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Croatia Bound

Croatia Trip 071When the invitation came from the U.S. Embassy to travel to Croatia to present a series of workshops on Digital and Traditional Literacy I was overwhelmed with the honor and responsibility of this task.

What were the libraries in Croatia like?  Did they offer programming, community events, internet access?  What were the communities like that they served?  What kind of budget did they have to work with?  How much were they like the libraries in the United States?

What an amazing experience this trip was.  I learned so much from the librarians in Croatia and I can only hope that they learned from me. 

The first set of workshops was held at the U.S. Embassy located in Zagreb.  The librarians that attended on the first day were from all over the country.  One librarian’s trip started at 4:00 a.m. where she boarded a ferry to take her to the city of Split and then a 4 hour drive to Zagreb.  The second day workshop was attended by librarians that worked all over Zagreb. The librarians were so eager to listen to a librarian from America!  They love America and wanted to learn as much as they could.  Each workshop held at the Embassy had a total of about 20 to 25 librarians.

U.S. Embassy in Croatia workshopsI spoke with them about E-books and Digital literacy and how that is becoming more and more common throughout libraries in the United States.  It became very clear, very quickly however, the limitations that these librarians have to work with.  Money is a very big issue which is something all libraries have in common throughout the world.  Sharing the budget struggles that I have experienced firsthand as a Library Director for 7 years seemed to make them feel more at ease.  I could totally relate to their expressions of frustration of not being able to offer these types of services to their patrons because of the lack of funding and the lack of support.  Not only was the cost of these devices out of reach for most of their patrons, the cost of subscribing to a type of E-book provider such as Overdrive was just a pipe dream.

Still, they soaked up everything that I had to offer them and I truly enjoyed visiting with them after the workshops and hearing about their libraries and how proud they were of them.

Croatia Trip 043The third workshop was held in Zadar which was a coastal community located about 3 ½ hours from Zagreb.  Zadar was absolutely breathtaking!  The city was built around Roman Ruins and was just like what I would imagine old time Rome would be like.  Streets made of rock and beautiful cathedrals everywhere you looked.  You could hear the bells tolling from the many bell towers all throughout the day and early evening.  The one thing that struck me was all the little children that were outside playing.  My escort told me that this city was extremely safe.  It had a very low crime rate and everyone knew each other and looked out for each other.  What a concept!

The group of librarians that I worked with in Zadar were from the “American Corners” libraries located throughout Croatia.  These libraries were partially funded by the U.S. Embassy and in exchange they had a “corner” of their library dedicated to all things American.  All the materials were in English and all of the items offered were related to the United States in one way or another.  These libraries were also required to hold 24 programs every year.  They were all so enthusiastic and motivated.  I was able to tour the American Corners library in Zadar and it was very similar to the Safford City-Graham County library where I currently am.  It was a busy and happening place with many patrons checking out materials, reading the newspapers, attending a program or with their children in the children’s area.  It felt very familiar!

The last workshop I held was actually a lecture to the library students at the University of Zadar.  This was probably the most fun out of all the workshops I gave because the students were so involved in the process.  They also understood all my jokes!  Many of them came up to me afterwards with all kinds of questions and comments!  I made sure these students knew that they had chosen the best profession ever.   There is nothing that can compare to it.University of Zadar Library Students

Overall the trip was a quick, fast paced adventure into a world that I had never been before.  The food was wonderful.  I had Risotto 4 times!!!!  It was delicious.  The sounds, smells and sights will be something that I will never forget and there is not enough time or space to share everything that I experienced.

The most important thing that I learned while I was there was that a librarian is a librarian wherever they live.  We all share the same goals and desires which is to serve our community and our patrons to the very best of our ability.  We have the greatest job in the world!  There is no other profession that I know of, other than a teacher that touches more lives for good than a librarian.  It didn’t matter that we didn’t speak the same language or that we didn’t have the same traditions, we are librarians, and that made us friends!

By Lisa Lewis, ARSL Board Member

Disaster of the Month: D&O Insurance

By Su Epstein

Saxton B. Little Library,  Columbia CTinsurance

To be honest, insurance was not something I really thought much about.  Personal insurance (home, auto, etc.) sure, but for the Library?  When I began as a Library Director, I knew the Library had a basic liability policy and I did review it.  I made sure it covered should someone get hurt in the building and if, heaven forbid the building had a fire, the contents would be covered.  But after that, I gave it very little thought.

