In this monthly feature, we profile ALSC Board members. We hope to offer information about the people who work to guide the organization so that you can feel more comfortable in reaching out to them with your concerns, questions, or comments. To continue this series, we invite you to meet ALSC Board member, Africa Hands.
Why did you join ALSC? How long have you been a member?
I joined ALSC about 10 years ago when I started my MLIS. I was interested in children’s librarianship and children’s literature so ALSC was a natural fit. Though, I didn’t go on to become a children’s librarian (yet), I still decided to make ALSC my “home division” and plant my feet in the organization. It’s been one of the easiest divisions to become active in, and I’m extremely grateful to more seasoned members like Chris Desai, Barbara Klipper, and Paula Holmes who opened the door to leadership opportunities within the organization.
What strengths do you bring to the ALSC Board of Directors?
I’ve served on numerous ALSC committees, so I have some understanding of the organization, which is helpful for starting out on the board. Of course now, I’m learning so much more as a board member about the running of ALSC.
I bring a variety of experiences to the board – experience serving on other non-profit boards, working in libraries, and providing administrative support to a board. I’m pretty frugal when it comes to spending organizational money, and aim to be a good steward of organization resources. I’m also not shy about asking questions and making sure I understand the issues and impact before taking a vote.
What have you learned – or what do you hope to learn – while serving on the Board?
I‘m learning more about the various partnerships of ALSC and the day-to-day operations of the association. I look forward to continuing to learn about finances and budgeting.
What do you wish ALSC members knew about ALSC or about the ALSC Board of directors?
I hope library staff experience how welcoming the ALSC community is and know that they are welcome to attend board meetings in-person or virtually. We’re an accessible group!