Job Description for Chairs

In order to plan and implement activities that reflect the group's function statement and the YALSA and ALA Strategic Plans, each chair must possess leadership and communication skills, including the ability to motivate and manage group members, to manage and maintain documents pertinent to the group's work, to use web 2.0 tools effectively to accomplish group work throughout the year and to communicate effectively and promptly with members.

Minimum Qualifications

Please note that by accepting a position as a chair, you are indicating that you are able to make a commitment to serve for the entire length of the committee appointment. If you know that a significant event will be happening in the coming year that would prohibit you from serving out your full appointment, then please delay your committee service until you have enough time to commit to the group. YALSA has many other options besides committee work that require less time commitment and offer more flexible opportunities, such as blogging, facilitating a discussion forum or webinar, joining a discussion or interest group and more.

  • Current membership in YALSA
  • In order to accomplish work in a virtual environment, all Chairs must be confident and competent users of web 2.0 tools, including but not limited to wikis, chat software and ALA Connect
  • Excellent time management and organizational skills
  • High ethical standards
  • Willingness to serve
  • Adequate time to commit to the work of the group
  • Meets deadlines
  • Project management skills
  • Demonstrated leadership skills including but not limited to the ability to bring a group to a consensus and motivate others
  • Familiarity with association structure and governance

Please note that specific groups call for certain areas of expertise. For example, the Financial Advancement Committee seeks members who have fundraising experience. Please check the individual group’s page on the web site for details.

Reports to: Liaison, President and Board

Management

  • Develops short and long-range goals with the member group based on YALSA’s strategic plan and direction from the Board.
  • Develops a timeline for completion of the group’s work based on direction from the YALSA President and/or the Board Liaison
  • As necessary, schedules meetings for both Midwinter and Annual Conferences with YALSA’s Program Officer for Conferences & Events.
  • Participates in all face-to-face or virtual training for chairs as appropriate to the format of the committee (virtual or face-to-face), such as but not limited to the Leadership Development meeting and any other meetings/calls called by the President.
  • When at the ALA Annual Conference, attends the YALSA membership meeting, All Committee Meeting and Leadership Development meeting, as well as any programs or meetings sponsored by your group.
  • Evaluates group work via online Quarterly Chair Reports, which are due Feb. 15, May 15, Aug. 15 and Nov. 15.
  • Ensures group members have the tools they need to be successful in their role and strives to keep members motivated and on task.
  • Addresses any group member performance issues with the individual in a timely and professional manner. Seeks assistance from Board Liaison if the issue persists.
  • Actively keeps track of member performance, and as situations arise, informs the Board Liaison of members who consistently perform below stated expectations. At the end of the Chair term reports to Board Liaison on both poor performing and high performing members.
  • Reports resignations and contact information changes of group members to the President, Executive Director and YALSA’s Program Coordinator for Membership.
  • Recommends high performing group members for reappointment to the President-Elect.
  • Coordinates group programs, publications and other activities.
  • After obtaining prior approval for the expenditure, submits Request for Payment forms with receipts for group expenses.
  • Brings requests for action to the Board in person or in writing, after having worked with Board Liaison to develop the RBA (Request for Board Action.)
  • Facilitates the work of the group’s projects throughout the year and keeps group members motivated and on track.
  • Informs group members of the "right of first refusal" for publishing group materials.
  • Clears contacts with vendors and requests to vendors with the YALSA Executive Director before an approach is made.
  • Mentors new group members, as needed.
  • Writes commendation letters for group members when appropriate.

Knowledge

  • Read through the ALA Handbook of Organization and refer to it as necessary to ensure group compliance with policies and procedures
  • Read and understand the content of the YALSA Handbook, and follows all policies or procedures that impact the work of the group
  • Pay special attention to association activities that affect or are affected by the group's work
  • Know YALSA’s Strategic Plan and be able to articulate how the work of the group supports the plan
  • Stay well informed about YALSA by reading YALSA E-News and YALS, monitoring the YALSAblog and/or subscribing to the association Twitter feed
  • Become familiar with the basics of association governance and the role of committees and member groups within that structure
  • Make an effort to learn more about best practices in leadership and how that applies to the chair work for the group

