RUSA/RSS Executive Committee Meeting II Minutes
2004 ALA Annual/Orlando
Tuesday, June 29, 2004, 8:00 11:00 a.m.
Sheraton World Resort, Board Room.
Present: Mary Hollerich (Chair), Anne Beaubien, Robert J. Bellinger, Linda Fenster,
Scott Garton, Linda S. Harris, John C. Hepner, Allan M. Kleiman, Lars Leon, Cynthia R.
Levine, Maira Liriano, Anne C. Moore, Carolyn M. Mulac, Eric Novotny, George
Porter, Loriene Roy, Ellen Safley, Joan Stein, David Tyckoson, and Kay Vyhnanek.
I. Approval of Agenda
Mary Hollerich opened the meeting at 8:14 a..m. The Committee voted to approve the
agenda as amended.
II. Approval of Minutes
The minutes for the meeting of Tuesday, 13 January 2004, were approved as amended to
correct the spelling of one personal name.
III. RSS Committee Reports
A. Services to Adults
Robert Bellinger reported that the Committee met and discussed issues related to their
conference program proposal.
At this point, Mary Hollerich asked for volunteers to write the section news for the RUSA
Update. While in the past the Section Secretary also prepared this column, a new editor is
needed. The editor need not be a member of the Executive Committee. The deadline for
submitting content to the editor for the next column is 9 July 2004.
B. Library Service to an Aging Population
Allan Kleiman reported that 85 were in the audience for their program, the "Boomers are
Coming, the Boomers are Coming." Content based on the program may be published in
Library Journal. The Committee is also planning an all day forum on aging at
Midwinter/Boston. The planners hope to have an audience of 100 people with
representation from each state. The Committee is also reaching out to other units in ALA.
OLOS now has content on their Web site on service to the aging. Members are preparing
content on the history of the committee for the winter issue of RUSQ. The tribute to
honor the Committee on its 40th anniversary is going to Council.
Members of the committee spoke with Booklist about an annual May column featuring
the best resources on aging. The committee is still seeking a sponsor for the Bessie Moore
Award and hopes to locate one by ALA Midwinter/Boston. The Award will not continue
if a sponsor is not located by this time.
The committee is planning to submit a proposal for a preconference in 2006 with the
tentative title of "Bridging the Ages." The morning portion of the program will cover
services to traditional adults while the afternoon will be a continuation of the baby
boomers program. The committee will also prepare a similar program for the next PLA
The committee examined a document from the International Relations Committee that
asks every ALA committee to have some international focus. The committee has already
C. Virginia Boucher, OCLC Distinguished ILL Librarian Award
Mary Hollerich announced that Joan Stein was the recipient of this award. This
committee will be moving to STARS.
D. Catalog Use
Cindy Levine described the discussion group the committee held on approaches to
explaining the catalog in reference and instruction. The fact that 84 people were in
attendance is evidence that many are interested in knowing more about a bridge between
cataloging and reference. The committee is also examining its charge.
E. Cooperative Reference Services
Linda Fenster reported that the committee discussed the proposal from the Organization
and Planning Committee to change the name and charge of this committee to incorporate
virtual reference. The committee also discussed planning for revisions of the Guidelines
for Cooperative Reference Service Policy Manuals. The committee's proposed program,
titled "Yours, Mine, and Ours: Quality of Service in Collaborative Virtual Reference"
was accepted for ALA/Chicago.
F. Evaluation of Reference and User Services
Maira Liriano announced that the program on a new definition of reference was a huge
G. Interlibrary Loan
The Committee sponsored programs at ALA, including a program called "License to
Fill." The PowerPoint slides from this program will soon be available on the ILL
Committee Web site. The committee would like to develop two versions of the ALA
Factsheet on ILL, one for trustees and one for the new ILL librarian. They will also place
summaries of STARS activities on the ILL list. They will issue another call for STARS
volunteers in September. They are working on updating Web site content with
explanations as the Web site transfers over to STARS. Their preconference for 2005 will
be titled "Currents of Change" and will cover workflow change and innovation.
