ALA Council/Executive Board/Membership Information Session – Sat., June 28, 2014

ALA President’s Report – Barbara Stripling

Barbara provided updates on the work being done on her presidential initiatives.  Barbara’s presidential theme was “Libraries Change Lives,” which she promoted by emphasizing the three areas of literacy, innovation, and community engagement.  In the area of literacy, she highlighted the work of the Digital Content and Libraries Working Group.  This group will continue for two more years.  Additionally, a new ALA director of literacy will enable ALA to connect and highlight ALA’s various literacy efforts.  Barbara reviewed her focus on the second area of innovation. She emphasized the two practices that are gaining momentum in libraries – makerspaces and hosting TED and TEDx talks.  Her third area of emphasis, community engagement, featured a project funded by the Gates Foundation and developed in collaboration with the Harwood Institute.  She also provided an overview of the Summit on the Future of Libraries and emphasized that its purpose was not to answer questions but to generate questions.  She announced that Miguel Figueroa has been named the Director of ALA’s Center for the Future of Libraries.  She closed by highlighting the disturbing trend of cuts to school libraries and the importance of advocacy for school libraries.

ALA President-Elect’s Report – Courtney Young

Courtney highlighted her Career Development Facilitators program.

Executive Director’s Report – Keith Michael Fiels

Keith announced that ALA’s membership currently stands at 56,637, which is down about 500 from last year.  The decline comes primarily from smaller public libraries.  Individual membership numbers are staying relatively stable.  He also highlighted that the Center for the Future of Libraries will serve as a clearinghouse for thinking about what is around the curve and will monitor trends.  It also will develop training for library staff that will enable them to look ahead more strategically and will work to establish a more vibrant innovation space for ALA.

Endowment Trustees Report – Rod Hersberger, Senior Trustee

Rod reviewed the mission of the Endowment:  “…to protect and grow the investment resources so as to support current and future Association needs, including scholarships, awards and unique programs that build a strong future for the American Library Association and America’s libraries.”  He also cited examples of how the endowment proceeds are spent, including Spectrum Scholarships, Carnegie Medal Awards, Newbery/Caldecott Award Medals, conference speaker fees, and conference travel support for students.  He reported that the responsibility for the Margaret Edwards Trust will be assumed by the ALA Endowment.

Budget Analysis and Review Committee Report – Patricia Wand, Chair

Pat reported that committee members reviewed results of the survey of PBA members and developed recommended adjustments.  Those include:  the President-Elect and Treasurer will issue a joint message welcoming all PBA members to a PBA Connect group, which will act as a venue for ongoing conversation; schedule the traditional timeframe of 1.5 hours to conduct the session; the majority of the session should be devoted to planning-related issues; President-Elect and Treasurer may choose a theme-focused discussion item; i.e. “Future Direction of Publishing,” a current trend, a strategic initiative, etc.; PBA members will be strongly encouraged to attend the ALA Council/Membership/Information Session. This session will serve as an orientation and education function for PBA members; and all session related documents will be provided as early as possible, with the understanding that some documents are still being prepared leading up to the session.  She also reported that BARC considered a resolution referred by Council regarding a request to allow programs at ALA Midwinter Meeting.  BARC plans to continue its review of the resolution after input from the ALA Conference Committee and will report to Council on this topic at Midwinter Meetings 2015.  She shared that ALA’s three largest revenue sources in FY13 were publishing at $17.2 million (34.4%); meetings & conferences at $11.1 million (22.2%); and dues at $8.45 million (16.8%).

Treasurer’s Report – Patricia Wand, presented on behalf of Mario Gonzalez

Pat presented the ALA Programmatic Priorities, which are aligned with the FY15 budget:  advocacy for libraries and the profession; diversity; equitable access to information and library services; education and lifelong learning; literacy; organizational excellence; intellectual freedom; and transforming libraries.  She also presented FY15 Key Initiatives:  invest $250,000 in technology initiatives; implement new e-commerce site; consolidate ALA’s online continuing education offerings with new ALA e-learning commons; implement next generation Engage social networking platform for ALA Chapters; undertake joint ALA/Division initiative to recruit and retain members; establish ALA Center for the Future of Libraries; and continue redesign of Annual Conference and Midwinter Meeting.

Detailed reports are available on ALA Connect.


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