Kansas City’s Crosby Kemper III nominated to direct IMLS.

American Library Association • November 15, 2019
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Crosby Kemper III to be nominated as next IMLS director

Crosby Kemper III

On November 13, President Donald J. Trump announced his intent to nominate Crosby Kemper III (right), director of the Kansas City (Mo.) Public Library, to be the next director of the Institute of Museum and Library Services. US Sen. Roy Blunt (R-Mo.) recommended Kemper for the position, saying that Kemper “has a deep-seated appreciation for the historical, cultural, and educational value museums and libraries have in local communities.” ALA endorsed Kemper’s nomination, supporting a swift and unanimous confirmation in the Senate. The IMLS director is an executive appointment of four years....

ALA Public Policy and Advocacy Office, Nov. 13; White House, Nov. 13; Sen. Roy Blunt, Nov. 13

AASL: The power of diverse books

Ellen Oh

Phil Morehart writes: “The AASL National Conference in Louisville, Kentucky, began on November 14 with a bang: a rousing performance by the Central High School drumline and dance team. AASL Executive Director Sylvia Norton followed with news that more than 2,300 library professionals had registered for the biannual conference—record-breaking attendance numbers. Keynote speaker Ellen Oh (right), children’s book author and president and cofounder of We Need Diverse Books, kept the momentum going as she described a serious issue—the lack of diversity in children’s books.”...

AL: The Scoop, Nov. 15

Wes Moore will be Midwinter Opening Session speaker

Wes Moore

Wes Moore (right)—American author, social entrepreneur, television producer, and decorated US Army combat veteran—will be the Opening Session speaker at the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia on January 24. Moore’s forthcoming book, Five Days: The Fiery Reckoning of an American City, available spring 2020, is a kaleidoscopic account of five days in the life of a city on the edge after Freddie Gray’s death. Coauthored by Erica Green, the story is told through seven characters on the front lines of the uprising that overtook Baltimore and riveted the world. The session is sponsored by Penguin Random House....

ALA Conference Services, Nov. 13

From the library with love

Seniors and online dating. Illustration by Tom Deja

Anne Ford writes: “Finding love after 50 isn’t always easy. Social norms change, life events like divorce and death leave emotional scars, and it sometimes feels as if the rest of the world has already paired off. Fortunately, there’s the library—not as a place to make romantic connections per se, but as a resource for older adults who want to learn how to navigate the world of online dating. Several public libraries have begun offering programs that help older patrons safely and effectively meet potential partners on the internet. Among those are Westport (Conn.) Public Library, Skokie (Ill.) Public Library, and Billings (Mont.) Public Library.”...

American Libraries Trend, Nov./Dec.
ALA news

Knowledge sharing within a community of practice

This is an excerpt from Libraries that Learn: Keys to Managing Organizational Knowledge, edited by Jennifer A. Bartlett and Spencer Acadia (ALA Editions, 2019)

Diana Dill and Alice Kalinowski write: “Sharing knowledge and information in the workplace significantly affects an organization’s ability to operate effectively and efficiently. Among the various types of workplace learning, tacit knowledge is one of the most difficult to codify and share. Considering that most workers switch jobs and careers multiple times, organizations must think about how tacit knowledge is shared, particularly in cases of employee turnover. Building a community of practice (CoP) can help. CoPs are a vital element of a successful knowledge management strategy and function most effectively when not bound by formal rules and procedures.”...

American Libraries feature, Nov./Dec.

Nontraditional approaches to reaching local leaders

Nebraska City (Neb.) Mayor Bryan Bequette (left) and his wife and daughter celebrate after solving a puzzle in the Morton-James Public Library’s escape room. Photo by Tammy Partsch / Nebraska City News-Press

Carrie Smith writes: “Think election season is the only time libraries can engage communities with elected officials? Think again. Not only have some libraries taken year-round approaches to civic engagement, but some also have broken with tradition to create memorable opportunities for interaction. At Manitowoc (Wis.) Public Library, which hosts a free carnival every August, local representatives such as the mayor and aldermen hop into a dunk tank or serve as targets for the water-balloon catapult. Youth Services Manager Julia Lee says getting local celebrities in the dunk tank helps break down barriers between residents and officials.”...

