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President, American Library Association (ALA)
Molly Raphael is 2011-12 President of the American Library Association. As ALA president, Raphael is the chief elected officer of the oldest and largest library organization in the world. Established in 1876, the American Library Association has nearly 61,000 members. Its mission is to provide leadership for the development, promotion and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.
Raphael, a public librarian for 40 years, directed two urban public libraries: Multnomah County Library (Portland, Oregon, 2003-2009) and the District of Columbia Public Library (1997-2003).
While at MCL, she received the Arthur Flemming Civil Rights Award for increasing diversity in library employment, collections and programming. In 2009, MCL received the Institute for Museum and Library Services’ National Medal, the nation's highest honor for libraries.
While at DCPL, Raphael held numerous positions. She led efforts to create an adult literacy program, expand services for at-risk children and families, and implement new technologies.
Raphael served on the ALA Executive Board and Council and as president of the Library Leadership and Management Association and DC Library Association. She founded ALA’s unit on library services for the deaf community in the 1970’s.
Raphael earned her MLS from Simmons College, receiving its 2006 Alumni Achievement Award, and BA from Oberlin College.