The New Jersey Association of Library Assistants hosts an annual conference and offers monthly virtual training and information sessions.

Our history: 35 Conferences! Can you believe it? It seems like only yesterday the idea for a library support staff conference was born. 

In 1986, the old Essex-Hudson Regional Library Cooperative’s Continuing Education Committee, and the McLaughlin Library administration and staff of Seton Hall University, began exploring the possibility of a conference for library support staff, planned and run by Library Assistants. 

The first Conference, held at Seton Hall, was so successful that it stimulated interest in future conferences and in creating a formal organization to continue the networking that had begun at the initial Conference. 

A committee of dedicated library assistants was formed, and with much demand for continuing education and requests for other intra-regional participation, a second Conference was held at Seton Hall in June 1988. With another success under its belt, the formation of an organization closer to reality, the committee began the task of deciding whether to affiliate with NJLA or to form its own independent association. 

With a great deal of trepidation, the New Jersey Association of Library Assistants was born at the Third Annual Conference at Seton Hall in June 1989, an independent organization that promotes the enhancement of New Jersey’s library assistants and promotes networking and communication among its many members. Our members are from public, private, and academic libraries, and provide a forum to debate hot topics and continuing education for our members.

Executive Council


John Guido

East Orange Public Library

Second Vice President

Vince Stewart

Cape May County Library

Vice Pres/Pres Elect

Teresa Hess

Ocean County Library


Suzanne Wright

Ocean County Library

Minutes Secretary

Kirsten Valero-Malanga

Somerset County Library System

Membership Secretary

Nicole Pelliccia

Somerset County Library System


Heather Kristian

Pennsauken Free Public Library

Digital Liaison

Crystal Hooper

Somerset County Library System


Deborah Leary

Closter Public Library


Lorraine Jenkins

New Jersey State Library


Pritiben Solanki

Plainsboro Public Library


Jen McNicol

Somerset County Library System

Past Presidents

YearNameLibrary System
1989-1990Rita HilbertLivingston Public Library
1990-1991Martha Harris **East Orage Public Library
1991-1992AnnaMarie Kehnast *Gloucester County Library
1992-1993Nancy WhitesellPennsauken Free Public Library
1993-1994Dolores PayneTom’s River – Ocean County Library
1994-1995Heather Rivera *Newark Public Library
1995-1996John GuidoEast Orange Public Library
1996-1997Linda Porter *Burlington County Library
1997-1998Jean McDevitt *Woodbridge Public Library
1998-1999Regina Bocilius *Burlington County Library
1999-2000Marilyn Jack-Brown *Montclair State University Library
2000-2001Ellen Brewer *Ocean County Library
2001-2002Anita KosinskiSomerset County Library
2002-2003Linda Porter *Burlington County Library
2003-2004Marilyn Jack-Brown *Montclair State University Library
2004-2005Anita KosinskiSomerset County Library
2005-2006Barbara Ward *Seton Hall University
2006-2007Kathy Falco *Ocean County Library
2007-2008Marilyn Jack-Brown *Montclair State University Library
2008-2009Barbara Ward *Seton Hall University
2009-2010Connie ReeseOcean County Library
2010-2011Cathy Lynch *Ocean County Library
2011-2012Suzanne Ridzy*Mary Jacobs Library – Somerset County
2012-2013Ginger Cairns *Ocean County Library
2013-2014Deborah BlackwellOcean County Library
2014-2015Vincent StewartCape May County Library
2015-2016Lorraine JenkinsNew Jersey State Library
2016-2017Pamela KirbyMontclair State University
2017-2018Teresa HessOcean County Library
2018-2019Heather KristianRowan University Library
2019-2023Vincent StewartCape May County Library
2023-2024John GuidoEast Orange Public Library
* Retired** Deceased