American Libraries feature, Nov./Dec.

Creating libraries for online college students

ACRL Standards for Distance Learning Library Services

Rebecca Koenig writes: “Students who take online college courses may not realize it, but they are the beneficiaries of a special bill of rights. Its goal? To ensure students can access books and other academic resources, even if they’re nowhere near a campus. ACRL maintains in its ‘access entitlement principle,’ which functions as a sort of library bill of rights, that all students of an institution of higher education ‘are entitled to the library services and resources of that institution,’ including access to a librarian, regardless of location. But serving distance learners is no simple task.”...

EdSurge, Nov. 14
Latest Library Links

ILL makes us all one library

40th anniversary of OCLC Interlibrary Loan

Jenny Rosenfeld writes: “Recently, the interlibrary loan staff at the Loyola Notre Dame Library tracked the locations around the world from which they borrow and lend library materials. The exercise was prompted by a student who, after being shown ILL by staff members Kate Strain and Zach Gahs-Buccheri, asked, ‘What’s the farthest library that you’ve gotten an item from?’ Turns out the answer was the Dalton McCaughey Library at the University of Melbourne in Australia, which is 10,038 miles from Loyola in Baltimore. What a great example of how ILL makes us one big library with endless shelves.”...

OCLC Next, Nov. 14

Seven ways libraries are fighting the opioid crisis

Cover of Dreamland: The True Tale of America’s Opiate Epidemic, by Sam Quinones

Christine Ro writes: “As the death toll from the US opioid epidemic continues to rise, public and private institutions are seeking to help in whatever way they can. Libraries are no exception. As trusted, non-partisan organizations, public libraries have a unique role in spreading information. But some have gone further than sharing information about opioids, to play a more active role in public health. Drawing on the recent report by PLA and OCLC, Public Libraries Respond to the Opioid Crisis with Their Communities, here are seven of the ways libraries are combating the opioid crisis.”...

Book Riot, Nov. 6, 15; Jan. 18, 2017; PLA, Nov. 6

Old books found in walls of flooded Utah library

Two of the vintage books found in the wall of the Sprague branch, Salt Lake City Public Library

Heavy rains destroyed thousands of books when the Sprague branch of the Salt Lake City Public Library flooded early on July 26, 2017. Over two years later, however, renovation crews found vintage books sheltered from the downpour in a unique hiding place—the walls. Branch Manager Heather Hart said construction workers discovered the books as they removed built-in shelves near vents that created a gap where a book could fall if placed precariously on top of other books lined up on the shelf. Most were from the 1930s through the 1950s. Renovation of the building began in October and should be finished by November 2020....

KSL-TV, Salt Lake City, Nov. 15; July 28, 2017
Dewey Decibel podcast

Google and Israel team up to digitize books

The Sefer Me’Am Loez, Livorno, 1823, one of the National Library of Israel books digitized by Google

The National Library of Israel is working with Google to digitize 120,000 books from its extensive collection of Jewish texts and put them online for public use. The collaboration will significantly increase the percentage of Hebrew texts available on Google Books. The library has already begun transporting 50,000 books to Google’s digitization center in Germany using climate-controlled shipping containers. Another 20,000 will be scanned in-house due to their rare or fragile nature. The whole process is expected to take around two years, after which all out-of-copyright Hebrew books will be available online and free to the public....

Washington Post, Nov. 13

AR and VR made easy

The MERGE Headset adapts smartphones into VR viewers with access to games, 360-degree video, and educational content

Carrie Smith writes: “Virtual and augmented reality are two of the fastest-growing areas of technology. While popular games like Pok√©mon Go and Harry Potter: Wizards Unite have introduced augmented reality (AR) to pop culture, the immersive and interactive aspects of virtual and augmented reality can increase engagement with learning as well. Short of creating a full-service virtual reality (VR) lab, libraries can make these technologies available to learners through common devices.”....

American Libraries column, Nov./Dec.

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