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Written by Kristin Shelley, 2018-2019 MLA President   

President's Update - February 14, 2019

MLA 2018-19 President Kristin Shelley

Happy Library Lovers Month! I hope you are all feeling the love and warming up!

The end of January brought the ALA Midwinter Conference and the Polar Vortex. I was able to attend the Councilor’s Forum at Midwinter with Jennifer Dean, Michigan’s ALA Councilor. Jennifer and I were excited to meet other association presidents and councilors from around the country.

The United States National Library of Medicine (NLM), a division of the National Institute of Health (NIH), also presented at the forum. They are doing good things to connect with libraries, especially public libraries, including health-related book discussion kits that they will send to libraries to use in book discussions for free. This month they are focusing on books on heart health. Other great initiatives include the All of Us Journey traveling exhibit designed to promote, educate, and enroll participants in the NIH All of Us Research Program. The Journey exhibits are visiting the Greater Midwest Region! Click here to learn more and see a list of dates and cities where the mobile will be. Contact [email protected] if your institution would like to host the Journey. Darlene Kaskie is the representative from National Network of Libraries of Medicine (NNLM) for the Greater Midwest Region. Check out the NNLM Greater Midwest Region at: https://nnlm.gov/gmr

The MLA Executive Director search continues. The job posting is up through Friday, February 15, 2019. If you know of anyone who is interested, please encourage them to apply. The board plans to do live interviews the week of March 25.

Spring is in the air, at least for MLA. March brings the Spring Institute, March 28-29 in Bay City. This year’s conference will be kicked off on Thursday with keynote speaker, Bryan Collier. Sessions include the third grade reading initiative, NASA @ My Library, music in storytimes, Friday’s keynote Chris Crutcher, chats on dismantling institutional racism, escape rooms and closing speaker Heather Shumaker. You don’t want to miss this!

In other MLA happenings, the annual conference call for proposals will be open this week. The conference is focusing on issues of diversity, equity and inclusion, but breakout proposals on all topics are welcome. Also, the 2019 Michigan Author Award call for nominations closes Feb 28.

On March 15, in Ann Arbor, MLA will hold the Academic Libraries conference. Join Abigail Goben for the morning session, where she will discuss the opportunities and challenges regarding the amount and types of data academic libraries capture; the privacy and ethical responsibilities surrounding that data; and a desire to make data-driven decisions to improve services and best support campus communities.

So many great programs happening with MLA—run to your computer to register. Lastly, I want to invite all of you to Gail Madziar’s retirement reception on March 8 at the East Lansing Public Library, 950 Abbot Road, East Lansing, MI, from 2:00-4:00 p.m. Please stop by to wish Gail a happy retirement and to thank her for the tremendous work she has done on behalf of Michigan libraries. If you plan to attend please RSVP the MLA office at [email protected] by March 1.

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