Lita Town Meeting 2007 Report

Lita Town Meeting 2007 Report:
Including Results from the Group Snow Card Activity.

Big huge thanks to Michelle Boule for compiling the large stack of papers and cards into something that resembled an organized mass.

LITA Town Meeting

What does success look like for LITA and it’s members? Mark Beatty, LITA Vice President, gave a quick environmental scan. Then the LITA members at the Town Meeting engaged in small group brain storming and clustered their ideas into categories. Attending members were asked to generate their ideas as a reaction to Mark’s introductory scan, their own current thoughts on the state of libraries and LITA, the LITA strategic plan and a small set of questions about LITA. Details on the group activity are below along with the results.

One of the easiest and interestingly the most significant remarks that could be made about the town meeting is that people had fun. The quite full 80 plus member meeting consisted of the full range of LITA members in length of membership. All ideas were equal. All attendees jumped in and participated equally. All worked to contribute to LITA while exchanging ideas, information, knowledge, opinions and friendship in an open and welcoming social setting. As the results below show the Town Meeting, and it’s fun, in many ways embodied what the attendees said they want LITA to be.

A 25 minute podcast of an interview with Mark Beatty and Michelle Boule after the Town Meeting can be heard at:

Setting the Environment

The initial theme was ‘Delivering Value to the Membership”

We wanted to gather ideas about LITA including:
What are the indicators of success
What defines value to the membership
What environments do we need to pay attention to
To define it another way. Let’s assume that we are mostly in the business of education of one sort or another and we want to deliver true value to our members. Then what does success look like for LITA and it’s members?
What value would members be getting?
What would motivate members to volunteer?
What would keep volunteers?
What would our menu of services look like?

We want to consider any new ideas in the light of the LITA Strategic Plan:

The LITA Vision is:
As the center of expertise about information technology, the Library and Information Technology Association (LITA) leads in exploring and enabling new technologies to empower libraries. LITA members use the promise of technology to deliver dynamic library collections and services.

The LITA Mission Statement is:
LITA educates, serves and reaches out to its members, other ALA members and divisions, and the entire library and information community through its publications, programs and other activities designed to promote, develop, and aid in the implementation of library and information technology.

Here are some of the current environment variables that are being talked about for communities and libraries.

Continue reading Lita Town Meeting 2007 Report

ALA Election Results

Election Results

Congratulations to the following members who have been elected to the LITA Board of Directors:

  • Vice President/President-Elect: Andrew Pace
  • Directors at Large (3 year terms): Mary Alice Ball and Susan Logue
  • Director at Large (1 year term): Karen Starr
  • LITA Councilor: Colby Riggs

Elected ALA Councilors who are LITA members:

  • Allene Hayes
  • Janet Swan Hill
  • Bernard Margolis
  • Catherine L. Murray-Rust

LITA Podcasts Presents: the LITA Candidates

LITA podcast


Welcome to the LITA Podcasts Election Series. For your listening pleasure, every few days a new group of LITA Officer hopefuls will be presented. Tune in here on LITABlog, via any RSS aggregator using our normal RSS feed, or now tune in via iTunes by clicking here or searching for LITA in the podcast area of the iTunes store.

Each individual, regardless of office, was asked to answer the following questions:

  • Describe your professional experience as it related to holding LITA office.
  • What do you bring to this position?
  • How do you envision LITA being a technology leader in ALA?

Each candidate was interviewed by David Free who knows a few things about podcasting and who has been instrumental in making this a success.

The schedule for the release of each group of candidates is as follows:

March 15 – Vice President/President Elect
Diane Bisom and Andrew Pace

March 19 – ALA Councilors
Kay Flowers (did not respond to interview request) and Colby Riggs

March 21-22 – Director at Large 3 year term
Mary Alice Ball
Susan Logue
Dale Poulter
Barbara Spivey

Director at Large 1 year term
Both candidates declined to be interviewed.
Maribeth Manhoff and Karen Starr

For more information about the LITA Elections, see the LITA Elections 2007 page, as well as the ALA Elections page.

Meet the LITA Candidates for the 2007 Elections

LITA podcastCan’t get enough of the podcasts from Midwinter? Want to know more about the folks running for various positions on the LITA Board? Podcasts of interviews with all the candidates for the LITA election will be available beginning March 15 when the ALA polls open. The podcasts will be posted here on the LITA Blog and available from the LITA Web site’s election page. Interviews are currently being recorded for 2 candidates for Vice-President/President-Elect, 2 candidates for Councilor, 8 candidates for directors-at-large. Set up feeds to your RSS aggregator or iPod to listen in to what our slate of candidates have to say!

