Author Archive: Terra Dankowski

Poet, educator, and activist E. Ethelbert Miller delivers the Closing Session keynote at the third National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on September 30.

Protectors of Culture

October 1, 2018

“We must construct a moral pathway to the future,” he said. “It’s the library that pushes back. We must be truth protectors.” Miller—who has written 12 books and two memoirs, and was director of Howard University’s African-American Resource Center for more than 40 years—was the keynote speaker at the Closing General Session of the third … Continue reading Protectors of Culture


Lalitha Nataraj, former adult education librarian at Escondido (Calif.) Public Library, describes the creation of “Home: A Living Archive Exhibition.”

Archive with Care

October 1, 2018

At “Proceed with Care: Steps Toward Building Trust with Marginalized Communities,” a September 29 session at the third National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque, New Mexico, two former Escondido (Calif.) Public Library (EPL) employees shared with attendees how they created a participatory archives to engage marginalized communities and put “justice-seeking, caregiving, and … Continue reading Archive with Care


From left, Milton Bluehouse Jr., Cassandra Allen, and Corey Garza present “Environmental Justice @ Your Library and in Your Community,” a September 29 session at the third National Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

The Path to Environmental Justice

September 30, 2018

“We are all familiar with what happened in Flint,” said Cassandra Allen, outreach librarian at the National Library of Medicine. So what part can libraries, universities, and other organizations play in making sure people of all races, cultures, and income levels are treated fairly when it comes to environmental development, implementation, and policy? At “Environmental Justice … Continue reading The Path to Environmental Justice


From left, Kalani Adolpho, Jesus Espinoza, and Twanna Hodge discuss academic library residency programs during the National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque, New Mexico.

The Reality of Residency Programs

September 30, 2018

At “Under the Hood: Exploring Academic Library Resident Programs in Practice,” a September 28 panel at the third National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque, New Mexico, three librarians of color talked about the benefits, challenges, and outcomes of their current and recent residencies. Moderated by Madison Sullivan, business research and instruction library … Continue reading The Reality of Residency Programs


From left: Maria Taesil Hudson McCauley, ALA President Loida Garcia-Febo, and John Spears

My Library, My Story

September 30, 2018

American Library Association (ALA) President Loida Garcia-Febo hopes these prompts and others can be leveraged to create better advocates and visibility for libraries on the local, national, and international level. “This is a time for action. We’re living in challenging times,” she said. “We need a seat at the table.” At “My Library, My Story,” … Continue reading My Library, My Story


Ana Ndumu, PhD postdoctoral researcher at University of Maryland iSchool, presented her findings on the obstacles black immigrants face in public libraries at the National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque, New Mexico on September 28.

Serving Black Immigrants

September 29, 2018

At “Engaging and Serving Black Immigrant Communities,” a September 28 session at the third National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque, New Mexico, Ana Ndumu, PhD postdoctoral researcher at University of Maryland iSchool, presented her findings on the obstacles black immigrants face in accessing information and what libraries can better do to reach … Continue reading Serving Black Immigrants


Natalia Fernández, associate professor at Oregon State University (OSU) and curator and archivist of the Oregon Multicultural Archives and OSU Queer Archives in Corvallis, presents “Campus Connections to White Supremacy: Reconciliation through Community Engagement and Historical Research” at the third National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque, New Mexico, on September 27.

Renaming and Reconciling

September 29, 2018

“Building and place names do matter. They can be those institutional symbols of racism,” said Natalia Fernández, associate professor at Oregon State University (OSU) and curator and archivist of the Oregon Multicultural Archives and OSU Queer Archives in Corvallis. “It can be very impactful, hurtful, and it’s important that we have these conversations.” In “Campus … Continue reading Renaming and Reconciling


Sandy Littletree, PhD candidate at University of Washington and 2011–2012 president of the American Indian Library Association, discusses “The History and Currency of Tribal Libraries: Sovereignty, Information, and Empowerment,” a September 27 session at the third National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque.

The Challenges of Tribal Libraries

September 28, 2018

Sandy Littletree, PhD candidate at University of Washington and 2011–2012 president of the American Indian Library Association (AILA), posed these questions at the outset of “The History and Currency of Tribal Libraries: Sovereignty, Information, and Empowerment,” a September 27 session at the third National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque, New Mexico. “There … Continue reading The Challenges of Tribal Libraries


Author, poet, and essayist Benjamin Alire Sáenz speaks to attendees at the Third National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color in Albuquerque on September 27.

Praise for the Gatekeepers

September 28, 2018

“You are the gatekeepers of American culture. You are what this country needs even though it doesn’t know it needs you. And you do it anonymously,” he said. Sáenz, a New Mexico native, welcomed a standing-room-only crowd to the Third National Joint Conference of Librarians of Color (JCLC) in Albuquerque on September 27. The Opening … Continue reading Praise for the Gatekeepers



Beth Crist, Dustin Landrum, and Wendy Cornelisen

Collaboration is Key

June 26, 2018

A room full of library professionals shouted out the answers: “Build a better team!” “Increase awareness!” “Reach new audiences!” “Share resources!” “Take pressure off overworked librarians!” “Build capacity!” “Avoid duplicating efforts!” For attendees at “Collaboration is Key: Steps to Building Great Partnerships with Outside Organizations,” an Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies–sponsored program at … Continue reading Collaboration is Key


Viola Davis

Viola Davis Takes a Bow

June 26, 2018

“This is one of my favorite cities,” she announced to an auditorium packed with library professionals. “You can blow a fuse in this city, though, between the vodka and the fried oysters.” Oscar, Emmy, and Tony-winning actor Davis was the Closing Session speaker at the American Library Association’s 2018 Annual Conference and Exhibition in New Orleans … Continue reading Viola Davis Takes a Bow