The Reference and User Services Association (RUSA) has named Kelvin Watson, executive director of the Las Vegas-Clark County Library District as recipient of its “2022 Best Emerging Technology Application (BETA) Award,” which recognizes the use of an existing technology application that directly benefits library users.
The BETA recognition represents the third award in 2022 for LVCCLD's outreach initiative, following the American Library Association’s “Library of the Future Award,” and the Urban Libraries Council’s “Top Innovators Honorable Mention.”
“Bringing the Library to Transit Riders” is a unique partnership between the Library District and the Regional Transportation Commission of Southern Nevada (RTC) to enable transit riders to instantly sign up for access to online materials using RTC’s free onboard WiFi on approximately 400 transit buses throughout the valley.
Riders can scan a QR code featured inside buses to download the Library app and then enter their mobile number to sign up for library access. The library system instantly verifies the new account, and riders can immediately begin borrowing eBooks, eAudiobooks, magazines, and movies at no cost, on the bus, at home, or anywhere on the go. The program also allows temporary library access to transit riders who are visitors to Las Vegas via a seven-day pass to the Libby app.
“(This program) shows a great commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion initiatives,” stated the BETA selection committee, “most notably providing resources in multiple languages and removing barriers to access by ensuring that the landing page is accessible and compatible with assistive technologies. We were particularly impressed by the statistics you included, with 7,013 apps downloaded, 40,995 checkouts, 3,893 page views, and 1,938 users between September 2021 and your submission in January 2022."
The Las Vegas-Clark County Library District has 25 branches with a collection of 3.2 million items. Watson was also named the 2021 winner of the RUSA Margaret E. Monroe Library Adult Services Award, sponsored by Novelist.