President’s Report


Gerald Natal, Interim President and Vice President/President Elect

This fall has been a fickle season, one minute spring-like weather, the next falling snow. It is the traditional season for formally giving thanks, and I feel I have a lot for which to be thankful. I am thankful for the many blessings in my personal life. I am grateful for my career as a librarian, for the opportunity to have a positive impact on students, staff, and faculty, and for my library colleagues. I am appreciative of members of this year’s conference planning committee, my fellow ALAO Board members, and the many opportunities and experiences afforded to me as a member of ALAO. I wish everyone peace in the coming holiday and into the new year.

On to business…

ALAO Executive Board Meeting Report 10-21-22:

Minor changes were made to the Bylaws and Procedures Manual concerning the Continuing Education Grant and an update given on the mentoring and distinguished service awards selection in progress. Previously the revived Communications Committee met to review the charge and purpose of the committee and prepare a communications workflow for the ALAO Board; members of the committee presented to the board for comment a detailed document that addresses modes of communication, responsibilities for maintaining them, and a timeline for updates. The board was also informed about the revived process for updating the State Library of Ohio statewide calendar with ALAO events and received an update on the conference planning committee. The ALAO treasurer reported that an overall discontentment with the PayPal payment system has prompted a search for a more user-friendly system for ALAO events.

48th Annual Conference Update

This year’s conference “Tipping Point: Initiating Change in Academic Libraries” took place during two gorgeous days on November 3rd and 4th at Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center in Lewis Center, north of Columbus. Attendance for the first in-person conference since 2019 was very respectable, with 27 pre-conference registrants and 217 registered for the day of the conference from Indiana, Kentucky, Michigan, and Ohio. Attendees were offered 26 concurrent sessions, 5 lightening sessions, and 9 posters (abstracts and links to many of the presentations can be found here). There was opportunity to see old friends, network, interact with our wonderful group of exhibitors and sponsors, swap items at the Sustainability Interest Group’s swag swap table, and mingle at Thursday night’s low-key social event. Conference feedback was generally favorable, and many were pleased to be attending the conference in person.

The pre-conference workshop Beyond Being “Good Colleagues:” Implementing and Sustaining Active Allyship Practices Within Academic Libraries was conducted by Alexia Hudson-Ward, Associate Director of Research and Learning of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology (MIT) Libraries and inaugural Editor-in-Chief of Towards Inclusive Leadership (TIE), a popular multimedia blog dedicated to diversity-centered research and discourse. Ms. Hudson-Ward also delivered an inspirational keynote for the conference, Active Allyship in Action. Both the workshop and keynote presentation addressed advanced active allyship practices, misconceptions surrounding allyship, and the systemic nature of bias and privilege, with a focus on data-driven and sustainable people-centered approaches. These themes are in keeping with ALAO’s strategic area Focus 1: Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion.

As is the custom, each year the conference planning committee selects a cause to support. To help combat the current attacks on school curricula and the singling out of books for censorship, ALAO donated to The National Coalition Against Censorship. The coalition is made up of a diverse group of fifty-nine national not-for-profit organizations, representing the artistic, educational, religious, and labor communities, joined together in the interest of protecting First Amendment rights.

This year’s People’s Choice Poster Award was a tie, with the prize money going to three individuals. Hal Howard from Miami University received a $100.00 prize for the poster “Student Perspective on Strategic Project Engagement in the OhioLINK Luminaries Program.” Beth Anderson and Heather Back from Wright State University each received $50.00 for their poster “Remember: Building Displays to Promote a Prominent Collection in the Community.” Congratulations to you three!

While I am on the subject of awards, several of our library colleagues were recognized for having received ALAO grants and scholarships. Congratulations to the following individuals!

  • Cara Calabrese, Miami University – Research & Publications Committee Research Grant
  • Catherine Saavedra Pic, Columbus State Community College – Diversity Scholarship
  • Mike Monaco, The University of Akron – TEDdy Award (previous winners Ken Irwin and Derek Zoladz also received their TEDdy bears and certificates, having been denied receiving their awards in person due to the pandemic)
  • Madeline Gaiser, University of Cincinnati and Taryn Mirabello, Portsmouth Public Library – Professional Development Grant

I encourage everyone to visit ALAO’s web page to find out more about these opportunities, as well as the Support Staff Conference Grant and Student Presenter Grant.

