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ALA NH Chapter Councilor’s Report from Midwinter in Atlanta

Amy Lappin

ALA NH Chapter Councilor

Report from ALA Midwinter, Atlanta, GA

Here are the highlights and action items from my time at ALA Midwinter in Atlanta from January 20-24, 2017. As always, I’ve tried to give you the highlights, but I’m happy to discuss any of these topics or ALA any time.

I should also note that at MW, I was elected by Council to serve on the search committee for the next ALA Executive Director. I am looking forward to this process and welcome input from NHLA members. It is exciting for NH and small libraries to have a seat at the table.

In addition to the regular work of Council, a Town Hall meeting was held directly after Council I on Sunday morning regarding association values in uncertain times. It was facilitated by Cheryl Gorman from the Harwood Institute.

Conversation revolved around these questions:As we think about the member dialogue sparked by the recent election, what is our intention? What’s the deeper purpose (the big “why”) that is really worthy of our best collective effort?

  • What do we know so far and what do we still need to learn about?

  • Are there specific areas where our core values are being challenged that need more attention than others?

  • As you reflect on the member discussion since the election, what’s taking shape? What are you hearing underneath the variety of opinions being expressed? What’s in the “center of the table”?

  • If there was one thing that hasn’t yet been said in order to reach a deeper level of understanding and clarity, what would that be?

The session was well attended and live-streamed on the American Libraries’ Facebook page. The video of the session remains on the page.

Council I, Sunday, January 22, 2017

Council I was kept short to allow for the Town Hall meeting described above.

At Council I, a vote was taken to bestow an ALA Honorary Membership to Ann Symons.

Voted yes. Unanimous vote.

Executive Board actions taken since Annual presented by Keith Michael Fiels, ALA Executive Director.

Council II, Monday, January 23, 2017

A motion was presented to amend 2015 ALA Strategic Directions by adding a 4th Strategic Direction: Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, CD#35-35.2 & CD#37 (The original three were Advocacy, Information Policy, and Professional and Leadership Development).

The motion passed. I voted yes.

Policy Monitoring Committee report was presented by ALA Councilor Christopher J. Corrigan, Chair

ALA CD#17. Council was asked to vote on changes to the policy manual based on passed votes of Council.

I voted yes to each.

A passionate debate occurred over a resolution brought to Council by the ALA Executive Board in preparation for the upcoming search for an Executive Director. Resolution on the Education Requirements for Future ALA Executive Director, ALA CD#14-14.1_ACT.

I voted yes. In the end, I decided I was ok with strongly preferred. The vote was extremely close (78-75). If you are interested in the two sides of the topic, Steven Bell wrote an article, ALA Goes Looking for a Leader, Library Journal, January 26, 2017 addressing the issue.

Resolution Establishing Family/Caregiver Status as a Protected Class in ALA Volunteer Work, CD#31 passed and will go to Policy Monitoring Committee.

I voted yes.

Other reports of interest:

Constitution and Bylaws Committee Report

Freedom to Read Foundation Report CD#22


Council III, Tuesday, January 24

Memorials and tributes (with links to the resolutions)


McRee (Mac) Elrod, M-#1

Robert (Bob) Alan, M-#2

Valerie Bross, M-#3

Sandra (Sandy) Friedman Dolnick, M-#4

Nettie B. Taylor, M-#5

Ruth Gordon, M-#6

John Shuler, M-#7

Karen Avenick, M-#8

Warren (Jim) Haas


Emily Sheketoff, T-#1

Action Items:

COL/IFC Joint Working Group on the Resolution on Gun Violence Affecting Libraries, Library Workers, and Library Patrons, CD#42, 42.1, & 45

Resolved, that the American Library Association (ALA) on behalf of its members:

  1. Grieves with the families and friends of all those victimized by gun violence;
  2. Calls upon the Directors of the National Institutes of Health (NIH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to:
  • publicly announce that their respective agencies will resume funding non-political, comprehensive research on causes and effects of gun violence in the United States; ensure that such research, and any uses to which such research is put by the NIH or CDC, does not violate the letter of the “Dickey Amendment” prohibition on the advocacy or promotion of gun control; and
  • sponsor robust research for the dual purposes of “preventing firearm injuries” and identifying “ways to prevent firearm deaths… without encroaching on the rights of legitimate gun owners”
  1. Encourages libraries to collaborate with appropriate local agencies to provide training and education

for library workers related to the presence of guns in the workplace; and

  1. Encourages libraries to support community discussions around all aspects of guns in society.

This resolution was a result of a working group formed after Annual 2016. The original resolution (CD#45) can be found here. The resolution above was brought to Council by the working group for substitution of CD#45.

1st vote… to substitute/replace… Motion passed. Voted yes.

2nd vote… on replacement as it stands? Passed. Voted yes.

Committee on Legislation CD#20

Deaf Culture Digital Library Working Group postponed indefinitely. Needs to be more developed before ALA takes action. Council voted on the motion to postpone, CD#46.

Voted yes. Motion passed.

Intellectual Freedom Committee

CD#19-19.10_act  Resolution on Access to Accurate Information as Amended. The full resolution can be found on the last page of the Intellectual Freedom Committee Report (link above). The Resolved clauses read as follows:

Resolved, the American Library Association reaffirms the resolution on Disinformation, Media Manipulation and the Destruction of Public Information approved in 2005 (2005 ALA CD #64).

Resolved, ALA opposes the use of disinformation, media manipulation, and other tactics that undermine access to accurate information;

Resolved, ALA encourages its members to help raise public consciousness regarding the many ways in which disinformation and media manipulation are used to mislead the public;

Resolved, ALA urges librarians and library workers to actively seek and provide sources of accurate information that counter disinformation;

Resolved, ALA supports the critical role public, academic, and school librarians in teaching information literacy skills that enable users to locate information and evaluate its accuracy;

Resolved, ALA will pursue partnerships with news organizations, journalism institutions, and other allies to promote access to accurate information and defend the role of journalists and the free press in American society.

Passed. Voted yes.

FY 2018 Programmatic Priorities, CD#13.1_act

Strategic Directions for framing budget direction. The priorities for FY 2018 include:


Equitable Access to Information and Library Services

Education and Lifelong Learning

Intellectual Freedom

Advocacy for Libraries and the Profession


Organizational Excellence

Transforming Libraries

Voted yes. Motion passed.

Report from Conference Accessibility Task Force, CD#37_inf

Working on a survey going out in mid February re: people’s experiences with accessibility at conferences.

ALA Annual will be in Chicago from June 22-27, 2017.
Respectfully submitted,
Amy Lappin

NHLA Chapter Councilor, 2016-18

Member, ALA Council Orientation Committee, 2015-2017

Member, ALA Executive Board Search Committee, 2017-18

Deputy Director

Lebanon Public Libraries

Lebanon, NH


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