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GSLIS welcomes nominations for annual intellectual freedom award


The faculty of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, seeks nominations for the Robert B. Downs Intellectual Freedom Award. The deadline for nominations is October 1, 2014.

Given annually, the award acknowledges individuals or groups who have furthered the cause of intellectual freedom, particularly as it impacts libraries and information centers and the dissemination of ideas. Granted to those who have resisted censorship or efforts to abridge the freedom of individuals to read or view materials of their choice, the award may be in recognition of a particular action or a long-term interest in and dedication to the cause of intellectual freedom.

The Robert B. Downs Intellectual Freedom Award was established in 1969 by the GSLIS faculty to honor Dean Emeritus Downs, a champion of intellectual freedom, on the occasion of his 25th anniversary as director of the School.

Libraries Unlimited, an imprint of ABC-CLIO Publishing Company, provides an honorarium to the recipient and co-hosts the reception in honor of the recipient. The reception and award ceremony for the 2014 Downs Intellectual Freedom Award will take place in January 2015 during the American Library Association’s Midwinter Meeting in Chicago, Illinois.

Letters of nomination and documentation about the nominee should be sent by email to with a copy to or in paper form to Terry Weech, Associate Professor, GSLIS, 501 East Daniel Street, Champaign, IL 61820 by October 1, 2014. Questions should be directed to Associate Professor Terry Weech at