One of the highlights of our year as an organization is always the conference. The opportunity to see old friends and the possibility for making new ones creates an excitement that cannot be duplicated by other events. Perhaps because we are a association of library staff who are, for the most part, isolated during the year, or perhaps because our work in small communities gives us insight into the power of face-to-face networking, the conference is always a big deal. I cannot encourage you strongly enough to do what you can to be there.
But beyond the 3 days that make up the annual conference, I encourage you to become active in this, your organization; for this is your organization. A place where those serving as a vital element in the life of their community can communicate, and sometimes commiserate, about their situations. Where you can “pick the collective brain” for solutions, and resources from those who are doing what you are doing, in the next town down the road. ARSL is an organization for you, powered by it’s members.
At the conference and for several weeks after, we will be issuing a call for committee members. As a growing organization, with an all volunteer board, we rely on the help and participation of our members. If you are in Texas for the conference, stop by the table we will have set up with committee information and see what part you can play. If you cannot come to Texas, look for that same message over the listserv. There is a piece to this puzzle that has your name on it. Get involved. It is the best way to assure that the ARSL remains your organization, carrying your message and speaking with the voice of rural librarians everywhere.