Communication

  • Reports to the Board Liaison, President and Board before and after each conference via the pre and post conference reports
  • Keeps Board Liaison updated on the work of the group
  • Communicates regularly with group members to keep them apprised of news and projects and to garner ideas for future and continuing work of the group
    • For Selection & Award Commitees: at least once a week
    • For all other appointed groups: at least once a month
  • Notifies group members of any changes to the group roster
  • Notifies YALSA members of group work via postings on the YALSAblog and/or articles in YALSA E-News and YALS.
  • Manages online resources for group communications, such as a YALSA electronic discussion list, YALSA wiki page or ALA Connect space
  • Networks with other chairs to explore possible joint projects
  • Reads all messages on chairs@ala.org discussion list
  • Copies the Board Liaison on all relevant communications
  • Orients the incoming chair and passes on all files , passwords, materials etc. at the end of the term

Special Responsibilities

Specific groups have unique responsibilities. Contact the President and last year's chair to discuss specific responsibilities, any manual or handbook for the group, access information to any online resources (listserv, ALA Connect, etc.). Ask YALSA’s Program Coordinator for Membership for the previous chair's contact information, if necessary.

Timelines

YALSA has two appointment cycles-one in the spring and one in the fall. Chairs appointed in the spring begin their term July 1st. Fall appointments generally begin their term February 1st. Besides the information that is provided below, groups may have their own specific timelines to be followed for group work, projects, and products.

Timeline for Chairs of Selection Committees


July – Sept.

Persons interested in serving on selection committees fill out the Selection Committee Volunteer Form.

Oct. – Nov.

President-Elect appoints committee chairs and members.

Dec.

Read materials about past activities and future committee work and contact the current chair for necessary information about ongoing projects, concerns, etc.

Contact your incoming committee members and introduce yourself. Explain what you will do as chair and what your expectations of committee members are.

Review YALSA’s Strategic Plan.

Work with YALSA’s Program Coordinator for Membership to set up a means of contacting and working with your group electronically.

Designate continuing members to mentor new members as needed and appropriate.

January

If you’re attending the Midwinter Meeting, sit in on the committee that you’ll soon be chairing.

If other incoming committee members are at Midwinter, set up an informal get-together so the group can begin to know one another.

Attend and participate in the Leadership Development meeting on Saturday from 8-10AM.

Make an effort to meet your Board Liaison.

Talk to the outgoing chair to find out any necessary information, resources, concerns, etc.

February

The work of your group officially begins. Use the space in ALA Connect, discussion list, and other electronic resources you set up earlier to begin work.

Ask your committee members when the best times to meet at Annual are.

Request meeting times and space for Annual when notified by YALSA’s Program Officer for Conferences & Events via the chairs@ala.org discussion list.

  Complete online Quarterly Chair Report by Feb. 15 and send a copy to your Board Liaison

March - April

The first of each month, send your proofread and accurate committee’s nominations to your staff liaison for posting on the web site at the beginning of each month. Also post the nominations on popular library discussion lists such as YALSA-BK, PUBYAC and LM_NET and encourage your committee members to post them on state library discussion lists as well as announce them via Twitter and Facebook, using the hashtag #bestofyalit.

May

Complete online Quarterly Report Form by May 15 and send a copy to your Board Liaison.

If your group has a request for the Board, work with your Board Liaison to fill out and submit the online Request for Board Action form.

June

Attend the Leadership Development meeting from 8-10 a.m. on Saturday.

Meet with your group at the Annual Conference.

Check in with your Board Liaison and share any concerns w/ him/her.

August

Ask your committee members when the best times to meet at Midwinter are.

 

Request meeting times and space for Midwinter when notified by YALSA’s Program Officer for Conferences & Events via the yalsacom discussion list.

 

Complete online Quarterly Report Form by Aug. 15 and send a copy to your Board Liaison.

 

Remind your committee members that anyone who is eligible to serve another year on the committee and who wants to do so must fill out a new Committee Volunteer Form.

Sept.

Provide feedback to the President-Elect as to who has done a great job on the committee and should be re-appointed. Provide feedback about potential chairs for the next committee.  Please note: the President-Elect has final say in determining all appointments.

