People & Library News

Case Western University News

Registration Now Open for 2018 Digital Scholarship Colloquium – The Digital and Democracy

On November 1-2, 2018, Kelvin Smith Library will be hosting “The Digital and Democracy” Digital Scholarship Colloquium bringing together the vanguard of professionals using digital tools to advance democracy. The colloquium will delve into how research can be used for the advocacy of communities experiencing disruption and inequality and in all the points that touch a person’s life, including, healthcare, housing, environment, social justice. The program will feature the country’s top scholarly work and digital tools used to scale the heights of democratic power and influence.

More Information:

Student, academic, and nonprofit rates available! Purchase your tickets today:


Kelvin Smith Library is pleased to announce a new library staff member:

Jose Diaz joined us as Associate Director of Academic Engagement Services.

Previous Position: Head of Humanities and Social Sciences Cohort, The Ohio State University Libraries

–Corina Chang, Case Western Reserve University

Cedarville University News

Centennial Library at Cedarville University would like to announce several changes in positions that occurred this summer.  Joshua Michael has been appointed Dean of Library Services, following Lynn Brock who had served in that role for 43 years.  Lynn is continuing to work in the library in a step-down position as archivist.

Josh had previously served as the library’s Director of Public Services.  The library welcomed Kari Siders to that role in July 2018.  Kari formerly served as the Director of Library Services at Southern State Community College.

In addition, Jessica Elder, Brian Humphreys, and Lauren Cannon joined the library’s staff this summer.  Jessica started in June as a Digital Services Specialist in the library’s Digital Commons.  Brian began as the library’s Staff Cataloger in July.  And finally, Lauren started in August as our Collection Services Technical Assistant.

One final position change: Joe Fox, Instructional Services Librarian, left the library to become the Head of Reference and Instruction at Charleston Southern University and to serve as CSU’s Digital Learning and Web Services Librarian

–Joshua Michael, Cedarville University

OhioNet News

The National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) has awarded a Professional Development Grant to the Greater Midwest Region (GMR) for the upcoming Midwest Chapter of the Medical Library Association Annual Conference 2018. The award will make it possible to bring Jim Beattie and Dr. David Frenz to Cleveland and offer the CE Program, Think Like a Doctor: Biostatstics and Informatics for Medical and Health Professionals. Ohio Health Sciences Library Association (OHSLA) members and the Midwest Chapter of MLA invite attendees to “shake up some old ideas, rattle some new cages, and roll with the good times.”   For more information about the conference and continuing education opportunities head to the conference website.

–Heidi Beke-Harrigan

University of Dayton News

From the collections at Marian Library, University of Dayton Marian blog discusses the Guadalcanal Rosary.  Read more here

-Brother Andrew Kosmowski, SM, University of Dayton 

Wright State University News

WSU Libraries received 1.1 million dollars in State Capital Funding monies for carpet replacement and modernization of furniture and study areas.  Improvements should be complete by May of 2019.

–Sue Polanka, Wright State University

Posted in Vol. 37 no. 3 (Sept 2018) | Tagged | Leave a comment

President’s Report

On April 27, the ALAO board met at OhioNET. At this meeting, board members discussed


Katy Kelly, President

the following items:

  • Meeting ALA Chapter Councilor Meg Delaney (Lucas County Public Library). Interest in a statewide ecosystem movement to share objectives across all libraries. Meg will be sharing ALA-related items to the ALAO listserv and newsletter.
  • Approving a new interest group (IG) proposed by ALAO members Matt Benzing (Miami University) and Ian McCullough (University of Akron). The STEM Interest Group will provide a statewide forum for discussing topics of interest to librarians and library staff who support the STEM field – science, technology, engineering, and medicine/mathematics. This interest group was approved, becoming ALAO’s 11th IG.
  • Appointing Kayla Harris (University of Dayton) to a term as procedures manual coordinator, effective in July.
  • Celebrating incoming elected board members: Katy Mathuews (Ohio University) – Vice President/President-Elect; Angel Mootispaw (Southern State Community College) – Secretary; Melissa Bauer (Kent State University at Stark), Heidi Beke-Harrigan (OhioNET), and Ann Marie Smeraldi (Cleveland State University) – Board Members at Large.
  • Reviewing a website task force report about improving the ALAO website and supporting the ongoing work required to sustain it. A motion to change the webmaster term from two years to three years was voted on and passed.
  • Selecting a board member to host an informational ALAO table at MiALA’s conference. Conversations continue about a joint conference with MiALA, Michigan’s academic library organization.
  • Limiting board roles to one per member in order to generate more involvement from the membership and avoid work overload. Verbiage was voted on and approved for the procedures manual.
  • Changing the Support Staff Presenter Grant to a Support Staff Conference Grant, opening up the grant to more applicants. An online vote took place, and the changes were approved.
  • Planning a free ALAO networking reception at ACRL 2019 in Cleveland for ALAO members. The reception will be 5 to 7 p.m. Thursday, April 11, at Zocalo Tequileria and will feature appetizers, a taco bar, and desserts. An online vote for a budget took place, and this event was approved.
  • Approving funds to support scholarships for ACRL 2019 registration costs. ALAO will award up to five grants to ALAO members and up to two grants to ALAO student members. Grant applications will be accepted beginning in the fall and reviewed by the Professional Development Committee.
  • Hosting a joint professional development event with Ohio Educational Library Media Association (OELMA).
  • Selecting Nationwide Hotel and Conference Center for the 2020 annual conference.

The next ALAO board meeting will take place at the board retreat on July 20, 2018, at OhioNET. At the board retreat, we transition from the 2017-18 board to the 2018-19 board.