A few years down the road, however, the make-up of our library board changed.  Personalities shifted and perspectives clashed.  Things came to a head over a fundraising event.  Tensions had been high and communications poor.  At a very public planning meeting, outside of the Library, a full-fledged shouting match erupted.  Accusations and names flew like startled birds.  A board member left, threatening to sue for defamation of character.  I consulted a lawyer and learned the board member had grounds.  At the same time, there arose issues with the vendor contracts for the fundraising event.  This too posed a potential litigious situation.  I called upon my inner Research Librarian, and hit the books and the internet.

It was then that I learned of Directors’ and Officers’ Liability Insurance (often called D&O).  This insurance, purchased by the organization reimburses the organizations leadership for losses or advancement of defense costs of legal actions coming about from alleged wrongful acts in their capacity as leadership of the institution.    Policies vary by the amount of coverage, but are offered by almost all of the major insurance companies.  Costs are based on not only the amount of coverage, but the size of the board and institution.

For our institution the cost increased our insurance line approximately five hundred dollars annually.  It was not an easy sell.  However, the cost of one lawsuit would be far greater.  At the time, my library was facing two possible legal actions.  A situation that six months earlier would have been inconceivable for all of us.

In the end, the fundraising event went off, but not without some very problematic hitches.  The former Board member decided they liked the Library more than they hated the Board and dropped the suit.  The Library Board purchased D&O insurance.  For me, it was all a little too close for comfort.

I don’t know if such insurance is needed and as the coverage varies, it must certainly be analyzed on a per library basis. Likewise, needs can be greatly affected by circumstance.  What I do know, definitively, is that is far better to research and discuss the options before there is a potential need.

Library Director – Garden City, KS

Today’s Date: 05/29/2014

Job Closing Date: 08/29/2014

Job Title: Library Director – Finney County Public Library, KS

Anticipated hours per week: Full Time

Institution Library Systems & Services

Library Location: Garden City, KS

Website (if applicable): https://careers-lssi.icims.com/jobs/1187/library-director-%e2%80%93-finney-county-public-library%2c-ks/job

Duties / Job description:
Seeking a forward thinking Library Director for the Finney County Public Library. It is ideal for an energetic early career librarian with a passion for exceptional library service.

The 27,000-square-foot library is located in the heart of Garden City and serves approximately 40,000 residents, primarily employed in farming wheat or corn and other crops, as well as cattle ranching and processing. Patrons enjoy a vibrant collection of books, movies, audio books, genealogy and magazines along with access to reference databases and downloadable eBooks as well as a new Nature Explore Classroom: http://www.natureexplore.org/certified/FinneyCountyPublicLibrary.com.

Finny County is a multi-ethnic, family-friendly region offers its residents a rich history and attractions including the Lee Richardson Zoo, golf courses, Big Pool and annual events such as Empire Beef Days, Tumbleweed Festival, and balloon classic: http://www.finneycountycvb.com/info/. It’s located approximately 200 miles west of Wichita and 300 miles southeast of Denver, Colorado, and is the second largest County in land area in Kansas.

The successful candidate will have a demonstrated knowledge of sound public library management principles, best practices, trends, and current professional theories. Ability to exercise good judgment, along with the ability to communicate effectively and positively with various government and community groups. Ability to lead and inspire staff with creative new ideas for increasing library services while growing the use of and support for library services among the public and strategic partners is very important. This is a highly visible position requiring a dynamic librarian capable of working closely with Finney County officials and the Library Board, and who can lead and inspire a full-service customer-focused organization.

Responsibilities:

•Oversee day-to-day library operations for the library to ensure contract performance within budget and represent the library to the community and public at large
•Ensure customer-service focus and orientation of the Finney County Public Library Supervise, train, and evaluate professional and paraprofessional staff
•Manage, create and/or deliver exceptional programming and educational opportunities within the library and through community outreach and oversee collection development
•Create and sustain excellent relationships with community groups and other organizations partnering with the library
•Report to LSSI, Finney County, and the Library Board as required

Qualifications: •MLS/ MLIS
•Ability to operate with minimum supervision and work in a team environment to build partnerships, find solutions and make service enhancements.
•Excellent oral and written communications abilities
•Strong organizational and interpersonal skills with proven ability to motivate and lead others
•Public library hands-on experience and supervisory experience with demonstrated ability to make sound management decisions, exercising good judgment dealing with people and situations
•Ability to connect positively with library and community constituencies including the local governing authorities, community leaders and organizations, library staff, library patrons and the general public.
•Background check

Will out of state candidates be considered? Yes

Salary Range: Commensurate with experience.

