Archive for January, 2012

ALA Midwinter 2012 – Monday, Jan. 24 – Council Session III

Molly Raphael, President of ALA, presented Memorials and Tributes.  Memorials for Dorothy Broderick, D. Whitney Coe, John Minto Dawson, and Robert W. Houk were acknowledged, as were Tributes in honor of Jill Nishi, Lois Ann Gregory-Wood, Maryellen Trautman, William J. Boarman, and the Norman A. Sugarman Children’s Biography Award.

Henry Stewart, Chair of the Tellers, reported on the results of the Executive Board election.  With 150 ballots cast, Rob Banks, Alexia Hudson, and John Moorman were elected.

Pat Scales, Chair of the Intellectual Freedom Committee, presented the Committee’s report.  She highlighted that the Office of Intellectual Freedom (OIF) and the Committee have been very busy since Annual Conference.  The “challenge” database that has been maintained since 1990 has become very limited in the face of current software capabilities.  The OIF will be establishing a new, more sophisticated database that will be operational by fall 2012.  Additionally, the OIF will launch an awareness campaign to encourage the reporting of challenges to library materials. “Defend the Freedom to Read: It’s Everybody’s Job” is inspired by the artwork and public safety notices of World War II.  Supporting materials are available at The OIF will again celebrate Choose Privacy Week, this year from May 1-7.  As part of the efforts, librarians and library workers are invited to participate in a survey that will measure librarians’ attitudes about privacy rights and protecting library users’ privacy.  It is available online at, is confidential, and will take about 15 minutes.

Sh presented a Resolution Opposing Restriction of Access to Materials and Open Inquiry in Ethnic and Cultural Studies Programs in Arizona – Resolved that the American Library Association: 1) Condemns the suppression of open inquiry and free expression caused by closure of ethnic and cultural studies programs on the basis of partisan or doctrinal disapproval; 2) Condemns the restriction of access to educational materials associated with ethnic and cultural studies program; 3)Urges the Arizona legislature to pass HB 2654, “An Act Repealing Sections 15-111 and 15-112, Arizona Revised Statutes” Relating to School Curriculum.  Council approved the resolution.

Eva Poole, Chair of the Committee on Legislation, presented the Committee’s report.  She shared that the 2012 Library Advocacy Day will be held May

She presented a Resolution Opposing the Research Works Act. Resolved, that the American Library Association 1) Urges the U.S. Congress to reject the Research Works Act, H.R. 3699, because it not only threatens future public access to federally funded research, but also nullifies the public access already provided to peer-reviewed journal manuscripts resulting from NIH funding; and 2) Reaffirms its support for the expansion of the NIH public-access policy to other federal agencies and departments.  Council approved the resolution.

She next presented a Resolution Opposing the Preventing Real Online Threats to Economic Creativity and The Stop Online Piracy Act (SOPA).  Resolved, that the American Library Association 1) Urges Congress to reject both the S. 968, PIPA bill in the U.S. Senate and H.R. 3261 SOPA bill in the U.S. House of Representatives because they compromise such fundamental rights as free speech, intellectual freedom, and privacy in an attempt to target foreign websites and combat online infringement overseas; 2) Opposes any legislation that compromises ALA’s core principles and stifles the dynamic, innovative potential of the global Internet.  Council approved the resolution.

Finally, she presented a Resolution on the Loss of Crucial Government Information.  Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA) urges U.S. Congress to restore funding to ensure permanent no-fee public access to aggregated sources of government information; 2) Urges the establishment of a mandated process with adequate notification to include the opportunity for public notice and comment with consultation by librarians, researchers, small businesses and other appropriate stakeholders before decisions are made to discontinue access to current or historical information resources when the federal government initiates, significantly modifies, or terminates information products; 3) Urges Congress to require that agencies discontinuing access to current or historical information resources transfer the content and related functionality to the U.S. Government Printing Office or other public institutions that can ensure continued no-fee digital access to this information; 4) Urges Congress to improve the federal government’s policies and capabilities for making government information available to the public in an open, timely, participatory, and transparent manner.  Council approved the resolution.

