We are proud to invite you to join us virtually this October 20th,  2020 for the annual Library of Congress Lavine/Ken Burns Prize for Film Ceremony. 

We live in a historic moment.  Historical awareness is more crucial than ever - and documentary films are critical to our ability to understand both the past and today.

As Jeannie and Jonathan Lavine, who generously endowed this prize remind us: our democracy is enriched when filmmakers share with us stories of our collective past, providing us with a range of view-points and a complex understanding of the events that have contributed to who we are today.

With this prize we also celebrate the rich, fruitful relationship between filmmakers - and all storytellers - and those who work so diligently to preserve our history.   Filmmakers rely on the Library of Congress as a central resource for their artform, finding both inspiration and a medium in its collections, preservation projects and troves of music, film, and photography.

We live in a complicated and difficult time.  But we are fortunate that we have access online to the Library’s photographs, films and documents. These materials are available to everyone - including new generations of young filmmakers who we also recognize this evening through the Next Generation Angels Award, a partnership with The Better Angels Society and National History Day, which highlights the work of middle and high school-age filmmakers.

We applaud the winners, as well as all filmmakers around the country who are digging into our country’s archives to uncover new stories that help us appreciate our past and navigate our future.


Carla Hayden                           Ken Burns