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9/30/2020 » 10/2/2020
MLA 2020 Conference - Sponsorship

9/30/2020 » 10/2/2020
MLA 2020 Conference - Exhibitor

9/30/2020 » 10/2/2020
MLA 2020 Annual Conference

About MLA

The Minnesota Library Association is an association of library supporters, representing all types of libraries by helping them accomplish together what none can do alone.

The Minnesota Library Association (MLA) serves the interests of its members by facilitating educational opportunities, supporting strong ethical standards, providing legislative assistance, and fostering connections between the library community and various constituencies. MLA offers year round opportunities for connection among library supporters and associates Learn more about the benefits of membership


The Minnesota Library Association provides opportunities to meet library peers and associates.

MLA meets the interests of its members by facilitating educational opportunities, supporting strong ethical standards, and fostering connections between the library community and various constituencies. MLA organizes an annual multi-day fall conference that features approximately 70 programs planned and sponsored by divisions, sections, round tables, and committees. Members receive reduced registration rates.

An effective lobbying effort has been instrumental in obtaining increases in state aid to libraries, securing legislation enabling inter-library cooperation, and enhancing the library community throughout the state.

MLA Vision and Mission


Vision statement: MLA ensures a future where libraries thrive.

Mission statement: MLA brings together staff and supporters from libraries of all types by helping them accomplish together what none can do alone.

MLA Strategic Plan


MLA's 2019 -2021 Strategic Plan overview can be viewed here.

MLA History


A small group of librarians met on December 29, 1891 at the Minnesota Historical Society to organize a State Library Association for Minnesota. A short constitution was drafted and adopted during the first meeting, and the Minnesota Library Association was born "for the purpose of mutual aid and cooperation in our profession, and the advantages which may be gained by union and interchange of ideas acquired by experience in our work." At the first meeting, Dr. William Watts Folwell (Librarian, University of Minnesota) was elected to serve as the first MLA President and went on to lead the Association for nine years. The other first two officers of MLA were Helen J. McCaine (Librarian, St. Paul Library), Vice-President; and J.Fletcher Williams (Librarian, Minnesota Historical Society), Secretary.

The Minnesota Library Association played a huge role in early 20th-century library development. They spearheaded support for the legislative bill to establish the first State Library Commission in 1899 (known today as State Library Services). MLA advocated for professional education programs to prepare students for librarian positions (at a time where there were only 4 library schools in the country) and library training for students and teachers.

MLA also promoted legislation to extend library service in the state and raise library standards. In the 1950s, MLA introduced and advocated for state aid for public libraries (which didn’t pass the Minnesota legislature until 1957), allowing for the expansion of library service in rural areas, leading to new county libraries and the first multi-county regional library systems in Minnesota.

MLA Bylaws and Organization


MLA Bylaws (amended September 2, 2020)

MLA Articles of Incorporation

MLA Code of Conduct

MLA Organizational Chart

MLA 2020 Budget

MLA 2017 Audit – Management Letter

MLA 2017 Audited Financial Statement

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