Duane Yazzie wins Todd H. Bol Award for Outstanding Achievement for launching Navajo Nation’s first Little Free Library

Duane Yazzie and students at the Tséhootsooí Diné Bi’Ólta’ Little Free Library.(Photo: Little Free Library)

Yazzie working to create a network of Little Free Library book-sharing boxes to serve students and community members of Window Rock Unified School District in northeastern Arizona

News Release

Little Free Library

The Little Free Library nonprofit organization is honoring Duane Yazzie, a teacher-librarian from Window Rock, Arizona, with the Todd H. Bol Award for Outstanding Achievement. Named for the organization’s late founder, the awards recognize Little Free Library volunteer stewards who are making an exceptionally positive impact on their communities.

Yazzie is being celebrated for launching the first Little Free Library book exchange in the Navajo Nation. 

“We established a Little Free Library to celebrate and encourage a love of reading among community members and visitors to our area,” Yazzie says. “Essentially we want to positively and meaningfully impact and transform lives and our surrounding communities.”

Yazzie is working to create a network of Little Free Library book-sharing boxes to serve students and community members of Window Rock Unified School District in northeastern Arizona. The first one is already reawakening a love of reading among community members young and old, Yazzie says.

The project has also given Yazzie a renewed appreciation for his community: “When networking with others in local community organizations, I am experiencing firsthand what happens when people work collectively on a project,” he says. “It is both empowering and rewarding and reminds me of the great power that lies within each of us and how that power is magnified when people come together in the spirit of goodness.”

The Todd H. Bol Awards are part of Little Free Library’s 10th Anniversary celebration. In 2009 founder Todd H. Bol created the first Little Free Library book exchange and quickly recognized its enormous potential to bring people together around the love of reading. Ten years later his idea has grown into a worldwide book-sharing movement. There are now more than 80,000 registered Little Free Libraries in all 50 states and 91 countries, and more than 120 million books have been shared. 

Yazzie established the Navajo Nation’s first Little Free Library through Little Free Library’s Impact Library Program, which provides no-cost Little Libraries to communities where they can have a meaningful impact on book access and community building. Thirty-six Native American communities recently received Little Free Libraries through this program.

“Little Free Library volunteer stewards are shining examples of the hope and compassion possible in this world!” says Monnie McMahon, Little Free Library national board chair. “We are incredibly proud of Todd H. Bol Award winner Duane Yazzie and his dedication to spreading the joy of reading, increasing book access and bringing people together in his community.” 

To learn more about the Todd H. Bol Award winners and this month’s Impact Library recipients, visit LittleFreeLibrary.org/10years.

About Little Free Library®

Little Free Library is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization that inspires a love of reading, builds community, and sparks creativity by fostering neighborhood Little Free Library book exchanges around the world. Little Free Library has received recognition from the Library of Congress, the National Book Foundation, the Women’s National Book Association, and others. 

To learn more, support our programs, and become a volunteer steward yourself visit LittleFreeLibrary.org. 

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