The Orange County Library System has been honored with numerous awards and recognitions. Further, as a recognized national leader in providing cutting-edge library services, representatives of the Orange County Library System are regularly invited to present at major national conferences. A partial listing of recent awards and grants received appears below:


Melrose Center Audio Studio

Melrose Center Receives Endowment to Stay on the Cutting Edge

December 2018

The Dorothy Lumley Melrose Center for Technology, Innovation and Creativity has been chosen to receive a $500,000 endowment from the Kendrick B. Melrose Family Foundation to upgrade and enhance its software and technology. The endowment will be used to keep the Melrose Center up to date with the latest hardware and software in its virtual reality, photography, video and audio studios, as well as the Fab Lab where the public is invited to get hands on with 3D printers, robotics and more. 

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Orange County Library System Recognized as a 2018 Recipient of Nation’s Highest Museum and Library Honor

April 2018

The Institute of Museum and Library Services today announced Orange County Library System of Orlando, Florida, as one of 10 recipients of the 2018 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation’s highest honor given to museums and libraries that make significant and exceptional contributions to their communities. Over the past 24 years, the award has celebrated 182 institutions that are making a difference for individuals, families, and communities. OCLS was recognized for the work it does to support its community, particularly when it comes to providing access to STEM education for children living in underserved communities, ESOL classes for adults and families, and a commitment to providing access to high-quality educational tools for children in the county’s public school system. 

For a complete list of 2018 recipients and to learn more about the National Medal winners, visit

Orange County Library System receives $100,000 grant from Walt Disney World

Orange County Library System receives $100,000 grant from Walt Disney World

April 2018

On April 17, Walt Disney World visited the Orange County Library System’s Winter Garden Branch to award OCLS with a $100,000 Disney Grant. Disney brought its Toy Story themed tailgate party to the library to announce the good news. The funds will be used to work with two local nonprofit organizations, ArtReach Orlando and Hero Spark, to enhance programming offered during the library’s annual Summer Reading Program.

Orange County Library System chosen for the 2018 Upstart Library Innovation Award

April 2018

The Upstart Innovation Award, presented by the Public Library Association, recognizes a public library’s innovative, cutting-edge, creative service to their community.  OCLS received the Upstart Innovation Award in recognition for its BizKids program, a series of classes and events aimed at promoting entrepreneurship and teaching young people the skills needed to succeed in business. These classes teach topics ranging from the basics of Microsoft Office to developing a business plan.  Winners are presented with $2,000 and a plaque in their honor.

Director/CEO Mary Anne Hodel receives 2018 Charlie Robinson Award

April 2018

Mary Anne Hodel, Director and CEO of the Orange County Library System, has been selected as the recipient of the American Library Association’s 2018 Charlie Robinson Award.  This prestigious award, presented by book vendor Baker & Taylor and the Public Library Association, a division of the American Library Association, honors a public library director who has proven to be a risk taker, an innovator and a change agent known for developing and implementing programs responsive to the needs of the community. The award consists of $1,000 and a gift to the director, who will be honored at the 2018 ALA Annual Conference.

Disney Awards $50,000 to Orange County Library System as Part of 2017 Disney Grants

October 2017

The Orange County Library System recently received $50,000 from Walt Disney World Resort through Disney Grants. With the funds, the Orange County Library System was able to support its annual Summer Reading Program, which attracted more than 116,000 people to attend more than 3,000 fun, educational events and activities at 16 library branches all summer long.

In all, Walt Disney World Resort awarded nearly $4 million in Disney Grants in support of efforts to positively impact the lives of over 300,000 local children and their families.

The Disney Grants directly support Central Floridians and help to strengthen our neighborhoods, inspire our children, create stronger family bonds and promote a more compassionate environment.

Dollar General Literacy Foundation Awards OCLS $10,000

July 2017

After a Dollar General Manager credited the Southeast Branch's ESOL classes for teaching him English, Dollar General donated $10,000 to support language learning programs throughout the Library.

Library Journal Gives Special Mention to OCLS

June 2017

Library Journal gave a special mention to the Orange County Library System (OCLS) in its 2017 Library of the Year awards program.

This national annual award recognizes innovative libraries that stay on the cutting edge in delivering innovative resources, technology and programming to the communities served. Library Journal sponsors multiple awards to recognize greatness and contributions to the library industry—the highest honor of which is Library of the Year.

Orange County Library System Receives $25,000 Grant for Sunshine State Author Series

June 2017

The Orange County Library System is proud to announce that it is the recipient of a $25,000 grant from the Florida Department of State Division of Cultural Affairs.  The funding will be used to present the 2018 Sunshine State Author Series, which brings award-winning authors of literature for children, teens and young adults to library branches for readings, book discussions and writing workshops. The goal of the series is to cultivate a love of reading in school-aged children by introducing them to outstanding writers.

"Books & Beyond" Wins 2016 Marcom Award for Nonprofit Newsletter Design

October 2016

The Books & Beyond newsletter has won two 2016 MarCom Awards in the category of External Newsletter for a Nonprofit. The annual competition recognizes outstanding creative achievement by marketing and communication professionals. There were over 6,500 entries from throughout the United States, Canada and several other countries in the 2016 competition. The MarCom Awards program is administered and judged by the Association of Marketing and Communication Professionals.