New Year Honour – OBE

I’m excited at being able to congratulate my friend and colleague Kathy Lemaire for her outstanding achievement in earning one of the great awards in the UK which honours personal and professional contributions to society!

Kathy Lemaire, the Chief Executive of the School Library Association in the UK has been awarded an OBE in the Queen’s New Year Honours List for services to education.

Kathy has been at SLA since 1997, and was previously Principal Librarian for the Oxfordshire Schools Library Service.

On hearing of the award Kathy said

I consider this honour really to be an acknowledgement of the work of the SLA and the importance of school libraries rather than a purely personal one, so it is for all of those hardworking school librarians at the sharp end too!

I have worked (and played) with Kathy as a member of the Executive of the International Association of School Librarianship. I also had the wonderful opportunity to meet many of the hard working and enthusiastic librarians in the UK when I attended and presented a session at their annual weekend conference held in Bath, UK : 23-25 June, 2006.

Kathy has always been a gentle, kind, and professionally strong quiet achiever, putting the interests of school libraries and her association first in all her endeavours. A wonderful acknowledgement of her career. Congratulations Kathy.

So work and play combine in the picture below – a glorious evening cruise in Lisbon, Portugal, as part of the IASL annual conference in 2006. On the left is Kathy Lemaire, and on the right is Karen Bonnano, an Australian from Brisbane (and another generous and strong library professional) who manages the IASL Secretariat.