Dr. Lian Ruan is the recipient of the CALA 2018 - 2019 Distinguished Service Award

Dear CALA Members:

The CALA Best Service Subcommittee is pleased to announce that Dr. Lian Ruan, life member of CALA and the Director of Illinois Fire Service Institute Library, is selected as the recipient for the 2019 CALA Distinguished Service Award!!!

Dr. Ruan has been dedicated to Chinese-American librarianship throughout her career.  She has committed to the growth and integrity of CALA as a strong ethnic professional association through her outstanding leadership, passionate activism and professional involvement.  Among her many contributions, below are listed her major accomplishments during her tenure as CALA Vice-President, President and Executive Director.

·         Reinstated CALA’s tax-exempt status after automatic revocation for 10 years with the State of Illinois.

  • Created CALA 2015-2020 strategic plan.
  • Established CALA ethical code of conduct.
  • Increased CALA membership at historic high.
  • Nurtured and mentored young and new CALA members.
  • Created an archive system to store CALA’s historical files.

·         Created a healthier organizational environment legally, financially, and ethically.


Dr. Lian has been an outstanding leader and played many leadership roles in organizations both nationally and locally.  She has chaired many committees and taken numerous key member positions since she entered the profession, such as:

·         CALA Executive Director, 2016-2019, President, 2015-2016, President-elect /Vice-President, 2013-2015,

·         IFLA: Information Literacy Section Standing Committee, 2017-2021,

·         JCLC: JCLC Steering, and Publicity and Public Relations Committees, 2016-2018,

·         ALA: Committee on Nomination for the 2019 ALA Election, 2018-2019; Task Force on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, 2014-2016,

·         Peta Phi Mu, Alpha Chapter:  President, 2018-2019.

Of particular note are Dr. Ruan’s prolific publications, numerous presentations, dedicated research and teaching endeavors and community services that recapitulate her contributions to Chinese-American Librarianship, cultural diversity and continuing education.  As a dedicated library professional, Dr. Ruan has worked on many grants and obtained over 20 grant awards with a total amount over six hundred thousand dollars.  Dr. Ruan has been recognized both nationally and internationally and received 23 awards and honors for her commitment to excellence in the profession, including the 2017 Illinois Academic Librarian of the year Award, the 2015-2017 National Medal for Museum and Library Service and 2016 CALA President Recognition Award.  

Please join us in congratulating Dr. Ruan on her being selected as the recipient of this long belated Award, and applauding her achievements at 2019 CALA Awards Reception in Washington D.C. during 2019 ALA Annual Conference.     


CALA Best Service Award Committee (2018-2019)

Leping He, Co-Chair (leping.he@asu.edu)

Hanrong Wang, Co-Chair (hwang@jsu.edu)

Daniel Xiao (danxiao@tamu.edu)

Li Sun (Li Sun (lisun@rutgers.edu)

Wei Peng (pengweilac@gmail.com)