Sha Li Zhang, Chair of the International Relations Committee Report, presented the Committee’s report.  Ninety-five international librarians in the 2012 Midwinter Conference.  The Committee has been busy developing activities to match the ALA 2015 plan.  The 2012 IFLA Conference will be held in Helsinki, Finland in August.   

Cynthia Czesak, New Jersey Chapter Councilor, introduced a Resolution on Publishers and Practices Which Discriminate Against Library Users – Resolved that the American Library Association opposes any discriminatory policies of publishers and distributors which adversely impact access to content by library users; and directs the Working Group on Digital Content in Libraries to review the situation and recommend appropriate action and/or appropriate parties who should be informed of this resolution.

Keith Michael Fiels, Executive Director of ALA, announced that conference attendance totaled 9,929.

President Molly Raphael adjourned the session.


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ALA Midwinter 2012 — Sunday, Jan. 22 — 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 $30,153. 

Roberta Stevens, ALA-APA Past President, and Jim Rettig, ALA-APA Past President and Task Force Chair, presented a recommendation from the Presidential Task Force for Improving Effectiveness of ALA’s Council.  The recommendation is to amend the APA bylaws to abolish the APA Council and adopt other changes to the bylaws. Action will not be taken until the 2012 annual conference.

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ALA Council/Executive Board/Membership Information Session – Sunday, Jan. 22, 2012

ALA President’s Report – Molly Raphael

In addition to her presidential initiatives in advocacy and diversity, Molly has focused on the following issues:

  • successful completion of the Neal-Schuman acquisition;
  • ensuring libraries’ access to digital content, particularly e-books;
  • focusing attention on the importance of professionally staffed school libraries; and
  • library funding issues, particularly for public and school libraries.

ALA President-Elect’s Report – Maureen Sullivan

Activities that have kept Maureen busy since her election have included:

  • orientations with ALA staff;
  • the committee appointment process (working with the Committee on Committees and the Committee on Appointments); and
  • her presidential initiatives of:
    • The Promise of libraries in Transforming Communities
    • Leadership Development
    • Rethinking ALA: Ensuring that ALA Is the Most Effective Organization It Can Be.

ALA Executive Director’s Report – Keith Michael Fiels

Keith reported briefly on several issues and introduced new staff at ALA: Laurie Borman, Editor & Publisher of American Libraries and Ron Jankowski, Membership Development Director.

Budget Analysis and Review Committee (BARC) Report – Clara Bohrer, Chair

BARC has been very hard at work, analyzing 100 recommendations from five different task forces, including Young Professionals Task Force, Chapter Relations Task Force, Future Perfect Presidential Task Force, Task Force on Equitable Access to Electronic Content, and Presidential Task Force for the Effectiveness of ALA’s Council.  Each individual recommendation is in various stages of review and pending the availability of additional financial resources, implementation will proceed only on those with no financial impact. 

The Finance Workshop, an educational opportunity for those members interested in how ALA’s finances work, has presented several issues in recent years. 

  • schedule conflicts make attendance difficult for members
  • the material covered from year to year is generally the same
  • the workshop usually is given four months into the fiscal year
  • participants have extremely varied knowledge bases

To address these issues, BARC and ALA staff have developed four webcasts covering basic financial topics: operating agreement, long-term investments, budget cycle/process, organizational structure. Webcasts on more topics will be developed.  Members will be able to access and review these at any time at

ALA Endowment Trustees Report – Dan Bradbury, Chair

The investing environment in 2011 was extremely volatile.  The value of the endowment at 12-31-11 was $30.1 million. This represents a decline of $722,587 (1.6%) from $31.7 million last year. The endowment trustees will be recommending to the ALA Executive Board the establishment of a new International Relations Round Table endowment. It will provide necessary funds to support IRRT activities and initiatives that encourage international collaboration, raise the visibility of international opportunities,and promote a global dialogue about librarianship.

