January 20, 2018

Lisa Peet

About Lisa Peet

Lisa Peet is Associate Editor, News for Library Journal.

ALA Full Membership to Vote on Executive Director Qualifications

When Keith Michael Fiels, the former executive director (ED) of the American Library Association (ALA), announced in September 2016 that he would retire the following July, ALA leadership began considering its requirements for the role. As ALA convened a search committee and engaged a search firm to find the next ED, the question arose as to whether potential candidates should be required to hold an MLIS—or the Council for the Accreditation of Educator Preparation (CAEP)/school librarian equivalent—or whether the degree should be merely preferred.

Museum and Library Services Act of 2017 Introduced in Senate

The Museum and Library Services Act of 2017 was introduced in the Senate on December 21 by Sen. Jack Reed (D-RI), along with Susan Collins (R-ME), Thad Cochran (R-MS), Kirsten Gillibrand (D-NY), and Lisa Murkowski (R-AK). The bipartisan bill, S. 2271, reauthorizes the core programs administered by the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS): the Museum Services Act and the Library Services Technology Act (LSTA), which provides more than $183 million in funding through the Grants to States program; National Leadership Grants for Libraries; the Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program; and Native American Library Services. The agency has been a source of support for public, academic, research, special, and tribal libraries, as well as some 35,000 museums.

Bard and Brooklyn Public Library Partner for Microcollege

Bard College, a private liberal arts college in Annandale-on-Hudson, NY, and Brooklyn Public Library (BPL) have partnered to launch a “microcollege”—an innovative undergraduate program for nontraditional students—at BPL’s Central Library in Prospect Heights. Bard at Brooklyn Public Library is designed to give the experience of attending a small, high-quality liberal arts college to students who have confronted barriers to continuing their education. The two-year program will culminate in an associate’s degree.

Lance Werner: LJ’s 2018 Librarian of the Year

If you ask Lance Werner, executive director of the Kent District Library, MI, and LJ’s 2017 Librarian of the Year, what makes him a strong leader, an effective legislative advocate, and a champion of access for his patrons, his answer is simple: it’s all about forming relationships.

Q&A with Trevor Owens, LC Head of Digital Content Management

In August, Trevor Owens became the first head of digital content management in library services at the Library of Congress (LC). The role at LC represents something of a full circle for Owens; before serving in various roles at the Institute of Museum and Library Services from 2015–17, most recently as acting associate deputy director for libraries, Owens was a digital archivist at LC’s Office of Strategic Initiatives since 2010. The position, on the other hand, is brand new—both to Owens and to LC.

Closure Plans for Cincinnati Library’s North Building Spark Concerns

Update: At an emergency meeting on Wednesday, December 20, the Public Library of Cincinnati and Hamilton County (PLCHC) board voted 5–0 (two members were not in attendance) not to sell the North Building. Instead, the library will seek a 1 mill tax levy in May, 2018 to help supplement its $54 million facilities plan. The library will host a community conversation on December 27.

Q&A with Kevin Moore, EveryLibrary’s 2017 Artist in Residence

The 2017 EveryLibrary Artist In Residence, Kevin Moore, is an editorial cartoonist and has been a reference librarian at Portland Community College, OR, since 2007. Moore was invited to create a series of weekly editorial cartoons focusing on library-related issues from September 4 through November 7; the cartoons are available for library supporters to use, copyright-free, in their advocacy work.

2017 ACRL/NY Symposium: The Mission

The 2017 ACRL/NY (Greater New York Metropolitan Area Chapter of Association of College and Research Libraries) Symposium, held on December 1 at Baruch College in Manhattan, led off with an interesting proposition: that thinking creatively about access—and how libraries can provide the widest range of access now and into the future—can offer a new kind of framework for shaping collections.

Residents Sue Escondido Over Library Outsourcing

Roy and Mary Garrett, residents of Escondido, CA, and longtime library patrons, are suing the city over its decision to privatize the Escondido Public Library (EPL). Officials voted in August to turn library operations over to Library Systems and Services (LS&S), a private for-profit company that manages public libraries, to forestall a projected citywide pension shortfall. In October, the city council voted to enter into a ten-year contract with the firm. Many residents have opposed the move from the beginning, noting that city officials pursued the plan without asking for input or presenting alternatives.

ITHAKA Next Wave Conference Focuses on Higher Ed Challenges

Speakers at ITHAKA’s The Next Wave conference, held at New York’s Roosevelt Hotel on November 29, made the case for work that colleges and universities must take on if they want to improve national educational attainment. The conference, “Innovating and Adapting to Address Today’s Higher Education Challenges,” looked at new approaches from a variety of angles, from administration to the classroom to research, with alignment between leadership and the library given particular attention.