Wyoming Library Association Awards Honor Service to Libraries

Oct 2, 2015

At last week’s Wyoming Library Association (WLA) conference at Little America in Cheyenne, the organization honored several people for their service to and support of the state’s libraries.

Librarian of the Year:
Claire Francis, Uinta County Library

Claire Francis

(L to R) WLA Awards Chair Megan Herold, Uinta County Library Adult Services Librarian, Uinta County Library Director George Strawley

Claire is recognized for her devotion to and improvement of the Uinta Library in times of need. She repeatedly and willingly assumed responsibility when the community needed her. And she stepped up not for the credit or career, but wholeheartedly for the sake of serving.

The Librarian of the Year award recognizes the significant accomplishments of a library employee who has in the past year improved library service to customers, contributed to WLA and the profession, or contributed to the library’s community.

Bill Van Arsdale

Bill Van Arsdale

Distinguished Service Award:
Bill Van Arsdale,
University of Wyoming Libraries

A long-time University of Wyoming librarian, Bill has played a significant role in every improvement and innovation the research library system has experienced since the 1990s. Not only did he invent, create, and build a new system to better serve staff and students, but he is an incredible mentor for his colleagues.

The Distinguished Service Award recognizes the significant accomplishments of a library or foundation employee who has been part of the Wyoming library community for at least the past five years and their contributions toward the improvement of library service to customers, contributions to WLA and the profession, or contributions to the library’s community.

Milstead Award:
Learning Resource Center and Shannon Smith, University of Wyoming Libraries

Shannon Smith

Shannon Smith

The Learning Resource Center is devoted to increasing digital literacy. Shannon developed several curricula for middle school students to engage them in building their own computers and to increase their learning in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering and Mathematics). Students as well as teachers have greatly benefited from projects, technology, and teachings provided by the LRC and Shannon Smith.

The Milstead Award recognizes a Wyoming library that accomplished a significant project or service that benefits children and/or teens.

Representative Tim Stubson

Representative Tim Stubson

Community Supporter Award:
Representative Tim Stubson

Representative Tim Stubson is a strong supporter of Wyoming libraries. His leadership in the development and passage of HB 76 (Public library endowment challenge program amendments) during the 2015 legislative session was essential to its success. The amendment to the Wyoming Library Endowment Challenge allowed libraries to create fundraising partnerships, and it extended the deadline for libraries to raise endowment funds eligible for state match.

The Community Supporter Award recognizes a supporter of the library, who is not an employee or volunteer. The person can be an elected official, financial benefactor, or other individual.

Bonnie Cohee

Bonnie Cohee

Trustee/Volunteer Award:
Bonnie Cohee,
Campbell County Library System

Bonnie was one of the first volunteers to sign up when Campbell County started their volunteer program. She has worked 18 years and more than 2,600 hours for the children’s department, fulfilling any request they had for her. Many other organizations in Campbell County benefit from Bonnie’s volunteering commitment.

The Trustee/Volunteer Award recognizes an individual or a group that has accomplished outstanding volunteer service and accomplishments for a library


Vicki Wallace

Vicki Wallace

Unsung Heroine/Hero Award:
Vicki Wallace, Big Horn County Library

Vicki’s outstanding customer service on a daily basis, attention to detail, and the ability to not only thrive in the face of change, but to also forge on with an uncompromising positive spirit, has made her a beacon of light at the Basin Library in Big Horn County.

The Unsung Heroine/Hero Award recognizes someone who works in a library and is essential to the organization. This can be for a major or minor achievement, something unusual, or even a noble deed.


If you have a question about this or any other article, please contact us at statelibrary@wyo.gov

Browse by Category

Browse by Month

Similar Articles You May Like