Betsy Blankenship, Ohio State University Marion
The time has flown by – this is my last report as President of ALAO. I will turn the reins over to Eboni Johnson in July, and she will ably lead us during our 40th anniversary and celebration. I really appreciated getting to know new members and re-connect with our “seasoned” members and working with all the board members – many wonderful events and activities resulted this year. To all of you who willingly lent us your talents in the past year – I salute you, as you provided the opportunity for ALAO to have a conference, offer workshops, award scholarships and grants, recognize outstanding members, redesign a website, put out a newsletter, advocate for libraries and services and promote professional development opportunities by attending, serving, nominating, awarding and submitting at some point over the last year.
Several activities were completed over the past year – the website was redesigned and unveiled; I think it is much more user-friendly! We are utilizing our website management features to provide a better conference website this year. We migrated to a new member email listserv – thank you to the University of Akron for hosting it for so many years. We had a very successful election, with great candidates, making voting very difficult. Congratulations to all the winners:
Vice-President/ President-Elect – Brian Gray (Case Western Reserve University)
Membership Chair – Katy Mathuews (Shawnee State University)
Secretary – Sheryl Gannon (Brown-Mackie College-Findlay)
Board Members at Large –
Moriana Garcia (Denison University)
Heidi Gauder (University of Dayton)
Carissa Thatcher (Southern State Community College)
We awarded a Legislative Day Travel Day Grant to Missy Creed, and it sounds as though both she and Joe Straw had a very productive visit in Washington. Don Appleby won the Jay Ladd Award for Distinguished Service; I’ve had the pleasure of working with him in the past as well as on the board and he certainly fits the concept of distinguished service to ALAO! The Research and Publications Committee and Professional Development Committee awarded funds to several members; I am so glad we can provide such support to our members! We partnered with Kent State University to offer a Diversity scholarship and with Library Leadership Ohio (LLO), Ohio Library Support Staff Institute (OLSSI) and ACRL to provide financial support and professional development opportunities for our members. We have been exploring some new initiatives such as conference proceedings and a mentoring program so stay tuned for more on those. Most importantly, the board reviewed policies and procedures and made changes when appropriate and continued to operate ALAO with sound fiscal practices and lead ALAO through another successful year. The Annual Leadership Retreat will take place at Mohican Lodge July 14-15, where the board “passes the torch” to incoming board members, says goodbye to those who have completed their terms and where I officially pass the ALAO gavel to Eboni Johnson, incoming President. I then assume duties as Past-President, so you’ll be hearing from me in the future as I seek Jay Ladd Award nominations and members to run for offices! Thank you for allowing me to be your President during 2013-2014!