2014 Emerging Leaders Team F Hosts "Librarians Build Communities: The Past, The Present and The Promising Future" at Networking Uncommons in Las Vegas

Volunteers at an LBC event, red T-shirts and hands in the air excited!
The mission of Librarians Build Communities is “to connect librarians with libraries and community organizations in need of skilled volunteers in order to form meaningful volunteer opportunities and to improve awareness of the expertise librarians possess.”

The 2014 Emerging Leaders team (Team F) assigned to Librarians Build Communities (LBC) was asked to build on the work of three previous Emerging Leaders teams. Those teams, from 2011, 2012, and 2013, delved deep into research on how LBC could be structured and promoted, then set up the initial websites and created promotional tools and procedures. We in the 2014 Team began our work aware of our indebtedness to the previous Teams and the project sponsor, Don Wood and the ALA Chapter Relations Office, as we transitioned LBC from an Emerging Leaders project into a sustainable, ongoing Membership Initiative Group (MIG) within ALA.

On March 10, 2014, Team F created a petition to have Librarians Build Communities established as an MIG. By March 12, 2014, Team F gathered the required 100 signatures. On April 30, 2014, the MIG was approved with this Statement of Purpose:

“To provide library workers with information about skills-based volunteering so that they can plan and carry out volunteer programs benefiting libraries and other social service organizations in communities that can benefit from organized, targeted volunteer events. Skills can include the skills that library workers exercise every day in their jobs (e.g., short-term cataloging projects, book repair, technology projects, story hours) as well as other skills such as painting, basic home/school/library building repair and improvement, carpentry, gardening and yard work etc. Assistance includes, but is not necessarily limited to advice and toolkits on how to develop a relationship with a library or community agency that can host an event and how to plan, organize, manage, recruit volunteers, obtain needed supplies or equipment, evaluate results, and share lessons learned with the library community so volunteer initiatives can grow and become a viral form of library advocacy. Skills-based volunteering can, literally, be grass roots advocacy.”—Jim Rettig, Chair, ALA Committee on Organization, April 17, 2014

If you want to learn more about Librarians Build Communities, Team F is hosting an informational meeting at the 2014 ALA Annual Conference on Monday, 2:00-3:00 p.m, June 30, 2014, in the Networking Uncommons at the Las Vegas Convention Center. Team F will also distribute brochures and name badge ribbons to conference-goers throughout ALA. Download the team's final report and see what the future holds for LBC! (WORD)

“The members of Team F pledge to continue the work of Librarians Build Communities at least through the three years of the MIG, and we invite any and all who are interested to join us.”

2014 Emerging Leaders Team F
Librarians Build Communities

Sara Zettervall, University of Minnesota, Minneapolis, MN – Project Manager
Brian Hart, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library, Charlotte, NC
Aaron LaFromboise, Medicine Spring Library, Blackfeet Community College, Browning, MT
Lynette Roberson, Dallas Public Library, Dallas, TX
Morgan Sohl, Driftwood Public Library, Lincoln City, OR
Lindsey Taggart, Forest Institute of Professional Psychology, Springfield, MO


The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) awarded Georgia Public Library Service (GPLS) a 2009 Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program grant to fund the GPLS “Librarians Build Communities” program, which provided the scholarships needed to prepare 45 students to be public librarians and provided them with expertise in community building. Courses were offered at Valdosta State University, Master of Library and Information Science (MLIS) Program. http://librariansbuildcommunities.wordpress.com/

Perhaps the MIG could follow up and connect with these wonderful Georgia librarians =--all alumni of VSU. Here is the report from the project. https://www.academia.edu/2591781/Libraries_Build_Community-Valdosta_State_University_Georgia--2009-2011