Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

Meet Lori Rivas, Library Advocate

I met Lori Rivas at National Library Legislative Day (NLLD) 2017 and knew instantly that I wanted to share her story with the ALSC community. Lori is a library consultant with Southern California Library Cooperative (SCLC). She received the WHCLIST Award, which recognizes non-librarians for their advocacy work and supports their participation in NLLD. I hope librarians and non-librarians alike are inspired by Lori’s tireless efforts to support libraries in her community. Lori brought her son Eli (pictured here) along to NLLD. He told her, “all these librarians are so nice! It makes me think that maybe I should be a librarian, too.” Looks like we got another one! Please give an overview of your advocacy experience. For 20 years, I home-schooled my children, depending on public library resources and programming. In 2010, our city, Santa Clarita, CA, proposed contracting with a private company for the management of our public…

Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

Advocacy & Legislation Co-Chairs Go To Washington – #NLLD17

Greetings ALSC community! It’s Africa and Kendra, co-chairs of the Advocacy and Legislation Committee. Two weeks ago we participated in our first National Library Legislative Day in Washington, D.C. on behalf of the Advocacy and Legislation Committee. In addition to meeting fellow committee member, Susan Kusel, and the ALSC leadership team (Aimee Strittmatter, Nina Lindsay, and Andrew Medlar), we met amazing library advocates from across the U.S. whom we’ll profile in future blog posts. Rather than write a traditional blog post about our experience, we recorded a conversation in which we recap our time in D.C. and offer takeaways from the experience. Have a listen and, if you also attended #NLLD17, share your takeaways in the comments. Thanks, ALSC! Want to learn more about National Library Legislative Day priority issues? Check out the issue briefs online. Library advocacy doesn’t stop with #NLLD17. Use these resources from Everyday Advocacy to continue advocating…

Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

Preparing for VLLD

The ALSC Advocacy and Legislation Committee recently distributed a survey to learn which of the existing advocacy resources are helpful and your current go-to resources for advocacy information. With Virtual Library Legislative Day (VLLD) approaching (May 1-5, 2017), the committee wanted to know what was already useful and whether members were aware of the resources already available before developing even more resources. What we learned from the survey is that an overwhelming number of respondents (90%) have not participated in a VLLD. Two common reasons for non-participation (besides lack of support from library administrators) were lack of awareness about the event and lack of time. This post aims to address both of these issues and put you on the path to participating in VLLD. Admittedly, the advocacy and legislation sections of the ALA website are overwhelming especially if you’re just getting started with advocacy work. So what do you need…

Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

Advocacy Interview with Paula S. W. Laurita, Athens-Limestone Public Library

Paula S. W. Laurita is the Executive Director of the Athens-Limestone Public Library in Athens, Alabama. She was a school librarian for ten years before making the switch to Public Services. Now, she is currently running for an open council seat for ALA! Throughout her career, Paula has constantly advocated for libraries and library services. Her work convincing her community that they needed a new public library epitomizes these efforts. Thanks to her incredible advocacy and use of best practices, the community of Athens, AL gained a beautiful 40,000 square foot library facility at the end of 2014! I was first influenced by Paula Laurita and her accomplishments when I attended her ALA webinar titled, “Marketing and Advocacy: Explaining Libraries to Elected Officials.” The three biggest takeaways I took from Paula, when working with elected officials, were these three rules: 1.Stay POSITIVE. 2. It’s not about you. It’s about the SERVICE to…

Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

Survey on Advocacy Tool Needs

Take the ALSC Advocacy Resources Survey

Considering the current state of affairs in the United States, advocacy for library services to children may be more vital than ever before. The ALSC Advocacy and Legislation Committee would like to make sure you have all the tools and resources you need to be excellent advocates for yourselves, your libraries, and children and families in your communities.

ALA Midwinter 2017

ALSC Valuation and Advocacy Research Task Force Recommendations at #alamw17

I’ve finally made it back to Ohio, and I am so energized by all of the wonderful work I saw happening over the last few days at #alamw17. My last afternoon in Atlanta, I listened to an ALSC Board of Directors meeting where the ALSC Valuation and Advocacy Research Task Force presented their report and recommendations. For those of you (like me) who are not / were not aware of the Task Force, they were charged two years ago to:

Blogger Advocacy and Legislation Committee

Advocacy Interview with Sara Moran, Free Library of Philadelphia

When Siobhan Reardon became President and Director of the Free Library of Philadelphia in 2008, she asked Sara Moran, her Chief of Staff then and Vice-President of Strategic Initiatives now, to manage government affairs and launch a legislative advocacy campaign. Sara Moran took on the challenge and still maintains her advocacy relationships, and I have been continuously impressed with her expertise, ability, and positive attitude. Some activities are ongoing, some annual, and some just when the time is right! Recently, I asked Sara about this initiative and her experiences. Can you give us an overview of your advocacy work? We approach local and state advocacy work with the overarching idea to make it as easy as possible for legislators and politicians to participate and stay involved. We regularly visit legislators in session and we are in frequent contact with local offices. We send them information and photos that legislators can…