May 11, 2015

Author Carl Hiaasen booked for 2015 Celebration of Learning, Library Foundation fundraiser

Carl Hiaasen (Photo by Tim Chapman)


COLUMBUS—The Columbus Metropolitan Library Foundation (CMLF) has booked Carl Hiaasen as the featured speaker for its 23rd annual Celebration of Learning on Friday, Oct. 30.

Celebration of Learning, the CMLF’s annual fundraiser, is usually held in the atrium and stacks of Main Library. However, with Main Library closed for renovations – expected to be completed in August 2016 – this year’s gala will be held at CML’s new Whitehall Branch (4445 E. Broad St.), which opened on April 11.

The annual event features remarks from an acclaimed author and the presentation of The Julian Sinclair Smith Award for Lifelong Learning to a Columbus resident who has demonstrated dedication to reading, education and lifelong learning.

Hiaasen is a bestselling novelist, columnist and investigative reporter. 

Born and raised in Fort Lauderdale, Florida, Hiaasen attended Emory University and the University of Florida, writing satirical columns for both universities’ student newspapers. After graduating, he reported for Cocoa Today (Cocoa, Florida) for two years before joining the Miami Herald, for which he still currently writes columns.

Hiaasen has written books for kids, teens and adults alike, including Star Island, Hoot, Skink—No Surrender and his newest novel for adults, 2013’s Bad Monkey. His literary style – referred to as “Hiaanesque” – combines wild plot lines, offbeat characters and an affectionate nod to life in South Florida.

He lives with his family in Florida.

The CMLF is seeking nominations for this year’s Julian Sinclair Smith Award honoree(s). Each year, the CMLF presents the award to honor inspiring individuals living or working in and around Franklin County with a passion for lifelong learning. The award will be presented at the Celebration of Learning event.

The Columbus Metropolitan Library Foundation helps fund the library’s capital needs as well as Homework Help Centers, Ready for Kindergarten initiatives, employment resources and Summer Reading Club, supporting the needs of kids, teens and adults.

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Columbus Metropolitan Library has served the people of Franklin County, Ohio since 1873. With its Main Library and 22 branches, CML is well known for signature services and programs like Homework Help Centers, Reading Buddies, Summer Reading Club and Ready for Kindergarten. The library’s Strategic Plan supports the vision of “a thriving community where wisdom prevails,” which positions CML to respond to areas of urgent need: kids unprepared for kindergarten, third grade reading proficiency, high school graduation, college readiness and employment resources.

CML was named a 2011 National Medal Winner by the Institute for Museum and Library Services for work in community service, the highest honor for libraries and museums. Columbus Metropolitan Library has been rated a 5-Star Library by Library Journal for seven of the eight years the magazine has published its industry ratings.