Hello — I recently got back from virtually attending ALA. Virtual attendance at Council meetings continues to work pretty well and I submitted one resolution.
We had significantly shorter meetings this time because we’ve gotten the main bylaws changed and the major Council reorganization done which were big jobs. Here is my report.
Previous reports from me: June 2020, January 2021 (did not write a report), July 2021, January 2022, June 2022 (did not go to ALA ), January 2023
I filled in for outgoing Councilor Marti Fisk who moved, and was elected to a three-year term starting in 2020. I am planning on having LibLearnX in January 2024 be my last conference.
So, VLA is looking for a Councilor. It’s a pretty low-key commitment: virtual or in-person attendance at meetings twice a year where you represent Vermont’s libraries and librarians, and occasional fill-in meetings. Paying attention to ongoing ALA Council issues and communicating about them to VLA. Writing conference reports and doing an annual “State of the Chapter” survey. I’ve been a Councilor for six years total–I was an “at large” councilor in the early aughts–and it’s a great way to meet librarians at a national level and work to get things done.
Do you already attend ALA and could you take on a bit more responsibility? Please contact me if you have further questions or want to get involved.
Continue reading “Vermont Chapter Councilor Report – ALA Annual 2023”
With SRRT Councilor Tara Brady, I sponsored a resolution about making ALA governance available virtually. Right now the bylaws say that Executive Board and Council meetings “may be held in either fully virtual, or hybrid virtual-and-in-person modes.” and we want to change that may to shall. Since this involves a bylaws change (The first one with his new set of bylaws!) it was referred to the Bylaws Committee. Here are my brief remarks on why it is an important resolution.
I am Jessamyn West, Vermont’s Chapter Councilor. You should support this resolution because it addresses the following issues that ALA cares about.
1. Equity issue (one of ALA’s Four Strategic Directions, also in parity with membership meetings – also coming up as one of three of ALA’s core values) allowing more types of people to be involved in ALA governance.
2. Community Engagement issue (ALA Policy Manual A.1.6, one of ALA’s strategic objectives is removing barriers to participation via technology and innovation)
3. Climate friendly issue (2021 ALA CD #53 – ALA is trying to go carbon neutral by 2025 – this is also coming up as one of three of ALA’s core values)
4. Access issue (conference travel and accommodations and accessibility issues – coming up as one of three of ALA’s core values)
5. Safety issue (supporting our LGBTQIA+ communities when conferences may be held in places where they do not feel safe such as the IFLA World Library and Information Congress being held in Dubai, currently being explored by the Executive Board)
I move that the pending resolution be referred to the Bylaws Committee for review and further recommendation, including that the committee consult with BARC regarding any fiscal implications and that the committee report back to the Council at LLX 2024.
All documents for this meeting can be found here.
Attendee report: 2653 attendees at LLX, 1711 are reg members (i.e. not vendors, corporate members, free attendees)
Continue reading “Vermont Chapter Councilor Report – ALA LibLearnX 2023”
Hello from your local Chapter Councilor to the American Library Association. This past week I attended Council Forums and Council meetings virtually and this is my report.
Want to be a Councilor?
Brief note that my Chapter Councilor term is up in May. While I am more than happy to serve a second three-year term, I would also be happy to pass the privilege and responsibility on to someone else. Feel free to contact me directly and I can discuss what is involved. I was lucky to follow in the footsteps of Marti Fiske (with some gap coverage also by Virgil Fuller, thanks Virgil and Happy Birthday!) who did a terrific job for us.
ALA Conferences Overview
The January professional development conference (with speakers and activities and vendors) is becoming known as LibLearnX, and all the committee meetings which happen at ALA in January are… still kind of called Midwinter. It’s a little confusing and I asked specifically if this lack of clarity was intentional and was told by the Conference Committee that they are really trying to spin up LibLearnX as a “whole new thing” and so they don’t use any of the Midwinter verbiage which, to my mind, leaves people to figure it out on their own. LibLearnX does look pretty interesting and now all of the speakers and activities are at “no conflict” times, in case you were thinking about attending in the future. Next LibLearnX is in New Orleans, always a great conference location.
Next big conference for ALA is in Washington DC June 23-28. It is still somewhat up in the air whether this will be in person, virtual or hybrid. I have been advocating for a hybrid conference as I think it allows for better accessibility as well as access for Councilors from far-flung states as well as some serious cost savings for people from smaller chapters but there has been some push back on this, so stay tuned. Report follows….
Continue reading “Vermont Chapter Councilor Report – LibLearnX 2022”
I am the Chapter Councilor for Vermont. This means I get to (have to) go to the annual and midwinter conferences and represent the great state of Vermont. I mostly like it. To be honest, I’ve liked it MORE since COVID means we can’t travel. This means two important things: meetings are held later in the day to accommodate our colleagues from Hawai’i; and meetings are cheaper because I don’t need to get on a plane and stay in a hotel to attend these meetings. There are many reasonable critiques of ALA, many of which I agree with, but I’m still trying to do my best in this tiny role. I always write up a report for the Vermont Library Association, the group that pays for my membership and which would be paying for my travel and registration. I figured I’d share it here as well.
I’ve just completed the ALA Annual Conference as your Vermont Chapter Councilor and wanted to fill you in on ALA things.
Continue reading “Vermont Chapter Councilor Report – ALA Annual 2021”