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VLA New Members Round Table: Mentoring Program 2020

The VLA New Members Round Table is pleased to offer another year of mentoring for VLA members! We welcome interest from both potential mentees and mentors. If you are interested, please complete the following form and we will be in touch in the next few weeks. The deadline for signing up is Wednesday, April 1

Link to sign up:

The VLA NMRT Mentoring Program is designed to help new VLA members grow professionally through partnerships with seasoned VLA members. The program is open to the following: 

Mentees: Librarians or library staff members in the first five years of their professional career or library school students. See this guide for more details.

Mentors: A career mentor must have been employed in a professional position for at least five years and be willing to correspond with their mentee at least once every two months in whatever manner is most convenient for both parties. See this guide for more details.

A few notes about the program:

  • Membership in VLA is required. Conference attendance is not required.
  • The VLA NMRT Mentoring Program is not intended as a job search program.
  • Mentor/mentee partnerships will officially run from April to October.
  • Mentors and mentees will be partnered based on their similar interests, professional experience or goals, and when able, by their geographic proximity to each other. While face-to-face communication is not required, we hope that mentors and mentees who are near one another take the opportunity to meet in person. 
  • The availability of mentors and mentees and the information provided on the applications will determine the partnerships made.

If you have any questions, please contact John Hood, VLA NMRT Communications and Outreach Director ([email protected]), or Anne Rappe-Epperson, VLA NMRT Chair ([email protected]). 

Thank you, and have a great day!

NMRT Leadership Team


2020 VLA Awards: Call For Nominations

The Virginia Library Association is now seeking nominations for our 2020 VLA Awards and our 2020 VLA Professional Associates Forum Awards. These awards will recognize contributions of library workers in Virginia during 2019. Please use the online submission form to submit your nominations by the extended deadline of  May 30. 

Questions? Contact Shaunna Hunter, Awards Committee Chair, at [email protected].

To view awards criteria and submission requirements, visit the VLA Awards webpage and VLA PAF Awards webpage.

Each nominee must meet the criteria for the award for which they are nominated. Nomination forms and accompanying documentation must be submitted prior to 11:59 p.m. on May 30, 2020.

The VLA Annual Conference Scholarship & Awards Celebration will be held in Norfolk in October This year, we are pleased to be honoring winners of VLA Awards and VLA PAF Awards during the celebration at The Norfolk Waterside Marriott! Tickets will be on sale when conference registration opens. Each award winner will receive one complimentary ticket to the Scholarship and Awards Celebration.

Jennifer Brown was named the 2019 Librarian of the Year. Central Rappahannock Regional Library Youth Services won the Public Innovator Award for 2019.

Jennifer Brown, above left, won the Donna G. Cote Librarian of the Year award for 2019. Central Rappahannock Regional Library Youth Services, some of whom are pictured above right, won the Public Innovator Award for 2019. To see the full list of 2019 VLA Award winners, visit the 2019 VLA Award Winners webpage.


**this information has been cross-posted**

2020 VLA Annual Conference, October 21-23, 2020, Norfolk Waterside Marriot, Norfolk,VA

Pass on What You Have Learned


VLA provides three options for submissions.

What do I need to complete the Proposal Form?

  • A VLA login. You do not need to be a member to have a login. You must log in to submit a proposal so that you are able to log back into the form and make changes in the future.
  • Contact information for all speakers: name, email and organization.
  • Program title, description, learning objectives and take-aways
  • Level of audience for the program
  • Preferred program date and time

Proposals will be reviewed and presenters will be notified in June 2020. Requested session times and dates will be honored wherever possible. Up to two presenters per session will receive $75 off the conference registration fee. If you have any questions, please contact VLA Executive Director Lisa R. Varga at [email protected].

YOUR participation is what makes the VLA Annual Conference possible - we hope to hear from you!

Jennifer Resor-Whicker, 2020 VLA President, [email protected] 

Adrian Whicker, 2020 VLA Conference Chair, [email protected]

Lisa Nickel, 2020 VLACRL Conference Within A Conference Chair, [email protected] 

and the 2020 VLA Conference Committee

Hotel rooms at the Norfolk Waterside Marriott will be available at the VLA group rate of $149.00 per night plus taxes and fees. Rooms must be booked by October 1 to be eligible for the discount. A small block of rooms will also be available at the prevailing government rate. A link to reserve hotel rooms will be posted when conference registration opens in July. 

