Annual Reports

Association for Library Collections and Technical Services Annual Report 2010–11

Cynthia M. Whitacre, ALCTS President 2010–11

This was a productive year for the Association for Library Collections and Technical Services (ALCTS), with some outstanding offerings in continuing education that energized and engaged the membership.

Second Annual Preservation Week

April 24-30, 2011, was the second annual Preservation Week, sponsored by ALCTS in cooperation with the Library of Congress and the Institute for Museum and Library Services. Preservation Week, aims primarily to advocate for preserving the cultural heritage of families and individuals, thus helping to preserve the nation’s cultural heritage. More than one hundred libraries (up from seventy the first year) contributed their events to the Preservation Week web site (, and more than 1,800 people attended the free webinars on selecting and preserving digital memories, protecting and saving family treasures, and protecting future access. These webinar recordings continue to be available free on the ALCTS web site. The third annual Preservation Week will be held April 22-29, 2012.

Continuing Education

The ALCTS webinars have been extremely popular. Twenty-nine webinars on a wide variety of topics, including Resource Discovery and Access (RDA), institutional repositories, intellectual property issues, collection management, weeding, copyright, electronic resources, and linked library data, were held this year, with more than 4,000 attendees. ALCTS continues to offer four online web courses throughout the year, which also have been well-attended. Most popular by far have been the ALCTS e-forums, held about once per month. These two-day online chats with defined topics are free and open to all. They have attracted participation from both members and nonmembers and covered topics such as job hunting, patron-driven acquisitions, digital preservation, and cataloging research. This model for engaging the library community in discussions has now been emulated by our colleagues in the United Kingdom, who initiated their own Chartered Institute of Library and Information Professionals (CILIP) Cataloging Interest Group (CIG) e-forum to discuss RDA after consulting with the ALCTS e-forum coordinator.

ALCTS Serials: Library Resources and Technical Services and ALCTS Newsletter Online

ALCTS’ peer reviewed journal, Library Resources and Technical Services (LRTS), is making strides toward becoming available electronically. We hope to announce its availability to members in the fall. Peggy Johnson continues as editor. The ALCTS Newsletter Online (ANO) is issued quarterly to provide news to the ALCTS membership. Mary Beth Weber completed her two terms (six years) as editor in June 2011.

Division Reorganization

The results of last year’s member survey on reshaping the division structure were examined by a task group, which recommended moving forward with incremental steps rather than drastic changes. The steps taken this year include reorganization and streamlining the Collection Management and Development Section (CMDS), which became the Collection Management Section (CMS) in June 2011. The Council on Regional Groups disbanded and reformed as the ALCTS Affiliate Relations Committee effective July 2011. The Cataloging and Classification Section (CCS) became the Cataloging and Metadata Management Section (CaMMS) at the same time. Dale Swensen accepted appointment as the first ALCTS Interest Group Coordinator for a three-year term.

Strategic Planning

A new ALCTS strategic plan focusing on issues facing the organization was adopted by the ALCTS Board at the 2011 ALA Annual Conference. This plan will guide ALCTS in new initiatives and will be reexamined and updated annually, rather than every five years.

ALA Midwinter Meeting and Annual Conference Highlights

Two well-attended Midwinter Meeting symposiums were held in San Diego: “Administrators, RDA and the Future” and “Beams and Bytes: Constructing the Future Library.” The ALCTS President’s program in June 2011 featured Paul Courant, economist and University of Michigan library director, who presented “Economic Reflections on Libraries.” Numerous programs, programs, discussions, and forums, as well as a preconference, were offered at both the Midwinter Meeting and the Annual Conference.

Awards Highlights

Special honors were accorded posthumously to Edward Swanson with the Best of LRTS Award, which was renamed in his honor, and the Margaret Mann Citation, given for his service to ALCTS and to the cataloging profession. The Leadership in Library Acquisitions Award was renamed the Harrassowitz Award for Leadership in Library Acquisitions to honor Dr. Knut Dorn on his retirement from Harrassowitz. The 2011 recipient of the Ross Atkinson Lifetime Achievement Award was Jean Merrill-Oldham, honored for her exceptional leadership in the preservation community. Presidential Citations were presented to Mary Beth Weber for her service as editor of ANO and to Kristin Martin for coordinating the hugely successful ALCTS e-forums.

Transforming Collections Task Force

ALCTS initiated a new Transforming Collections Task Force in March 2011, ably chaired by Mary Beth Thomson, to lead ALCTS in working on the ALA goal area of Transforming Libraries. The task force presented a list of tasks, ideas, and actions to the ALCTS board at the Annual Conference and will work collaboratively with many ALCTS groups to implement the top ideas during the next year.

Closing Thoughts

One concern of the ALCTS membership that merits more attention is the need for additional participation opportunities that do not require travel. Institutional travel funds continue to be reduced or unavailable to members, and this trend is likely to continue. ALCTS has made great strides by offering virtual continuing-education resources (webinars, web courses, and e-forums) apart from conferences and meetings. ALCTS has long had virtual committee members and even some virtual committees that only meet online or via phone. However, we need to continue to do more to improve in this area. The newly adopted ALCTS strategic plan calls for investigation and implementation of better ways to incorporate virtual participation, which is especially crucial for those that cannot attend conferences.

I continue to be excited and energized by the ALCTS membership because you are engaged and passionate about being librarians and participating in our profession. The ALCTS executive director, Charles Wilt, and staff members Christine McConnell and Julie Reese provide fabulous guidance and support to ALCTS and its members. We can be proud of our evolving and dynamic organization.

Collection Management & Development Section

Ginger Williams, CMDS Chair 2010–11

The Administration of Collection Development Committee sponsored the program “Purchase-on-Demand Programs in Public and Academic Libraries” at Annual 2011.

The Collection Assessment Committee compiled a bibliography, Collection Assessment Resources.

The Education Committee updated the reading lists for the online course, Fundamentals of Collection Development and Management. Committee members also participated in the pilot test of a new Fundamentals of Collection Assessment course.

The Coutts Award Jury presented the 2011 award to Jason Price, Acquisitions and Collection Services Manager at Claremont Colleges.

The Publications Committee approved proposals for Sudden Selector Guides on anthropology, romance languages, political science, art, and government publications. The committee also approved manuscripts for Sudden Selectors Guides on biology and chemistry; those guides have been sent to the ALCTS office for publication. The committee launched a new blog, Collection = Connection: The Library Library Collection Management Blog ( The committee also organized the CMS Emerging Research Forum at ALA Annual.

The Collection Development and Electronic Resources Committee organized the standing room online Midwinter Forum, “Is Selection Dead? The Rise of Collection Management and the Twilight of Selection.”

The ALCTS New Members Interest Group highlighted the section at their Midwinter Meeting with Harriet Lightman and Kathy Tezla discussing opportunities to get involved in CMDS. Brian Falato and Ginger Williams participated in the ALCTS 101 speed-dating event at Annual Conference, talking with new members about the section’s activities and ways to get involved.

The section’s reorganization proceeded with three committees that were dissolving following Annual 2011 successfully petitioning to form interest groups. The section is looking forward to some great programming from the new Administration of Collection Development, Collection Assessment, and Collection Development and Electronic Resources interest groups. The Transition Advisory Committee, appointed by Chair-Elect Harriet Lightman, will work with the new interest groups, the Planning Committee, and ALCTS IG Coordinator Dale Swensen to help them get off to a good start. Finally, the section’s name change also became official following Annual 2011; the section’s new name is Collection Management Section.