Winter 2010 Newsletter

This issue of the ILA/ACRL Newsletter features a semi-annual President’s Piece submitted by sitting ILA/ACRL president, Mary Iber, results of the IA/ACRL fall elections,reports from the fall ILA Conference and a video link submitted by member Hank Zaletel, Iowa DOT Librarian.

President’s Piece

November 2010

What a great year to be President of ILA/ACRL! Working with such creative and innovative members of our organization has been a privilege for me, and I hope there have been benefits to each person in our organization.

Our Strategic Planning sessions in early 2010 resulted in three major categories where we are working to extend and improve our influence. I’ll use these categories to highlight some of the progress we’ve made this year.

  1. Outreach – to improve our value within our institutions, and between them:
  • We are focusing on building bridges with school librarians to help make the transition for students from high school to college more productive. At the November 5, 2010 ILA planning meeting, IAASL and ACRL formed a committee of librarians who are passionate about this. If you’d like to be involved with this committee, contact Jen Rouse (
  • A Scholarly Communication subcommittee was established under the leadership of Kate Hess. A survey is underway to determine the needs of academic librarians in this area and the committee will proceed from those results.

2. Technology – to improve our communication through use of appropriate technology

  • Have you joined our new Facebook page yet? Use “ILA ACRL” to share ideas and stay in touch with Iowa Academic Librarians. (Thanks to Sara Scheib and Mara Eghermann for getting this off the ground.)
  • Many ideas are in the testing ground. Some have provided experience for future success (such as recording our spring conference sessions.) Some examples of what is working and saving time and money are:

i. doing some committee brainstorming via google docs between meetings

ii. electronic voting (thanks to Laurie Hews at ILA for setting this up for the past 2 elections and the work of Ryan Gjerde and the Nominating Committee)

iii. an amazingly informative newsletter online (thanks to Leslie Ross Ferm and the Newsletter Committee)

iv. online registration for the Spring Conference for the first time (thanks to Beth McMahon and the Spring Conference Committee)

v. a new membership directory complete using googld maps (thanks to Deb Seiffert and the Directory Committee)

3. Membership – to provide quality opportunities that encourage new and continued membership

  • Our Spring Conference on April 23, 2010 The Library is Open: Open Minds, Open Doors, Open Access at the Kirkwood Center for Continuing Education was filled with just the kind of “opening” experiences the committee hoped for. With Barbara Fister as keynote, naturally there was food for thought and challenges to our way of thinking and operating. Concurrent sessions provided examples of librarians creating or maintaining a wide variety of openings. (Thanks to Beth McMahon and the Spring Conference Committee)
  • At the ILA Fall Conference, ACRL co-sponsored a successful pre-conference on The Customer-Driven Academic Library led by Jeannette Woodward. We rounded out our programs offerings with sessions on using humor at work, relationships at work, and computing in the clouds. (Thanks to Dan Boice and the Fall Conference Planning committee)
  • In 2011, at Central College in Pella our Spring Conference will be on March 18. The theme is The Essentials: Rethinking, Refining, Reviving. Hope to see you there, if not before.

Wherever we are working, each of us is contributing to the flow of ideas and information. If you would like to take your ideas and contributions to another level, join us on Facebook, contribute by serving on a committee, run for office, attend and/or present at our conferences. It’s all about sharing the talents we already have, and rising to develop new ones. In that light, be sure to watch announcements about 2011’s one day leadership workshop which promises to be lively, practical, and fun.

I wish Ryan Gjerde at least as rewarding a year as I have had as he takes up the Presidency of ILA/ACRL.

May we all grow and prosper.

All the best, Mary Iber President, ILA/ACRL