Winning Champions for your Library

Turning legislators into champions for libraries takes more than a single visit. Make time to develop a relationship—one based on trust, respect and positive feelings. Look for opportunities to make both them—and you—look good. Anything you can do to help them will be appreciated—and remembered.

  • Recognize officials for their contributions. Present them with a special award. Publish a photo in the library newsletter or post on the bulletin board.
  • Provide photo opportunities. Invite them to staff the information desk during National Library Week, or to participate in a groundbreaking or read-a-thon. Take photos for the library’s newsletter and Web site. Alert news media.
  • Invite legislators to hold meetings or a constituent hour in the library. Encourage library users and Friends to attend.
  • Go to them. Offer a personal demonstration of how new technology can help them—and their constituents. Send articles/information that you know is of interest to them.
  • Have students give them a tour of the school or campus library. Hold a question-and-answer session with students. Make sure the school newspaper covers it. Also invite community media.
  • Get to know legislative staff members. Stop by to say hello or leave a message when you’re in the area, even if you don’t have an appointment. Send them thank you notes.

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