The Kathryn Venditti Mentoring Award

A highlight of the annual conference is the announcement of The Kathryn Venditti Mentoring Award recipient. The award was established in 2016 to honor individuals who demonstrate excellence as a mentor. The award is named in memory of its first recipient, Kathryn Venditti, an exemplary librarian, and long-time ALAO member. This year’s award went to Paul Fehrmann, Emeritus Professor at Kent State University. Paul was described as having “Spent over 25 years welcoming and mentoring new librarians,” as “kind and supportive,” and as a “Strong advocate and ally of BIPOC librarians, demonstrating inclusive practices and behavior.” One nominator stated that Paul’s “support made a difference in my career and most importantly, in my life.” ALAO congratulates Paul on receiving this special honor.

The Jay Ladd Distinguished Service Award

Another award that spotlights praiseworthy achievement at the conference is The Jay Ladd Distinguished Service Award, named in honor of a former Ohio State University librarian who played a large part in the formation of ALAO. Recipients of this award must have broadly promoted academic libraries and librarianship and have a strong record of leadership. This year the award was presented to Krista McDonald, Director of the Rentschler Library at Miami University–Hamilton. Krista has a sustained record of service and was described as an “active and vocal member” of ALAO’s Diversity Committee, including her work on ALAO’s Diversity toolkit and Diversity Action Task Force. She is a former ALAO President and Board member and is active in OhioLINK. Krista’s nominator notes that while her work merits recognition, Krista is known for her “passion, creativity, good humor, and commitment to justice.” [I was urged to make mention of Krista’s passion for camels (the animal), an in-joke among her colleagues.] As a further distinction, Krista is only the second person besides Kathryn Venditti to receive both the mentoring award and the distinguished service award.

Congratulations to this year’s award recipients and to the other worthy nominees!

Before I sign off, it is a perfect time to publicly thank everyone who had a hand in making this year’s conference a success. Without support from the conference center, sponsors, exhibitors, and the many who attended, we don’t have an event. My thanks go out to the members of the board who assisted with presenter introductions, and especially to the planning committee who gave of their precious time and energy (and who put up with my many, many emails)—you all rocked it!

If you didn’t have a chance to fill out our post-event survey or have additional feedback about the conference, please feel free to reach out to the Conference Planning Committee at


Dear ALAO Colleagues,

Are you looking for a leadership opportunity? Would you like to get involved in professional service for an ACRL chapter?  If so, please consider nominating yourself for the ALAO Board — or encourage a colleague to consider nomination! Elections will take place in spring 2023, and successful candidates will take office at the ALAO Board Retreat this summer.  Come join a fantastic group of Ohio library workers!

*A diverse board membership benefits the organization—all are encouraged to apply*

 In-person attendees of the 2022-2023 ALAO Executive Board Retreat

What does the ALAO Board do?

As the Ohio chapter of ACRL, we have a mission of advancing academic library services in our state and providing opportunities for education and growth for library personnel at all levels and at every career stage. We sponsor an annual conference and spring workshops that focus on innovative topics and showcase Ohio academic librarians; we provide scholarships and awards; and we maintain several active, diverse interest groups and committees. In addition, we have a mentoring program that pairs up Ohio academic librarians for peer-to-peer, inter-generational, leadership, or student mentoring relationships.

What is my role as a Board member?

  • Perform the duties described for your elected position – see the Procedures Manual for the specific duties and responsibilities of each position
  • Attend the annual retreat in July of each year
  • Attend scheduled Board meetings (announced at Board Retreat–these have been virtual through Zoom)

This year, we will be electing the following officers:

  • Vice President/President Elect
  • Public Relations Coordinator
  • Board Member-at-Large (3 positions)

Remember that you must be an ALAO member to run for office, so this is a perfect time to join or renew.

Submit the online nomination form by Monday, February 17, 2023, to be considered as a candidate!

