Charlotte Mecklenburg Library
Alicia Finley is a youth specialist for Charlotte Mecklenburg Library in Charlotte, North Carolina, and the self-proclaimed “community connector.” Alicia is passionate about making community connections and developing genuine partnerships. Furthermore, she creates innovative educational experiences for young learners and school-age children that involve STEAM education.
In addition, Alicia loves advocating for the preteen population. Alicia observes ways to improve services for preteens and works with adolescents to get their input about how the library can better serve them. As a result, Alicia created a preteen space at her library and the Preteen Advisory Board to ensure their presence and voices are welcome to promote an environment of inclusivity.
Alicia’s expertise is in working in children’s services; however, she expands her talents to adult and teen programming. Her most recent projects include programming centered around affordable housing, gentrification, business ownership, and creating an esports program for teens that encourages representation from diverse communities.
As a serial learner, Alicia indulges in learning about entrepreneurship, wealth building, and nonprofit organizations as she shares that information with her library community through programming. Alicia always seeks out opportunities to grow professionally and to serve exceptionally. She was a past recipient of the American Library Association Leadership Institute and the North Carolina Library Association Leadership Institute. She focused on providing services for diverse and underserved populations.
At the conference, Alicia will be a speaker at the Coretta Scott King Program Data: Piecing Together Effective Outreach to Communities, sharing programs she created for the 50th Anniversary of the Coretta Scott King Book Awards. From that experience, she extended those program activities to develop a Black History Month Literary Festival and Black History programming throughout February 2020 that included participation from Charlotte Black Film Festival and Gordon C. James, recipient of the 2018 Illustrator Honor Book Award.