The Mid-Atlantic Chapter presents two awards that are offered for its members to engage in professional development by attending conferences and meetings organized by the Society and the Chapter.

Caroline Backlund Award

This award was established in 2002 and is named in honor of Caroline Backlund (1920-2016) who had a distinguished career as an art librarian, educator, and author. Mrs. Backlund, a long-time chapter member, received the ARLIS/NA Distinguished Service Award for her contributions to the Society in 1989. The Backlund Award is intended to help student members of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter become more involved in ARLIS/NA at the national level. It is maintained through donations from chapter members. The chapter invites contributions in any amount, year-round.  The amount of the award is $750. The winner of the Backlund Award also serves on the Travel Awards Committee for one year following the award.

Washington Art Library Resources Committee Award

The Washington Art Library Resources Committee (WALRC) comprised research libraries in the greater Washington, DC area. In 1981, WALRC published Art serials: union list of art periodicals and serials in research libraries in the Washington D.C. metropolitan area (edited by Carolyn S. Larson) which proved to be a very useful and popular publication. In 2018 WALRC, which had been inactive for many years, disbanded and the funds from the sale of the publication was transferred to the Chapter. The WALRC Award is intended for professional (i.e non-student) members of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter become more involved in ARLIS/NA at the national level. Funding for the award is provided by income from WALRC invested accounts. The amount of the award is $1,000.


Award applicants must be a current member of ARLIS/NA and must be a current member of the ARLIS/NA Mid-Atlantic Chapter. Applications are encouraged from those who do not have institutional or outside funding or have never attended the national conference with additional consideration given to applications for members who will be participating in the conference as speakers, presenters, or in leadership positions.

Following the conference, the winner must submit a brief written report to the Travel Awards Committee within 30 days and is encouraged to make a presentation to the chapter membership at the next meeting and/or through a posting on the chapter web site.


[The deadline for applications for 2021 has passed.]

Applicants for the awards should submit a current résumé or curriculum vitae and a letter describing the benefits anticipated from conference attendance, their specific role in the conference (if applicable), and a travel budget including any expected funding from the applicant’s institution or other sources.

Please send applications to:

Gregory P. J. Most
Chair, ARLIS/NA Mid-Atlantic Chapter Travel Awards Committee

Previous Backlund Award Recipients

  • 2021 K. Sarah Ostrach, Samuel H. Kress Fellowship in Art Librarianship at the Robert B. Hass Family Arts Library at Yale University
  • 2020 Claralyn Burt, Intern, Department of Image Collections of the National Gallery of Art Library
  • 2019 Jennifer Page, Library Manager, National Museum of Women in the Arts
  • 2018 Chris Needham, Administrative Assistant, US Department of Defense
  • 2017 Siân Evans, Instruction Librarian, Maryland Institute College of Art
  • 2016 Sarah Osborne Bender, Visual Resources Curator, American University
  • 2015 Megan Halsband, Reference Librarian, Library of Congress
  • 2014 Daniel Moore, Training and Library Solutions Coordinator, Atlas Systems
  • 2013 Eden Orelove, Student Library Technician, National Gallery of Art
  • 2012 Heather Slania, Director, Library and Research Center, National Museum of Women in the Arts
  • 2011 Emily Hunter, MLS student, University of Maryland
  • 2010 Kristina Keogh, Reference Librarian for the Arts, Virginia Commonwealth University
  • 2009 Stephanie Moye, Serials Librarian, Smithsonian Institution Libraries, American Art/Portrait Gallery Branch Library
  • 2008 Rebecca Cooper, Manager of Reader Services, Society of the Cincinnati, Washington D.C.
  • 2007 Anne H. Simmons, Assistant Librarian, Library and Research Center, National Museum of Women in the Arts
  • 2006 Kathy Woodrell, Reference Specialist, Decorative Arts, Humanities and Social Sciences Division, Library of Congress
  • 2005 Lucie Stylianopoulos, Information Services Librarian, Fiske Kimball Fine Arts Library, University of Virginia
  • 2004 Phyllis Graham, Librarian, American School of Classical Studies in Athens, Greece
  • 2003 Heather Ball, Art and Architecture Librarian, Art and Architecture Library, Virginia Tech

Previous WALRC Award Recipients

  • 2021 Mary Wassermann, Former Special Collections Librarian, Philadelphia Museum of Art
  • 2020 Anna Boutin-Cooper, Research & Visual Arts Librarian, Shadek-Fackenthal Library, Franklin & Marshall College


Contributions are solicited annually, and the Chapter relies on your generous support to replenish the award funds each year. Please consider making a contribution in any amount. Thank you!