MLA Award Winners 2024

MLA Diversity Scholarship
The MLA Diversity Scholarship Award, funded by the membership of MLA, offers candidates from under-represented groups the opportunity to pursue a master’s degree in library and information science with financial support. This year two scholarships were awarded to Blair Black and Joseph Sioui.

Lenore F. Coral IAML Travel Grant
The Lenore F. Coral IAML Travel Grant is intended to help support travel and conference fees to attend an annual meeting of the International Association of Music Libraries, Archives and Documentation Centres. This year’s award goes to Dr. Andrea L. Beckendorf to support her attendance at the IAML 2024 Conference in Stellenbosch, South Africa.

Kevin Freeman Travel Grant
The Kevin Freeman Travel Grant is an annual grant to support travel and hotel expenses to attend the Music Library Association annual meeting. Recipients must be either a student, a recent graduate, or a colleague new to the profession. Recipients of this year’s grants are Jacob Mauldwin, Alison Nikitopoulos, and Emily Paulson. 

Left to right: Anthony Sharp, Emily Paulson, Alison Nikitopoulos, Jacob Mauldwin, Joseph Sioui


Paraprofessional and Public Librarian Travel Grant
The Paraprofessional and Public Librarian Travel Grant is given annually to support travel, hotel expenses, and conference registration fees to attend the Music Library Association annual meeting. Recipients must be working as a library paraprofessional or in a public library and are not required to be current members of the Music Library Association. Awardees will receive a complimentary one-year MLA membership at the regular membership level. This year’s awardees are Freja Cole, Alison Nikitopoulos, and Anthony Sharp. 

Vincent H. Duckles Award
The Vincent H. Duckles Award is given annually for the best book-length bibliography or other research tool in music. This year’s award goes to Lubomír Spurný & Ondřej Pivoda for their book, Pavel Haas: A Catalogue of the Music and Writings. Praha: Bärenreiter, 2022.

Upon receiving news of the award, Dr. Spurny wrote: Thank you very much for the pleasant information! I greatly appreciate the Vincent H. Duckles Award. I share this pleasure with the co-author Ondřej Pivoda, my former student and colleague. I am glad that the topic of Terezín music and the life fate of Pavel Haas are interesting topics even outside the borders of Central Europe.

Jessica Abbazio and Avery Boddie

Richard S. Hill Award
The Richard S. Hill award is an annual award for the best article on music librarianship or article of a music-bibliographic nature. This year, it is a special pleasure to announce that the winners are MLA’s own Jessica Abbazio, Avery Boddie, and Ellen Ogihara for their article “Music Libraries and an Expanding Repertory: Suggested Strategies for Building Diverse Music Library Collections” in Notes, volume 78, number 3.

Eva Judd O’Meara Award
The Eva Judd O’Meara Award is an annual award for the best review published in Notes. This year’s award goes to Dr. Ralph P. Locke for not one, not two, but three reviews of books on Bizet’s Carmen published in Notes volume 78, number 2 of March 2022.—Richard Langham Smith’s Bizet’s Carmen Uncovered (Boydell, 2021); Carmen and the Staging of Spain: Recasting Bizet’s Opera in the Belle Epoque. By Michael Christoforidis and Elizabeth Kertesz. (Oxford University Press, 2018), and Carmen Abroad: Bizet’s Opera on the Global Stage. Edited by Richard Langham Smith and Clair Rowden (Cambridge University Press, 2020).

Upon receiving notification about his work, after his surprise and thanks, Dr. Locke wrote: I’ve loved Notes ever since I discovered it, as a grad student, and also have enormous admiration for the music librarians I’ve been privileged to work with through the years, including Hans Lenneberg, Dena Epstein, Mary Wallace Davidson, Dan Zager, and now Jon Sauceda. I figure that writing for Notes is partly my way of . . . giving back, in gratitude for all the encouragement and assistance I have received (not to speak of the amazing behind-the-scenes work that librarians do to build their collections and so on)!

Anna Kijas

A. Ralph Papakhian Award
The A. Ralph Papakhian Award is given to recognize extraordinary service to the profession of music librarianship over a relatively short period of time. The Board MLA unanimously voted to confer the Papakhian award on Anna E. Kijas for her efforts to preserve the cultural heritage of Ukraine as it struggles against the Russian invasion through the co-founding of the organization Saving Ukrainian Cultural Heritage Online or SUCHO.

The effort launched in March of 2022, and by June 2022 more than 1,000 volunteers had successfully web archived over 50 terabytes of data encompassing more than 5,000 websites. Data from every type of institution was archived– museums, music academies, monasteries, archives, and local history programs, to name a few. Saved data is being stored to be returned to the Ukrainian people. In June 2023, SUCHO received a European Heritage Award, with the remark that, unlike other rapid-response projects, SUCHO stands out due to its remarkable scale and scope. Anna and her co-founders, Quinn Dombrowski (Stanford University) and Sebastian Majstorovic (European University Institute, Italy), have ensured that the priceless, fragile, and irreplaceable evidence that defines a culture can indeed be saved and restored. 

MLA Citation
The MLA Citation, the Association’s tribute for lifetime achievement, is awarded in recognition of distinguished service to music librarianship over a career. Earlier this year, the nominating committee recommended without reservation that Richard Griscom receive the Citation for his impact on the Association, the field, and the scholarly arena. He is a highly respected member of our profession whose remarkable service to the Music Library Association and our profession serves as an inspiration to those of us who have been privileged to know and work with him. 

Richard Griscom

Dick began his career as a music cataloger at Northwestern University and served as the music librarian at the universities of Louisville, Illinois, and Pennsylvania, where he taught and mentored students who are now successful music librarians. As a member of the Music Library Association, Dick’s distinguished service includes holding the positions of executive secretary, fiscal officer, and editor of Notes and the Index and Bibliography Series. He has served on and chaired countless committees, working groups, and task forces. When we were all wondering how to communicate in a brave new world of computers, Dick and Ralph Papakhian quietly established MLA-L, our association’s robust listserv.

Dick’s love of writing has resulted in numerous published articles and coauthored books. He shares the 2014 Vincent H. Duckles Award with David Lasocki for their book The Recorder: A Research and Information Guide. Possessed of finely honed editorial skills, he consistently produces flawless text. The author who has Dick’s gentle and wise guidance is truly fortunate. A performer as well, Dick is an orchestral percussionist and plays recorder in ensembles. 

In recognition of his extraordinary service to music librarianship, the Music Library Association is delighted to award the MLA Citation to our colleague, Richard Griscom. 

The Dena Epstein Award for Archival and Library Research in American Music was not awarded this year due to a lack of funding. The Carol June Bradley Award for Historical Research in Music Librarianship and the Walter Gerboth Award will be announced in late May of this year.

All photos courtesy of Gerry Szymanski.