A librarian from Staffordshire County Council’s Libraries and Arts service has been shortlisted for a prestigious national award for the second year running.

Liz Gardner, Stock Services and Activities Officer, has been shortlisted for the Library/Librarian of the Year category in the Romantic Novelists’ Association 2021 Industry Awards.

Liz, who has been with the library service for 14 years, was named Librarian of the Year 2020 and is hoping it’s second time lucky.

Liz has spent years promoting and raising awareness of the romantic genre and getting people together on the Staffordshire Libraries’ Book Chat Group on Facebook. Liz has also been instrumental in developing the Book Chat online author talks program, which regularly attract audiences of over 250 people.


Liz (pictured left) said: “It is a real honour to be shortlisted again for this amazing award. Winning last year was wonderful and I feel extremely privileged to have been nominated again. I love books, particularly romance and I’m never shy in recommending titles to library users or my friends and family. These kind of books can provide a welcome bit of escapism and I feel that they are often underrated.  I’m always happy to help increase awareness of the breadth and benefits of the romance genre and the work of the RNA.”

The nomination recognises Liz’s ongoing support for romantic fiction, loving to share her enthusiasm for books across the county’s 43 libraries.

Victoria Wilson, Libraries Chief at Staffordshire County Council said: “This is great news and we’re all hoping that Liz can go all the way in winning the award again.  Our libraries continue to be hubs within local communities, providing access to a huge range of services and online activities. They also play an important cultural role, engaging with authors and providing a broad range of reading material too. Liz and our library staff and volunteers are all passionate about books and reading and I know they enjoy recommending new books to library users. Good luck Liz.”

The winner will be announced at the Romantic Novelists’ Association’s Winter Party and Industry Awards ceremony, which is being held in London on 28 October.

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