I’m sharing with you a document on small division collaboration (LITA, LLAMA, and ALCTS) which I encourage you all to read carefully. I am also interested in any thoughts, questions, feelings, or ideas that you may have.
The context for this document is that, as you may know, LITA, ALA, and membership associations generally have been experiencing declining membership for some time. The resulting budgetary deficits make it difficult for us to sustain services. The Presidents, Vice Presidents, and Executive Directors of LITA, LLAMA, and ALCTS have been discussing our shared challenges in this arena, and imagining how we could reduce duplication and build on our strengths were we to work together, whether through formal collaboration or potentially merging our divisions.
All three division Boards discussed this document on Monday afternoon at Midwinter, and we decided it is worth considering further. The division leadership, myself included, will be regrouping on February 28 to update each other on our Board meetings and discuss next steps.
I want to emphasize that nothing has been decided; this document is only the beginning of a discussion. We will be planning a process and timeline for gathering information and other next steps. This will include an open and public dialogue with you, our members, with numerous opportunities for you to participate across a variety of channels.
I expect you (like us!) have a range of feelings on this topic. I know for a fact that any direction we take will be substantially improved by your creativity and insight. You are welcome to discuss this topic here on LITAblog, as well as privately with me, Executive Director Jenny Levine, or President-Elect Bohyun Kim. You may also submit an anonymous question for the Board as a whole; responses will be collated and addressed here on LITAblog. I look forward to your responses.
On behalf of the LITA Board,