2012 ALA Nominating Committee Report – Vivian Wynn, Chair

Vivian Wynn presented the candidates for ALA President-Elect: Gina J. Millsap, Executive Director of the Topeka and Shawnee County Public Library and Barbara K. Stripling, Professor of Practice, Syracuse University.  She also presented the list of 2012 ALA Candidates for Councilor-at-Large.  Keith Michael Fiels presented additional candidates by petition for Councilor-at-Large.

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ALA Midwinter 2012 – Monday, Jan. 23 – Council Session II

Jim Neal, ALA Treasurer, presented his report .  The 2011 financial situation for ALA is about the same as it was in 2010.  Although revenue is down, the Association has made the appropriate adjustments to expenses.  ALA total revenues equaled $46,581,260 and total expenses equaled $46,741,997.   Net assets are up to $30,117,193.  Dues were down slightly 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); expanding the migration to electronic publishing distribution and business models; sustaining and growing membership; the impact of a new spending/payout policy for the endowment; and developing new products and services.  Finally, in the area of new business development, he stated that ALA is either active in or will explore possible business development in the following areas: electronic publishing, expanded publishing program, continuing education online, the international community, the public/library users, mergers and acquisitions, and planned giving.

He continued his report with an update on the acquisition of Neal-Schuman Publishing.  ALA conducted due diligence, an evaluation study, and created an extensive business plan.  After much study, internal consultation, and external consultation, ALA purchased the company for $7 million.

He also presented the FY2013 programmatic priorities that are in line with the 2015 ALA strategic plan, which Council approved:

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

John Moorman, Chair of the Policy Monitoring Committee, presented motions on the following:  change text in ALA Policy 8.5.1; change text in ALA Policy 5.3; and change in ALA Policies 5.5.2 and 7.4.10.  All motions reflected changes in text made necessary by actions taken at the 2011 Annual Meeting.  All motions passed. 

John Moorman, Chair of the Presidential Policy Manual Revision Task Force, highlighted several items from his report.  He emphasized that the task force continues its work in carrying out a thorough examination of the Policy Manual.

Jim Rettig, Chair of the Committee on Organization, presented his report.  The Educators of School Librarians Section of the American Association of School Librarians has recommended that one existing seat on the ALA Committee on Education be permanently allocated to a representative from AASL ESLS. Council approved this recommendation.

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 that the FTRF adopted a strategic plan that addresses five action areas: awareness, litigation, education, engagement, and capacity building.  He also reported that the FTRF will be pursuing some membership initiatives in the coming months.  He very briefly reviewed results of litigation involving the freedom to read and litigation that the FTRF is monitoring.

Roberta Stevens, Immediate Past President of ALA, presented two nominations 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 nominees were Senator Jack Reed and Dr. Betty J. Turock.  Council approved the designation of Honorary Member for these individuals.

Keith Michael Fiels announced a current total registration of 9,935 at Midwinter Conference.

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ALA Council I – Sunday, Jan. 22, 2012

Maureen Sullivan, Chair of the 2011-2012 Committee on Committees (and ALA President-Elect), presented the 2012 nominations for   Executive Board election.  Three councilors are to be elected for three-year terms from the following candidates: Robert (Rob) Banks, Alexia Hudson, Bobbi Newman, John Moorman, Rosario Garza, and Karen Downing.  Gladys Smiley Bell was nominated from the floor.

Keith Michael Fiels, ALA Executive Director, reviewed Executive Board actions since the 2011 Annual Meeting.  Major actions included approval of the acquisition of Neal-Schuman Publishing and approving Columbus as the site of the AASL 2015 Divisional National Conference.  He also reviewed the implementation report on ALA Council actions taken at the 2011 Annual Conference.

Sari Feldman and Robert Wolven, Co-Chairs of the Digital Content and Libraries Working Group, presented a brief report on the work of the group to date.  The committee is made up of a cross-section of librarians. The group members will conduct the majority of their work through six subgroups over two years.

Keith Michael Fiels announced that total registration currently stands at 9,954.

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