General Sessions & Special Events

General Sessions

Get ready to be inspired, energized, and entertained by PLA 2020 speakers! Additional speakers and events to be announced soon.

Admission to general sessions and Big Ideas sessions is included with Full Conference registrations and Exhibits-Plus badges. Single-Day registrants can attend all general sessions and Big Ideas sessions on the day for which they’ve registered.

Wednesday, February 26, 2:00 PM–3:30 PM

Speaker to be announced. Stay tuned!

Saturday, February 29, 12:00 PM–1:00 PM

Wrap up the PLA 2020 Conference with one of the most unique and sharp comedic voices on television, Samantha Bee, star of the late-night show Full Frontal with Samantha Bee.

The Big Ideas Series, PLA’s version of “TED Talks,” kicks off each day with an inspiring speaker sure to challenge your mind and spark your creativity. Stay tuned for announcements on who will be taking center stage Saturday morning to start your day with some Big Ideas.

Dr. Bettina Love thumbnailBig Ideas with Dr. Bettina Love
Thursday, February 27, 8:00 AM–9:00 AM

Dr. Bettina L. Love is an award-winning author and associate professor of educational theory and practice at the University of Georgia. Her research focuses on the ways in which urban youth negotiate Hip Hop music and culture to form social, cultural, and political identities and how teachers and schools working with parents and communities can build communal, civically engaged schools rooted in intersectional social justice for the goal of equitable classrooms. More…

Haben Girma thumbnailBig Ideas with Haben Girma
Friday, February 28, 8:00 AM–9:00 AM

The first Deafblind person to graduate from Harvard Law School, Haben Girma advocates for equal opportunities for people with disabilities. A talented storyteller who helps people frame difference as an asset, she travels the world teaching organizations the benefits of fully accessible products and services. More…

Special Events

Back by popular demand, these special events will spice up your day, help you discover new ideas, and get the creativity flowing!

Thursday, February 27, 5:15 PM–6:15 PM
Friday, February 28, 4:45 PM–5:45 PM

Get fueled with great ideas in this fan-favorite program where your peers will educate, inspire, and entertain—all in under five minutes! We’re now accepting proposals for five-minute lightning-fast presentation for Spark Talks. Proposals are due by 11:59 PM Central on November 13, 2019.

Hear the latest publisher buzz for 2020 at the Book Buzz Stage, located in the Exhibits Hall!

From programming ideas to crafts to gaining life skills—the How-To Festival is a great way to get some bite-sized learning and have a little fun!

Anythink Libraries (Adams County, CO) is teaming up once again with “The Bubbler,” a Madison (WI) Public Library program that connects artists to the community through free, hands-on making, exhibitions, and community events. Staff from these libraries will offer PLA Conference attendees an immersive experience demonstrating how art can be used as a vehicle for meaningful engagement with patrons of diverse backgrounds and interests, positioning libraries as catalysts for creativity and innovation.

Résumé reviews, speed mentoring, interview coaching, and more! The career center will have scheduled events—including career “how-to” lessons—and will also be open during conference hours for job posting or impromptu interviews

Friday, February 28, 6:00 PM–8:00 PM

Join your fellow attendees on Friday for an evening of fun, food, and dancing—this is Music City after all! The reception will also include a cake-cutting ceremony commemorating PLA’s 75th anniversary.