Robert P. Doyle receives 2009 Freedom to Read Foundation Roll of Honor Award

Freedom to Read Foundation

Robert P. Doyle, executive director of the Illinois Library Association (ILA), is the recipient of the 2009 Freedom to Read Foundation (FTRF) Roll of Honor Award.

Doyle, who is serving his first term on the FTRF Board of Directors, was reelected to a second term in April’s trustee election. He currently serves with 2008 Roll of Honor Award recipient Burt Joseph as co-chair of the FTRF 40th Anniversary Celebration Committee; the 40th anniversary will be celebrated on July 12, 2009 at ALA’s Annual Conference in Chicago.

In addition to his position at ILA, Doyle serves as editor of the Banned Books Resource Guide, a compendium of thousands of books that have been subject to censorship challenges. Prior to joining ILA, Doyle served as director of ALA’s International Relations Office and before that, as deputy director of the ALA Office for Intellectual Freedom, under Judith Krug’s leadership.

“I am thrilled to announce Bob Doyle as this year’s Roll of Honor awardee,” said Roll of Honor Committee chair Kent Oliver. “Bob’s reputation as a fierce advocate of intellectual freedom is known throughout the library world. He has successfully shepherded ILA through quite a few legislative attempts to restrict intellectual freedom, and under his leadership, ILA has trained countless librarians on their rights and responsibilities under the First Amendment.”

“Bob’s indefatigable work putting together the 40th Anniversary Gala has been an impressive thing to watch,” said FTRF Acting Executive Director Deborah Caldwell-Stone. “Thanks to him, we will have a truly wonderful evening to celebrate FTRF, the McCormick Freedom Museum and, of course, the life and legacy of our mutual hero Judith Krug.”

The award will be presented at the 2009 ALA Annual Conference during its Opening General Session from 5:30-7 p.m. on Saturday, June July 11, at McCormick Place.

The Freedom to Read Foundation Roll of Honor was established in 1987 to recognize and honor those individuals who have contributed substantially to FTRF through adherence to its principles and/or substantial monetary support. FTRF was founded in 1969 to promote and defend the right of individuals to freely express ideas and to access information in libraries and elsewhere. FTRF fulfills its mission through the disbursement of grants to individuals and groups, primarily for the purpose of aiding them in litigation, and through direct participation in litigation dealing with freedom of speech and of the press.