LITA Sponsors Michelle Boule in the ALA Emerging Leaders Program

The LITA Board is pleased to announce its sponsorship of Michelle Boule to the ALA Emerging Leaders Program. LITA had a number of excellent applicants. LITA has a very bright future with such bright, rising stars.

ALA has selected 100 participants for the 2007 program. Each participant will attend leadership workshops at both ALA conferences in 2007. In addition, they will participate in an online working group between the conferences as they continue to grow as leaders.

Each participant is expected to provide 2 years of service to ALA or one of its units. The LITA Board wishes to ensure that our Emerging Leader has a meaningful leadership experience within LITA. Michelle will work closely with the LITA President and President-elect, working most closely with the President-elect for continuity, on aspects of the LITA strategic plan implementation.

Michelle Boule is indeed a LITA emerging leader. She was instrumental in starting the LITA Blog and the LITA Wiki. She currently co-chairs the BIGWIG Interest Group which focuses on Web services applications. Michelle actively participated in the ALA Library 2.0 Bootcamp. The LITA Board values Michelle’s expertise and enthusiasm and willingness to take action. Michelle has stated that she has decided to attach her star to LITA and her enthusiasm is contagious to other librarians. Michelle is a Reference Librarian at the University of Houston where she has been a member of the Strategic Directions Steering Committee and initiated staff technology training. She also participated as a program planner for two unique online learning communities–HigherEd Blog Con 2006 and “Five Weeks to a Social Library” online learning community for librarians. She is a wonderful example of what an emerging leader for ALA and LITA should be.

LITA to Sponsor an Emerging Leader

ALA President Leslie Burger has announced a new Emerging Leaders Program to prepare 100 librarians new to the profession in leadership ( LITA is very pleased to announced that it has agreed to sponsor one individual in this Program. Are you:

–a current LITA member?
–no older than 35 OR have no more than five years of post-MLS library experience?
–able to meet the obligations that Leslie outlined on the website?
–interested in the Program?

If so, please submit the following items to LITA President Bonnie Postlethwaite ( by September 15:

–A list of LITA or ALA activities (no more than five, if possible)
–Participation in state, regional or other library associations (no more than five)
–Three ways you have demonstrated leadership potential (500 words or less)

LITA sponsorship is not required for application, but it will give you preference in the selection process.

A memo from Leslie Burger clarifies the selection process as follows:

“My goal is to identify 100 Emerging Leaders who have demonstrated leadership potential, who represent the broad spectrum of diversity within our Association and profession — including ethnicity, gender, geographical location, type and size of library, professional focus area, and ALA, divisional, Chapter, or round table affiliation — and who have indicated a willingness to apply their Emerging Leaders training to a two-year term of service on a division, Chapter, round table or ALA committee, task force, working group or project team. …

Although this is a competitive application process, each division, Chapter and round table that chooses to support applicants will be guaranteed that at least one of your nominees will be accepted into the program. If your unit would like to recommend and support more than one applicant, please rank them in priority order. The selection committee will make every effort to honor your selections while still maintaining diversity and balance in the final group of Emerging Leaders.”

The individual selected for LITA support will be notified by September 22nd. Nominees must submit the full application to Leslie Burger( by the September 30th deadline.

Bonnie Postlethwaite
LITA President

In Memory

In this LITA’s 40th anniversary year, we have lost two icons to the profession who also served in LITA’s formative years as president. Henriette Avram passed away on April 22 and Frederick G. Kilgour passed on July 31. It’s hard to imagine today’s libraries without the work of these two giants of our profession. Their work was intertwined. Without the communications format of the MARC record championed by Henriette Avram, shared cataloging and OCLC, which Fred Kilgour founded, would not have been possible.

Much has been written about both of these people. However, it is fitting for LITA to recognize their special contribution to our organization which was still called the Information Science and Automation Division (ISAD) in their days. Fred Kilgour served as the eighth president for two terms in 1973-1975. Henriette Avram followed as president from 1975-1976. According to Stephen R. Salmon’s article, “LITA’s First Twenty-Five Years: A Brief History”, Kilgour, then at Yale Medical Library, was part of the group that actively worked to create the division collecting signatures for the required petition and then serving on the organizing committee. He immediately was appointed as the first editor of the new division’s journal, Journal of Library Automation (JOLA). Meanwhile, in January 1968, the Board approved the creation of 10 regional institutes “to tell the Project MARC story in technical detail to processing personnel throughout the country.” Henriette Avram was part of the team of presenters from LC and other pioneers in the implementation of MARC and the institutes attracted thousands of librarians. The regional institutes were continued through 1979 with several being offered each year. At Avram’s instigation, ALA created a committee, now known as MARBI, to review changes to the MARC format. The first meeting was held in January 1968 and had representations from ISAD, RTSD, and RSD. MARBI continues today to provide proper review of MARC changes.

