Latest News

Letter from VLA President Todd Elliott: March 2018

Greetings VLA colleagues!

Though I spent part of my childhood in upstate New York, I do not enjoy cold weather at all. I know that some of you are thinking “winter is the BEST time of the year” and we will have to agree to disagree – come on spring! First things first: congratulations to all of the library workers around the state who were selected for the 2018 Virginia Library Leadership Academy! VALLA, which will feature American Library Association Past-President Maureen Sullivan, offers an intensive leadership experience for participants.

One of the great things about participating in your state library association is all of the networking that goes on, and do those connections ever help! Let me get personal for a minute: as a newly-minted public library director here in Portsmouth, it was precisely three days into the job that I engaged in a small freak-out session. Quietly, because I was in the library. What if I’m not up to this? What if I make a major blunder? What if..? Reaching out to a fellow director and member of the Virginia Library Association, I was gently assured that things would be just fine because we support one another. None of us has to go it alone, in truth we shouldn’t. I like the way that we collectively engage in conversation to share ideas, events, and occasionally frustrations.

Speaking of ideas and events – be sure to take a look at the VLA online calendar. You will agree that the VLA Website Content Committee does a good job it making it meaningful and current. Freedom of Information Day is March 16, and related to it is Sunshine Week (March 11 – 17), the annual nationwide celebration of access to public information and what it means for you and your community. There is a link to the official website for more information and free resources. There is a youth services workshop in region 6 and a CaTS cataloging forum in region 3. Want more? Hie thee to the calendar!

Several of you will head to Philadelphia to the Public Library Association Conference later in the month and I hope that you will learn something to share at home and with colleagues across the Commonwealth. Safe travels!  

As my wife, Jackie, would tell our sons as they were growing up: Questions? Comments? Rude remarks? Feel free to give me a shout at [email protected].


ALA Councilor Samantha Thomason: Midwinter 2018 Report

Denver, CO, February 8-13, 2018

Samantha Thomason - ALA Chapter Councilor 2017-2019, Virginia

All Midwinter Council documents:

Midwinter Attendance: Over 8,000, including 2,600 exhibitors

The future of ALA, particularly organizational effectiveness and financial viability, was a major focus of this year’s Midwinter meeting. Council II session included a 30-minute Organizational Effectiveness Discussion open to all members.

Discussions topics over the course of Midwinter included:

  • Details of ALA’s investments and budget
  • Assessment of  ALA real estate at 40 & 50 E. Huron Street in Chicago
  • Viability of ALA’s publishing division
  • Membership dues structure
  • ALA divisions, potential mergers
  • Viability of Midwinter and conference restructuring
  • Technology implementation plan

While not an issue for Council debate at Midwinter this year, the executive director search is very much on everyone’s radar as ALA seeks to establish new leadership. After an unsuccessful search for a new executive director in 2017, the hotly debated issue of whether or not an ALA- or CAEP-accredited master’s degree should be required for this position will be decided by ALA membership during elections March 12-April 4.

Advocacy was also a major focus. President Trump’s proposed FY2019 budget dropped during Midwinter, and, as expected, eliminates the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS), which provides approximately $183 million in direct funding to libraries through the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA). The budget proposal also eliminates the $27 million Innovative Approaches to Literacy program administered by the Department of Education. Preserving federal library funding will continue to be one of ALA’s top legislative priorities. Advocating for school libraries will also be a top priority as more school libraries and librarian positions are being threatened.

ALA Council Actions:

ALA Executive Board Elections:

Diane Chen Elected for the 5-month term (February 2018 through June 2018) to complete President-Elect Loida Garcia-Febo’s term

The following ALA Councilors were elected to ALA Executive Board for a 3-year term, 2018-2021:

  • Tamika Barnes
  • Ed Garcia
  • Maria McCauley


Resolution on Socially Responsible Investments for the ALA Endowment Fund - not passed

Library Bill of Rights Interpretation on Visual and Performing Arts - adopted

Membership dues adjustment proposal - adopted (to be voted on in upcoming elections)

Meetings Attended:

Friday, February 9:

Recruit & Rally - ALA Advocacy Training Institute, 12:30-4:00

Saturday, February 10:

ALA Council I/Executive Board/Membership Information Session, 3:00-4:30

ALA Council Forum I, 8:30-10:00

Sunday, February 11:

ALA Council I & ALA-APA Council, 8:30-11:00

Chapter Councilor’s Forum, 12:30-2:00

Monday, February 12:

ALA Council II, 10:00-12:00

ALA Executive Board Candidate’s Forum, 12:15-1:15

Chapter Relations Committee, 1:30-2:30

Tuesday, February 13:

ALA Council III, 9:30-11:30


2018 VLACRL Spring Program

postcard with flowers, Register NOW for VLACRL Spring Program, Critical Librarianship in Higher Education, April 12, 2018 at Swem Library William and Mary, Registration open

Registration:  Deadline - April 1st.

