President's Column

What a joy it is to welcome all of you to a new year of New Members Round Table activities! I always experience some amount of trepidation when taking on a new leadership role, but I know that you will be a fantastic group of students, librarians, library workers, and library friends to work with over the next year. This was proven by the amazing response to last year's call for committee volunteers and the eagerness many of you expressed in personal e-mails to me regarding your appointments. I can't wait to see what all we will accomplish.

While I know NMRT will benefit from your commitment this year, I hope that you will gain as much or more from your membership. My presidential theme is "Finding Your Balance: Seeking Personal and Professional Fulfillment." Many NMRT members are at transitional points in their personal and professional lives--new schools, new degrees, new jobs, new careers, new leadership roles, new babies, or new spouses. I want to help NMRT members explore how they can advocate for themselves. When we take care of ourselves, it is so much easier to represent and advocate for our libraries and our profession. I look forward to hearing your ideas on this subject.

An additional focus of NMRT this year will be developing stronger relationships with alumni and friends of the organization. NMRT's mission is to help those who have been ALA members for ten or fewer years to become actively involved in the association, and I believe we are successful. Look, for example, at ALA President-Elect Courtney Young, who served as NMRT's president in 2009-2010. We recently formed a committee to explore ways that we can ask our wonderful alumni to better share their stories and expertise with those of you who are just beginning to find your paths. In exchange, I hope that they will benefit from the energy and innovation that you bring to the profession and organization.

We're already planning programming for the Midwinter Meeting in Philadelphia and the Annual Conference in Las Vegas. I hope to see you there! In the meantime, I hope that you'll participate in our upcoming monthly discussion forums via the NMRT Listserv and on Twitter.

If you have any ideas for improving NMRT, or questions about the organization and how you can get involved, I would love to hear them. Please don't hesitate to contact me at any time.

Emily Prather-Rodgers
NMRT President, 2013-2014