Navigating Book Challenges in Rural America

Challenges to books, displays, and other library resources are on the rise in all areas of our country, including rural areas. While it may seem that a “one size fits all” approach can be used in all libraries, it’s important to understand the differences in our communities and consider the best approach when working through a book challenge. 

In this new webinar, Heather Hutto and MacKenzie Ledley will share knowledge and perspective from their experience living and working in rural areas. They’ll provide insight into successfully addressing topics of censorship, intellectual freedom, and privacy in small and rural communities.

By participating in this event, libraries workers will learn:

  • How to factor in differences in community location, size, and needs when addressing book challenges.
  • Effective strategies to directly address challenges at school and public libraries.
  • How library board members, trustees, and community members can support libraries and library workers in their mission to serve the information needs of everyone in the community.
Registration for this event is included in the Defending Intellectual Freedom: Facing Challenges and Fighting Back bundle.

About the Instructors

During an internship in San Francisco, Heather Hutto noticed several key gaps between the technology and information literacy levels of Bay Area residents compared to those back home in rural Oklahoma. After a decade of service in tribal-rural public schools and libraries in northeastern Oklahoma, she now serves as executive director of a tribal-rural public library in northeastern Oklahoma serving 12,000 people. In this role she tries to bridge digital inclusivity gaps and foster awareness about this, and intersecting issues.

MacKenzie Ledley has served as the Executive Director at the Pulaski County Public Library since 2009. She holds an M.L.S. from Indiana University and believes that any community, including rural communities, can embrace intellectual freedom. MacKenzie has served on a variety of IFRT committees and was a past co-chair of the Legislative Committee for the Indiana Library Federation.

This event will be hosted in Zoom. Automatic captions will be enabled for this event. This event will be recorded, and registrants will receive access to the recording within a day after the event ends.

If you have questions or requests regarding accessibility, contact us at ce@ala.org or at 312-280-5100.