It’s that time of year again: ALA Elections! Any ALA member should get their ballot information this week, between March 17 and 19. If you’re interested in the direction the association takes, and an ALA member, please remember to vote. If you’re also a LITA member, please keep reading.
I believe in the importance of professional organizations. I believe ALA is in a good position to do good things for libraries and their staff. I believe that if ALA doesn’t change, and quickly, they will lose membership as people turn to other options. If that happens, we will have lost a powerful tool for the profession.
ALA is too mammoth to change much at the largest levels without a grassroots change from the membership. Having been a member of and observed many parts of ALA, I believe this change can best come from LITA. LITA gave rise to the BIGWIG Social Software Showcase and the Top Technology Trends panels. LITA has innovative and enthusiastic members who work to adapt the organization for today’s world. LITA has connected me with colleagues who I respect and learn a lot from. With the right leadership, LITA can demonstrate how associations can stay relevant to their users, and can be a role model for its parent, ALA.
I’d like to offer LITA members my personal endorsement of the following candidates:
- LITA President: Karen Starr
From her personal statement: “Creative change comes with long term investment, commitment, and patience. Every 10 years of the last 30, the library field has passed a milestone in its use of technology [...] Now we are involved with the digital world [...] The innovators and leaders of tomorrow are the LITA members of today. It is refreshing to work with a dynamic group on the national level who care, who want to define that future and who come together to work on what the big picture should look like. I look forward to the opportunity to work with LITA’s members to collaboratively implement the vision that sustains our country’s 21st century information infrastructure.”
- LITA Director-at-Large: Aaron Dobbs
Aaron and I have crossed paths a number of times, both online and at conferences. I have always found him to be friendly, supportive, and fair, and he is a role model for transparency within ALA. From his personal statement: “As an advocate for LITA members, libraries, and library technology admins and users, I will move forward efforts re-thinking and improving how LITA disseminates our technology savvy [...] LITA should inform ALA’s internal debate by keeping the Association aware of how technologies in use today could be affected, depending on the resolution of these policy debates.”
- LITA Director-at-Large: Maurice York
I have met Maurice at a few ALA Conferences, and have always been impressed with his professionalism and focused attention on how to get things done. From his personal statement: “[...] I believe that LITA is positioned to represent the potential of a responsive and flexible professional organization to play an important role in shaping the profession at this critical turning point. My exposure to a wide variety of the aspects of LITA that make it hum–the interest groups, the program planning, the committees, the administrative and procedural concerns–has prepared me to join in the governance of the organization and take an active role in promoting these principles.”
I am hopeful that LITA can continue to offer cutting edge services to its users, demonstrate how technology can easily and practically be used for professional associations, and be a resource for all those interested in today’s library technologies. I believe that the three individuals above are the best for that job.
Thanks for reading and considering voting for these three candidates.
This endorsement represents my personal opinion and is in no way reflective of any committee, interest group, or other unit of LITA or ALA.