Archive for January, 2011

ALA Midwinter 2011 – Council Session III

Roberta Stevens, President of ALA, presented Memorials and Tributes.  Memorials for George P. D’Elia, Locke Morrisey, Edward G. Holley, and Carolyn Wicker Field were acknowledged, as were Tributes in honor of the 100th Anniversary of the Arkansas Library Association and of John Ison on his retirement from DEMCO, Inc.; and in gratitude to the founding members of the Retired Members Round Table for establishing the Round Table.

Em Claire Knowles, Chair of the Tellers, reported on the results of the Executive Board election.  With 128 ballots cast, Dora T. Ho, Sylvia K. Norton, and Michael Porter were elected.

Tom Wilding, Chair of the Constitution & Bylaws Committee, presented the Committee report.  The Committee recommended several non-substantive changes to the ALA Constitution and Bylaws.  The number of Endowment Trustees was increased.  The ALA Executive Director was identified as a non-voting officer of the Association.  Wording related to the following was clarified:  Committee on Election,  and to the beginning of terms of service for councilors who are filling vacancies. 

The following item will be submitted to the membership for a vote:  All elected at large, divisional , and roundtable councilors, except those elected to fill vacancies, shall serve terms of three years, commencing at the adjournment of the final ALA Council meeting of the annual conference following their election.

Julius Jefferson, Chair of the Intellectual Freedom Committee, presented the Committee’s report.  He highlighted that the Office of Intellectual Freedom has been awarded a two-year grant in the amount of $105,650 from the Open Society Institute (the Soros Foundation) for privacy programming.  OIF had previously received a three-year $350,000 grant from the Institute that enabled the development of the first-ever Choose Privacy Week.  With the new grant, OIF will be shifting focus to topics of government surveillance; privacy and young people; and privacy as it relates to use of libraries by immigrant and refugee communities.   Banned Books Week 2011 will run from September 27 through October 4. 

Julius introduced Charles Kratz, Chair of the Committee on Legislation, to present a resolution for Council’s consideration. 

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA):
1.  Commends President Barack Obama for establishing the National Declassification Agency and issuing Executive Order 13526 on Classified National Security Information and supports and encourages expanded initiatives to reform the U.S. classification system;
2.  Urges Congress to pass legislation that expands protections for whistleblowers in the Federal government, such as the Whistleblower Protection Enhancement Act of 2010;
3.  Urges the U.S. President, Congress, the federal courts, and executive and legislative agencies to defend the inalienable right of the press and citizens to disseminate information to the public about national security issues and to refrain from initiatives that impair these rights;
4.  Affirms the principle that government information made public within the boundaries of U.S. law should be available through libraries and the press without restriction.

Council approved the resolution. 

Charles Kratz, Chair of the Committee on Legislation, presented the Committee’s report.  He shared that the 2011 Library Advocacy Day will be held May 9-10 in Washington, D.C.   and highlighted the tremendous victory in the recent reauthorization of the Library and Services and Technology Act (LSTA) as part of the Museum and Library Services Act (MLSA).

He presented a Resolution Commending the U.S. Congress and the President on the Reauthorization of the Museum and Library Services Act. Resolved, the American Library Association commends the leadership of Senator Jack Reed, co-sponsors Senators Thad Cochran, Richard Burr, Tom Harkin, Susan Collins, Michael Enzi, and Jon Tester and the members of the United States Senate and House of Representatives, and President Barack Obama for their efforts to sustain the federal role supporting library services, as the cornerstone of our nation’s information infrastructure.  Council approved the resolution.

He next presented a Resolution Commending President Obama and the U.S. Senate in Nominating and Confirming Susan Hildreth to be IMLS Director.  Resolved, that the American Library Association commends President Obama for nominating Ms. Hildreth to serve as director of IMLS and the United States Senate for confirming her.  Council approved the resolution.

Next he presented a Resolution Thanking “Bob” Tapella for His Service as the 25th Public Printer of the United States.  Council approved the resolution.

Finally, he presented a Resolution to Commend Senator Jack Reed for His Efforts to Recognize Libraries as Essential Community Organizations During Disasters.  Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA) commends Senator Jack Reed for his tireless efforts working to convince the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA) to amend its policies to recognize libraries as essential community organizations, thus entitled to reimbursement for temporary relocation facilities.  Council approved the resolution. 