Oct. – Nov.

President-Elect appoints next round of committee chairs and members

Complete online Quarterly Report Form by Nov. 15 and send a copy to your Board Liaison.

Dec.

Talk with the in-coming chair about any ongoing projects, concerns, etc.

If your group has a request for the Board, work with your Board Liaison to fill out and submit the online Request for Board Action form.

Communicate with the incoming chair of the committee about the work of the group.

Jan.

Attend the Leadership Development meeting from 8-10 a.m. on Saturday.

Meet with your group at the Annual Conference.

Check in with your Board Liaison.

Turn in final lists, information for the press release, etc. to the YALSA office before leaving the conference.

Discuss with the incoming chair the post-conference report. Fill out the Quarterly Chair Report Form and send a copy to your Board Liaison and the incoming committee chair.

Provide the in-coming chair with any necessary materials or information.

Timeline for Chairs of Process Committees, Juries, Taskforces & Advisory Boards


Jan. – Feb.

Persons interested in serving on selection committees fill out the Selection Committee Volunteer Form.

Mar. – Apr.

President-Elect appoints committee chairs and members.

May

Read materials about past activities and future committee work and contact the current chair for necessary information about ongoing projects, concerns, etc

Contact your incoming committee members and introduce yourself. Explain what you will do as chair and what your expectations of committee members are.

 

Review YALSA’s Strategic Plan and think about how your group could contribute towards achieving the goals laid out in the plan.

Work with YALSA’s Program Coordinator for Membership to set up a means of contacting and working with your group electronically.

Designate continuing members to mentor new members as needed and appropriate.

June

If you’re attending the Annual conference and there’s a meeting of your group, sit in on their meeting.

If other incoming group members are at Annual, set up an informal get-together so the group can begin to know one another.

Contact your Board Liaison and introduce yourself.

Talk to the outgoing chair to find out any necessary information, resources, concerns, etc.

July

The work of your group officially begins on the 1st. Use the space in ALA Connect, listserv and other electronic resources you set up earlier to begin work.

August

Ask your committee members when the best times to meet at Midwinter are.

Submit your online Quarterly Chair Report by Aug. 15 and send a copy to your Board Liaison.

Request meeting times and space for Midwinter when notified by YALSA’s Program Officer for Conferences & Events via the yalsacom discussion list.

Sept. – Nov.

Continue the work of your group. Check in with your group members regularly to ensure that projects are on track and that there are no concerns.

Complete online Quarterly Chair Report by Nov. 15 and send a copy to your Board Liaison

Publish information about the work of your group on the YALSAblog, YALS, and/or YALSA E-News, as appropriate.

Dec.

Complete online Quarterly Report Form and send a copy to your Board Liaison.

If your group has a request for the Board, work with your Board Liaison to fill out and submit the online Request for Board Action form.

Jan.

If appropriate, meet with your group at the Midwinter Meeting and attend the Leadership Development meeting on Saturday from 8-10AM.

Check in with your Board Liaison.

Feb.

Complete online Post-Conference Report Form and send a copy to your Board Liaison.

Remind your group members that anyone who is eligible to serve another term on the group and who wants to do so must fill out a new Committee Volunteer Form.

If you plan to meet at Annual, ask your group members when the best times to meet are.

Request meeting times and space for Midwinter when notified by YALSA’s Program Officer for Conferences & Events via the chairs@ala.org listserv.

Provide feedback to the President-Elect as to who has done a great job on the group and should be re-appointed. Provide feedback about potential chairs for the next group.  Please note: the President-Elect has final say in determining all appointments.

March - April

President-Elect appoints next round of chairs and members.

May

Talk with the in-coming chair about any ongoing projects, concerns, etc.

Complete online Quarterly Chair Report Form and send a copy to your Board Liaison.

If your group has a request for the Board, work with your Board Liaison to fill out and submit the online Request for Board Action form.

June

If appropriate, meet with your group at Annual and attend the Leadership Development meeting on Saturday from 8-10AM.

Check in with your Board Liaison.

Complete the online Post-Conference Report Form and send a copy to your Board Liaison and the incoming chair.

Provide the in-coming chair with any necessary materials or information.