City Librarian Michael Lambert Named President of Public Library Association

Michael Lambert

CHICAGO — The Public Library Association (PLA) has announced the results of its 2023 Election. Members elected Michael Lambert, City Librarian, San Francisco (Calif.) Public Library, to the office of 2023–2024 PLA president. Lambert will serve a three-year term beginning this June, including one-year stints as president-elect (2023–2024), president (2024–2025), and immediate past-president (2025–2026). 

“I’m deeply honored to be the next president-elect of the Public Library Association and stand on the giant shoulders of the phenomenal leaders who have been advancing the mission of PLA,” said Lambert upon learning the outcome of the election. “Public libraries anchor our communities and contribute to the resilience of towns and cities with essential programs and services. I look forward to engaging with the PLA board and working with the PLA staff to increase support for our industry and all the mission-driven library workers who dedicate their lives to public service.”

Lambert is the first Asian American to serve as City librarian for the City and County of San Francisco. He was appointed to the position in March 2019 by Mayor London Breed. During his tenure, the San Francisco Public Library (SFPL) was named the 2018 National Library of the Year by Library Journal. As City librarian he has championed increased and equitable access to libraries through expanded hours and a fine-free library system.

Prior to his employment with the City and County of San Francisco, Lambert managed library operations at San Mateo County Libraries and at the Charlotte Mecklenburg Library in North Carolina. He began his career in his hometown of Columbia, S.C., at the Richland Library. He is an alumnus of the University of South Carolina with a degree in History and earned his Master of Library and Information Science degree from South Carolina’s College of Library and Information Science. He is the proud father of James Michael Lambert, a freshman studying at the University of Hawaii.

The following candidates also were elected to the PLA board:

ALA Division Councilor

  • Deb Sica, Deputy County Librarian, Alameda County (Calif.) Library


  • Veronda J. Pitchford, Assistant Director, Califa Group/Infopeople (San Francisco, Calif.)
  • Tamara M. King, Chief Equity and Engagement Officer, Richland (Columbia, S.C.) Library 

Each will serve a three-year term beginning in June 2023.

PLA thanks all the candidates who stood for election, as well as all the members who voted. Their efforts to impact and enhance PLA are extremely valuable to the future of the organization.

Special thanks to the 2023 Nominating Committee, chaired by Michelle Jeske, for an outstanding slate of candidates.

About the Public Library Association
The Public Library Association (PLA) is the largest association dedicated to supporting the unique and evolving needs of public library professionals. Founded in 1944, PLA serves nearly 9,000 members in public libraries large and small in communities across the United States and Canada, with a growing presence around the world. PLA strives to help its members shape the essential institution of public libraries by serving as an indispensable ally for public library leaders. For more information about PLA, contact the PLA office at 1 (800) 545-2433, ext. 5PLA, or

April 14, 2023