Our History

For many years, Professor Bernard (Bernie) Vavrek from Clarion University sponsored two organizations, the Association for Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL) and the Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services (ABOS).  They would have a joint conference in Columbus, Ohio each year.  Clarion University also hosted a listserve for each organization.  In early 2006, Prof. Vavrek decided to retire.  The two groups decided to separate.


This was the last conference that was hosted by Clarion University and Prof. Vavrek. This conference was held in Columbus, OH. The Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services was formed in 2006.  Marilyn Kackmeister was elected the  first president.


The 1st Conference was held in Saint Louis, Missouri. Jeannie Dilger-Hill was the second president.

During the year, Carol Hole, a pioneer in early bookmobile and outreach services in Florida passed away.  The Association created the John Philip Award to honor a person who was instrumental in mentoring colleagues and expanding the reach of bookmobile and outreach services.  Carol Hole received the award posthumously.


The 2nd Conference was held in Columbus, Ohio. Theresa Gemmer was the third president. John Philip presented the award named after him to Barbara Adrianopoli.


The 3rd Conference was held in Everett, Washington (outside of Seattle).  Jody Oliveri was the fourth president.


The 4th Conference was held in Denver, Colorado.  Kathy Totten was the fifth president. This was a joint conference with the Association for Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL).


The 5th Conference was held in Cleveland, Ohio. Mary Anne Marjamaa was the sixth president.


The 6th Conference was held in Richmond, Virginia. Brad Thomas was the seventh president.


The 7th Conference was held in Baton Rouge, Louisiana.  Martha Buckner was the eighth president.


The 8th Conference was held in San Diego, California. Eletha Davis was the ninth president.

Conference Attendance: 108


The 9th Conference was held in St. Charles, Illinois. Pattie Johnston was the tenth president.


The 10th Conference was held in Covington, Kentucky (across the river from Cincinnati, OH). Marianne Thompson was the eleventh president. 10th Anniversary of ABOS.

Conference Attendance: 236


The 11th Conference was held in Pittsburgh, PA.  Ann Plazek was the 12th president. 

Conference Attendance: 223


The 12th Conference was held in Raleigh, NC.  Tina Williams was the 13th president.

Conference Attendance: 259


The 13th Conference was held in Omaha, Nebraska. Susan Parkins was the 14th President.

Conference Attendance: 200


Our 14th Conference was held virtually. Cathy Zimmerman was the 15th President.

Conference attendance: 1,015


Our 15th Conference will be held in St. Louis, Missouri. David Kelsey is the 16th President.


Powered by Wild Apricot Membership Software