OLA President's Award for Exceptional Achievement

The President's Award for Exceptional Achievement acknowledges an outstanding action or contribution that has in a major or unique way enhanced or furthered librarianship in Ontario. The selection is at the full discretion of the President of the OLA. Awards are only given if there is something of true historic significance to recognize.

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2017 Award Recipient


Forest of Reading®

Ontario Library Association
The Forest of Reading® is one of the most important and successful programs offered by OLA, engaging members, partners, the media, and readers in a way that few other activities do. This award is for OLA staff, from former executive director Larry Moore who was an early champion, to Meredith Tutching, who now directs the Forest programs full-time. It is for the OLA divisions, the Ontario School Library Association, the Ontario Public Library Association and l'Association des bibliotheques de l'Ontario-Franco, who championed the programs and brought them to the heart of what we do. But most of all, it is for the volunteers. Ever year, committees of OLA members are formed to steer the programs and to read the submitted books to create a shortlist of nominees. At the Festival, a ton of volunteers are on hand to greet school groups, give directions, and make the festivities more welcoming and special. And let's not forget the readers. Some chosen students even get to come to the Festival and introduce their favourite nominated author! And who recruits these readers? School and public library staff, who form voting groups, buy the books, and organize special activities. We couldn't do it without them. Todd Kyle, 2016 OLA President

2016 Award Recipient


OLA Governance Review Committee

Ontario Library Association
For the past two years, a team of truly dedicated individuals has generously devoted their time and expertise to comprehensively review and strengthen the Association’s governance system, structures and processes. Great teams don't just happen. It takes special group of individuals to coalesce, congeal and fit together like pieces of the puzzle. The Governance Review team had its members spread out across the province, which was great in terms of geographical representation. Every month we would schedule an hour-long teleconference, usually late in the afternoon and oftentimes, it would be woefully insufficient. The discussion would continue past the allotted time and sometimes even went beyond the 2-hour mark but everyone hung in there until the business of the meeting was completed. Each member came to the “virtual” table with a unique perspective along with distinctive set of life- experiences. Sharing their thoughts, questioning and constructively contributing not only provided team members with a more nuanced analysis of a situation; it also allowed them to expand on each others’ ideas creating an engaged and enlivened meeting environment. The synergy was magic and a joy to be apart of. Each and every person stepped up without hesitation to research, draft, revise and deliberate over governance models, principles and endless policies. With the focus on a common goal and a shared understanding of the task, they committed their time, talent and expertise to complete a phenomenal amount of work that will serve the Association well, both now and in the future.  Jane Hilton, 2015 OLA President