Sha Li Zhang, Chair of the International Relations Committee Report, presented the Committee’s report.  Seventy-five international librarians from eighteen countries participated in the 2011 Midwinter Conference.  She shared that ALA’s relief efforts to date have raised and distributed more than $25,000 for three libraries in Haiti.  Additionally, ALA’s Chile Library Relief Fund has raised approximately $1,500 to help relief efforts there.  The 2011 IFLA conference will be held in San Juan, Puerto Rico, August 13-18.

Council resumed deliberation of the Resolution on Notifying Conference and Meeting Attendees of Hotels Named on “Do Not Patronize” Lists.  The name of the Resolution has been proposed to be changed to Resolution on Hotel Labor Disputes.  The amendment was: Executive Director will provide registrants with information on how to determine whether there are labor disputes at hotels with contracted housing blocks, so that registrants can decide whether to utilize the information when making hotel choices. 

 The amendment failed.  Council returned to considering the original Resolution: Resolved that the American Library Association directs the Executive Director: To the extent known at the initial announcement of conference registration and prior to the conference taking place, will inform attendees of conferences and exhibitions if a hotel is on the “Do Not Patronize” list of the local labor body during an ALA event, or is the object of a boycott because of the unfair labor practices of the hotel.  The resolution failed.

Loida Garcia-Febo, Councilor-at-Large, introduced a Resolution in Support of Requesting Congress to Reintroduce and Vote on the DREAM Act. 

Resolved, that the American Library Association:
1. Urges members of the Congress of the United States to re-introduce and vote for the DREAM Act.
2. Urges members of the Congress to include community service and vocational education – in addition to attending college and joining the military – as a pathway to citizenship.
3.  Asserts that having higher education, military service, or community service will provide these immigrant children greater success in life through higher lifetime earnings, higher income tax contributions, greater contributions to the economy, and less reliance on government assistance.

 Peter Hepburn, GLBTRT Councilor, presented a Resolution on the Removal and Censorship of Artwork from the Smithsonian Institution’s National Portrait Gallery.

Resolved, That the American Library Association (ALA)
1.  Commends the National Portrait Gallery for its inclusion of materials that reflect the diversity of our society, including those related to religious viewpoint, specifically as presented in the Hide/Seek Exhibition;
2.  Commends the National Portrait Gallery for its inclusion of materials that reflect the diversity of our society, including those related to sex, gender identity, and sexual orientation, specifically as presented in the Hide/Seek Exhibition; (ALA Resolution on Threats to Library Materials Related to Sex, Gender Identity, or Sexual Orientation);
3.  Condemns the censorship of the Hide/Seek Exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery;
4.  Urges the National Portrait Gallery to immediately reinstate the video artwork by David Wojnarowicz to the Hide/Seek Exhibition at the National Portrait Gallery;
5.  Urges the National Portrait Gallery to refuse to censor by removal or alteration other works of art from any exhibition or collection; and
6.  Urges the Smithsonian Institution to fight censorship of works of art or collections dealing with any subject matter, including sex, gender identity, sexual orientation, or religious viewpoint in its national galleries, museums, archives and libraries.

Council approved the resolution.

Tiffani Connor, Social Responsibilities Round Table Councilor, presented a Resolution of WikiLeaks and Federal Agencies.

Resolved, That the American Library Association (ALA)
1. Calls for the amendment of Executive Order 13526, Classified National Security Information (Dec. 29, 2009) to exclude publicly available information.
2. Calls for the amendment of any other executive orders, public laws, or federal regulations that forbid access to publicly available information.
3.  Calls for all US government agencies to follow the example of the Library of Congress in unblocking and providing access to documents available on WikiLeaks.

Council voted to table the motion.

Tiffani Connor, Social Responsibilities Round Table Councilor, presented a Resolution in Support of WikiLeaks

Resolved that the American Library Association
1.  Supports the rights of WikiLeaks to publish leaked government documents
2.  Commends the efforts of WikiLeaks to expunge from documents names and other material deemed potentially harmful to innocent people
3.  Commends WikiLeaks for performing a public service by making available important documents related to foreign and military policy.
4. Urges libraries to link their websites to the WikiLeaks websites.
5.  Condemns the harassment of WikiLeaks volunteers.

Council voted to table the resolution.

Keith Michael Fiels, Executive Director of ALA, announced that conference attendance totaled 10,110.

President Roberta Stevens adjourned the session.