If you have questions, please contact

Thank you from the Nomination Committee!

Gerald Natal, ALAO President/Acting Past President and Nominating Committee Co-Chair

Laura Birkenhauer, Miami University, Nominating Committee Co-Chair

Gwen Short, Ohio State University

Clayton Hayes, Kenyon College

Alison Ricker, Oberlin College & Conservatory

Lynn Warner, University of Cincinnati

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Vice President/President Elect Report

Mark Eddy, Vice President/President Elect

Greetings to all in the ALAO community!

Seeing many friends and colleagues for the first time in two years in person at the 2022 ALAO Conference was so great! The Conference went well, and we are hoping to repeat this success with ALAO 2023.

The 2023 Conference Planning Committee met informally in late October and reviewed several potential themes for next year’s Conference.  We hope to finalize the theme at our next meeting in December and begin preparing a call for proposals that will go out to the membership and elsewhere some time early next year.

Happy Holidays Everyone!

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2022 People’s Choice Poster Awards

At every ALAO Annual Conference, the Research & Publications Committee asks attendees to vote for the People’s Choice Poster Award. This award is typically given to one poster; however, this year, we had a two-way tie. Both posters will each be given the $100 award to split among co-authors. Please join us in congratulating the following People’s Choice Poster Award winners from the 2022 ALAO Annual Conference:

“Student Perspective on Strategic Project Engagement in the OhioLINK Luminaries Program.”

  • Hal Howard (Miami University)

 “Remember: Building Displays to Promote a Prominent Collection in the Community.”

  • Beth Anderson (Wright State University)
  • Heather Back (Wright State University)

–Paul Campbell, Research & Publications Committee Co-Chair, Ohio University
–Sarah Nagle, Research & Publications Committee Co-Chair, Miami University

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Member Spotlight

Let’s shine the Member Spotlight on Lynn Warner from University of Cincinnati!

What is/are your role(s) in academic libraries?

I am the Research and Health Sciences Librarian at the Donald C. Harrison Health Sciences Library at the University of Cincinnati. I work with the College of Nursing and the College of Allied Health Sciences. I’m new to UC, before this I worked for many years as a Teaching and Learning Librarian across the river at Northern Kentucky University.

What do you like most about academic library work?

I love teaching information literacy and working with students. Whether in a consult or instruction session, seeing their “aha!” moments is incredibly rewarding. Helping students connect to the information they need and guiding them to become more confident researchers makes me happy!

What are some interesting projects you’ve been involved with lately?

As a part of my role at UC, I assist faculty and students with developing searches for systematic reviews they are conducting. I’m currently working with Nursing faculty on a review about simulation-based education and nursing students.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself.

I am a huge Golden Girls fan, and I recently attended the first ever “GoldenCon.”

Why did you join ALAO?

I joined ALAO when I started my new position at University of Cincinnati. I have attended ALAO conferences in the past, and they have always been so wonderful! I’m looking forward to attending the next one this fall.

–Laura Birkenhauer, Membership Chair, Miami University

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Membership Report

The current membership of ALAO includes a total of 292 members consisting of 260 regular members, 4 retiree members, and 28 student members. We are excited to welcome new members who joined between September 3, 2022 and November 17, 2022.

Kathryn Albright, Otterbein University

Aja Bettencourt-McCarthy, University of Cincinnati

Robin Buser  Columbus State, Community College Library

Dana Carlsen , Miami University Hamilton Campu

Maddie Clawson, Defiance College

Rachael Clukey, Columbus State Community College

Leigh Dunewood, University of Maryland

Beate Gersch, Kent State University

Gregg Havey, Ohio Dominican University

Lisa Hechesky, Muskingum University

Rachelle Hippler, Baldwin Wallace University

Catherine King, Case Western Reserve University

Collette Knight, Defiance College

Meme Marlow, Edison State College

Jacqueline Mayse, Cleveland Institute of Art

Ian McCullough, The College of Wooster

Amanda McLellan, Wittenberg University

Karen Nelson, Smith Library, Muskingum University

Peace Oyebode, Student

Barbara Sedlock, Defiance College

Rhonda Stricklett, Columbus State Community College

Jenna Willhoit, Student

Alexander Zemskov, Case Western Reserve University

–Laura Birkenhauer, Membership Chair, Miami University

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Interest Group Reports

Message from the Interest Group Coordinator

Greetings! I am the new Interest Group Coordinator, Abi Morgan, stepping into the role from Sara Klink. Thank you Sara, for your years of fantastic leadership in this role. 

