Guest Blogger

Opening Session with Luvvie Ajayi Jones #PLA2022

#PLA2022 began with over 3,000 people descending upon the Oregon Convention Center in Portland. After 2 long years, we were all together in the same room once again. And what a way to begin! Professional Troublemaker Luvvie Ajayi Jones was the Opening Speaker. Luvvie challenged us to join her in becoming a Professional Troublemaker. Luvvie contends that in every room that we are a part of, we have the opportunity to elevate the room to do better and be better. While she was speaking, I kept thinking of the musical Hamilton.

In Hamilton, Alexander Hamilton and Aaron Burr sing about “The Room Where it Happens”.  That is, the room where the power and opportunities are happening.  What struck me while Luvvie Ajayi Jones was speaking was that every day, we are in “The Room Where it Happens”.

So how do we challenge challenge our rooms? Not by leading with fear, but by telling the truth. By being a Professional Troublemaker who makes the courageous choice to speak up. If we don’t have the courage to initially stand up and speak out, then we need to have the courage to back up any other person in the room who is standing up for the truth.

For the things we challenge change lives.

This is our chance to make a difference in the world.

Please note that as a guest post, the views expressed here do not represent the official position of ALA or ALSC.

Guest conference blogger Bettina Wesloh (she/her) is a Librarian at the Owings Mills Branch of the Baltimore County Public Library. Bettina is looking forward to discussing how library services have evolved in the wake of the pandemic and effective strategies for bringing back into the doors of the library. She is eagerly anticipating the children’s author breakfast and learning how to play the ukelele. Bettina and her little black cat Hermes share a passion for breakfast food.

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