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CLA Young Adult Services Award
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About the award | Current award recipient | Past award recipients

The CLA Young Adult Services Award of Achievement recognizes the accomplishments of an exceptional librarian or paraprofessional working in young adult services in a school or public library.  The award is sponsored by the Bay Area Young Adult Librarians (BAYA).

All members of the library community are invited to take this opportunity to recognize a deserving young adult services colleague who has made significant contribution in the area of young adult services.

A maximum of one award is given each year. The CLA Young Adult Services Award recipient is honored at the CLA annual conference. The winner will also receive $500 and a one-year membership to BAYA.


2017 Award Recipient

Matthew Lorenzo, Cupertino Library - Santa Clara County Library District

Matt Lorenzo is the teen services librarian at Cupertino Library, member of the Santa Clara County Library District (SCCLD). Early in his career, Matt spent six years working in elementary and high schools before receiving his MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh (Hail Pitt!). Since beginning work as a Teen Librarian, Matt has been the lead developer of several large-scale, teen-centered projects including the Santa Cruz Public Library’s Teen Battle of the Bands (1,2,3), Woodland Library’s book club for teen guys, “Book Dudes,” and the Cupertino Library’s Green Teen Garden Project, a hands-on gardening program that fosters teenagers’ gardening skills and in which all vegetables grown are donated to people in need within the local Cupertino community.

Matt served as the President of the Bay Area Young Adult Librarians Association (BAYA) and is also a published writer for the Voice Of Youth Advocates (VOYA) magazine. He is the creator of
CU Hacks, the first overnight hackathon for teenagers in a public library venue; this very successful program is now in its third year of operation. Matt’s teen programs have been featured in both Library Journal and School Library Journal, and he is a featured speaker in LJ’s professional development course, “Coding Program Workshop.”  In 2015, Matt was the recipient of the SCCLD’s “Employee Excellence Award” and Santa Clara County’s “Outstanding Employee of the Year Award.” 

*Photo caption: Matt Lorenzo and his Teen Advisory Board members. From l to r - Maithilee Kanthi, Renee Cai, Matt Lorenzo, Aakash Adesara, Kanalya Ari.

Award Information

Application period
The 2018 award nomination period has closed.


  • Nominees nominated for the award are required to be CLA members.
  • Nominees must have worked for an entire year in a California library.
  • Nominees must submit three professional recommendations by nomination deadline. 
    • Recommendations should be emailed to Shana Sojoyner. When submitting recommendations by email, please label your files as follows: YAServices_nominee last name_ProfessionalReferences

How to Nominate

  • Nominators are not required to be CLA members however, if a nomination is made by a non-member, the nomination must be endorsed by a CLA member. If you need assistance in finding a CLA member to endorse your nomination, please contact the CLA office no later than two weeks prior to the deadline.
  • Nominators should submit a statement of no more than 500 words, identifying the nominee's achievements and briefly describing the impact of the achievements on those areas of the library profession that encompass young adult services.
  • Nominators may also write a Letter of Recommendation provided they are not nominating themselves.
  • If the nominator is also writing a Letter of Recommendation, the nomination statement may be a paraphrased version of the letter.

Criteria for selection are outstanding achievement in all of the following areas:

  • Nominees must have planned and implemented an outstanding, creative and innovative service for young adults in grades 6th-12th between January 1 and December 31, 2017.
  • Nominees must have created a program that has resulted in a positive impact in their library, resulting in positive community building for teens.
  • The nominee’s program or service must model best practices for teen programming, as outlined in YALSA's programming guidelines found at

Further information

  • The CLA Young Adult Services Award is coordinated by the Bay Area Young Adult Librarians (BAYA) and CLA's Youth Services Interest Group (YSIG).
  • BAYA/YSIG may consider only those individuals who have been formally nominated for the award.
  • BAYA/YSIG reserves the right not to give an award if a qualified candidate is not found.
  • Award recipients will be asked to submit a photograph to be used in award publicity.
  • Nominations and all supplementary materials must be received by 5:00PM PDT on the last day of the nomination period.
  • If you have questions, please contact Brandi Bette Smead, BAYA President at

Nominate now!

2018 BAYA/YSIG Selection Committee Members:

Christina Appleberry, San Jose Public Library
Michelle Clark, Redwood City Public Library
Don Phillips, Santa Clara County Library District
Brandi Bette Smead, Benicia Public Library


Erik Berman, Alameda County Library
Rachel Kitzmann, Los Angeles Public Library