Lisa R. Varga, MLS
Executive Director
Virginia Library Association
P.O. Box 56312
Virginia Beach, VA 23456
Phone: (757) 689-0594 Fax: (757) 447-3478
[email protected]



The Virginia Library Leadership Academy (VALLA) is now accepting applications for the 2020 Academy!

We are pleased to announce that Dr. Angela Spranger, author of Why People Stay : Helping Your Employees Feel Seen, Safe, and Valued, will be leading the sixth leadership academy with a special focus on diversity and social equity. Dr. Spranger is Assistant Professor in Management at Christopher Newport University and an experienced consultant and facilitator in organizational leadership, coaching, and change management. Dr. Spranger will be joined by Dr. Nan Carmack, Director of Library Development and Networking at The Library of Virginia, as presenter and facilitator on project management in libraries. Dr. Carmack is past-Director of the Campbell County Public Library and a frequent presenter for VLA and for libraries throughout the Commonwealth.

When: Tuesday, March 31, 2020 – Wednesday, April 1, 2020

Where: Stonewall Jackson Hotel in historic Staunton, Virginia

Participants are mid-career library professionals and professional associates ready to assume a higher administrative or managerial role, with an interest in experiencing project planning and implementation and sharing their results with their colleagues in the Virginia Library Association. The academy includes an interactive learning component, followed by an introduction to project management. Before leaving, each participant will submit a brief description of their planned project.

To apply, please submit an application package as one to three emails or email attachments to [email protected] by Monday, February 10, 2020. Please be sure to include applicant’s name on each. A complete application includes:

(click here for one Word document with all three forms)

The selection committee reviews applications to select a participant mix based on type of library (public, academic, school, special, etc.), organizational responsibility, geography, gender, and race/ethnicity. This selective process is based on leadership potential, professional achievement, and community or campus involvement, particular attention will be paid to applicants’ personal statements and letter or support.

Cost per participant is $300 for VLA members and $450 for non-VLA members and includes Tuesday night lodging, parking, and four meals (Tuesday lunch and dinner and Wednesday breakfast and lunch). We are grateful to Quinn Evans and Tappé Architects for their generous support of this program.


The Accidental Library Worker: VLA Professional Associates Forum 2020 Regional Workshop Tour

The Virginia Library Association Professional Associates Forum (VLAPAF) is bringing together library support staff from around the Commonwealth at workshops this Spring and Summer. Here is your chance to network with other library staff as part of our educational training series. The series is proudly sponsored by The Library of Congress Federal Credit Union (LCFCU). Each workshop will feature a discussion of Cataloging/Technical Services/Collections, presentations about setting SMART goals (professionally and personally), roundtable discussions of topics relevant to YOU and a break for lunch, where you’ll be welcome to chat with others about your experiences working in your library.

Did you plan to work in libraries? Were you looking for a change and just happened to come across library work? Are you are new to the library world? Your voice and experience matter. As part of our workshop, we’ll be looking for you to tell us what you want from continuing education experiences – since we will be hosting a conference in 2021 geared specifically to library support staff – and you can help shape the future of those events,

Are you new to VLA? This is a great way to learn more about what other libraries are doing in VA. We encourage staff at academic, public, government, special and law libraries to attend.

Registration for the workshops is now open. Cost is $20 for VLA members, $30 for non-VLA members. You will be able to specify dietary restrictions on the registration form.

The Accidental Library Worker events are from 10am-4pm:

  • March 4th: Longwood University
  • April 6th: Mary D. Pretlow Anchor Branch, Norfolk Public Library
  • May 6th: Chinn Park Regional Library
  • May 21st: Crozet Library
  • July 15th: Washington County Library, Main Library Branch
  • August 6th: Henrico County Libraries

Thank you in advance for your support of this program.
Kristi Jerome, Longwood University: Chair, VLA Professional Associates Forum
Isaak Hopson, Virginia Commonwealth University: Co-Chair, VLA Professional Associates Forum
and the members of the VLA Professional Associates Forum Board

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