Humanities Commission Announces New Home For Minnesota Book Awards

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The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library to take the lead.

The Minnesota Humanities Commission is pleased to announce the new sponsor of the annual Minnesota Book Awards. Effective immediately, a Capital City consortium of The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library, the Saint Paul Public Library, and the office of the Mayor of Saint Paul will begin coordinating the annual awards program that recognizes, honors, and celebrates the best in Minnesota literature. The Friends will take the lead in coordinating the Awards for the Capital group.

“The Saint Paul Friends has been actively involved in the Book Awards since its inception,” said Stanley Romanstein, president and CEO, Minnesota Humanities Commission. “The organization is uniquely positioned to do great things with this annual celebration,” he said.

“The Humanities Commission has been a great home to the Book Awards, bringing strong organization, legitimacy, and statewide recognition to the Awards,” said Peter Pearson, president of The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library. “As the founding organization of the Book Awards, we are pleased to bring them back home and are committed to building on the legacy of the Minnesota Humanities Commission.

“We also look forward to partnering with other organizations, including the Minnesota Library Association (MLA) and the Metropolitan Library Service Agency (MELSA) to ensure that the celebration of the Book Awards continues to reach people across Minnesota,” Pearson said.

The Humanities Commission announced last month that it would no longer sponsor the awards, in an effort to focus its programming while meeting budgetary obligations. In the weeks following the announcement, Humanities Commission staff met with representatives from several agencies that expressed interest in conducting the awards.

“The Capital City consortium led by The Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library is the best home for the Awards,” Romanstein said. “While we’re sorry to part with the Book Awards, we’re looking forward to working with The Friends to make the transition as smooth as possible,” said Romanstein.


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