Jesuit High School librarian Gregory Lum was chosen as the Young Adults Library Services Association (YALSA), a division of the American Library Association, Volunteer of the Year for his outstanding service to the goals, mission, and work of YALSA in 2020.
"Gregory Lum's efforts made far-reaching impacts across our organization, and his hard work and dedication will benefit librarians who serve teens and teens themselves for many years to come," wrote Jessica Hilbun Schwartz, YALSA Committee Chair.
Over the past two years, Gregory worked with YALSA and the American Library Association to create the Joann Sweetland Lum Memorial Grant to help libraries promote literacy in creative and innovative ways.
After his proposal was approved last winter, Gregory volunteered his time and energy to write over 300 personal letters to family and friends to raise the necessary funds. In the following months, he collected over $30,000 for this new grant named in honor of his late wife, Joann, who was an avid user and advocate for libraries.
"I was shocked by everyone's generosity," said Gregory. " It is a true blessing to award this grant in honor of my late wife Joann. I am thankful for all of the monetary donations from family and friends to promote literacy across the country for years to come."
Gregory has been the Library Director at Jesuit High School since 2003. In addition to serving on national and state library committees, he regularly volunteers his time to lead Encounters and other community building activities for Jesuit students.
"Gregory's award is well-deserved," said Associate Librarian Erin Fitzpatrick-Bjorn. "He continually aims to improve the quality of the education we provide here at Jesuit and the quality of library services across the country. I learn from him every day. He is definitely a man for others personally and professionally, and I am very proud to work alongside him."