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Grants for Libraries: FLA 2018

Resources supporting the FLA 2018 presentation: Unleash your librarian superpowers to author winning grant proposals.

Unleash your librarian superpowers to author winning grant proposals

Conference Panel Presentation at the 2018 Florida Library Association Conference at the Caribe Royale in Orlando, Florida​

DATE: Thursday, May 24
TIME: 3 - 4 p.m.

FLA Annual Conference 2018 Program Description

Do you have a great idea for your library but need funding to implement your project?

Have you seen grant opportunities, but were perhaps too intimidated to apply?

Have you recently had a grant application rejected and lack the confidence to try again?


Join a panel of experienced grant writers who will help you unleash your grant writing potential. Panelists will identify the key components of successful grant proposals, such as team formation, budgeting practices, project planning, creating well-defined objectives, establishing reasonable timelines, and building connections with grant funders.

Panelists will discuss the importance of authoring compelling narratives that engages the reviewer and clearly communicates your library’s existing need and demonstrates your capacity to complete the project if funded. The panel will share resources and strategies for locating funding sources relevant to libraries, including non-traditional sources that perhaps you haven’t considered before.

The panel will share strategies to overcome common barriers to submitting winning grant proposals, such as time constraints, inexperience, or lack of administrative support. Participants will also have the opportunity to pose their most challenging experiences to the panel for feedback and guidance. Lessons learned from both acceptance and rejection will be shared by panelists from academic, public and school libraries, as well as, a grant development professional with a record of success with grant submissions of varying size and scope.

Participants will be encouraged to ask questions via an interactive presentation tool designed to enhance engagement. Finally, participants will be provided with a list of resources identifying grant opportunities of relevance to the library community along with corresponding tips and strategies to motivate and empower participants to pursue grant funding at their respective libraries.


Bess de Farber serves as Grants Manager for the University of Florida Libraries, and previously served in the same position at the University of Arizona Libraries. She has provided grantsmanship instruction throughout the past 29 years, and has led efforts to secure millions in grant funding for nonprofits and academic libraries. She is the author of Collaborative Grant-Seeking: A Practical Guide for Librarians (2016), and co-author of Collaborating with Strangers: Facilitating Workshops in Libraries, Classes, and Nonprofits (2017).
Sara Gonzalez is a Branch Manager with the Orange County Library System. She is a former Regional Branch Manager with the Seminole County Public Library, where she ran the successful S.T.E.a.M. mentoring program for girls, after being awarded a Sparks! Innovation grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services.
Anna Ruth, M.S, is the Director of Grants Development at Eckerd College. Ms. Ruth has more than twenty years of experience in grant development, implementation and evaluation in US and international settings. Additionally, Ms. Ruth has taught seminars on grant development and served as a proposal  reviewer for local non-profit organizations.
Nancy Schuler (moderator), is Assistant Professor of e-Resources and Collection Development at Eckerd College.  As the liaison to the Creative Arts disciplines at Eckerd, her work has focused on the incorporation of emerging technologies into library instruction, liaison services, and campus partnerships.