News

Select a news topic from the list below, then select a news article to read.

MPLA Carl Gaumer award to go to Mike Delello

New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs Deputy Secretary Mike Delello is the recipient of the Mountain Plains Library Association’s (MPLA) Carl Gaumer Library Champion Award for his service as Acting State Librarian and continued service to the library community. 

The Carl Gaumer Library Champion Award is to be given to an individual, organization or company whose positive support of the Mountain Plains Library Association is demonstrated by repeated conscientious endeavors towards libraries, library staff, trustees, and professional activities.  Deputy Secretary Delello won the award for his innovative accomplishments and staunch library advocacy while serving as Interim State Librarian during 2014 -2015 and his continued work with libraries state-wide as the Deputy Cabinet Secretary.

During his active tenure as interim State Librarian, Delello visited many public and tribal libraries to talk to the library staff and find out what their needs were. He initiated statewide licensing for New Mexico students and job seekers to the online tutoring service Brainfuse, with both HelpNow for homework assistance and JobNow providing help to those seeking employment providing much needed assistance to overly burdened librarians. Delello was also instrumental in the Maker-State initiative, an Institute for Museum and Library Sciences and nationally recognized program through the innovative maker space pop-up program for libraries. Delello also provided a key partnership between the state museums and public libraries statewide by creating the Department of Cultural Affairs Family Pass, which allows library patrons to check out this pass for free admission to the state’s eight museums and Historic Sites. Delello’s support was instrumental in working with a statewide panel of librarians and stakeholders to produce a statewide assessment of New Mexico’s libraries.

“The New Mexico Library Association congratulates Mike Delello for this award recognizing his ongoing support of all New Mexico’s Public and Tribal Libraries,” stated Lynette Schurdevin, Rio Rancho Library Director and President of the New Mexico Library Association.  “With the Deputy Secretary’s help libraries now offer additional resources for patrons including job research, student homework help, and maker space programs. “

“Mike’s commitment to Libraries Transform New Mexico has given direction to all our state’s libraries to focus on three principal areas to increase library services to our communities by expanding broadband/e-rate services, ensuring sustainable government funding and locating alternative funding sources. “

Delello also served as co-chair of Libraries Transform New Mexico, a conference based upon the assessment. Delello was instrumental in the establishment of the State Library of New Mexico Foundation, and serves as co-chair of the New Mexico Libraries Transform steering committee.

“I am so deeply honored to be receiving this award,” Delello said. “Libraries are more than just book repositories.  They serve as quasi social service agencies assisting patrons with e-government service, digital literacy, and resume development just to name a few.

“I have rarely encountered public servants as dedicated to their communities as public and tribal librarians. I humbly dedicate this award to Wanda Walters and Kristina “Krissie” Carter, staff at the Clovis Library, Clovis, NM, who lost their lives while serving patrons in a tragic shooting this past August.”

The Carl Gaumer Library Champion Award will be presented to Deputy Secretary Delello at noon October 18 at the Hardrock Hotel, Stateline Nevada.

Letters About Literature 2018

New Mexico’s Letters About Literature 2018

Letters About Literature encourages young readers to read a book and write a letter to the author about how the book changed their view of the world.  This is the sixth year New Mexico State Library has sponsored the competition.

Readers in grades 4-12 write a personal letter to an author explaining how his or her work shaped their perspective on the world or themselves.  Students may write about works of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry.  New Mexico state judges will select the top letter writers in New Mexico, who then advance to the national competition.

Letter writers compete at three levels: Level I is grades 4-6; Level II is grades 7-8; and Level III is grades 9-12. One winning letter from each level from each state is entered in the final national competition. There will be cash prizes for the three state winners and also for the national winners.

Please click here to see and/or print the Letters About Literature participation guidelines and the entry form.

Level 1, 2, and 3 entries must be postmarked by January 12, 2018.

Teacher's Guide

For more information about New Mexico’s Letters About Literature contest, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it.  or call Lori Thornton at 505-476-9717.

Letters About Literature is sponsored by the New Mexico State Library, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs.  Letters About Literature is also sponsored by The Center for the Book at the Library of Congress.

The Letters About Literature annual writing contest for young readers is made possible by a generous grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, with additional support from gifts to the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, which promotes the contest through its affiliate centers for the book, state libraries and other organizations.

To read about the Letters About Literature contest at the national level, please click here:

Letters About Literature – Center for the Book – Library of Congress

SALSA Consortium Executive Committee Meeting

The Executive Committee of the SALSA Consortium will meet on Tuesday November 28, 2017 at 10:00 in the Conference Room, History and Literary Arts Building, National Hispanic Cultural Center, 1701 4th Street SW, Albuquerque, NM 87102.  Agenda is available from this link.