H. Management of Reference
There was no committee report.
Maira Liriano noted that this committee is conducting its business via email. People can
direct their questions to her.
J. Research and Statistics
Joan Stein reported that over 100 attended the Reference Research Forum. In addition to
planning this event, the committee is considering other parts of its charge. They would
like information on how to add and revise Web site content. They are also starting to
explore the process of establishing a reference research award. Mary Hollerich added that
an ALA awards committee ultimately approves new awards. The committee would also
have to secure funding from a vendor to cover the cost of the award and administrative
K. Library Service to the Spanish Speaking
There was a question about the existence of this committee.
L. Organization and Planning
John Hepner distributed three handouts. Two listed new RSS committees and discussion
groups with their charges. The third handout listed existing committees, their current
charges, and any proposed changes to their charges.
Discussion first addressed three new proposed committees. Mary Hollerich asked whether
the charge for the Education and Professional Development for Reference Committee
would monitor educational opportunities rather than develop workshops and training
opportunities within the section. John Hepner replied that this task will be included in the
committee's charge which will also include developing the section's own training and
development programs. Hollerich asked that both tasks be stated explicitly in the charge
since involvement with developing WebCT programs will be a great opportunity to
Ellen Safley noted that the representative from MARS spoke at the meeting of the RUSA
Reorganization Committee about the possible formation of a dual committee for virtual
reference service to be formed from two RUSA sections. She also reminded the
Committee that 12 July 2004 is the deadline for submitting changes to appear in the next
ALA Handbook of Organization. These updates include new appointments.
John Hepner indicated that the vision for the Marketing and Public Relations for
Reference Services Committee's applies to activities both internal and external to an
information setting. While Mary Hollerich suggested adding the phrase, "to internal and
external bodies," to this committee's charge, the preference of the Board was to leave the
charge as proposed.
The Board approved the establishment of three new committees to RSS. These are the
Educational and Professional Development for Reference Committee, the Marketing and
Public Relations for Reference Services Committee, and the User Education and
Information Literacy Committee.
Discussion next turned to the RSS Discussion groups. Three existing discussion groups
will continue: Performance Issues for Reference/Information Librarians, Reference
Services in Large Research Libraries, and Reference Services in Small and Medium-sized
Libraries. There was also a request that Discussion Groups be more overtly mentioned on
the Web site.
Organization and Planning sent a proposal to RUSA to request that the Hot Topics in
Frontline Reference Discussion Group be transferred to RSS.
John Hepner explained that the RSS bylaws provides no provision for the Executive
Committee to create a discussion group. The Executive Board has two procedural options
it can follow. It can vote to suspend the bylaws and allow the Board to create a discussion
group without signatures or it can approve the formation of a discussion group in
principal and then secure 25 signatures to create them officially. The process of
requesting signatures can involve sending emails to the RUSA and RSS listservs,
requesting members to print off a petition, sign it, and return it. David Tyckoson and
Allan Kleiman suggested that they try to secure the necessary signatures at ALA
Midwinter/Boston and ALA Annual/Chicago.
Mary Hollerich said since RSS is, in essence, creating a new section, they have to redo
the bylaws. John Hepner added that RSS is currently operating under the existing bylaws
as amended. He noted that RSS is due for a RUSA section review in another year or two.
Hollerich advised that when RSS revises its bylaws that it removes this requirement that
discussion groups petition to be reestablished.
This discussion led to a vote by the Committee to suspend the bylaws to establish two
new discussion groups and transfer one existing discussion group to RSS.
The Committee next examined the list and charges for existing committees. John Hepner
mentioned that Organization and Planning recommends that every committee look at their
current charge and consider whether adjustments need to be made to reflect new goals.
He asked that Committees place this task on their agendas for discussion at ALA
Slight changes were made to the charges for the Organization and Planning and Research
and Statistics committees. The Catalog Use Committee might need to update its charge.
