President’s Message

Submitted by Clare Leibfarth, Midwest Chapter/MLA President
Kent State University Libraries, Kent, OH

Greetings Midwest Chapter Colleagues!

It is a beautiful spring day as I write this message to you! It is my favorite time here on campus. Things are just a little less frantic. Final exams and commencement ceremonies were held last week and the beginning of the summer class sessions is yet three weeks away.

This spring has been a busy one for your Midwest Chapter officers and committees. The Executive Board met on March 25 in Ohio. You can look over the meeting agenda and submitted reports here on the chapter website. The meeting was well attended; almost all of the board members were able to participate in person and the rest joined on conference call. In a little over five hours, we got a lot of work done! I would like to thank President-elect Janna Lawrence for her work above and beyond and at the last minute to help get the meeting off the ground!

Annual Report to MLA

One of my responsibilities as president of the Midwest Chapter is to submit an annual report to the MLA Board of Directors covering the chapter’s activities and current initiatives. Here are some of the things I reported this month:

  • Current chapter membership stands at 303, including 19 student members. Yay!
  • We had a very successful 2010 Annual Conference in Madison, Wisconsin and are planning a dynamite conference in Indianapolis, Indiana this fall.
  • Last year, the chapter awarded 2 Annual Meeting Scholarships, 2 Professional Development Awards, 2 Chapter Sharing Roundtable “Free Lunch” Awards, and the Jean Williams Sayre Innovation Award.
  • Chapter members used the chapter display at 4 library science school career fairs this winter. (Read this story for a report from one career fair!)
  • The chapter archives reorganization project was completed this year.
  • Both MIDLINE and ConnectMidwest were migrated to the WordPress publishing platform.
  • The chapter will be adding a new Emeritus membership category. (Get psyched for a bylaws revision vote in the fall!)
  • The Membership Committee will be surveying our membership this spring so that we can improve chapter membership value and services. (Watch your e-mail later this month for your personal survey invitation!)
  • The Finance Committee is investigating the adoption of accounting software for managing chapter expenses, particularly for better tracking of conference expenses.
  • The Awards & Scholarships Committee will be revising the Distinguished Librarian of the Year Award criteria, emphasizing service to the chapter and simplifying the application/nomination process.
  • A special committee led by President-elect Janna Lawrence will be reviewing the Travel Reimbursement Policy to better support meeting participation.
  • The chapter will be stepping up its efforts advocating for health sciences libraries and librarians. The activities of the Advocacy Special Committee will be integrated into the work of the Professional Practice Committee. (See this article for more details!)

Chapter Service

Wow! As you can see, this is one busy chapter. There is a lot to be done and we need your help. This organization is what we make it to be. And I’m asking YOU to consider volunteering your time and talent for the Midwest Chapter. One of the most important areas where we need more volunteers is in communications. Sharing information with and among our members is key to the success of the chapter. Join our Communications Team! You’ll meet new people, gain new skills, and have an all around good time! E-mail me (cleibfar AT kent DOT edu) to indicate your interest.

MLA Meets Midwest

MLA ’11 in Minneapolis, Minnesota starts in but a few days! If you will be there, please keep an eye out for me and say “Hey, Clare!” For a list of all the Midwest Chapter members who are presenting papers and/or posters at MLA, see the story later on in this MIDLINE issue. All I can say is Midwest Chapter rocks!

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