LITA Manual Section 13 Liaisons

Approved by the Board of Directors, June 1990

Categories of Liaison
Appropriateness of LITA Liaisons
Selection and Appointment of the Liaison/Representative
Role of the Liaison/Representative

LITA Manual Table of Contents


A liaison from LITA to another group may be appointed to communicate LITA interests held in common with the other group, and to advise LITA regarding activities of the other group that might have implications for LITA programs, publications or organization. It is presumed that the resulting relationship will be beneficial to LITA and the target group by allowing the two groups:

  1. to share information and ideas of mutual benefit;
  2. to avoid duplicate programming activities;
  3. to share, if appropriate, programming and publication efforts in areas of mutual interest through co-sponsorship; and
  4. to preclude duplication of organizational structures within both groups.

[Liaisons from LITA Table of Contents]

Categories of Liaison

Liaisons fall into three categories:

  1. Designated Liaison. In this category, LITA feels a need to send a liaison to another group. Although the interests of both groups are met, the principle beneficiary of the designated liaison is LITA.
  2. Requested Liaison. Here, LITA is approached by another group requesting a liaison. The interests of both groups are served, but the principal beneficiary of the Requested Liaison is the requesting group.
  3. Representative. In the final category, LITA is asked by ALA to send a liaison to a group. The liaisons are obligatory, but the value of the representative is assumed to be shared equally by both groups. In this case, the individual represents ALA, not just LITA.

[Liaisons from LITA Table of Contents]

Appropriateness of LITA Liaisons

It is appropriate for LITA to establish a liaison or designate a representative:

  1. if the other organization addresses issues and concerns relevant to LITA;
  2. if the representation will help to avoid duplication of effort;
  3. if the representation will enhance LITA's position and serve as an advocate for LITA policies; or
  4. if the representation will promote shared programming and publication efforts in areas of mutual interest.

It is appropriate for LITA to designate a liaison or representative to another organization whenever such representation seems appropriate. The LITA Bylaws and Organization Committee will examine the need for continued representation in light of the interests of the LITA membership and the nature of the work of the other organization. A formal review will be conducted on at least a biennial basis with a written report to the Board of Directors at the Midwinter meeting, including any changes or proposed additions to the liaisons list.

[Liaisons from LITA Table of Contents]

Selection and Appointment of the Liaison/Representative

The member selected must fill all requirements stated in the LITA Manual (Requirements for Nomination or Appointment to Division Office Boards, or Committees).

An attempt should be made to select a LITA member to serve in a liaison/representative capacity who has an established interest in the group or organization.

When LITA sends a liaison to another group, the LITA President announces the appointment in a written communication to that group which includes the following:

- asks the group to accept the LITA liaison;
- states LITA's purpose in establishing the liaison;
- requests that the group include the liaison in the distribution of agenda and minutes;
- informs the group that the liaison will observe and submit a report the LITA Board;
- clarifies that, while the LITA liaison may be authorized to speak for the LITA Board, the liaison will not routinely report to the group on LITA activities, policies or procedures. Such would be the responsibility of that group's liaison to LITA.

Term of Appointment

The liaison/representative shall be appointed annual for a term of two years. Re-appointment may occur, but the liaison/representative shall not serve more than four years consecutively.

[Liaisons from LITA Table of Contents]

Role of the Liaison/Representative

  1. Attend meetings of the appropriate governing group (Committee meetings, Association Board meetings, etc.,);
  2. Report on discussions, policies and action relevant to LITA (not necessarily programs);
  3. When possible, obtain minutes of the meeting and summarize/highlight relevant sections;
  4. Request inclusion in the distribution of agenda and minutes of meetings;
  5. If appropriate, request copies of existing manuals or policy documents as background;
  6. Submit a written report the LITA board. If particularly important issues have been discussed, an oral report the Board may be appropriate at the request of the LITA President;
  7. If the liaison/representative cannot attend the meeting, he/she is responsible for finding an alternate to attend and report. The alternate should submit the report through the designated liaison.

[Liaisons from LITA Table of Contents]