'Kitchen-table' conversations focus on professional development at 2015 Midwinter Meeting

For Immediate Release
Tue, 12/30/2014


Alicia "Alee" Navarro

Conference Coordinator

Conference Services

American Library Association


CHICAGO – ALA President Courtney L. Young recently invited attendees of the 2015 ALA Midwinter Meeting in Chicago to sign up for the “kitchen-table” conversations that have become an important channel for discussion among members of the ALA community (members, staff, and external allies). The focus of the 1.5-hour conversations at Midwinter is professional and leadership development.

The conversations, also held at recent Midwinter Meetings and Annual Conferences, provide an opportunity for a wide range of voices to weigh in on future directions and aspirations for ALA as a professional community, in a time of significant change. “I urge you to participate so you are heard as we consider the best ways for ALA to work with and on behalf of members now and in the future,” Young said in her invitation.

The conversations will take place with up to 16 participants each at the Hyatt Regency McCormick, Boardroom 1, from Saturday, Jan. 31 through Monday, Feb. 2, with four options per day: 8:30 - 10 a.m., 10:30 - noon, 1 - 2:30 p.m. and 3 - 4:30 p.m. Spaces are filled on a first-come basis, and attendees are welcome to join without signing up provided there’s space. To ensure a seat, please register in advance at http://vols.pt/Eab9qU. Attendees can also easily add the conversations to their schedule at http://alamw15.ala.org/sessions/kitchentableconversations.

Help from attendees is critical to continuing this series of conversations, which participants have consistently said they want to see continued. The sign-up link in the invitation includes the option to volunteer to be a facilitator or note-taker, especially helpful if you’ve done this before or have received/are receiving Harwood training. Following the Midwinter Meeting, notes will be posted in ALA Connect (http://connect.ala.org/node/210217 ) to help build a rich base of public knowledge about the aspirations and concerns of our community. The conversations will be continued at the Annual Conference in San Francisco in June 2015.

Attendees are also encouraged to explore, examine, and reflect on options, ideas, and implications with colleagues by attending the Unconference on Friday and Library Camp on Monday afternoon, and by participating in discussion groups. The Networking Uncommons is also available for follow up, small-group discussions, and more.

Register and book housing for 2015 ALA Midwinter Meeting and Exhibits in Chicago, Jan. 30 - Feb. 3, at alamidwinter.org. Use these resources to make your case for attending.

Stay in touch and get updates at the Midwinter website, use the Scheduler, track the tag-- #alamw15, join the Facebook Event, and find us on Tumblr, Google+, Pinterest, and Instagram.