ALAO has 12 active special interest groups that have formed to discuss concerns, issues, and new trends related to academic librarianship in Ohio. Joining an interest group is a great way to participate in leadership events and network with fellow librarians and library staff. 

At the 2022 Annual Conference, the interest groups staffed an informational table to spread awareness about our various offerings and encourage new membership. We had 14 new sign ups across our interest groups.

However, you can join an interest group at any time during the year! For more information visit the ALAO website or contact Abi Morgan, Interest Group Coordinator.

-Abi Morgan, Interest Group Coordinator, Miami University

Community & Two Year College Libraries Interest Group (C2YCLIG) News

Calling all LibGuide wizards!

Has your library done innovative things with your LibGuides and you would like a chance to highlight your work and share with your colleagues? The Community & Two Year College Libraries Interest Group (C2YCLIG) is looking for 2-3 libraries to present to our group during our virtual meeting in February (date to be determined once presenters are selected). If you are interested in being a part of this panel, please email Co-Chairs Meagan Fowler and Zoe Orcutt to express your interest.

Please feel free to share this with colleagues who may be interested; they do not need to be a current member of ALAO or our IG.

–Meagan Fowler, C2YCLIG Co-Chair, Cuyahoga Community College
–Zoe Orcutt, C2YCLIG Co-Chair, Overdrive

Distance Learning Interest Group (DLIG) News

Please welcome Dr. Beate Gersch as the new co-chair of DLIG. Dr. Gersch serves as the Assistant Dean for Student & Research Success at Kent State University.

–Dana Knott, Distance Learning Interest Group Co-Chair, Columbus State Community College

Instruction Interest Group News

The Instruction Interest Group (IIG) is moving into the brainstorming phase for our spring/summer workshops and webinars for 2023 and we want to hear from you! Have you learned something new that you’d like to share with the group? Have a new lesson plan or presentation and are looking for guinea pigs? Or maybe you have an idea for a topic you’d like to see? Let us know! We always welcome ideas for sessions from our members, so please reach out.

If you’d like to join the workshop planning committee, we are seeking additional members! It’s a great way to get involved with ALAO and meet new colleagues. We will be sending out an email later in 2023 to solicit interest. In the meantime, please feel free to contact with any questions.

–Stefanie Hilles, Instruction IG Co-Chair, Miami University
–Jaclyn Spraetz, Instruction IG Co-Chair, Miami University

Special Collections and Archives Interest Group (SCAig) News

In accordance with its mission, the Special Collections and Archives Interest Group (SCAig) holds a workshop every spring centered around a special collections or archives-related topic. We are already starting to consider potential themes for our spring 2023 workshop, and would like to know what topics SCAig members are interested in learning more about. Look out for a short survey on topic preferences, to be sent out to the SCAig and general ALAO listservs during December. You should also feel free to reach out to the SCAig co-chairs directly with your suggestions at We look forward to hearing from you!

–Josh Zeller, SCAig Co-Chair, Mount St. Joseph University
–Miriam Intrator, SCAig Co-Chair, Ohio University

Support Staff Interest Group News

It is time to begin a search for a new co-chair for the Support Staff Interest Group (SSIG)  . If you are interested or would like to nominate someone else, let the co-chairs know.

We are starting to plan the annual workshop, which will be held virtually in 2023. If you are interested in serving on the planning committee, please contact the co-chairs. Rob is currently gathering topics and workshop ideas. 

Look for a save-the-date for the workshop early in the new year!