How to apply? https://careers-lssi.icims.com/jobs/1187/library-director-%e2%80%93-finney-county-public-library%2c-ks/job

To post job openings, please see Job Submissions.

Association for Rural and Small Libraries: ALA Emerging Leaders Scholarship

Dir of Library Services, Pend Oreille County, WA

Today’s Date: 05/15/2014

Job Closing Date: 06/30/2014

Job Title: Director of Library Services

Anticipated hours per week: Full Time

Institution Pend Oreille County Library District

Library Location: Pend Oreille County, Washington State

Website (if applicable): http://www.pocld.org

Duties / Job description: The Board of Trustees of the Pend Oreille County Library District (POCLD) is seeking the ideal candidate who possesses the vision and passion to creatively lead the Pend Oreille County Library District to excellence in library services for the community. In keeping with the mission and strategic plan of POCLD, the Director will be responsible for developing and supporting all efforts necessary to maintain a rural library district that is responsive to the community’s needs for information and education.

The Pend Oreille County Library District includes four branches; each branch provides a number of community programs. The district is governed by a board of trustees consisting of five appointed members who oversee the district’s operating budget of a half million dollars, providing strategic planning guidance and capital expenditure planning. The Director reports to the Board of Trustees with a Financial Manager assisting to provide District office support. A fifteen member staff supports the library operations in the towns of Newport, Cusick, Ione, Metaline and Metaline Falls.

Situated in the northeast corner of Washington State, Pend Oreille County borders Idaho and Canada and serves as a gateway to some of the Pacific Northwest’s finest wilderness and outdoor recreation areas. Pend Oreille County has rare scenic beauty and vast natural resources.

ESSENTIAL DUTIES:
• Provides leadership in the implementation of library operations, including reference, circulation, programs, community outreach and relations, staff training and development, and IT technology.

• Ensures the selection and maintenance of books, media, computer programs and other materials to meet the needs

• Provides administrative support for all technology services that enhance library services.

• Takes lead role in the development of the District Strategic Plan. Develops long range plans that support the goals and objectives resulting from the strategic plan.

Qualifications: • A Master’s Degree in Library Science from a recognized college or university plus three (3) years of progressively responsible public library administration experience including at least two (2) years in a supervisory capacity . A combination of education and experience which demonstrates the ability to successfully meet the requirements of the position may be considered.
• Washington State Librarian certificate (or obtainable within three months of hire).

Will out of state candidates be considered? Yes of the community.

Salary Range: Salary range starts at $52, 000 yearly commensurate with experience. Excellent benefits offered.

How to apply? Please see our website at http://www.pocld.org to learn more about Pend Oreille County and the library district. Resume with a letter of interest should be submitted to bot@pocld.org

To post job openings, please see Job Submissions.

2014 ARSL State Library Scholarship Opportunities

State library agencies are again making scholarship opportunities available to librarians in their state! Below are the details that we have received thus far.

Arizona

The Arizona State Library, Archives & Public records offers Continuing Education Scholarships of up to $1250 to attend ARSL and other conferences. Applicants must be employed full-time by an Arizona library. For more information and to download an application, visit www.azlibrary.gov/libdev/continuing-education/scholarships.

California

The California State Library is pleased to announce ARSL scholarships for rural or tribal library staff. We expect to fund up to 2 scholarships per library jurisdiction. If we do not receive enough applications we will establish a waiting list; library directors may forward more than two applications, but please prioritize them from your perspective.

Scholarship applicants must:

  • Be a current ARSL member;
  • State how attending the conference will benefit your library;
  • Identify at least 3 sessions you will attend;
  • Meet virtually via a ReadyTalk session to discuss scholarship requirements before the conference;
  • Meet as a group during the conference to plan ways to cooperate and share what you learn with others, and how you will use that to help improve library service in your communities.

All scholarship requests are to be submitted by Library Directors by July 1, 2014.

Scholarship Form and Application

Contact: Susan Hanks, Library Programs Consultant, susan.hanks@library.ca.gov, 916-653-0661

Montana

The Montana State Library is funding four scholarships ($1,500 each) for librarians who serve in small libraries or tribal libraries in Montana with the deadline of July 1, 2014 to apply. Complete the application and send to Jo Flick, jflick@mt.gov.

