I am a writer who lives in Evanston, Illinois. I grew up in Chicago with three brothers and attended Chicago Public Schools. Then I studied at the University of Illinois at Champaign-Urbana and Loyola University Chicago. I have been a librarian, a professor, and a college trustee. I like the arts, sports, traveling, and staying home.
And when I am home I like to read and write, knit and sew, bake and run, and walk my Daisy Doodle along the Lake Michigan shore.
My most recent publication is Our World is Whole (Sleeping Bear Press, 2020). My friend Randy Meyer and I are co-editors of Indivisible: Poems for Social Justice (Norwood House Press, 2013). I also publish books, articles and essays, for teachers and librarians and all lifelong learners.
More about me:
Gail Bush, Ph.D., is professor emeritus of education, National Louis University in Chicago. Gail’s academic background includes a bachelor’s degree in anthropology, master’s degree in library science, and doctorate in educational psychology.
In 2002, Gail followed her tenure as an academic, corporate, and high school library practitioner by moving into academia as director of the Dominican University Graduate School of Library and Information Science School Library Media Program. She then developed the School Library Program and founded, along with Dr. Junko Yokota, the Center for Teaching Through Children's Books, in the Department of Reading and Literacy at National Louis University. Gail's research includes educator collaboration and the development of professional dispositions; her areas of intellectual engagement are social justice, creativity, poetry, and serving youth through literature.
After a career in libraries that included the National School Library Media Program of the Year award, Gail was recognized as the University of Illinois Champaign-Urbana Graduate School of Library and Information Science Distinguished Alumnae of 2008. In 2010, she was elected the president of the Illinois Library Association while serving as an Evanston Public Library trustee. Gail completed her term as the United States delegate to the School Libraries Committee of the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA) in 2014. She served as a trustee of the Poetry Foundation from 2010 – 2015 and was inducted as an Illinois Library Luminary Honoree in July 2015. In 2019, Gail was elected member of the Oakton Community College District 535 board of trustees.
Keenan, L. (2013). Evanston educator makes poetry accessible and relevant for all ages, new anthology spotlights social justice issues. Evanston Review. April 23, 2013.
Schroeder, R. (2012). Information transliteracy in the 21st century: Questioning the answer: An interview with Professor Gail Bush. January 17, 2012.
BWI Titletalk. (2010). Gail Bush: The role of public libraries in lifelong learning. BWI Titletalk: Follett Library Resources. Winter 2010-11.2-3.
Burton, P. (2007). Illinois School Library Media Association Polestar Award Winner.
Press Release. November 7, 2007.
Ague, L. (2004). Collaboration, excellence and the fighting Illini: Gail Bush.
Interchange: Journal of the Oregon Educational Media Association, 33(1). 29-30.
Honors and Recognition
2015 Inducted as Honoree, Illinois Library Luminary, Illinois Library Association
2009 Elected President, Illinois Library Association, 3000+ membership including all types of libraries and library affiliation in Illinois.
2008 University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Graduate School of Library and Information Science Distinguished Alumnus (peer nominations).
2007 Illinois School Library Media Association Polestar Award recipient. The Polestar Award is presented to honor members of the Association who have made outstanding contributions to school library media programs in Illinois. Selection determined by committee based on multiple peer nominations.
2005 “Top 100 Leaders in School Librarianship” published in the Whole Library Handbook for School Librarians, a publication of the American Library Association, ALA Editions, 2005. Selection determined by multiple peernominations.
1998 North Suburban Library System School Librarian of the Year. Nominated by a staff member and recognized by the North Suburban Library Foundation for leadership in multi-type cooperation between Maine West High School LRC and the Des Plaines Public Library.
1996 National School Library Media Program of the Year. Maine West High School Library Resource Center (District 207, Illinois) was recognized by the American Association of School Librarians and Follett Library Resources (librarians Geralyn Haan, Merrilee Andersen Kwielford, and Gail Bush).
Educational and Professional Background
Ph.D., educational psychology, Loyola University Chicago, with distinction, 2001
Dissertation: The Development of a Theoretical Framework of Educator Collaboration
Illinois State Board of Education Library Information Specialist Certificate Type 10, 1992
M.S., library science, University of Illinois at Urbana, Beta Phi Mu Honorary Society, 1977
B.A., anthropology, art history, University of Illinois at Urbana, magna cum laude, 1973
Professor, Reading and Language, and Director, Center for Teaching through Children’s
Books, and Director, School Library Program, National College of Education, National-Louis University, Skokie, IL, 2006-12. Emeritus, 2012-
Associate Professor and Director, School Library Media Program, Graduate School of
Library and Information Science, Dominican University, River Forest, IL,
Lecturer/Instructor, Department of Curriculum, Instruction, and Educational
Psychology, School of Education, Loyola University Chicago, 1998-2002.
Curriculum Librarian, Maine Township High School West District 207,
Des Plaines, IL, 1992-2002.
Reference Librarian, Introduction to Graduate Research Instructor, National
College of Education (National-Louis University), 1982-1992.
Corporate Library Manager, Heidrick & Struggles International Executive
Recruiting Corp., 1979-82.
Campus Librarian, National College of Education, Chicago Campus, 1977-79.
Circulation Librarian Graduate Assistant, Graduate Library, University of
Illinois Urbana-Champaign, 1975-77.
Information Center Staff, PLATO Project, Computer-based Education Research
Laboratory, University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, 1973-75.
Professional Committees and Leadership Positions
Chair, 2011 American Association of School Librarians (AASL) Nominating
Chair, School and Public Library Cooperation Interdivisional Committee,
(AASL/ALSC Association for Library Service to Children/YALSA Young Adult
Library Services Association), 2007-2009
Chicago Writers Association, Chicago Literary Hall of Fame Nominator, 2012
Illinois Library Association, President, 2010-2011
Illinois State Library Advisory Committee, Member, 2003-2009
International Federation of Library Associations,
School Libraries Standing Committee Member (USA Delegate), 2009-2013
International Reading Association, Committee Member, Outstanding Book Award, 2007-2009
Oakton Community College, Trustee, Elected, 2019-present
RAILS (Reaching Across Illinois Libraries System), Charter Member, Elected, 2011-2015
Illinois Library Association, President, Elected, 2010-2011
Poetry Foundation, Board Member, 2010-2015
Evanston Public Library Board Trustee, Mayoral Appointment, 2008-2011
School Library Media Research,Editorial Board Member, 2008-2013
Heinemann-Raintree Publishing, Advisory Board Member, 2007-2010
School Libraries Monthly,Editorial Board Member, 2007-2015
ALA Editions, American Library Association, Editorial Board Member, 2002-2011
Teacher Librarian,Editorial Board Member, 2002-2012
Knowledge Quest: Journal of the American Association of School Librarians, American
Association of School Librarians, a division of the American Library Association,
Editorial Board Charter Member, 2000-2008