Welcome to LJ’s 2021 Movers & Shakers

It is my honor and pleasure to congratulate the 46 people honored as part of the Movers class of 2021. Since the inaugural Movers & Shakers, named in 2002, this marks the 19th year that LJ has spotlighted a group of individuals who are moving the library field forward as a profession. Over the years, Movers have come from the ranks of both degreed librarians and non-degreed library workers, as well as volunteers and vendors, and have come from academic, public, school, and special libraries settings—occasionally even outside of traditional libraries altogether.

This year’s class of Movers has had little choice but to embrace change and run with it. And they’ve certainly risen to the challenge. Their stories and so many more offer actionable examples to replicate and adapt across a range of library environments and communities. I hope you will find them as inspiring as I do.

This year’s Movers are doing their groundbreaking work in the middle of a pandemic, at a time when providing basic, much-needed services often felt like—and was—an exceptional achievement. In recognizing those who were able to go above and beyond this year, we want also to hold space for those who overcame illness, grief, fear, financial losses, and more to deliver core library services in new, safer ways. The point of naming Movers & Shakers in the middle of a crisis is not to say that everyone can or should be expected to deliver exceptional results despite these circumstances. Rather, it is that learning from those who were able to do so can make their advances that much more achievable for the next person.

While I’ve been lucky to be part of the Movers process since I joined LJ in 2012, this is the first year I’ve had the opportunity to introduce the Movers, because former LJ editor-in-chief, project manager, and Movers cofounder Francine Fialkoff has decided to step back from helming the process, though she’s stayed on as an editor. My thanks go out to her, as well as to new project coordinator Amy Rea; LJ’s art team, who came up with a creative solution to missing photoshoots from canceled conferences; and all the writers and editors, inside the LJ team and out. And of course to sponsor Baker & Taylor, whose support makes this work possible.

I’d also like to extend my heartfelt thanks to our newly added panel of external judges: Anna Avalos, Elizabeth Joseph, Cicely Lewis, JJ Pionke, and Veronda Pitchford. Drawn from previous classes of Movers, they brought a fresh perspective and hands-on librarianship experience, not only to selecting individuals, but to improving the process itself. Their contributions will make our future work even stronger, and that’s what Movers is all about.

Because library work is never done, I want to close by saying, it’s not too early to start thinking about who you want to nominate as a 2022 Mover & Shaker. We could not do this without our readers and their nominations of the colleagues whose work to change libraries they admire and respect.—Meredith Schwartz, editor-in-chief

More Info






We are currently offering this content for free. Sign up now to activate your personal profile, where you can save articles for future viewing