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Cumberland County Public Library to Receive 2012 National Medal for Museum and Library Service


MEDIA CONTACT: Sara Neumann (202) 414-0788; sneumann@susandavis.com

Cumberland County Public Library to Receive 2012 National Medal for Museum and Library Service National Award Recognizes Exceptional Contributions to Cumberland County, N.C.

WASHINGTON (November 5, 2012) – The Institute of Museum and Library Services today announced Cumberland County Public Library in North Carolina as one of 10 recipients of this year’s National Medal for Museum and Library Service. The nation’s highest honor conferred on museums and libraries for service to the community, the National Medal celebrates institutions that make a difference for individuals, families, and communities. The National Medal will be presented at a celebration in Washington, D.C. on November 14.

Cumberland County Public Library & Information Center is a vital resource in a community distressed by the economic downturn. At the heart of workforce development, the library offers job skills training, entrepreneurial opportunities, one-on-one assistance, and job fairs. In addition, the library’s award-winning programs foster literacy, celebrate arts, culture, and their rich history. Given its proximity to Fort Bragg, the library lends support to military service members and their families.

“Museums and libraries serve as community gathering places and centers for lifelong learning, and we are very proud to name the Cumberland County Public Library one of this year’s National Medal for Museum and Library Service winners,” said Susan Hildreth, director, Institute of Museum and Library Services. “This year’s National Medal recipients demonstrate the many ways libraries and museums build strong communities and provide opportunities for individual success. Innovative programs are teaching residents how to read late in life, inspiring children to dream, using technology to offer e-books on the go, bridging cultural differences, and more.”

“The modern library transforms its community. Just by entering our doors a person gains the potential for intellectual growth. You have at your fingertips resources and experiences beyond the ordinary, all ready to be realized. Public libraries are also a positive force that keeps democracy vibrant,” said Cumberland County Public Library Director Jody Risacher. Willie Wright, a retired U.S. Army veteran who has volunteered at the library since 1987, will travel to Washington and share the impact Cumberland County Public Library has had on his life during the November 14 celebration.

This year’s honorees exemplify the nation’s great diversity of libraries and museums and include a school library, county library systems, individual libraries, children’s museums, an art museum, science centers, a park conservancy, and more, hailing from 10 different states. Medal winners are selected from nationwide nominations of institutions that demonstrate innovative approaches to public service, exceeding the expected levels of community outreach. For a complete list of 2012 recipients and to learn more about the 2012 National Medal winners, please visit www.imls.gov/medals.

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. Our mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. Our grantmaking, policy development, and research help libraries and museums deliver valuable services that make it possible for communities and individuals to thrive. To learn more, visit http://www.imls.gov or follow us on Twitter at http://twitter.com/us_imls @US_IMLS.