About NHLA

NHLA is committed to networking, professional growth and advocating for the future of New Hampshire libraries. NHLA is a professional association of library personnel, trustees, and library supporters whose purpose is: 

  • To advance the interests of its members through advocacy on library issues and increasing public awareness of library service. 
  • To support the professional development of its members. 
  • To foster communication and encourage the exchange of ideas among its members. 
  • To promote participation in the association and its sections.  


From the President

Dear NHLA Members,

With the American Library Association (ALA) in the news, we know some of you may be getting questions from the public. As you probably know, Amy Lappin is the NHLA representative to ALA, so our past-President, Denise van Zanten and I got together with her to create some talking points that we hope you will find useful.

Established in 1876, the ALA is a non-partisan, non-profit professional organization that supports library and information services. Members consist of libraries, librarians, library workers, library trustees and library supporters. 

The American Library Association:

  • Is not a governing body and has no authority over the funding and governance of New Hampshire Libraries, which are governed by their local board of Library Trustees; 
  • Provides information about best practices to its membership;
  • Serves all demographics and ideologies in our free democratic society;
  • Is governed by a council and executive board elected by the membership, including a representative from the NHLA; 
  • Supports our country's constitutional First Amendment Rights to free speech, thought and opinion;
  • Promotes the Freedom to Read and Library Bill of Rights;
  • Publishes professional publications that many of us use including American Libraries, Information Technology and Libraries, KnowledgeQuest, Public Libraries, Reference and User Services Quarterly, and Young Adult Library Services;
  • Offers discounts for members on publications, workshops, conferences, webinars (professional development); and
  • Creates public relations campaigns that promote library services for all libraries to use.

ALA advocates for federal and state funding for libraries. ALA membership also gives New Hampshire libraries a path to collaborate with libraries and librarians all around the country. This is particularly important when there are issues affecting us all. For example, during COVID-19 shutdowns ALA's Chapter Relations Office provided many opportunities for us all to share and learn about ways to continue good customer services with our patrons and ways to assist our colleagues with the unprecedented challenges of a pandemic.

If a member of your library community has more questions about the role of ALA as it relates to New Hampshire libraries, please do not hesitate to contact me and/or Amy. My email address is president@nhlibrarians.org, and I can be reached by phone at 603-573-6402. 

All my best,

Mindy Atwood, 2023 NHLA President

August 21, 2023

News and Events

View Upcoming Events Here

It's Time To Update Your NHLA Membership!

Your NHLA Membership term runs from January 1 - December 31. Any individual associated with libraries in New Hampshire may join, from library staff to Trustees to members of Friends organizations and from students just embarking on their Masters in Library Science to librarians who have enjoyed a long career in the field and our library vendors that support our work. 

To join or renew your membership, please register online here. 

Membership in NHLA provides our 600+ members with

...support through our advocacy efforts in the state legislature to ensure that New Hampshire's libraries receive necessary suport and resources from the NHSL and to have important local library issues recognized on the state level when necessary;

...information through regular updates on natoinal and state news and information that affects New Hampshire's libraries; and

...growth both professionally and personnally through involvement in NHLA sections, committees, meetings, and conferences.



Registration opening soon

Thursday, November 9th, 2023, 9:30 am - 3:00 pm

Common Man Inn & Spa

231 Main Street, Plymouth, NH 03264

Keynote: Make Thinking Fun - And Effective: Using the Six Thinking Hats

Our Guest Speaker: Dorothy Stoltz

Dorothy is a professional librarian, author, and deBono thinking methods trainer who has worked for decades in the field of librarianship programming,  outreach manager, and community engagement director. She firmly believes that both the quality of our thinking and the love of learning are incomplete without the support of each other. Good library services, programs, and collections need to include the use of the mind to think creatively and thoroughly. 

Dorothy will be leading a introductory demonstration/presentation and follow up activity on The Six Thinking Hats (de Bono method of thinking creatively) to illustrate looking at things in different ways while using a deliberate process for drawing out one's thinking abilities.

Registration information coming soon!




NHLA members receive the benefit of NHLA’s advocacy efforts in the state legislature, the Governor’s office, and other areas of state government to assure that New Hampshire’s libraries 1)receive necessary support and resources from the New Hampshire State Library (such as ILL van service and free or reduced charge access to online database subscriptions), and 2) have important local library issues recognized on the state level when necessary. 


NHLA offers its members scholarships and interest-free loans for graduate study as well as mini-grants for professional development. Members also receive reduced registration rates for a variety of professional development opportunities throughout the year, designed to help library staff at all levels keep up with the ever-changing world of information science and maintain the excellence that New Hampshire residents have come to expect from their libraries. 


NHLA members receive regular updates on national and state news and information that affects New Hampshire’s libraries through the NHLA web site, blogs, and other electronic communications from the NHLA sections. 


NHLA members have access to numerous opportunities for networking and involvement through NHLA sections. These opportunities to plan meetings, develop educational programming, evaluate trends, and develop resources for other NHLA members help prepare library staff for leadership roles within their own libraries.