The Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the Art Libraries Society of North America

Category: Awards (Page 1 of 9)

Chapter Announces 2021 Conference Award Winners

The Mid-Atlantic Chapter of the Art Libraries Society of North America is pleased to announce its conference award winners for 2021.

Caroline Backlund Award

This award was established in 2002 and is named in honor of Carline 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 in 1989 for her contributions to the Society. The Backlund Award is intended to help student members of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter become more involved in the ARLIS/NA at the national level. Funding for the award is provided by contributions of members of the chapter.

The 2021 Caroline Backlund Award recipient is K. Sarah Ostrach, currently the holder of the 2020/21 Samuel H. Kress Fellowship in Art Librarianship at the Robert B. Hass Family Arts Library at Yale University. K. Sarah is a 2021 graduate of the College of Information Studies at the University of Maryland. She is an alumnus of Brown University and received her MA in East Asian Art from Sotheby’s Institute of Art. While studying for her MLIS, K. Sarah worked as a student technician at the National Gallery of Art Library as well as a teaching assistant at UMD.

On May 13 at the Montreal conference, Ms. Ostrach will be co-presenting with Claralyn Burt (Gonzaga University) at Session 28: Professional Development IV — Collaborative Institutional Problem-Solving: Exploring DEI Initiatives and Five Case Studies Across Libraries and Museums. Their presentation is called “Fostering Collaborative Institutional Cultures through DEI Initiatives.”

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 members of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter to become more involved with ARLIS/NA at the national level. Funding for the award is provided by income from WALRC invested accounts.

The 2021 WALRC Award is presented to Mary Wassermann. A long-time member of ARLIS/NA and the Mid-Atlantic chapter, Mary is the former Collection Services Librarian at the Philadelphia Museum of Art. She has served ARLIS/NA as moderator of the Collection Development SIG and the Visual Resources Division, and as a member of the Public Policy Committee.

Congratulations to the award recipients. I would like to thank the members of the Travel Awards Committee for their work; Anna Boutin-Cooper (Franklin and Marshall College), Claralyn Burt (Gonzaga University), and Yuki Hibben (Virginia Commonwealth University) as well as officers of the chapter for their guidance in reimagining the travel award for a virtual conference.

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

Deadline Extension for Conference Travel Awards

The deadline for submissions of applications for the Chapter awards to attend the virtual ARLIS/NA conference in Montreal has been extended to April 5th.   The Chapter encourage its members and students to apply!


The Mid-Atlantic Chapter of ARLIS/NA encourages its members to participate in the 2021 Montreal conference. Since no members will be physically traveling, the travel awards will be re-imagined to support participation.  The Chapter will offer multiple Backlund and WALRC awards that will cover the cost of conference registration. The criteria for selection will be simplified this year.

Caroline Backlund Award

This award was established in 2002 and is named in honor of Carline 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 in 1989 for her contributions to the Society. The Backlund award is intended to help student members of the Mid-Atlantic Chapter become more involved in the ARLIS/NA at the national level.

There will be six Caroline Backlund Awards to encourage student participation.

Criteria: Students must be members of the chapter and enrolled at least part-time in a library/information science school. Weight will be given to students who are participating in the conference as a presenter or leader of a group. Students should submit a brief letter stating the benefits of attending the conference.

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 to become more involved with ARLIS/NA at the national level. Funding for the award is provided by income from WALRC invested accounts.

There will be ten Washington Art Library Resources Committee Awards:

  • Four awards will be presented to unemployed members who are searching for jobs.
  • Four awards will be present to members who have been impacted by furloughs, reduction in hours, pay cuts or in any other way related to the pandemic.
  • Two awards will be made to non-member students.  The award will also provide a  one-year membership in ARLIS/NA.

Criteria:  Preference will be given to chapter members who are participating in the conference or are members of committees or other leadership groups where their participation is necessary. Applicants for the student awards should state the impact of membership in ARLIS/NA will have on their chosen profession. Other applicants should briefly explain in their letter how they qualify for the award.

Applications should be emailed to the Travel Awards Committee Chair by April 5th.

Mid-Atlantic Travel Awards Committee

Gregory P. J. Most, National Gallery of Art, Chair
Anna Boutin-Cooper, Franklin and Marshall College
Claralyn Burt, formerly University of Maryland I-School
Yuki Hibben, Virginia Commonwealth University

« Older posts