Honoring and Respecting Relationship: Rethinking Library Praxis

Decolonizing Knowledge

June 25, 2020

Camille Callison, Indigenous strategies librarian at University of Manitoba in Winnipeg, commenced the American Indian Library Association President’s Program “Honoring and Respecting Relationship: Rethinking Library Praxis” June 25 at ALA Virtual by introducing herself as member of the Tahltan Nation and recapping some of the racist and problematic actions Canada has inflicted upon Indigenous people. … Continue reading Decolonizing Knowledge



From left: Melanie Toledo (at podium), Carolyn Petersen, and Janessa Esquivel.

Supporting Tribal Libraries

February 28, 2020

At “Perspectives on Outreach to Tribal Libraries,” a February 28 program at the Public Library Association’s 2020 Conference in Nashville, librarians from tribal libraries and the state libraries that support them offered tips for successful collaboration. Have a purpose. Are you from a state or public library that wants to reach out and network with … Continue reading Supporting Tribal Libraries


Better Literacy for the Blackfeet Nation

June 24, 2019

That’s the number at which literacy levels of all types significantly improve, said Anthony Chow, associate professor at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro, at “Resources for Rural and Tribal Libraries,” a June 24 session at the American Library Association’s (ALA) Annual Conference and Exhibition in Washington, D.C. Of the Blackfeet Nation individuals he … Continue reading Better Literacy for the Blackfeet Nation


Illustration of library in field receiving signals from towers (Illustration: © Auguste Lange/Adobe Stock)

Wi-Fi in the “White Space”

May 1, 2019

But the library is reaching them using an Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) grant. The grant provides broadband Wi-Fi service to Huron’s parks through unused parts of the television broadcast spectrum. Often called “white spaces,” these parts of the spectrum were freed up when most broadcasters switched from analog to digital signals in … Continue reading Wi-Fi in the “White Space”


Santo Domingo Pueblo (N.Mex.) Library

14 Tiles to the Right

October 4, 2018

SDPL turned those missed opportunities into a vision for the pueblo. The library worked with the Tribal Council to unite Santo Domingo with the Cochiti, San Felipe, and Santa Ana Pueblos and establish the Middle Rio Grande (MRG) Pueblo Tribal Consortium, a unique, 100% tribally-owned fiber optic network. MRG secured a 90% discount on the … Continue reading 14 Tiles to the Right


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


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


What Is Access without Equity?

March 1, 2018

For community-based or other participatory archive models, digital technologies offer a way to meaningfully engage with materials. Yet what good is a digital archive if the community does not have internet available? How can an individual fully participate in using or shaping digital heritage resources if they do not have the computer skills, or even … Continue reading What Is Access without Equity?


Archivist Tawa Ducheneaux stands over a quilt that dates to between 1913–1915. Each square was created by quilting club members from the Wounded Knee ­District in South Dakota and notes the maker’s identity, the date, and sometimes the family’s cattle brand.

Bookend: Tribal Heritage

January 2, 2018

As both the academic library for Oglala Lakota Tribal College and the public library for the reservation, the Woksape Tipi Library oversees 13 branch libraries scattered over nearly 3,500 square miles. “We’re all about local access,” says archivist Tawa Ducheneaux (pictured), one of six library employees. If a staff member isn’t present at a branch … Continue reading Bookend: Tribal Heritage


Young patrons at the Ak-Chin Indian Community Library in Maricopa, Arizona, use tablets to code by connecting to library Wi-Fi. (Photo: Jeffrey Stoffer/Ak-Chin Indian Community Library)

Bringing Broadband to Tribal Lands

December 12, 2017

Access to high-speed broadband is vital to our nation’s economic well-being, and libraries are taking a leading role in providing it. For many underserved communities—particularly in rural areas—libraries provide the only access to broadband. Tribal lands in many states are both rural and underserved. The lack of high-speed broadband means for many tribal residents that … Continue reading Bringing Broadband to Tribal Lands