A Message Regarding ALA Ahead to 2010

Contact: Mark Gould


Public Information Office

312-280- 5042


January 7, 2005

Dear Colleagues:

I am pleased to share with you a draft of the American Library Association's proposed new strategic plan, ALA Ahead to 2010.

Over the last year, we have been engaged in an unprecedented effort to reach out to the association's 64,000 members. Through member surveys, focus groups and forums, we have sought to gather information from ALA members about the issues that are important to them, and the trends that they see affecting the future of libraries and the association. As an example, over 14,000 members responded to our member survey last spring.

Using the information gathered from members, the ALA Executive Board has worked with division and round table representatives to develop a series of draft goals and objectives for the next five years. In developing these, the planning group looked at the future of the profession and of libraries, and tried to anticipate and respond to the important issues and trends that are shaping our environment.

We are now distributing the draft ALA Ahead to 2010 plan for your discussion and comment. As part of a process of association-wide consensus-building and review, we are inviting ALA's approximately 1,000 boards, round tables, committees and discussion groups to spend time discussing the proposed goals and objectives at our upcoming Midwinter Meeting. All of these groups will be invited to provide feedback on the plan and how it relates to their interests and work. (Information on how to participate in this process and provide feedback is contained in the introduction to the draft plan.)

Based on the thoughts and comments received from these forums, we expect to further refine the plan over the course of the spring. We will then bring the document to ALA Council for discussion and approval at our 2005 annual conference in Chicago.

ALA's previous strategic plans, Goals 2000 and ALAction 2005, have led to such important initiatives as the Spectrum Scholarship program, the Office for Information Technology Policy and the Campaign for America's Libraries. It is our expectation that this new plan will also provide us with a blueprint for a stronger and more vital association over the next five years.

For more information on the ALA Ahead to 2010 planning process, visit


Carol Brey Casiano


American Library Association