A committee will meet the first week of July to make selections for the scholarship.

North Carolina

The State Library of North Carolina is now accepting applications for scholarship funds to attend the Association for Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL) Conference in Tacoma, Washington from September 3-6, 2014. Since there are limited funds available, this is a competitive scholarship. Priority will be given to first time conference attendees in libraries serving rural/small populations. The brief essay question about benefits of conference attendance will also be weighted heavily in the awards.

A $1,200 lump sum payment will be made to the winning applicant’s library to help with conference costs; receipts for these expenses will have to be submitted to the State Library of North Carolina shortly after the end of the conference.

The application is available online and will close on July 20, 2014. Winning applicants will be notified by the end of July. If you have questions or need assistance, please contact Jeffrey Hamilton at 919-807-7417 or jeffrey.hamilton@ncdcr.gov.

Utah

The Utah State Library Division is funding up to six scholarships ($1,300 each) for library directors, library staff, or trustees in a small or rural  public or tribal library in Utah. The application deadline is June 13, 2014. Complete details are available at http://heritage.utah.gov/library/arsl-grant.

Vermont

For scholarship opportunities from the Vermont Department of Libraries, please contact Brittney Wilson, (802) 828-3266.

Washington

The Washington State Library, thanks to funding from the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA), is making full scholarships available for rural and tribal library staff to attend the 2014 conference of the Association of Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL). Scholarships will include all conference fees, transportation, and other expenses.

Eligible applicants must:

  • Work at a small and rural library (serving 10,000 or fewer), or in a tribal library in Washington State;
  • Be a first-time attendee at the ARSL conference;
  • Demonstrate a willingness to share knowledge gained from conference attendance with fellow library/district staff through a webinar, printed article, blog post, etc.;
  • Show how conference attendance will help to meet the library’s goals as they relate to the LSTA priorities;
  • Attach authorized (signed) permission to the application.

Deadline for applications: Friday, May 30, 2014. For more information, or to apply, visit the Washington State Library ARSL Scholarship page.

Wyoming

The Carol McMurry Library Endowment will offer any Wyoming library worker up to $1500 per year to attend this or another conference: will.state.wy.us/mcmurry/indivgrants.html

Applicants can contact Jamie Markus if they have questions about the application.

Board Agenda – May 16, 2014

Association for Rural and Small Libraries Board of Directors Meeting
Friday, May 16, 2014
10:30 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. Central

VIA READYTALK

Step 1: Dial in: 866-740-1260
Access Code: 5149183

Step 2: Web Login — https://cc.readytalk.com/r/a55vfzelk5u1&eom

ARSL Mission Statement:

The Association for Rural & Small Libraries provides resources and support that empower those in small and rural libraries to deliver excellent service for their communities

AGENDA

2 min. I. Welcome and Call to Order Tena Hanson,
****** Start Meeting Recording****** President

3 min. II. Consent Agenda

• Approve Minutes of March 21, 2014*/**
• Current Financial Statements*/**
• Member Services Committee Report
• Conference Planning Committee Report
• Partnerships Committee Report
• Member Development Committee Report
• Governance Committee Report
• Finance Committee Report
• Executive Committee Report
• President’s Report

5 min. III. Verbal Committee Reports if Pulled from Consent Agenda

15 min. IV. Vice President/President-Elect’s Report Donna Brice

• Aspen Institute Meeting
• SHLB Meeting
• TVWS Proposal
• Research Institute for Public Libraries, Advisory Team

10 min. V. Approval of ARSL Student Chapter University of Washington*/** Donna

15 min. VI. Online Meeting Task Force Report*/** Becky Heil, Chair

15 min. VII. Partnerships Committee Report Cal Shepard, Gail Sheldon,
Co-Chairs

• Proposed new “Friends” non-member category*/**
• US Fire Administration MOA*/**

5 min. VIII. Nominating Committee Report Andrea Berstler, Chair

• Proposed Slate for the 2014 Election*/**

5 min. IX. Potential Story Corps Partnership*/** Tena Hanson, President

10 min. X. PUBLIC COMMENT

5 min. XI. Topics Identified for Board Work Session?

Next Board Meeting – Friday, July 18, 2014 — ReadyTalk

90 min. ADJOURN BOARD MEETING

* Denotes Action Item
** Posted in DROP BOX

Registration now open!

Yea! The conference is coming! Yes, it is time to register for the 2014 Association for Rural and Small Libraries.