If some of these things sound familiar, we have people like Kilgour and Avram to thank for setting into motion lasting structures in LITA. We still publish a journal, now called Information Technology & Libraries (ITAL); we still hold Regional Institutes on timely topics; we still are part of the structure of the MARBI committee. These are just a few examples, I’m sure, of the mark both of LITA icons made on the organization.

LITA 2.0

This past spring, I was fortunate to participate in the ALA Library2.0 Bootcamp sponsored by ALA. This was a wonderful learning opportunity and testing ground for how ALA could use Web2.0 concepts and tools to incorporate into the member experience of ALA. The group of people were about 50% ALA staff and 50% members. ALA retained The Otter Group and Kathleen Gilroy to facilitate the process. Michael Stevens and Jenny Levine served as the faculty. The group was divided into 10 teams, each with their own topic. I served on Team 9 with our own LITA Blog Guru, Michelle Boule, Mary Taylor (LITA Executive Director), and Sherry Vanyek, (ALA Director of ITTS). Our topic was Integrating Library Services Into Search Engines. We used our topic as the first to appear on the new LITA Wiki which can be found at .

There is no concensus on the use of the Library 2.0 name. The 2.0 nomenclature aside, I am excited by the concepts behind Library 2.0:

• Flexibility and nimbleness to enable rapid change
• Commitment to continuous improvement based on assessment
• Interactive and collaborative services driven by users needs
• Taking the library to the users AND making the library a destination
• Embracing radical trust
• Use of new technological tools to accomplish the above

Team 2 of the ALA Library 2.0 Bootcamp dealt with the topic of how associations can use Web 2.0 concepts and tools, Association 2.0. You can read their conclusions at . I challenge LITA members to help create a blueprint for LITA2.0 embracing the concepts above of making LITA more interactive and responsive to its members. Comment here on the blog or add your ideas to the LITA Wiki. With your input, we can take LITA to the next level.

First Days on the Job as LITA President

Bonnie Postlethwaite

The ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans was an awe-inspiring experience on many levels. I was so overwhelmed by the gratitude of the New Orleaneans who could not have done a better job of making the 16,000+ visitors comfortable. New Orleans has a huge struggle ahead as the recovery has only begun. ALA set the example to the world that we believe in the city and want to help as much as possible in its recovery. Librarians not only helped economically by coming to the city, but many donated time and energy through volunteer service. I am proud to have attended the conference and even prouder that ALA chose to keep the conference in New Orleans.

I began my LITA Presidency at the end of the day on Tuesday, June 27. I want to thank Pat Mullin for all he did in the past year as President. He has been a great mentor to me and accomplished a great deal to move LITA forward. The LITA Board recognized the many years of hard work that our outgoing Past-President, Colby Riggs, has contributed. I will personally miss her insight and good humor at the Board and Executive Committee meetings. I welcome Mark Beatty, our new Vice President. Mark has served 3 years on the Board and the past year as the Director-at-Large on the Executive Committee. Mark has wonderful ideas and I look forward to working with him. Mark and I are committed to opening up lines of communication with LITA members on the LITA blog. I hope we can entice you all to dialogue in this space and via other means. We want to hear from you.

One of the awe-inspiring events of the conference was a breakfast with former LITA presidents done in recognition of LITA’s 40th anniversary. Sixteen former presidents attended and shared stories and memories. In particular, the group remembered all of the contributions to the profession of Henriette Avram who recently passed away. What a pioneer!!! She alone was ample inspiration to us all, but it was truly a humbling experience as incoming president to be in the presence of so many LITA leaders.

Our Sunday Afternoon with LITA was a smashing success starting with a stimulating Top Tech Trends. The reception that followed celebrated LITA’s 40 years with cake and champagne. LITA awards and scholarships were presented to an exemplary group of contributors. Finally, the President’s Program, Internet Culture: What Do We Know about User Behavior?, engaged the huge audience regarding Internet usage. Thanks to Pat for putting together this fabulous program.

I want to extend my enormous appreciation to the LITA staff, Mary Taylor and Val Edmonds. They have managed to keep things running smoothly while they try to fill Rob Carlson’s position. I hope we can announce the filling of this important vacancy soon to assist with all of our programming.

I look forward to the next 12 months as LITA President. Watch this spot on the blog for frequent communications from me. I hope to hear from you as well. Afterall, LITA is all about networking.