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ALA Midwinter 2011 – Council Session II

John Moorman, Chair of the Policy Monitoring Committee, presented his report and stated that the PMC is working on revising and codifying the Policy Manual.  Additionally, he presented motions on the following:  change text in ALA Policy 54.16; change text in ALA Policy 7.1.1; insert text in ALA Policy 53.1.23; and change in ALA Policy 6.2.1.  All motions reflected changes in text made necessary by actions taken at the 2010 Annual Meeting.  All motions passed.  He also reported that the Committee is considering the ambiguity of the term “Headquarters” and will continue to do so once the Constitution and Bylaws Committee has completed its review of the ALA Bylaws and Constitution.

Jim Rettig, Chair of the Committee on Organization, presented his report.  He brought three action items to Council.  The first was to change the name of the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual,and Transgendered Round Table to the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual, and Transgender Round Table.  Council approved.  The second was to modify the composition of the Web Advisory committee to add as an ex officio member of WAC the chair of the ASCLA Accessibility Assembly.  Council approved.  The third was to discontinue the American Library Association-Association of American Publishers Joint Committee in favor of a more workable system of maintaining an important ongoing inter-association relationship. 

Kent Oliver, Chair of the Freedom to Read Foundation, presented his report.  He stated that the FTRF serves as the First Amendment defense arm of the American Library Association.  He reported on two recent victories for the freedom to read: Powell’s Books v. Kroger, a lawsuit challenging two new “harmful to minors” statutes passed by the Oregon legislature; and a second lawsuit that was filed against the State of Alaska, which challenges a newly adopted Alaska statute that criminalizes the distribution of certain material to minors under the age of 16 either on the Internet or in person, such as in a library or a bookstore.  He also reported that the FTRF made the first grants from the Judith Krug fund.  Developing issues for the FTRF include the recent WikiLeaks controversy, e-books and privacy, and issues raised by new laws regulating obscenity and recent obscenity prosecutions. 

Maggie Farrell and Vivian Pisano, Co-Chairs of the Presidential Task Force on Traditional Cultural Expression, presented their report.  This task force was faced with synthesizing some very complex issues, including copyright, cultural property, traditional cultural expressions, and traditional groups.  The co-chairs reported that although the majority of the TF members participated in discussions related to the report, and most of them contributed to the report’s content, there was not unanimous support for all statements contained in the report and there remain reservations by task force members for aspects of the report. 

Michael Porter, Co-Chair of the Presidential Task Force on Equitable Access to Electronic Content, presented his report. He stated that the task will emphasize that the ALA at a national level needs to play an active role in defining an e-content marketplace model that will work for libraries and will also ensure that the mission of libraries is maintained.  Key discussion items will be library lending, accessibility of content, preservation, and ideas for actionable projects in which the library community can engage.  Task force members have agreed to conduct an environmental scan of library and the e-content market. 

Jim Neal, ALA Treasurer, presented his report and stated that the result of the ALA audit was an unqualified opinion of no material weaknesses and no significant deficiencies, the best possible result.  He reported that the 2010 financial situation for ALA is improved over 2009.  Although revenue is down, the Association has made the appropriate adjustments to expenses.  ALA total revenues equaled $52,489,065 and total expenses equaled $50,208,833.   Net assets are up to $29, 663,464.  Dues were on target while revenue from publishing improved.  He also identified a number of future issues for ALA budget planning, including: investing in technology (new systems and services); rethinking the role of Midwinter meetings; continuing to migrate to electronic publishing distribution and business models; sustaining and growing membership; and developing new products and services.

He also presented the FY2012 programmatic priorities that are in line with the 2015 ALA strategic plan, which Council approved:

Diversity
Equitable Access to Information and Library Services
Education and Lifelong Learning
Intellectual Freedom
Advocacy for Libraries and the Profession
Literacy
Organizational Excellence
Transforming Libraries

Camila Alire, Immediate Past President of ALA, presented a nomination for ALA Honorary Membership.  This is the highest honor that the Association can bestow on an individual.  Honorary membership may be conferred on a living citizen of any country whose contribution to librarianship or a closely related field is so outstanding that it is of lasting importance to the advancement of the whole field of library service.  The nominee was Yohannes Gebregeorgis, librarian and author.  He was nominated in recognition of his founding of Ethiopia Reads, a nonprofit organization that is establishing children’s libraries in Ethiopia and publishing bilingual and trilingual children’s books.  Council approved the designation of Honorary Member for Mr. Gebregeorgis.

