Articles

Despite welcoming quiet in her library, Julie Yockey found she couldn't stay silent when the governor's recommendations for next year's budget came out earlier this month. On Tuesday, Yockey, director of the Carthage (MO) Public Library, was chosen as the one representative to meet with the governor from the librarians who flocked to the Capitol on Library Advocacy Day. Librarians came from all over the state came to plead with their elected officials to restore their funding.In the 2015 budget year, public libraries received 50 cents per capita. The current budget has scaled back funding to 13 cents per capita, which the governor plans to continue into the next budget year. From the $9 billion in the state's general revenue fund, all Yockey wants for public libraries, she said, is a return to their 2015 slice of $7.3 million, instead of their current $3.5 million sliver. "People use the public library to get online instead of in line while trying to find a job," her letter reads, taking a cue from Greitens' State of the State address. "We support people who are trying to build or rebuild their lives." READ MORE
In his eulogy to the American volunteers fallen for France during World War I, the poet Alan Seeger wrote: “They brought fresh hearts … to that high mission. Yet sought they neither recompense nor praise.” As the centenary of the United States’ entry into World War I approaches, those who didn’t fall but also brought “their fresh hearts” to France deserve a remembrance of their own. Many American women librarians volunteered for “that high mission” of organizing library services in the war-devastated regions of northern France. Their work has had a lasting impact on the public library system in France.Anne Tracy Morgan, daughter of financier John Pierpont (J. P.) Morgan, was the mind and money behind the volunteer mobilization. Morgan was a frequent visitor to France. When war broke out, she threw herself into relief work for the Allied cause. In 1917, she created the American Committee for Devastated France, better known as CARD (Comité Américain pour les Régions Dévastées), and set up her relief facilities in the war-shattered Aisne department of Picardie, north of Paris. Applications to volunteer in France poured in. Applicants were required to speak French, hold a driver’s license, and be financially self-sufficient, which included providing their own CARD horizon-blue military uniform (the color of French uniforms). The small group of volunteers eventually grew to 350. They set up headquarters in the ruins of a 17th century château in the village of Blérancourt. Wooden barracks served as dispensaries, warehouses, stores, schools, and libraries. When the fighting ended in November 1918, the devastation was such that CARD was now in charge of reconstructing the livelihoods of 60,000 people in 130 villages. That mission would last six years. READ MORE
The living voice is that which sways the soul,” wrote Roman author Pliny the Younger in the 1st century CE. Indeed, the audible voice is an essential component of an interview. Programs such as StoryCorps and other oral history programs preserve the voices that convey the memories of participants in important events of earlier times.Libraries have been collecting audio and video for many years, and audiovisual librarians well know the value of voices and moving images. Within the profession itself, Technical Services Manager A. Arro Smith—author of Capturing Our Stories: An Oral History of Librarianship in Transition (ALA Editions, 2017)—has been chronicling the oral histories of retired librarians on a supplementary website. Smith is working with former American Library Association (ALA) President Loriene Roy, in partnership with the University of Texas at Austin School of Information, on this repository.Many audiovisual collections are considered at risk. Years of data could be lost through deterioration of the original media unless it can be transferred to more durable digital formats. Libraries and other cultural institutions are rediscovering the value of these collections and are taking steps to preserve the sounds and images they contain. READ MORE
Book lovers in the New York City area—don’t miss BookCon, June 3, 2017, the “ultimate celebration of books” where storytelling and pop culture collide. And librarians interested in attending BookExpo, register before April 30 to get this special discount.  http://www.bookexpoamerica.com/ READ MORE
James Madison once wrote that a “popular Government, without popular information, or the means of acquiring it, is but a Prologue to a Farce or a Tragedy; or, perhaps, both. Knowledge will forever govern ignorance: And a people who mean to be their own Governors, must arm themselves with the power which knowledge gives."Madison, who is recognized as the “Father of the Constitution” and a staunch advocate of open government, is honored each year on his birthday, March 16, which is celebrated as National Freedom of Information Day. READ MORE
Most visits between Deborah Hunter and her daughter end with Hunter at home, in tears.  Her daughter was diagnosed with schizophrenia shortly after starting college. The disease has progressed to a point where Hunter’s daughter doesn’t believe her mother is really her mother.Instead, in her mind, they are simply friends.  “I had to learn how to compartmentalize our relationship,” she said. “I had a very clear vision that I wasn’t a friend, I was her mother, so that transition was hard. It’s still hard.”As much pain as her daughter’s mental illness has caused Hunter, it also serves as the driver for her work.  Hunter is a case manager with Family and Children’s Services’ homeless outreach team and works within the Tulsa City-County Library System. READ MORE
A lot of the people visiting the nine locations of the Lake County (IN) Public Library System are still reading the print editions of newspapers and magazines, and walking out with borrowed books tucked under their arms, according to Carolyn Strickland, who serves as assistant director of public library services.But Strickland, as well as other library officials across the Region, has seen the role of libraries broaden into areas that were not even imaginable when she began her career 30 years ago.  "We're trying to have the resources and services that our population wants or needs," she said.Among the more innovative efforts is the Spark Labs program at the LaPorte County Public Library, which is about as far as you can get from traditional image of a group of silent patrons being shushed by an angry librarian.The Spark Labs, which are offered at each of the seven locations and in mobile form, provide hands-on learning experiences in the tradition of shop classes or vocational education programs, according to Library Director Fonda Owens. READ MORE
Tabatha “Tabby” Farney, director of web services and emerging technologies and associate professor, is a treasured resource at the University of Colorado in Colorado Springs.She so impressed one colleague that when he nominated her for a 2016 I Love My Librarian Award, Donald Klingner called her “the best librarian I’ve worked with in my 42 years as a tenured or tenure-earning professor of public administration at public universities in Indiana, Florida and Colorado since 1974.”  High praise, but definitely earned, as her record as research librarian to the UCCS School of Public Affairs over a six-year period attests.During that time, she expanded access of scholarly information for faculty, students and staff. Her impact on the MPA (Master of Public Administration) helped it achieve a full seven-year accreditation from an international accrediting body, NASPAA (the Network of Schools of Public Policy, Affairs and Administration).  “I know that her support services have contributed directly and in measurable ways to transforming lives – our own, our students, and in the communities we serve,” Klingner said. READ MORE
From local practices to national policies, there is growing acknowledgement that becoming an adult is a process, not just a date on a calendar. This concept is rooted in research that identifies a unique stage of physiological and social development between the ages of 18 and 25, known as Emerging Adulthood.1 It also reflects the challenges of a post-recession reality in which young adults often delay leaving their parents’ homes and health insurance policies.Libraries have responded to the concept of Emerging Adulthood in two major ways. First is the growth of educational programming that builds individual capacity, commonly referred to as “adulting.” A necessary step towards growing up is learning how to survive independently and, with a plethora of resources and deep connections to the community, libraries are well positioned to support that step. READ MORE
The Clear Lake City-County Freeman Branch Library is named after NASA astronaut Theodore Cordy “Ted” Freeman, who died after his T-38 jet crashed in 1964.  The name reflects Clear Lake City’s status as home to the NASA Johnson Space Center.But the library, which belongs to the Harris County Public Library system in the Houston area, shows that NASA doesn’t corner the market on innovation.  That innovative spirit is palpable at the library’s Jocelyn H. Lee Innovation Lab, where the library connects in meaningful ways with the community it serves. READ MORE

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