My year as President has ended and I wanted to thank you all for your support of ALSC during our eventful year. I’m using this blog as an opportunity to wrap up our year and to thank key individuals who have made our important work possible.
Dear ALSC Members and Friends, Welcome to May! We’ve all had some dark days in the past few months. I’m hoping life is getting better for all of you as some of us transition to open workplaces and businesses and some of us must wait for at least another month. No matter what, ALSC is here for you. May Community Forum: Impact of Covid-19 on the Library: Present and Future Speaking of opening up, the next ALSC Community Forum will take place on Wednesday, May 20, 2020, 12 noon CST. Join fellow members and leaders for this upcoming Community Forum to discuss the impact of Covid-19 on your work and your libraries. What will library life look like once we reopen them? What do we need to consider in meeting the needs of our communities? Register now by logging into your ALA account. I hope to see you there!
University of Central Florida staff members Kristine Shrauger, Amy Dovydaitis and Emma Gisclair have created a database in order to provide access to diverse books that are ‘hidden’ in the library stacks. Hidden because the formal subject headings assigned to them do not reflect the details within the books that families are looking for: diversity in race, culture, sexuality, family relationships, health and disability. Using an intake form to categorize books they are building their Diverse Families Bookshelf database. They take a ‘picture walk’ through picture books as well as deeply reading and categorizing books for kids up to age 18. The PowerPoint of the program is here. They welcome your assistance on this important project that benefits all families.
Oh, how I love informational books and what a stellar line-up of authors at PLA presenting their new books. I knew Bob Garfield’s voice, but had never seen a photo of him, which is unusual for someone so well known; Bob is the longtime co-host of On the Media. Bob’s new book is American Manifesto: Saving Democracy From Villains, Vandals and Ourselves. He believes we should all become ‘bulwarks against the post-truth barrage.’ He has a established We the Purple: a nonpartisan coalition, campaign and movement. As an aside and as we were in Nashville, Bob invited us to listen to two stories on his webpage: Tag You’re It, Part I & II, where he details how he is resolved to become a country music legend.
Gosh, so much for ‘live’ blogging! So many great programs and so little time to write about them. The conference ended a few hours ago and I want to share some notes I took while I’m still flying high with happiness and inspiration. This is the first of several posts. I’ll add to Abby Johnson’s great post about Haben Girma: Steer Around the Sharks. Before Ms. Girma was born, her mother traveled from Eritrea to Sudan, where she spent 10 months before arriving in the US. She thought the US would offer the justice she was looking for, but she realized that geography doesn’t create justice, people create justice.
Stacey Abrams got everyone excited and and ready to take up the mantle of protecting voting. She also called the public library the perfect place for people to fill out the census form, especially if they fear being tracked. As she says: ‘if you’re not counted, you don’t count.’
Happy New Year ALSC members and Friends! Here in the inland Northwest the weather can’t decide whether to snow or rain so it’s doing both at the same time! Weather can be unpredictable for Philadelphia as well, so best to pack an umbrella and boots. So many ALSC choices to look forward to in just a few short weeks, so start planning your schedule now. I like to use the ALA online conference scheduler to build my list of meeting, programs, and special events. You can find a link to it from the Midwinter conference page.
In 2016 the ALSC Board of Directors began work on a new 2017-2020 Strategic Plan. As many of you know, Strategic Plans are generally for 5 years, but ALSC decided that a 3 year plan gave our organization the opportunity to review, refresh and revise in a shorter time frame. This is not to say that we haven’t been doing this during the 3 year period – we have! The Strategic Plan is not a document we put together and put away; it’s a living document. A Strategic Plan Implementation Progress Report is written four times a year, updating the Board and membership where we are in achieving our goals.