For immediate release | October 3, 2017

United for Libraries and PLA to host Oct. 17 webinar on ‘Troubled Library Boards’

BRYN MAWR, Pennsylvania — United for Libraries and the Public Library Association (PLA) are partnering to present a webinar designed to improve library boards of directors. The webinar, titled “Troubled Library Boards: Prevention and Survival” will be held at 2 p.m. Eastern Time on Tuesday, Oct. 17.

Dysfunctional boards of directors are an increasingly common problem in libraries. Serving on a troubled board is stressful, and it can take the focus away from a board’s primary mission. What essential practices can prevent or minimize board problems? When a board does become dysfunctional, how can those involved survive and create change?

The webinar will be led by former United for Libraries Executive Director Sally Gardner Reed, Illinois Trustee Jo Beckwith, and Algonquin (Ill.) Public Library Director Stephen Bero. Participants may submit questions (anonymously, if preferred) ahead of the webinar so that personal cases can be addressed during the question and answer period.

Webinar participants will learn:

  • Best practices to prevent or minimize board problems.
  • What can be done to get a wayward Trustee back on the right track.
  • How to move forward as a high functioning team.

Sally Gardner Reed was the executive director of United for Libraries from 2002 to 2017. Prior to her tenure with United for Libraries, Reed spent nearly 20 years in library administration, running small public libraries in New England and the Midwest, and was the director of the Norfolk (Va.) Public Library. Reed has authored eight books on library management, advocacy, volunteers, and fundraising, and numerous articles for professional library journals. She has presented programs and workshops to hundreds of friends groups, trustees and librarians nationally and internationally. She is the 2000 recipient of ALA’s Herbert and Virginia White Award for promoting libraries and librarianship.

The cost of the webinar is $50 for United for Libraries members and PLA members, $75 for non-members. To register, visit, call (800) 545-2433, ext. 5, or email Registration is limited for the live webinar.

United for Libraries: The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations, is a division of the American Library Association with approximately 4,000 personal and group members representing hundreds of thousands of library supporters. United for Libraries supports those who govern, promote, advocate, and fundraise for libraries, and brings together library trustees, advocates, friends, and foundations into a partnership that creates a powerful force for libraries in the 21st century. To join, please visit or call (800) 545-2433, ext. 2161.

The Public Library Association (PLA) is the largest association dedicated to supporting the unique and evolving needs of public library professionals. Founded in 1944, PLA serves nearly 9,000 members in public libraries large and small in communities across the United States and Canada, with a growing presence around the world. PLA strives to help its members shape the essential institution of public libraries by serving as an indispensable ally for public library leaders. For more information about PLA, contact the PLA office at (800) 545-2433, ext.5PLA, or


Jillian Wentworth

Manager of Marketing & Membership

United for Libraries