May 5, 2016

Penguin Random House Announces New Award

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A new industry award aims to highlight extraordinary programs in public libraries across the country. Sponsored by big five publisher Penguin Random House (PRH), the Library Awards for Innovation will “acknowledge innovative public library programs and services that engage citizens in reading while strengthening the social and cultural fabric of their communities” according to a press release. The awards will consist of one $10,000 grant and four $1,000 grants for runners-up. Additionally, each winning library will receive $1,000 in PRH books.

Asking the Right Questions | The User Experience

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“Let’s ask people what they want from the library.” I’ve heard this said in a few meetings, and I’ve seen related questions in surveys from libraries. I’m not so sure that this is the most productive way to think about creating a user-centered library.

Arguing with Charlie: Debate need not be hostile | Blatant Berry

John Berry III

Charlie Robinson and I both earned our MLS degrees at the School of Library Science (SLS) at Simmons College in Boston. I first met Charlie (who died last month) in the office of Ken Shaffer, the SLS dean. When alumni would come back to visit, Shaffer would gather a few of his favorites in his office for conversation. If they were influential dignitaries, or he thought they would become such, he liked it all the better.

SPONSORED CONTENT

Going Geosocial: Big Data Research

Big Data Research

Professor Matthew Zook, Co-Editor of the journal Big Data & Society and Professor in the Department of Geography at the University of Kentucky, weighed in on the subject of supporting big data research for the third and final piece in our webcast series “Library & the Changing Scholarly Environment” presented by Electronic Resources & Libraries (ER&L), and sponsored […]

SPONSORED CONTENT

Celebrating the “Cozy Crime” Genre

Andrew Cartmel

Andrew Cartmel’s Vinyl Detective series combines the author’s eclectic love of mystery, treasure hunting, crime, humor, cats, and vintage vinyl records. Readers are about to get more of him, as on May 10, Titan Books will publish The Vinyl Detective: Written in Dead Wax, the first in Cartmel’s new three-part crime novel series. We spoke […]

360° Fund Raising | Budgets & Funding

EFFORTS, EVENTS, EFFECTS Top: Darien Library’s Party on Post gala, a true crowd-pleaser; Bottom: the customized and colorful new bookmobile funded by the Seattle Public Library Foundation. Party On Post flyer by Bryan D’angelo; Party On Post photo by Katherine Sweet Photography

From annual appeals, planned giving, and partnerships to events, libraries’ fundraising efforts do much more than make up gaps. Libraries of every size, in communities of all kinds, can develop fundraising strategies to meet a wide range of programming, collection development, and building needs and provide a chance to try things that public money might not cover such as new services, training, or temporary staff. But this adaptability requires ongoing maintenance of approaches, databases, and—most of all—relationships.

Rooted in Research | Genealogy

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On Finding Your Roots with Henry Louis Gates Jr., a PBS program that’s a must for those interested in family history, viewers watch as Harvard professor Gates reveals to famous people information about their ancestors, some of them recent forebears and others from many generations ago. TLC’s Who Do You Think You Are? (WDYTYA), based on a BBC series of the same name, is now in its eighth season and offers a similar chronicling of the search for a famous person’s roots.

Growing the Family Tree | Genealogy

Photo by Peter Simon/PBS Distribution

Few individuals have contributed more to the popularization of genealogy in the United States than Dr. Henry Louis “Skip” Gates Jr. In addition to serving as the Alphonse Fletcher University Professor and director of the Hutchins Center for African and African American Research at Harvard University, he is perhaps best known as the creator of PBS’s hit show Finding Your Roots. With the help of librarians and genealogists across the country, the series traces the family trees of well-known Americans from Branford Marsalis to Gloria Steinem to Stephen King. Guests discover unexpected chapters in their family histories that include immigrations, adoptions, marriages, murders, and tales of hardship and courage—on a recent episode, Dustin Hoffman wept to learn of his great-grandmother’s years in a Soviet concentration camp after the execution of both her husband and son. LJ caught up with Gates to see what librarians and patrons can learn from his approach to genealogy as narrative.

AnyThink Director Pam Sandlian Smith Elected President of the Public Library Association (PLA)

Anythink Libraries (a “revolution” of the Rangeview Library District) are located in Adams County, Colorado. From Today’s Announcement: Announced Friday, April 29, Anythink Director Pam Sandlian Smith has been elected 2017-2018 Public Library (PLA) Association President. A division of the American Library Association, PLA helps provide a diverse program of communication, advocacy and programming for […]

Selecting Spanish | Collection Development: Spanish-Language Fiction & Beyond, May 1, 2016

According to book purveyor Baker & Taylor, “sales of Spanish-language material has grown over the last three years to over $12M at list.” Need we say more? These 31 titles should bolster any collection or create a solid core for those starting out. ¡Vámonos!

The Capacity To Endure | Sustainability

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Think big—I mean really big—about the future of your library and its capacity to endure. Does it have the support it needs? Can it bounce back after disruption? Do its services and programs bring new and energetic life to the community, school, or campus that it serves?

Documenting the Now Builds Social Media Archive

Ferguson vigil at McGill University in Montreal, November 25, 2014
Credit: Gerry Lauzon

Partners from three universities across the country have joined forces on a new project, Documenting the Now: Supporting the Scholarly Use and Preservation of Social Media Content, that will collect, archive, and provide access to Twitter feeds chronicling historically significant current events, particularly around issues of social justice.

Arkansas: Legislative Leaders and Governor Agree to Restore $1 Million in State Funding For Libraries

From Arkansas Online: Legislative leaders and Gov. Asa Hutchinson have agreed to restore a $1 million cut in state funding for libraries and a $1 million cut in state funding for senior citizen centers. Senate President Pro Tempore Jonathan Dismang, R-Searcy, and House Speaker Jeremy Gillam, R-Judsonia, on Friday said the agreement was reached in […]

Feedback: Letters to LJ, April 15, 2016 Issue

Let libraries be “libraries,” the Tyranny of Positivity, “double reading,” and more letters to editor from the April 15, 2016 issue of Library Journal.

Mariana Ramirez Godinez, High School Student Trustee

Mariana Ramirez Godinez

While serving as a library trustee is no longer the exclusive domain of retirees, or even those in late or midcareer, only the board of the Cornelius Public Library, OR, can boast a chair who is still thinking about her SAT scores. Sixteen-year-old Mariana Ramirez Godinez (pictured), a junior and honor student at Glencoe High School, where she plays violin and sings in Una Voz, the Hillsboro School District’s 35-member mariachi band, was unanimously elected chair of the 11-member Cornelius Library Advisory Board in December; she has been a board member since spring 2015, a volunteer for the past three years, and a fan of the library since she moved to Cornelius from Mexico ten years ago.