-Katy Kelly, President, University of Dayton

Posted in Vol. 37 no. 2 (June 2018) | Tagged | Leave a comment

Election Results

ALAO election results are in!  We welcome the following newly elected members to the Board:

Vice President/President-Elect
Katy MathuewsO15513 Kristy McDonald

Angel Mootispaw

Membership Chair
Maureen Barry

Board Member-at-Large
Melissa Bauer
Heidi Beke-Harrigan
Ann Marie Smeraldi

I want to take a moment to thank each of these ALAO members for their willingness to serve on the Executive Board, as our organization is strengthened by having new people step into leadership roles. 

I also extend my thanks to the other members of the Nominating Committee:

Katy Mathuews
Brianna Miller
Evan Meszaros

And many thanks go to Derek Zoladz and Ryan Scott from the ALAO Web Team for their excellent work managing the logistics of the election as well.

For members who missed running for elected office this year, but would still like to serve and engage with ALAO, there are many opportunities to get involved. Please take a look at some of these options:

ALAO volunteer form:

Interest Groups:


-Krista McDonald, Past President, Miami University Hamilton

Posted in Vol. 37 no. 2 (June 2018) | Tagged | Leave a comment

Annual Conference Update

Three updates from the Conference Planning Committee:

    • The committee thanks everyone for the great presentation and poster proposals that were submitted.  All proposers should have been notified of their status. If you have a question about your status, please e-mail
    • Registration for the pre-conference and conference will open on June 25. Rates are being finalized, but will be announced at that time.
    • We hope to have information on reserving hotel rooms available on the conference website by the end of the month.

-Eric Resnis, Vice President/President Elect, Miami University

Posted in Vol. 37 no. 2 (June 2018) | Tagged | Leave a comment

2018 Diversity Scholarship Recipient Malgorzata Rehfus

The Diversity Committee is pleased to announce that Malgorzata Rehfus has been Malgorzata Rehfus - 2018 Diversity Schoarlship Recipientselected as the 2018 Diversity Scholarship Recipient.

“I strongly believe that advocating for diversity and inclusion is the social responsibility of the LIS profession. It is our professional and moral obligation to advocate for human rights,” Ms. Rehfus states.

Recently, Ms. Rehfus has participated as an associate in IFLA’s New Professional Special Interests Group and has submitted proposals supporting LGBTQ rights in Malaysia, the site of this year’s IFLA World Congress, and has supported outreach in Liberia and an annual scholarship for a new professional to attend the World Congress.

Ms. Rehfus currently is pursuing a Master of Library and Information Science at Kent State University and has professional interests in organization of information and international librarianship, and plans to work to combine the two in a meaningful way. Ms. Rehfus indicates that as a library and information science professional, one of her goals is to reduce barriers to information, whether that means working with metadata, advocating for net neutrality, or locating a reliable source in a minority language. She plans to stay engaged locally and to contribute to the LIS profession at large, believing that continuous change is necessary in order to make a difference.

-Bree Miller, ALAO Diversity Committee Co-Chair, Columbus State Community College

Posted in Vol. 37 no. 2 (June 2018) | Tagged | Leave a comment

2018 Research Grant Recipient Mandy Shannon

The ALAO Research and Publications Committee is pleased to announce that Mandy 19212 Jim Hannah, Mandy Shannon in the Dunbar Library 7-18-17Shannon of Wright State University Libraries is the winner of the 2018 Research grant. This funding will support her proposed research project regarding how individual research assistance from a librarian affects overall student success.

Congratulations, Mandy!

-Heidi Gauder, Co-Chair, Research and Publications Committee, University of Dayton
-Eboni Johnson, Co-Chair, Research and Publications Committee, Oberlin College

Posted in Vol. 37 no. 2 (June 2018) | Tagged , | Leave a comment

ALAO Member Spotlight: Karmen Beecroft

Karmen is the Digital Projects Librarian in the Preservation & Digital Initiatives Department at the Ohio University Libraries. Read on to learn more about her work and personal interests from sharing cultural heritage materials to exploring our solar system and beyond!

Member Spotlight Beecroft (1)What is your role(s) in academic libraries?

As a Digital Projects Librarian, I oversee the digitization of rare books, manuscripts, photographs, and other materials held by the Mahn Center for Archives and Special Collections. I then describe the resulting images using established metadata standards and upload to the Libraries’ digital content platform, CONTENTdm. Together, I and my colleague Janet Carleton supervise the work of 4-8 student workers producing tens of thousands of files a year.

What do you like most about academic library work?

I love that my job is to share cultural heritage materials with people who might not be able to visit the reading room in person. Part of my charge is doing outreach to promote our digital collections and I have lots of fun researching collections and designing activities and exhibits to encourage folks to come to their own conclusions about the content. The Subjective Stitch workshop was especially enjoyable to plan; I really wanted to take a historical collection and tease out enduring themes that still had relevance in the lives of participants, so we combined a pop-up exhibit with discussion sections where participants were invited to subjectively interpret the objects through the lens of their own experiences.

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

I’m currently working on a collection of materials relating to the Athens Asylum, later know as the Athens Mental Health Center. It has been very illuminating seeing the ephemeral traces of everyday life left by staff and patients over the past 150 years and gradually filling in the story of the institution through time.

Tell us a fun fact about yourself.

I’m obsessed with the Voyager space probes, which are currently cruising through the liminal zone at the edge of the solar system on their way to interstellar space.

What do you love about being an ALAO member?

ALAO is just the right size—not so large as to be cold and intimidating but not so small that you feel like you’re in an echo chamber. I enjoy getting the perspectives of colleagues across Ohio who are perhaps dealing with similar issues as my own and staying up-to-date on their projects and accomplishments.

-Katy Mathuews, Membership Chair, Ohio University

Posted in Vol. 37 no. 2 (June 2018) | Tagged | Leave a comment