The Columbus Metropolitan Library will receive a shiny medal for its outreach and services to the people of central Ohio.

The Columbus Metropolitan Library will receive a shiny medal for its outreach and services to the people of central Ohio.

The Institute of Museum and Library Services has selected CML as one of only 10 libraries and museums to receive the 2011 National Medal for Museum and Library Service.

The accolade was a result of the library's Ready to Read Corps, homework-help centers and job-help centers, said Patrick Losinski, executive director of the local system, which is composed of the main library downtown and 20 branches.

The national medal is the second significant honor CML has received in the past two years. The library system was named 2010 Library of the Year by Library Journal and Gale, part of Cengage Learning.

“I think our past achievements have put us on the radar nationally for what we're doing,” he said. “It's just such a wonderful situation we have, a very supportive community. And they're supportive because they use the library and see great value in what we offer.”

Losinski said an anonymous person and former Columbus resident nominated the library. Officials from IMLS then sent the application form to Losinski's office.

“There are a lot of other libraries in this space but I think Columbus has really taken it into a new level and really integrated the services in our community,” Losinski said. “And it's really resonated with those awarding the medal.”

Along with the award, CML received $10,000. An official recognition ceremony will be held next year in Washington, D.C.

The National Medal for Museum and Library Service honors outstanding institutions that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities, according to the ILMS website. Selected institutions demonstrate extraordinary and innovative approaches to public service, exceeding the expected levels of community outreach, the website said.

Other award recipients include: Alachua County Library District, Gainesville, Fla.; Brooklyn Museum, Brooklyn, N.Y.; EdVenture Children's Museum, Columbia, S.C.; Erie Art Museum, Erie, Pa.; Hill Museum & Manuscript Library, Collegeville, Minn.; Lewis Ginter Botanical Garden, Richmond, Va.; Madison Children's Museum, Madison, Wis.; San Jose Public Library, San Jose, Calif.; and Weippe Public Library & Discovery Center, Weippe, Idaho.

IMLS is the primary source of federal funding for museums and libraries, according to a release. The National Medal for Museum and Library Service was created to highlight their contributions to society. Recipients are selected by the director of IMLS following an open nomination process and based on the recommendations of the National Museum and Library Services Board.

gsemam@thisweeknews.com

www.ThisWeekNews.com