President’s Report

Conference Summary

Jessica Crossfield McIntosh, ALAO President

A very successful 2021 conference is now complete. We had a total of 279 registrants, including 71 non-ALAO-members, and 31 students. We got some wonderful feedback from attendees:

“Kudos to the organizers, this was a great conference this year. There was a good variety of topics and many that I came away thinking what can I do to implement something like this at my library. I liked the format because if I could not watch something at the time allotted, I could go back and watch it later.”

“I did like the change this year in that you watched the prepared presentation together and then had plenty of time following for Q&A. It seemed more like an in-person presentation.”

“While I think this conference was awesome and I give *all* the kudos to everyone involved, I miss going in person!”

“I loved the AMA. It was great to hear from librarians from other types of libraries and learn about their job duties and collections. I would love to see this program offered next year with representatives from different library types.”

“Really appreciated having the presentations pre-recorded and available but also showing them at the designated time slot, so that everyone could “attend” in the matter that worked best for them. Also really appreciated breaks between each session. So many virtual conferences neglect to include adequate breaks.”

“I’m always interested in additional support staff and technical services topics, as so often the default presentation is reference and instruction. But I also thought this year was more equally balanced, and am hopeful/optimistic that trend will continue!”

The conference content is now open to all, and it will be available until next year. Please share with colleagues who may not have been able to attend.

ALAO Membership Meeting

Like last year, we held the membership meeting during the conference instead of a truncated board meeting. It was open to all ALAO members and lasted about 20 minutes. About forty people attended. Please feel free to send any feedback you have about this format for future conferences. 

ALAO Award Winners

Congratulations to our 2021 ALAO award winners! The ALAO Awards Ceremony was also open to all ALAO members and had 64 attendees. It was a lovely celebration but we hope to see everyone in person next year.

Award NameWinner
Research & Publications Committee Research GrantDr. Feng-Ru Sheu
Continuing Education GrantNathanael Davis, Cedarville University   Kristin Cole, Otterbein University   Mike Monaco, University of Akron
TEDDY AwardKen Irwin
Kathryn Venditti Mentoring AwardMark Eddy
Jay Ladd Distinguished Service AwardDerek Zoladz

Another huge thank you to the members of the 2021 Conference Planning Committee for their time, energy, commitment and teamwork. We had our post-conference session Wednesday and have built a great advice document for the 2022 CPC. If you have any additional feedback about the conference and didn’t have a chance to fill out the post-event survey, feel free to reach out to me.

Executive Board Meeting Report

The ALAO Executive Board has been making progress on projects related to two of our strategic priorities. One strategic priority is to improve the diversity, equity, and inclusion (DEI) of ALAO as an organization, while also providing support to our members in this area. To accomplish this goal, the board is working on the following projects:

A DEI taskforce, in collaboration with the Diversity Committee, has been formed. The group has begun to plan and work on initiatives: a state DEI resource toolkit, and a programming roadshow. We look forward to sharing more as things progress, and thanks again to those who’ve volunteered for the taskforce.

Related, the diversity committee with Jerry Natal and Mandi Goodsett, have taken the lead on developing a DEI statement for ALAO as an organization. They’ve been pulling some examples and best practices for development of such a statement. The goal is to put forth an example for the board at the February 18th meeting.

The other strategic priority is increasing ALAO’s program offerings with external organizations and membership outreach. Planning is being done with the Membership and IG coordinators to determine next steps in these efforts. More information will be shared in the spring. This initiative is a continuation from an idea last year to further involve students in the state with ALAO. Membership Chair Maureen Barry is preparing a proposal that will be brought to the board in February as she reaches out to student supervisors over the coming months.

And finally, I’ve accepted a new position and must resign from participation on the board. Gerald Natal, president-elect, and Mandi Goodsett, past-president, will be taking the lead and standing in as interim President in the coming months. I will miss the wonderful professionals that make up this organization. Thank you all for your continued service.

ALAO member input and feedback is always welcome. If you have ideas for how ALAO could improve or would like to volunteer to help with a specific project, please feel free to reach out to a board member.

This entry was posted in Vol. 39 no. 4 (Dec 2021) and tagged . Bookmark the permalink.

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