Moloka‘i Educator Named National Librarian of the Year
Moloka?i High School educator Diane Mokuau was awarded 2021 Librarian of the Year by the School Library Journal.
Members of the Moloka?i Services Cadre nominated Mokuau for the national award. She founded the group by organizing the island’s librarians to help one another serve their communities.
Mokuau also created the Moloka?i College and Career Tour Club, which arranges for local students to visit colleges on the mainland. She also co-created Moloka?i’s Earth Day celebration with neighboring schools and local businesses.
Mokuau said she felt humbled to receive the award.
"Getting awards like this is not only a great acknowledgement, but it’s also a responsibility to give back further," she said. "Libraries are so awesome. It’s like this is a free place for free resources. It can change lives."
"You can learn so much, and expose so much, and share your joy of reading. You know when students find a book that they like and then they want to read more? Those are all like, so amazing perks of this position," she added.
Mokuau hopes that receiving this award will help her bring attention to the inequities Moloka?i students have faced during the pandemic when it comes to their access to online education.
She is currently working on giving students a more personalized library experience -- even in the midst of a pandemic -- by offering e-books and curbside pickup.