-Rob Withers, Co-Chair, Coordinator of Access Services, Miami University
-Peggy Rector, Co-Chair, Assistant to the Director of Libraries, Denison University

Sustainability Interest Group (SUSig) News

The Sustainability Interest Group  is happy to report that our inaugural Swap Table at the in-person ALAO Annual conference this year was a success! Many conference attendees brought swag for the table, and many others shopped the table and brought home new-to-them treasures. The remaining items were donated to Scrap It Up, a creative reuse nonprofit in Cincinnati, and the Habitat for Humanity Re-Store. We hope to make this an annual tradition. Please reach out with your feedback and ideas for next year’s swap table!

On December 2nd at 10AM, please join us for a virtual discussion centered around an essay from the compilation volume, All We can Save: Truth, Courage, and Solutions for the Climate Crisis, edited by Ayana Elizabeth Johnson and Katharine K. Wilkinson. We will be discussing “Wakanda Doesn’t Have Suburbs’: How Movies Like Black Panther Could Help Us Save the Planet “, by Kendra Pierre-Louis, which is freely available online from Time magazine in addition to being published as an essay in the book. You can also find this essay available in audio format through the podcast Temperature Check. Event details are posted to the SUSIG web page.

In other big news, SUSIG is seeking a co-chair to finish out the current term ending in July of 2023. This is a great opportunity to try out a shorter-term service commitment. Creative programming and community-building ideas are welcome. This is your opportunity to make your mark on the sustainability committee!

Please reach out to the current co-chair, Megan Jaskowiak ( for more information or to nominate yourself or someone you know! 

–Megan Jaskowiak, Sustainability Interest Group Co-Chair, Miami University

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People & Library News

Cincinnati State Technical and Community College News

ALAO member co-chairs new Library of Congress SACO funnel

ALAO member Margaret Breidenbaugh, Library Specialist at Cincinnati State Technical and Community College, co-chairs a collaborative cataloging group that began meeting virtually in June 2022. The Gender and Sexuality Funnel Project includes participants from all across North America and meets once a month to discuss current and upcoming projects. People of all experience levels are welcome to join this critical cataloging effort.

The Gender and Sexuality Funnel Project was formed in summer 2022 and falls under the Program for Cooperative Cataloging’s SACO Program (Subject Authority Cooperative Program). This project promotes and facilitates the creation and revision of authority records for Library of Congress controlled vocabularies used in the cataloging of resources about, for, and by transgender, gender diverse, intersex, asexual, and other queer, non-heteronormative or non-heterosexual people. The goal of this project is to improve access to gender- and sexuality-related resources, and to reflect more accurately the terminology used by non-heteronormative and/or non-heterosexual communities.

Additionally, the Gender and Sexuality Funnel Project is interested in the creation and revision of terminology addressing personal relationships, with a focus on subject authority records that perpetuate or normalize cisgender and heterosexual perspectives and relationships as the standard.

Anyone interested in becoming a participant in the funnel project should contact

Margaret Breidenbaugh (she/her/hers)
Library Specialist (Resource Sharing Coordinator and Serials)
Cincinnati State Technical and Community College, Cincinnati, Ohio

Maya Espersen (she/her/hers or they/them/theirs)
Cataloging Coordinator
Aurora Public Library, City of Aurora, Colorado

Adam L. Schiff (he/him/his)
Principal Cataloger
University of Washington Libraries, Seattle, Washington

–Margaret Breidenbaugh, Cincinnati State Technical and Community College

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Funding Opportunities Column

Continuing Education Grant Program-Apply Now! 

Are you presenting a conference paper, attending a workshop, or looking to participate in other professional development opportunities in 2023? The Academic Library Association of Ohio (ALAO) Continuing Education Grant can help you get there!

The Academic Library Association of Ohio (ALAO) Continuing Education Grant is awarded each year to support the cost of participating in professional development opportunities such as conferences, workshops, seminars, etc. which are related to the member’s current position, in pursuit of a professional library degree, or growth of DEI knowledge and leadership. Current ALAO members are eligible to apply for funds to defray the costs of attending any library-related educational opportunity occurring during the calendar year.