Council revisited the Resolution on Notifying Conference and Meeting Attendees of Hotels Named on “Do Not Patronize” Lists.  Resolved that the American Library Association directs the Executive Director: to the extent known at the initial announcement of conference registration and prior to the conference taking place, will inform attendees of conferences and exhibitions if a hotel is on the “Do Not Patronize” list of the local labor body during an ALA event, or is the object of a boycott because of the unfair labor practices of the hotel.  ALA’s legal counsel shared comments on antitrust law.  Council engaged in a lengthy discussion.  Action on this resolution was postponed to Council III.

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ALA Midwinter 2011 — ALA-APA Council Meeting

Jim Neal, ALA-APA Treasurer, presented his report.  He highlighted the three areas of activity for ALA-APA:  providing national certification for library workers (Certified Public Library Administrator Program and Library Support Staff Certification Program); advocating for salaries and training for library workers; and providing reports and analyses (Library Salary Survey, Non-MLS Salary Survey, Library Salary Database).  He happily reported that ALA-APA experienced a gain in net revenue of nearly $50,000. 

Cal Shepard, Chair of the ALA-APA Certified Public Library Administrator Program Certification Review Committee, presented her report.  Eleven candidates were accepted into the program, which currently has 133 candidates.  Five candidates submitted final reviews and were graduated from the program.  A total of 42 people have graduated from the program.  Committee goals from FY11 include assessing the appeals process; assessing the final review process; conducting a five-year review of the course competencies; and developing a committee orientation.

Peggy Seiden, Chair of the ALA-APA Library Support Staff Certification Program Certification Review Committee, presented her report.  The program was launched in January 2010 and currently has 98 candidates.  Candidates complete six of ten competency sets in four years.  Among the committee goals for FY11-FY13 are:  adoption of certification renewal policy for candidates; establishing agreements with Library Technical Assistant Programs to grant some graduates the LSSC; and developing reciprocity with states requiring and considering certification. 

Cristina Ramirez, Chair of the ALA-APA Standing Committee on the Salaries and Status of Library Workers, presented her report.  Committee goals for 2010-2011 include:  promoting National Library Workers Day on Tuesday, April 12, 2011; recruiting volunteers for subcommittees; and promoting program sessions at the 2011 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans.

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2011 ALA Midwinter — ALA Council I

Robert R. Newlen, Chair of the 2010 ALA Nominating Committee, present the committee’s report.  He shared that the committee members made many contacts with members to gain suggestions, and then made many phone calls to potential candidates.  He commented that one area of disappointment in recruiting  was in the area of school and youth librarians, indicating that it is difficult for them to have the time to attend ALA meetings.  He also introduced the two candidates for ALA President -Elect:  Maureen Sullivan and Susan Stroyan.  Electronic balloting will begin on March 16, 2011 and polls will close on April 22, 2011.  Results will be announced on April 29, 2011.

Molly Raphael, ALA President-Elect and Chair, Committee on Committees, presented the nominations for the Council Executive Board:  Dora T. Ho, Tom Wilding, Loida Garcia-Febo, Michael Porter, Karen E. Downing, and Jose Aponte.  Nominations from the floor followed:  Sylvia Norton and Gina Persichini.

Loida Garcia-Febo, Chair of the Committee on Membership Meetings, presented her report on plans for the annual membership meetings at the 2011 Annual Conference in New Orleans.  She also reviewed reasons for lack of attendance at these meetings.  The committee has been investigating a pilot virtual membership meeting in New Orleans.  The committee has crafted a survey that will be posted shortly after Midwinter.

Em Clair Knowles, Co-Chair of the Dinners for Spectrum Scholars Coordinating Committee, reported on the campaign to raise $1 million  for the Spectrum Scholarship Program.  More than $568,000 has been raised to date.  Fourteen dinners have raised more than $12,000.  She encouraged all members of ALA Council to support this initiative with a donation.  While 75 scholarships were funded last year, 100 were not due to lack of funds. 

Keith Michael Fiels, ALA Executive Director, highlighted Executive Board actions since the 2010 Annual Conference.  Among the actions were the approval of the continuation of the Young Librarians Task Force, to approve a new membership category called Community Groups Members for Friends groups.

Keith also reported on the implementation of the 2010 Annual Conference Council actions.  The new Retired Members Round Table has been established and has already met.  Additionally, the strategic plan is being implemented.

