Adell Bridgeford with the distinguished Northern Lights Library Network Life Achievement Award.

Long-time Laporte resident Adell Bridgeford was honored for 37 years of serving citizens in the region through her work in the media center of Walker-Hackensack-Akeley Public Schools.

At a meeting of educators, media specialists, and librarians at Lakes Country Service Cooperative Thursday night, Bridgeford received the distinguished Northern Lights Library Network Life Achievement Award.

“Adell is consistently mindful of serving our citizens by making books and educational materials available to students and citizens in the Walker area.  Most recently, she wrote and received a grant to bring Electronic Library of Minnesota (ELM) materials into WHA Public Schools, which she will be doing this coming fall.”

The Life Achievement Award from Northern Lights Library Network (NLLN) signifies a contribution to the NLLN region from a citizen who has given extraordinary service to libraries throughout a career.

Bridgeford’s work in libraries began at Walker-Hackensack High School, where she was a library aide her senior year.  After high school, she received her undergraduate degrees in from Bemidji State University in Library Science, Elementary Education and Biology. She completed her master’s degree as a Media Specialist in Information and Technology from Mankato State University.

She went on to serve Walker-Hackensack School District as media specialist for 37 years, beginning and ending her career there. Bridgeford dedicated 25 years to Spotlight on Books and served on the Northern Lights Library Network board for six years and is active in NLLN’s Train-the-Trainers program, most recently securing funds to being library resources back into WHA High School.

The award went to Carol Sibley, MSUM, in 2014; Barbara “Babs” Larson, Warroad, in 2015; and Peg Werner, Viking Library System, in 2017.

Northern Lights Library Network (NLLN) is a cooperative system of 280 academic, public, school, and special libraries in 23 counties in north central, northwest and west central Minnesota, that works at the grassroots level to bring together all types of libraries and collections in the region to discover, enhance, and share resources through administrative, technological, and educational support.

Northern Lights Library Network covers a geographic region of 26,950 square miles  (over one-quarter of the state) that includes the following 23 counties: Becker, Beltrami, Cass, Clay, Clearwater, Crow Wing, Douglas, Grant, Hubbard, Kittson, Mahnomen, Marshall, Norman, Otter Tail, Pennington, Polk, Pope, Red Lake, Roseau, Stevens, Traverse, Wadena and Wilkin.

The NLLN system consists of four regional public library systems; academic libraries on two campuses of the University of Minnesota at Crookston and Morris; Minnesota State Colleges and Universities System institutions including Minnesota State University Moorhead, Bemidji State University, Northland Community College, Minnesota State Community and Technical College on four campuses (Moorhead, Thief River Falls, Wadena, and Fergus Falls);  three tribal colleges, including Leech Lake, Red Lake, and White Earth; numerous private colleges; 185 school libraries (including public and charter schools, Bureau of Indian Affairs schools, and private schools) in 79 school districts; and a rich variety of special libraries in museums, county law libraries, hospitals, and early childhood programs.

The network reduces duplication of services by enhancing coordination among libraries.  As resources are shared among libraries, services are expanded, and efficiency is improved.  As a result, libraries can offer services or programs they may not otherwise be able to afford. All of the work performed by NLLN affects the direct service of its members, and has an exponential effect on its client base.  A primary goal of NLLN is to bring resources from the state and national level to the local level.  Another goal is to discover resources within the region and share them universally.

Northern Lights Library Network is funded by the Minnesota Legislature through the Minnesota Department of Education.

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