Contact: Guy Lamolinara (202) 707-9217

December 22, 1999

Library's National Digital Library Program Wins Best in Education Web Site Award from GII

The Library has been named by the fourth annual Global Information Infrastructure (GII) Awards as the winner of the best Web site ( in Education.

Ziff-Davis's GII Awards are the world's leading forum to define, recognize and promote best practices and new models in the application of Internet and network technology. The honor, awarded to the Library's National Digital Library Program, was presented at a ceremony at the Westin St. Francis Hotel in San Francisco, in conjunction with the Nextravaganza conference, part of ZD Studios' series.

"On behalf of the Library's hard-working staff, I am honored to accept this prestigious award," said Dr. Billington. "The National Digital Library Program, with the help of Congress and private donors, is leading the way to the next millennium by providing unique, high quality educational content for Internet users throughout the nation and the world."

The GII Awards program is a nonpartisan, private-sector initiative sponsored by leading corporations, organizations, publishers and government agencies.

"The GII Awards honor people in all areas of society and industry who use the Internet to create extraordinary results, from making money to making a difference," said Melanie McMullen, general manager of the GII Awards and The Standard for Internet Commerce. "The Library of Congress is a visionary institution that exemplifies best practices and an innovative model in a new era of knowledge and communication."

The fourth annual GII Awards recognized achievement in 10 categories "that are central to the way people live, work and play": Arts and Culture; Children; Commerce; Community; Education; Entertainment; Government; Health; Netpreneur; and News and Media.

"This award recognizes the Library's efforts to use technology to make its collections as useful as possible to all Americans," said Laura Campbell, director of the NDL Program. "All the hundreds of LC staffers who have worked to make our Web site a leader in providing educational content share in this honor."

The National Digital Library Program is one of the Library's "Gifts to the Nation" during its Bicentennial. By the 200th birthday of the Library, on April 24, 2000, it will make available on its Web site more than 5 million important items relating to American history. In addition to the more than 70 collections on-line, the Library also offers access to its on-line "card catalog," major exhibitions, information from the U.S. Copyright Office and THOMAS, a congressional database.

The Library is the nation's oldest federal cultural institution. It preserves a collection of 115 million items -- more than two-thirds of which are in media other than books. These include the world's largest map and film and television collections. In addition to its primary mission of serving the research needs of Congress, the Library serves all Americans through its popular Web site and in its 22 reading rooms on Capitol Hill.

"We will celebrate with pride our first 200 years of Library history," said Dr. Billington. During that time, the Library has grown into the world's largest repository of knowledge and creativity, which it has preserved for all generations of Americans. "We want to take advantage of this opportunity to energize national awareness of the critical role that all libraries play in keeping the spirit of creativity and free inquiry alive in our society."

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PR 99-187
ISSN 0731-3527

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