Mary Utopia Rothrock Award

Mary Rothrock
Mary Utopia Rothrock's Biography
The Southeastern Library Association honors a librarian who has contributed substantially to the furtherance of librarianship in the southeast during a career

The Mary Utopia Rothrock Award was established in 1976 from the will of Mary Rothrock. It was sent to the SELA President on February 11, 1976, and stated, "I bequeath $10,000.00 to the SELA, the income from which shall be used to establish a biennial award. The recipient of this award is to be designated by a committee of the Association from among librarians of the Southeastern States, and chosen for exceptional contribution to library development in the Southeast." The committee shall be appointed by the President of SELA and shall include librarians from varying member states of SELA. The recipient of this award has always been kept secret until the actual presentation is made during the conference.



  1. The age and years of service should not be a deciding factor in the selection.
  2. Service in one or more states of the southeast would qualify a person for nomination for the award.
  3. The award should be made to only one person in any biennium, and, if no deserving person is nominated, an award may be omitted for that biennium.
  4. Nomination must be made by an SELA member.

Please provide name of nominee, nominee's phone/email, mailing address, SELA member making nomination, member phone/email, signature, date and supporting biographical information. Nominations may be submitted along with any supporting biographical material, to any member of the Rothrock Award committee by August 28, 2020.


For more information conact:
Sharon C. Parente, Chair
Reference & Instructional Services
Middle Tennessee State University Walker Library
MTSU Box 13
Murfreesboro, TN 37132
615-898-2549 or 615-898-5551 fax


Previous SELA Rothrock Award Winners List

1976 Mary Edna Anders
1978 Kenneth Toombs & John Gribbin
1980 Frances Neal Cheney
1982 Virginia Lacy Jones
1984 Martha Jane Zachert
1986 Ruth Waldrop
1988 David E. Estes
1990 Frank P. Grisham
1992 Edward G. Holley
1994 John David Marshall
1996 Ralph Russell
1998 Cecil Beach
2000 Mary Louise Rheay
2002 Samuel Morrison
2004 Charles Edward Beard
2006 Ann H. Hamilton
2008 Kathleen Imhoff
2010 None Awarded
2012 None Awarded
2014 Dr. Gordon N. Baker
2016 None Awarded
2018 None Awarded
2020 Judith Gibbons