Between now and ALA Midwinter/Boston discussion will take place on whether to
jointly sponsor the virtual reference committee with MARS. Ellen Safley asked whether
marketing of the section should be added to a committee's charge. Maira explained that
RSS will form a one-year promotion task force that can provide advice on the possible
establishment of a new committee. As RSS Chair, she will look at committee
memberships and charges over the next year.
Mary Hollerich and Eric Novotny suggested a change to the proposed charge for the
Organization and Planning Committee to reflect that it reviews the section organization
and advises the Executive Committee.
John Hepner added that a change to the charge for the Cooperative Reference Service
Committee is probably not necessary. There was some discussion on the best way to note
that sponsoring an annual research forum is part of the charge of the Research and
Statistics committee. The Committee suggested that the reference research forum be
listed in lower case in the charge to allow for flexibility in planning this event.
John Hepner asked Cooperative Reference Service to consider changing its scope to
cover both cooperative and virtual reference. Mary Hollerich moved that this committee
prepare a charge. This action was approved unanimously.
IV. MOUSS Discussion Group Reports
A. Interlibrary Loan
Anne Beaubien reported on this discussion group as well as on the activities of the
Interlibrary Loan Committee. She announced that an Executive Committee for STARS
has been elected by RUSA members present at the RUSA ILL Discussion Group and
includes Mary Hollerich as Chair, Anne Beaubien as Vice Chair/Chair Elect, Kay
Vyhnanek as Secretary, and Lynn Wiley, Tanner Wray, and Tom Schneiter as the three
members at large. The Discussion Group also held small group discussions on possible
projects for the new STARS committees and a program on international ILL by Lynn
B. Performance Issues for Reference Librarians
There was no report from this discussion group.
C. Reference Service in Large Research Libraries
There was no report from this discussion group.
D. Reference in Small and Medium-Sized Libraries
There was no report from this discussion group.
V. RUSA Committee Reports
A. Access to Information
There was no report from this Committee.
B. Conference Coordinating
Scott Garton reported that all four RSS program proposals were approved. The Research
and Statistics program will take place on Saturday during the 1:30 3:30 time slot. The
Management of Reference program will take place on Sunday, 1:30 3:30. The Service
to Adults program will occur on Saturday from 4:00 5:30. The Cooperative Reference
program will be on Sunday, 8:30 10:00. RUSA will sponsor a total of eleven programs
at ALA/Chicago, not counting the RUSA President's program. While each section may
sponsor up to three programs, RSS will have four programs because it will co-sponsor the
Cooperative Reference program with STARS. The MARS and RSS co-sponsored
preconference was approved as was the RSS ILL preconference. Allan Kleiman asked if
committees be given a fair opportunity at sponsoring programs by reviewing program
sponsorship at ALA Midwinter.
Mary Hollerich asked whether the program limit will be increased with the arrival of
STARS as a new section. Scott Garton indicated that he was not sure what channel needs
to be used to make the Reference Research Forum a permanent RUSA event and thus not
be counted as one of the three RSS programs. Joan Stein noted that programs provide an
excellent opportunity to market RUSA and RSS. Program planners might provide
information on how to join RUSA on evaluation sheets distributed at the program. Allan
Kleiman added that program moderators might pick up packets prior to the programs to
distribute at the programs.
There was no report from this Committee.
Maira Liriano observed that David Tyckoson is Chair of Nominating and activities are
going well. Several RSS members will be on the ballot. STARS will have to select a
representative to this Committee in the future.
Ellen Safley summarized some changes occurring in other RUSA Sections. CODES will
be undergoing review. STARS will be asked to share a committee with CODES. BRASS
just completed their review. The MARS representative spoke about a new virtual
reference committee. MARS also sends a representative to some NMRT members in an
effort to recruit new members to MARS. RSS might want to emulate this activity.