ALA Councilor Carrie Gardner presented the Resolution on Notifying Conference and Meeting Attendees of Hotels Named on “Do Not Patronize” List.

Resolved that the American Library Association directs the Executive Director , to the extent known at the initial announcement of conference registration and prior to the conference taking place, will inform attendees of conferences and exhibitions if a hotel is on the “DO Not Patronize” list of the local labor body during an  ALA event, or is the object of a boycott because of the unfair labor practices of the hotel.

Keith Michael Fiels commented on the potential financial ramifications for ALA.  After much discussion, Council approved a motion to postpone a vote on this resolution until Council II.

ALA Councilor Peter Hepburn presented the Resolution on Clarification within Job Listings as to the Presence or Absence of Domestic Partner Benefits.

Resolved that the American Library Association
1. Requires that potential employers specify explicitly in their job announcements in ALA publications or website whether or not they provide domestic partner benefits by means of appending one of the following two phrases: “Domestic-partner benefits are not offered by this institution” or “Domestic-partner benefits are offered by this institution.”
2. Urges other publishers and providers to encourage potential employers to specify explicitly in their job announcements whether or not they provide domestic partner benefits by means of appending one of the following two phrases: “Domestic-partner benefits are not offered by this institution” or “Domestic-partner benefits are offered by this institution.”

After much discussion, a motion was made to replace the word requires with the word encourages in item 1 and the word require with the word encourage in item 2.  The motion to amend passed.  Then Council approved the amended resolution.

Council II adjourned.

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2011 Midwinter — ALA Council/Executive Board/Membership Information Session

Mario Gonzalez, Chair of the Budget Analysis and Review Committee, presented his report at the Information Session.  Total ALA revenue of $8,653,554 is $377,004 less than budget.  The General Fund revenue of $4,797,176 is $149,500 less than budget due primarily to lower organization dues revenue.  Total ALA expenses of $10,278,309 are 6%, $700,385 less than budget.  The General Fund expenses of $6,425,604 are $120,594, 2% more than budget.

BARC recommends to the Executive Board approval of the final FY 2011 budget.

Dan Bradbury, Chair of the Endowment Trustees, presented a brief overview of the performance of the Endowment over 2010.  Although a detailed analysis for the 12 months of 2010 is not yet available, the Endowment Trustees are happy to report that the value of the endowment at 12-31-10 was $31,668,000.  This is a gain of approximately $3.0 million (10.4%) compared to the previous year.  The estimated gross return for the ALA portfolio was 12.2% for 2010.

Roberta Stevens, President of ALA, provided a brief overview of her report.  She highlighted her presidential initiatives.  She first commented on Our Authors, Our Advocates, her effort to enlist well-know and beloved authors to speak out for libraries through video and audio PSAs and quotes.  Authors who have participated to date include Laurie Halse Anderson, David Baldacci, Carmen Agra Deedy, Sharon Draper, Sara Paretsky, Scott Turow, and Mo Willems.  More have been contacted and are expected to confirm their participation.  Visit www.ilovelibraries.org/ourauthorsouradvocates for more information.  She next reviewed Frontline Fundraising.  An online toolkit will be launched in February and will provide information on developing a fundraising plan and online giving; establishing a planned giving program and conducting an annual fund drive.  Finally she reviewed the “Why I Need My Library” Contest for teens, which will be soft-launched in January. 

Molly Raphael, ALA President-Elect, presented a brief report on her activities to date.  She highlighted her Presidential Initiatives regarding advocacy and diversity. 

Keith Michael Fiels, Executive Director of ALA, reviewed a number of items.  For the first time since the recession hit, there has been a slight dip in membership, with a decline of about 2%.  Membership currently stands at about 61,500.  Organizational memberships are declining, primarily in the area of smaller public libraries.  ALA is exploring developing benefits for organizational membership in order to boost those numbers.  The Connect with Your Kids campaign is now benefiting from formal partnership with Lifetime Television and with a number of parenting magazines.  The Carnegie Foundation is very interested in continuing the I Love My Librarian award.  He reported on a grant awarded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) to fund Discovering Librarianship: The Future is Overdue, a project that will support the training of 35 early career librarians to serve as recruiters in national, regional and local career recruitment and education events.  He also referred to a white paper on the future of Midwinter, which “examines current practices and emerging patterns, and suggests a vision for the future.  It is intended to serve as a basis for discussion and suggest some directions for exploration and development.”

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