From the Editor

Alice Platt, ANO Editor

Alice Platt, ANO Editor

Opportunities Abound

In our current society, there is endless debate about where progress and change come from. Which has the greater potential to change history: policy-making from our organizational leaders, or the individual who quietly takes on a new task or initiative? Fortunately, we can have both, and it is to both we thank for humanity’s progress.

I see this in our libraries. Many are the dedicated members of The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), the leading international body representing the interests of library and information services and their users. Thirteen ALCTS members currently serve in IFLA, and as liaisons to ALA they provided reports of this year’s annual IFLA General Conference and Assembly, held in August 2011. This issue includes their accounts of the conference programs and meetings. It is encouraging to know such great progress is being accomplished at the international level.

Back home, individuals are making a difference in libraries across the country, supporting missions of cultural, educational, and informational needs of our citizens. We can see this in Pamela Bluh’s article about Project SEARCH, a program designed to provide internships and job training to young adults with disabilities. The technical services department at the University of Maryland Thurgood Marshall Law Library discovered that not only could the individuals in the program benefit, but the library could as well. I do not believe it is overreaching to assume that this work leads to even greater benefits in our society.

In this vein, I encourage everyone to reflect on your accomplishments of 2011, both great and small. We all have the opportunity to make a difference.

Contact Alice Platt (platt@bostonathenaeum.org).