  • Applicant must be a current member of ALAO.
  • Applicant may not have received this grant in the previous three award cycles (2022, 2021, 2020).
  • Funded event must occur between January 1 and December 31, 2023.

Application Deadline: February 3, 2023 11:59 p.m.

For more information and to apply online go the ALAO website.

If you have any questions about the Continuing Education Grant, please contact the Professional Development Committee chair, Kristen Peters.

–Kristen Peters, Professional Development Committee Chair, Wittenberg University 

From the ALAO Diversity Committee: ALAO Continuing Education Grant Eligible DEIA Learning Opportunities

Here are a variety of DEIA learning opportunities listed below.  Some are free and others require some sort of fee.   ALAO members have the opportunity to apply for the ALAO Continuing Education Grant. The grant would cover any of the below and other opportunities.   

Upcoming Events

Recent events from ACRL

More from ARCL

Other Opportunities in Ohio

State Library of Ohio continuing education calendar

–Gwen Short, Diversity Committee Chair, The Ohio State University Wooster Campus 

Call for the ALAO Research Grant applications

As an ALAO member you have the opportunity to apply for up to $2,000 in grant funding in support of your research.  The Academic Library Association of Ohio (ALAO) Research Grant is awarded each year to help in funding costs associated with research investigations related to issues in libraries, librarianship, and information science and technology.  

  • Eligibility:  Applicant must be a current member of ALAO.
  • Application Deadline:  January 20, 2023

Apply online. For more information go to the ALAO Research & Publications Committee website.

If you have questions, please contact the ALAO Research & Publications Committee Co-Chairs, Sarah Nagle or Paul C. Campbell. 

–Paul Campbell, Research & Publications Committee Co-Chair, Ohio University
–Sarah Nagle, Research & Publications Committee Co-Chair, Miami University

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President’s Report

Gerald Natal, ALAO President

Annual Conference Update:

This year’s planning committee has been going full steam as we shift gears from the online conferences of the past two years and return to an in-person event. As of this writing the CPC is hard at work attending to all the numerous necessary details, so that attendees can once again network face-to-face, select from several informative and inspiring sessions, and celebrate our colleagues with special awards. There are 27 presentations, 10 posters, and 5 lightning talks scheduled, with what I believe is a good balance of topics across subjects and interest group areas. Both the pre-conference program (“Beyond Being “Good Colleagues:” Implementing and Sustaining Active Allyship Practices Within Academic Libraries”) and conference keynote (“Active Allyship in Action”) [Note: titles have changed from the original working titles posted] will be presented by Alexia Hudson-Ward, Associate Director of Research and Learning at the Massachusetts Institute of Technology Libraries, and Editor-in-Chief of Choice’s Toward Inclusive Excellence (TIE). The TIE blog features musings on equity, diversity, and inclusion of interest to the library community. Please note that the titles of these programs have been changed from the original working titles.

Revive and Reconnect at ALAO! There will be a casual social event after the pre-conference for everyone to gather and get caught up after two-plus years of the Sword of Damocles that is the pandemic. Light refreshments will be served.

For those who may have concerns about COVID as an uninvited guest at the conference, the CPC has thought of safety precautions such as table spacing, options for dining outside the ballroom area, masking, and contact identifiers on name tags.

Conference registration opened on August 15th; if you have not yet registered, there is still time to take advantage of the early bird rate—the deadline is Friday, September 24th. Registration will close on Wednesday, October 19th. If you will be presenting at the conference, please be aware that you are required to register by September 24th. Please visit the conference website for details on registration.

I continue to publicly express my gratitude to the CPC for their efforts towards putting on this event, and I hope to see you all there—long-time members, new members, and colleagues outside the organization alike!

Call for Nominations: Jay Ladd Distinguished Service and Kathryn Venditti Mentoring Awards:

The ALAO Awards Committee is now accepting nominations for the 2022 Jay Ladd Distinguished Service Award and the Kathryn Venditti Mentoring Award.

