The Friends of Wicomico Public Libraries hosted the Sixth Annual Light of Literacy Awards on Thursday, April 19th at the Wicomico Youth & Civic Center in Salisbury. The morning’s program included a Flag Ceremony presented by the Girls Scouts of the Chesapeake Bay and a delicious breakfast provided by the Civic Center.

Over 285 individuals from the community came together to celebrate the work of individuals, businesses and non-profits.  In keeping with this year’s theme of Health Literacy, Keynote speaker Steven Leonard, President and CEO of Peninsula Regional Medical Center, announced a new campaign titled the 2018 Lower Shore Health Literacy Challenge. The initiative is aimed at educating the community in health literacy so that they are able to understand basic health information needed to make appropriate medical decisions.  The campaign will partner with Wicomico Public Libraries as part of the outreach effort.


A special presentation by the Friends of Wicomico Public Libraries was made to Dr. Janet Dudley-Eshbach, President of Salisbury University in recognition for her 18 years of leadership at SU and her work promoting the power of education and literacy and celebrating multiculturalism in our community. In honor of Dr. Dudley-Eshbach’s work in the community, Wicomico Public Libraries has added a set of selected titles to their children’s collection. These titles promote cultural diversity and celebrate the uniqueness of the individuals in our community.  Each title will have a special bookplate honoring Dr. Dudley-Eshbach’s work and leadership.


Best of all, many individuals and organizations supporting literacy in our community were honored.  The stories of how these works make a community impact and improve lives demonstrate that literacy is key to a successful life.  By providing opportunities for individuals to improve their literacy skills the Library opens doors of opportunity.  These opportunities are often under-utilized, because people simply do not know what a modern Library does, and what impact it can have on the community.  Wicomico Public Libraries are as necessary and vital to the health of our community today as they were when the Library began in 1926.


Congratulations to our 2018 Light of Literacy Award Winners:

Organization Luminary Award:  Kid’s Café at Salisbury Urban Ministries

Higher Education Luminary Award:  Dr. Patty Dean

Student Luminary Award:  Rehman Liaqat

Adult Luminary Award:  Wynnette Curtis

Educator Luminary Award:  Joan Cooper

Financial Literacy Luminary Award:  Salisbury Neighborhood Housing Services

Health Literacy Luminary Award: The Lower Shore Health Literacy Initiative

Liz Bellavance Award:  Brice Stump


The Friends of Wicomico Public Libraries would like to thank WMDT Channel 47, The Daily Times, Delmarva Public Radio and Clear Channel Outdoor for providing their expertise in promoting this event. The Friends want to also thank Dr. Scott Duncan, our Emcee, as well as the Award Narrators, Julian Sadur and Erica Murphy, for sharing their time and talents with our attendees.   A special “Thank you!” to all our sponsors for making our Awards Ceremony a reality, and to all the volunteers who made the day so very special.  Lastly, thank you to our community for coming to the event and for supporting the Library’s mission and vision.


Wicomico Public Libraries are located in Downtown Salisbury, the Centre at Salisbury, on the grounds of the Pittsville Elementary and Middle School, and via the Bookmobile. The Library strives to create an accessible, welcoming space where the community can discover new ideas and connect with one another.  Wicomico Public Libraries offer numerous resources such as free Internet access, a variety of classes and events, and an online Digital Library.  Your Library supports learning, economic development, and community engagement.  You Belong @ Wicomico Public Libraries!



For more information on Wicomico Public Libraries or if you wish to become a Friend of the Library, please visit our Web site – or check out our newsletter – Belong – in the Library or online.

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