It will be held in Tacoma, Washington, September 3-6, 2014. Register now!  (Remember to log in first so you can get a member discount!)

Library Director – Liberal, KS

Date: 05/01/2014

Job Closing Date: mm/dd/yyyy

Job Title: Library Director

Anticipated hours per week: Full Time

Institution Liberal Memorial Library

Library Location: Liberal, Kansas

Website (if applicable): http://www.lmlibrary.org

Duties / Job description: Liberal Memorial Library is looking for a Library Director. This is a highly administrative and management position with responsibility for the daily operations of the library. The library director plans, coordinates, directs, and evaluates all daily functions of the library, oversees the physical building, programs, services, and finances, supervises library personnel, works in cooperation with the city of Liberal, and is supervised by the Library Board.

The Library Director is responsible for:
Library services: manages the provision of full library services to patrons and community organizations
Personnel management: responsible for hiring, managing, and evaluating the library staff
Financial operations: responsible for the preparation, management, and oversight of the library’s budget
Planning and Policy Making: responsible for short and long term planning in cooperation with the Library Board and staff
Public relations: supervises all internal and external library communications and outreach
Physical plant management: oversees all aspects of the interior of the library building and grounds
Professional development: keeps current of new trends, library management, technology, legal issues facing libraries, and new ideas in library service
Library board: provides communication and staff support to the Library Board and maintain regular communication with the Board

This is a full, time, exempt, salaried position with health and dental benefits, sick and vacation leave, and state retirement plan.

Qualifications: MLS degree from an ALA accredited graduate library school with public library experience

Will out of state candidates be considered? Yes

Salary Range: 55,000+ depending on qualifications

How to apply? Send a letter of interest, resume, and three professional references to: Selection Committee, Liberal Memorial Library, 519 N. Kansas, Liberal, KS 67901 or board@lmlibrary.org

Position will remain open until filled.

Liberal Memorial Library is an equal opportunity employer.

To post job openings, please see Job Submissions.

City Library Director – New Haven, CT

Today’s Date: 04/30/2014

Job Closing Date: 05/25/2014

Job Title: City Library Director

Institution New Haven (CT) Free Public Library

Library Location: New Haven, CT

Website (if applicable): http://nhfpl.org/

Duties / Job description: The New Haven Free Public Library, with a $5 million annual budget ($4.5 from City appropriations), a strong senior management team and a dedicated staff (52.3 FTEs), provides services and programs through the historic Ives Main Library (on the New Haven Green and adjacent to the Yale campus), four branches and a ReadMobile. The Library Director, working with the board and a related foundation board, will build on fundraising successes of the last decade and secure new financial resources to increase services.

New Haven is one of America’s most dynamic small cities. The City proper has a population of 130,000. The principal municipality of a metropolitan region on the northern shore of Long Island Sound, it is in close proximity to Boston and New York City, which is accessible by more than 40 daily train connections. New Haven had the largest population growth of any New England city in the 2000-2010 U.S. Census and it has the highest apartment occupancy rate in the nation, with construction of more downtown residential sites underway. Like most communities, New Haven is also home to people with socio-economic challenges – but it has a scale and assets that make connecting residents to opportunity more possible. Yale University and five other universities in the region enroll 35,000 students a year. Gateway Community College opened a state-of-the art downtown campus in 2012, three blocks from the main library. New Haven has professional theater, practicing architects, new and classical music concerts, outdoor festivals, and free world-class art museums unmatched by any city of similar size in the country. It also has 376 years of history – seen in its town green and architecture spanning three centuries. For additional information, visit NHFPL Links.

Qualifications: Minimum qualifications include a master’s degree in library science, business, non-profit management or other related fields. A minimum of ten (10) years of progressively responsible leadership, management and board governance experience. Five (5) years of which includes experience in administration, working with unions and authority over personnel. Residency in the City of New Haven is required within six months of appointment. For a more complete list of requirements and preferred attributes, please visit our link to the official job description.

Will out of state candidates be considered?

Salary Range: $80,000-103,000 (dependent upon experience and qualifications) and an attractive benefits package.
How to apply? Contact:

Karen E. Miller
Managing Consultant
Bradbury Associates/Gossage Sager Associates
Ohio Office:
3513 E. Harvard Blvd.
Canton, OH 44709
330.224.9177
karenmiller@gossagesager.com

To post job openings, please see Job Submissions.