The Jay Ladd Distinguished Service Award recognizes an individual who has:

  1. been an Academic Library Association of Ohio member for at least 5 years
  2. promoted academic libraries and librarianship on his or her own campus and within the state 
  3. provided sustained leadership in the promotion of Academic Library Association of Ohio, e.g., committee service, interest group chair, position on the Executive Board

Additional information about the Jay Ladd Distinguished Service Award is available at

Please submit nominations for the Jay Ladd Distinguished Service Award through the Jay Ladd Online Nomination Form

The Kathryn Venditti Mentoring Award recognizes an individual who has: 

  1. demonstrated excellence as a mentor to a librarian, library worker, or library science student
  2. a sustained record of effective mentorship, as demonstrated by activities that may include but not be limited to advising, developing, coaching, sponsoring, advocating, guiding, and/or supporting librarians, library workers, or library students

Additional information about the Kathryn Venditti Mentoring Award is available at

Please submit nominations for the Kathryn Venditti Mentoring Award through the Kathryn Venditti Online Nomination Form

NOTE: You may nominate more than one person for each award! Your reasons for nominating your candidate(s) will be especially valuable to the Awards Committee so please be as detailed as possible.

Please submit your nominations by Friday, October 14, 2022.

**** If you nominated someone for either of these awards last year, please consider nominating them again this year. There were several excellent candidates, but unfortunately only one winner for each award—so here is another opportunity to celebrate those individuals who have made a difference to you personally and to the profession. ****

Questions? Please contact Gerald, ALAO President and Awards Committee Chair at

2022 Executive Board Retreat Report:

This year’s Executive Board retreat was held in person on Friday, July 15th. The Board had its last business meeting before new members transitioned on. The first order of business for the new version of the Board was to review the established goals and accomplishments over the past year to check for alignment with the 2019-2024 strategic plan. Goals that remained unaddressed were given new consideration. The current strategic plan is comprised of the following focus areas and objectives:

Focus 1: Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion

Goal: ALAO will exemplify equity, diversity, and inclusion in daily practices, foster those practices in its membership, and position members to become effective advocates on important issues facing the profession.

Focus 2: Expanding our Horizons

Goal: ALAO will position itself as a regional leader for an array of professional development activities, expanding and innovating upon its well-revered suite of programming.

Focus 3: Efficient and Purposeful

Goal: ALAO will build upon partnerships, management best practices, and sound organizational strategy to refine practices that position ALAO as current, efficient, and valuable.

ALAO activities over the past year successfully addressed each of these focus areas. I am particularly proud of the work done by various committees, task forces, and interest groups towards the goal of exemplifying equity, diversity, and inclusion in our daily practices. Examples include the creation and adopting of a new DEIA/Antiracist Statement, finalizing the DEIA toolkit, and the numerous program offerings both at the 2021 conference and those which were offered throughout the year. Some of the ideas generated at the retreat to continue to build on these efforts included:

  • Doing a review of ALAO’s Bylaw’s and Procedures Manual to improve communication within organization and to look for exclusive language
  • Exploring strategic goals for interest groups and encouraging IG collaborations with the Diversity Committee
  • Investigating opportunities for collaboration with other organizations, possibly a future joint conference
  • Developing opportunities for LIS students within ALAO
  • In consideration of ALAO’s annual report to ACRL, looking at ways to better convey the value of libraries to higher education
  • Utilizing ALAO’s newsletter as a forum for issues of concern to Ohio librarians
  • Thoroughly investigating the possibility of hybrid events

Stay tuned to the ALAO Newsletter for progress as these ideas are developed.

Posted in Vol. 40 no. 3 (Sept 2022) | Tagged | Leave a comment

Vice President/President Elect Report

Mark Eddy
ALAO Vice President/President Elect

Greetings ALAO community!

The summer has flown by, and before you know it, we’ll be together again at this year’s ALAO Conference in November!  So excited to see everyone in person this year after our previous two online conferences.  

As the new ALAO Vice President and chair of the 2023 Conference Planning Committee, I’m happy to report that we are filling out the Committee roster and will soon meet to begin discussing possible ALAO 2023 Conference themes and considerations.  I’m very much looking forward to exploring ideas for next year’s conference and planning a great experience for our ALAO members.

All the best for a wonderful Fall season!

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