F. Planning and Finance
Lars Leon reported that RUSA will end FY04 with an even budget. RUSA might receive
around $20,000 through a Walgreen's consumer health information grant. RUSA will
also host five preconferences; preconferences usually generate income for the Section.
RUSA will have a little reserve balance for FY2004; RUSA has to retain 50% of the
expenditures averaged over 3 years. The biggest question is dues.
RUSA last raised dues 8 years ago. A dues increase would have to be voted on by
membership. This question may appear on the spring 2005 ballot. The general advice is
not to request a dues increase in a section during the same year that ALA asks for a
general dues raise. Mary Hollerich advised that RUSA might want to examine the dues
structures of other divisions. Lars Leon suggested that RSS place this discussion item on
its Saturday agenda at ALA Midwinter/Boston.
Lars Leon reported 2003 RUSA membership at 4,113 personal members. Mary Hollerich
observed that ALA needs to institute a public relations and promotion plan with
incentives for membership. Allan Kleiman added that he would like to see a discount at
the ALA bookstore for members. Hollerich would also like to initiate a discussion of
other sources of revenue for RUSA, especially income that might relate to WebCT
G. Professional Development
Carolyn Mulac said that the committee was given a new charge by the RUSA board: to
provide leadership and coordinate the development of RUSA programming apart from
annual conferences including generating topics and recommending other topics for Web
courses, evaluate proposals for WebCT courses including those from outside sources,
and organize and sponsor an orientation session for new members.
David Tyckoson announced that he has developed a four-week, Web-based course on The
Reference Interview that is offered through RUSA. The course will be offered twice in
fall 2004 and enrollment will be limited to 30. It is especially recommended for support
staff. The fee for RUSA members is $130.
There was no report from Publications.
I. Standards and Guidelines
The revised Guidelines for Behavioral Performance of Reference and Information
Services Professionals were passed by the RUSA Board. A couple of paragraphs were
added to the ILL code as explanatory text. The Guidelines for Library Services to
Hispanics is scheduled for review. They will also start to look at the Guidelines for
Library Services to Older Adults at ALA Midwinter/Boston. The Standards and
Guidelines Committee is available to help committees prepare and revise guidelines; their
services include a checklist on the Web site.
VI. RUSA Board Report
The RUSA Board is looking for nominations to ALA Council. They also discussed the
draft of the RUSA Web site policy. The contact person is Joe Straw at the University of
Illinois. Standards and Guidelines endorsed the resolution to honor the 40th anniversary of
the Library Service for an Aging Population.
VII. Old Business
There was no old business.
VIII. New Business
Maira Liriano reported that the MARS Executive Committee voted to endorse creation
of a joint RSS/MARS Virtual Reference committee. The structure being discussed
would involve a Chair and Vice-chair, with each position rotating between RSS and
MARS. The Chair and Vice-chair could attend the board meetings for their
respective Sections, rather than having one Chair report at both boards. All
present RSS Executive Committee members voted in agreement. It is hoped to form
this committee as soon as possible. It was noted that at the present time, the
Cooperative Reference Service Committee is also focusing its attention on virtual
reference issues. But it was decided that there are cooperative reference issues
that do not involve virtual reference, as well as virtual reference issues that do
not involve cooperative relationships between libraries. Therefore, it was
concluded that the two committees should be separate, even though they have
overlapping interests at the present time.
Maira Liriano also asked for interest in establishing a three member, one-year taskforce to
promote RSS. Mary Hollerich added that the taskforce have a clear charge with deadlines.
David Tyckoson volunteered to serve on and chair this taskforce. Allan Kleiman also
volunteered to serve.
George Porter arrived in time to ask whether Tuesday Executive Board meetings might be
located near each other so joint meeting time might be scheduled. There was also a
suggestion that name cards be reintroduced at Board meetings.
The meeting adjourned at 11:12 a.m.
2004 Annual Meeting Minutes June 29
RUSA/RSS Executive Committee Meeting II Minutes