Here’s an organization with: 57,000 members, representing an incredibly wide range of backgrounds, communities served, types of libraries, and interests a new president every year an Executive Board a 185-member Council 11 divisions (each with its own board) 20 round tables 56 state and regional chapters membership in 96 countries 1,266 online communities 1,272 discussion … Continue reading My ALA Journey
If no one does anything, this could actually happen. Only a band of brave individuals stands between us and this scenario becoming a reality. Who are these heroes? They are us. When speaking at chapters around the country, I often ask attendees to raise their hands if they have ever had their US representative or … Continue reading It’s Time to Make That Call
As an Association, we advocate for a wide range of federal legislation and policy issues, from intellectual freedom and privacy to access to government information to preservation to copyright. We also advocate for funding for library programs, including the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA), the E-Rate program, … Continue reading In D.C., It’s All about Our Values
With a sustained national advocacy campaign our first priority, the Libraries Transform public awareness program launched last year. More than 3,000 libraries and supporters have already signed on to be part of the campaign. Last year we saw 144,001 page views of LibrariesTransform.org, 12,387 downloads of the library toolkit, 22,000 #LibrariesTransform mentions on Twitter, 65,000 … Continue reading Advocacy School Is In Session
Thanks to the American Library Association’s new public awareness campaign Libraries Transform, it has never been easier to spread the word about the transformative and critical role libraries play in the digital age. Since the October 2015 launch, more than 1,600 libraries have registered to participate in the campaign, and that number is growing daily. … Continue reading A United Effort
Examples of these changes include new provisions in the ESSA regarding local education agencies assisting schools in developing effective school library programs to provide students the opportunity to develop digital literacy skills and other ways to improve academic achievement. The bill also authorizes states and local educational agencies to use these federal funds to support … Continue reading Every Student Succeeds
It begins with our core values. These statements define our deepest aspirations and how we approach our work together. They are: extending and expanding library services in the US and around the world promoting all types of libraries—academic, public, school, and special supporting all librarians, library staff, trustees and other individuals and groups working to … Continue reading The New ALA Strategic Directions
In some communities, we see that testing pressures and budget decisions have led to the elimination of school libraries and school librarians. In some districts, we see that school libraries are seen as a “frill”—nice to have but not essential to student learning. Yet school libraries and school librarians are among the most effective and efficient … Continue reading Support School Libraries!
Over the last year and a half, we have been talking a lot with members about advocacy and the strategic direction of the Association for the coming years. In dozens of kitchen-table conversations, chapter forums, virtual town hall meetings; in conversations with divisions, round tables, committees, and affiliates; and in discussions with Council and the … Continue reading The Advocacy Continuum
In other words, libraries need to be the community hub where people can come to see the new and exciting—to see the future. And by communities, I mean all the communities we serve as libraries: municipalities and counties, colleges and universities, elementary and secondary schools. Libraries were once the place where community members gathered to … Continue reading Welcome to the Future—at Your Library
In May, then-President Barbara Stripling brought together a hundred individuals—and about half from outside the library community—at the Library of Congress to discuss the future of libraries. In the process, these individuals also helped launch a new ALA Center for the Future of Libraries. Later that month, Miguel Figueroa was named director of the … Continue reading Who Will Shape the Future?
In any conversation with ALA members, advocacy consistently emerges as a number one priority. This coming year, we’re taking a fresh look at advocacy, and our vision for advocacy going forward. Our new vision of advocacy needs to reflect both what I would describe as “upstream” and “downstream” advocacy. “Downstream” advocacy is what happens when … Continue reading A New Vision of Advocacy