Summer 2017 Temporary Hours

The State Library will begin a new temporary schedule on Monday, August 14, 2017. 

  • The Main Reading Room will be open from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm, Wednesday only.
  • The Southwest Room will be open from 1:00 pm to 5:00 pm, Friday only.
  • The Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped is open from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm, Monday through Friday.
  • Email and telephone reference requests are handled daily, Monday through Friday, to serve clients with research needs.
  • The Foundation Information Network and the Federal and state government publication depositories are also available Monday through Friday, 8:00 to 5:00 by appointment.
  • Libraries may request research assistance via email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or by calling the State Library Reference Service toll free number: 1-800-876-2203 (libraries only please).

Wireless access is provided in the building.

We apologize for the inconvenience.

Letters About Literature 2017

LAL Ceremony

The Letters About Literature awards ceremony took place on Friday, May 12 in the rotunda of the Round House in Santa Fe. State Librarian, Kathleen Moeller-Peiffer, welcomed everyone and awards were then presented to the three New Mexico state champions who read their letters aloud, the three second place winners, the three third place winners, and the honorable mention letter writers.

Raven Callaway-Kidd, a fifth grade student at Turquoise Trail Elementary in Santa Fe, is the Level 1 champion.  Raven wrote her letter to Holly Schindler about her book, The Junction of Sunshine and Lucky.

Natashia McDonald, an eighth grade student at Des Moines Municipal Schools in Des Moines, is the Level 2 champion. Her letter is addressed to The Fault in Our Stars author, John Green.

Rebekah Hildebrant, an eleventh grade student at Arrowhead Park Medical Academy in Las Cruces, is the Level 3 champion. Rebekah wrote her letter to Rick Riordan about his books The Lightning Thief and The House of Hades.

Winners

Each of the state champions received a certificate acknowledging their achievement and $150 from the State Library. The second place, third place, and honorable mention writers also received a certificate and a $25 gift card for Collected Works Bookstore.  The three New Mexico champions' letters were sent to the Library of Congress for the national competition. The winners of the national competition will be announced in early May.

Four hundred and seventy-four New Mexico students entered the 2017 contest.  Of those 474 entries, 83 writers advanced to round two.  In Level 1, there were 128 entries with 21 letters advancing to round two and 16 to round three state judging.  In Level 2, there were 209 entries with 31 letters advancing to round two and 15 of those to round three state judging. In Level 3, there were 137 entries with 31 letters moving on to round two and 21 to round three state judging.  All of the writers who advanced to round two and three were sent a certificate in the mail. 

Our special thanks to the New Mexico judges:

Level 1 - Veronica N. Gonzales, Cabinet Secretary, New Mexico Department of Cultural Affairs, Santa Fe; Kathleen Moeller-Peiffer, State Librarian, New Mexico State Library, Department of Cultural Affairs, Santa Fe; Ben Wakashige, Retired State Librarian, Rio Rancho

Level 2 – Kristina Carter, Youth Services Librarian, Clovis-Carver Public Library, Clovis; Corey Bard, Director, Ruidoso Public Library; Elizabeth Martinez, New Mexico Library Commission, Santa Fe

Level 3 – Susan Beck, Professor and Head of Access Services, New Mexico State University Library, Las Cruces; John W. Byram, Director, University of New Mexico Press, Albuquerque; Sarah Stark, Author, Santa Fe

Letters About Literature encourages young readers in grades 4 -12 to read a book and write a personal letter to the author explaining how the book changed or shaped their perspective on themselves or the world. Students could write about works of fiction, nonfiction, or poetry. Letter writers compete at three levels: Level I is grades 4-6; Level II is grades 7-8; and Level III is grades 9-12. The writers compete in the state contest to win $150 cash prize per competition level and a $1,000 cash award per competition level in the national contest. 

This is the fifth year New Mexico State Library has sponsored the competition.

For more information about New Mexico’s Letters About Literature contest, please email This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. or call Lori Thornton at 505-476-9717.

To read about the Letters About Literature contest at the national level, please click here:

Thank you to all the students, teachers, librarians, and families who participated in New Mexico's Letters About Literature program. Keep reading and writing!

Letters About Literature, the annual writing contest for young readers is made possible by a generous grant from the Dollar General Literacy Foundation, with additional support from gifts to the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, which promotes the contest through its affiliate Centers for the Book, state libraries, and other organizations.  In New Mexico, the contest is sponsored by the New Mexico State Library, a division of the Department of Cultural Affairs.

Subcategories