Information Sheet

Keeping Up With...Critical Librarianship - from the ALA website

Critical Librarianship in Higher Education
Thursday, April 12, 2019     9:30am – 3:30pm
William & Mary, Swem Library, Williamsburg, VA

Highlights of the program, Critical Librarianship in Higher Education, will include:

  • Keynote speaker,  Eamon Tewell of the Long Island University Brooklyn.

profile photo

Eamon Tewell is Reference & Instruction Librarian at Long Island University Brooklyn, where he supports the teaching and learning activities of the campus community. He received his MLIS from Drexel University and his MA in Media Studies from LIU Brooklyn.

Eamon has published and presented on the topics of critical information literacy, popular media and active learning in library instruction, and televisual representations of libraries.

9:30 to 10:15
 – Registration, Light Refreshments, Networking
10:15 - 10:30 – VLACRL Business Meeting
10:30 to 12:00 – Keynote Speaker: Eamon Tewell

12:00 to 1:00 – Lunch (provided); Networking

1:15 to 2:00 – Affinity Groups (choose one):

      • Instruction and informaion literacy
      • Tech services and cataloging
      • Collection development
      • Library technology and systems
      • Hiring and management

2:15 to 3:00 – Share Takeaways from Affinity Group Discussions

3:00 - 3:30 – Tour of Swem Library

Costs and Directions

VLACRL or ACRL member rate:  $35

  • Registration fees include morning refreshments and lunch.  Options will be offered for special dietary considerations. 

Directions and Parking ($5/day)

From the South or East: From I-64, take Exit 242A, Route 199 West (towards
Williamsburg/Jamestown). Travel approximately 5 miles on Route 199 to the 4th traffic
light(Jamestown Road). Turn right onto Jamestown Road.

From the North or West: From I-64, take Exit 234, Route 199 East (Lightfoot). Travel
approximately 8 miles on Route 199 to the 2nd traffic light (Jamestown Road). Turn left onto
Jamestown Road.

Once on Jamestown Road: Go past the traffic light at Walsingham Academy and past the small
lake (Lake Matoaka). At the painted crosswalk across Jamestown Road, turn left onto Ukrop Way.
This puts you on the William & Mary campus.

Once on the William & Mary campus, travel .25 miles to the parking deck (201 Ukrop Way,
Williamsburg, VA). Park, then obtain a $5 visitor parking pass from Parking & Transportation
Services (1st Floor, attached to parking deck), and place the pass in your windshield.

Questions?  Contact any of the current VLACRL officers:


Youth Services Workshop and Networking Event planned for March 16

(Please note: Membership in VLA is not required to participate in this event.)

Youth Services Workshop and Networking Event to be held March 16When: Friday, March 16 from 10 a.m. to 3:30 p.m. at the Jefferson-Madison Regional Library - Central Library, 201 East Market Street, Charlottesville, VA (directions).
Plan to arrive beginning at 9:30 a.m., with the first session beginning at 10 a.m.

Cost: Free! Lunch is on your own.

Morning - 3, 45-minute sessions:

Kaleidoscope Sensory Storytimes for Preschool Children with Special Needs
Learn how Sensory Storytimes help special needs kids and their families feel welcomed in libraries, show how to interact with librarians and books, help children transition to regular programs, and provide safe spaces for those who may be too loud or impulsive to participate in other library activities.
Presenter: Gail Wellock, Fairfax County Library

Booktalking: An Essential Tool in Your Outreach Toolbox
How do you engage with students in a group setting to get them excited about books? With booktalks! Learn practical techniques for writing and presenting booktalks for students of all ages that will have your audience begging to check out those books.
Presenters: Angela Critics & R. Timothy Carrier, Jefferson-Madison Regional Library

Self-Directed Programming & Interactive Displays:
Learn more about passive programming beyond simple Make & Take projects. Explore how interactive displays and contests can help push your collection, encourage in-library engagement, and serve teens with limited transportation, time, and ability to attend traditional programming.
Presenter: Megan England, Jefferson-Madison Regional Library


These sessions will be followed by an informal lunch. Brown bag it or pick up something from one of the local shops and hang out with Youth Services staff from around the state to share ideas.


The afternoon will be devoted to networking round tables, each with a different theme. Conversation prompts will help get the sharing of ideas started.

More information

Sign up at:

Questions: contact Angela Critics at [email protected]

Forum information: Learn more about the Youth Services Forum.

—Updated 2/22/2018


Are you InteresTED in Hearing What’s New With the Libraries of Northern Virginia?

Join us on Friday, February 23, 2018
1 p.m. - 4 p.m.
Haymarket-Gainesville Community Library
14870 Lightner Road, Haymarket, VA 20169

  • Central Rappahannock Regional Library  will be discussing 3D printers and maker spaces in their library system. 
  • Loudoun Public Libraries will be sharing their experiences with the same topic.
  • Cindy Church of the Library of Virginia is coming to talk about the opioid crisis.
  • Alexandria Public Libraries will be talking about their new passport services.

Register by 2/20 at this link:  VLA Region V InviTED

Free program!  All welcome!  

Questions? Please contact Judith Rodriguez, Branch Administrator, Prince William County Public Library System, 703-792-8385

<< first < Prev 1 2 3 4 5 6 7 8 9 10 Next > last >>

Page 7 of 37