Charlotte Mecklenburg Library named finalist for 2017 National Medal for Museum and Library Service

The Institute of Museum and Library Services today announced that Charlotte Mecklenburg Library is among the 15 library finalists for the 2017 National Medal for Museum and Library Service. Charlotte Mecklenburg Library won the honor in 2006 and was presented with the medal by First Lady Laura Bush in Washington, DC. (2006 Photo)

The National Medal is the nation’s highest honor given to museums and libraries for service to the community. For 23 years, the award has celebrated institutions that demonstrate extraordinary and innovative approaches to public service and are making a difference for individuals, families and communities. 

Finalists include 15 libraries and 15 museums. Discovery Place Museums is a finalist in the museum category.

“The 2017 National Medal Finalists represent the leading museums and libraries that serve as catalysts for change in their communities,” said Dr. Kathryn K. Matthew, Director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services. “It is our honor to recognize 30 notable institutions for their commitment to providing programs and services that improve the lives of individuals, families and communities.  We salute them and their valuable work in providing educational opportunities to their community and celebrate the power libraries and museums can have across the country.”

“We are grateful for this recognition, and thank IMLS for including our Library among this year’s Medal finalists,” said Lee Keesler, Library CEO. “We appreciate our customers and our community who allow us to serve them. Support from our donors, trustees, Library Foundation, Mecklenburg County, the state of North Carolina, Mecklenburg ABC and IMLS makes it possible for us to do this essential work. It’s a privilege to wake up every morning with the opportunity to improve lives, to build a stronger community and to serve and grow readers, leaders and learners.”

Finalists are chosen based on their significant and exceptional contributions to their communities. IMLS is encouraging community members who visited Charlotte Mecklenburg Library to share their story on the IMLS Facebook page. To share your story and learn more about how these institutions make an impact, please visit

National Medal winners will be announced later this spring. Representatives from winning institutions will travel to Washington, D.C., to be honored at the National Medal award ceremony.  

To see the full list of finalists and learn more about the National Medal, visit

MEDIA CONTACT: Cordelia Anderson(704) 416-0712,

About the Institute of Museum and Library ServicesThe Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) is celebrating its 20th Anniversary. The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 123,000 libraries and approximately 35,000 museums. Our mission is to inspire libraries and museums to advance innovation, lifelong learning, and cultural and civic engagement. Our grant making, 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 and follow us on FacebookTwitter and Instagram

About the Charlotte Mecklenburg LibraryCharlotte Mecklenburg Library is one of America’s leading urban public libraries, serving a community of over one million residents in Mecklenburg County, NC. Accessible and welcoming to all, the Library is committed to its mission to improve lives and build a stronger community.




Quick facts

Charlotte Mecklenburg Library won the honor in 2006 and was presented with the medal by First Lady Laura Bush in Washington, DC.
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Finalists include 15 libraries and 15 museums. Discovery Place Museums is a finalist in the museum category.
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