SRRT Action Council Minutes - ALA Midwinter Conference 2020

Social Responsibilities Round Table

Action Council I & II Meetings

ALA Midwinter Conference 2020

Philadelphia, PA



Saturday, January 25th

Pennsylvania Convention Center Room 110-B



  1. Welcome and Introductions
    1. Introductions of Action Council Members and Guests

April Sheppard, Stavroula Harrissis, Al Kagan, Tom Twiss, Brianna Jarnigan, LaJuan Pringle, Ginny Moore, Sherre Harrington, Tara Brady, Jane Cothron, Ed Garcia, Julie Winklestein, Mark Hudson. Two visitors (names not collected)

    1. Announcement of 2020 ALA Emerging Leader Kayla Kuni sponsored by SRRT
    2. Announcement of 2020 Herb Biblo Conference Travel Award Recipients
      1. Jay DelaCruz
      2. Joseph Winberry


  1. Review of Agenda
    1. Additions to Agenda and Approval of Agenda*no additions
    2. Approval of Annual Conference 2019 minutes*approved


  1. ALA Council Resolutions (Tara Brady)
    1. Resolution Task Force Report on Annual Conference 2019 CD # 49 “Resolution in Defense of the Free Speech of Supporters of the Movement for Palestinian Rights” (Tara Brady & Tom Twiss)
      1. Record Acceptance of Action Council email vote re SRRT Response, Resolution, and Amendment
    2. Tom will speak to the resolution Monday; there is a question about whether the resolution will be moved back to Council from committee referral.  Committees are not in favor. Tara moved to approve, April seconds. Amendment in appendix includes “Executive Order”.  Approved unanimously.
    3. Resolution on Iran (Al Kagan & Tom Twiss)*postpone until June 2020.
    4. Resolution on ALA Restrictions of the First Amendment (Al Kagan)*Al moved to endorse any of these three*Stavroula Harrissis seconded**10 yeas, 1 nay, none abstaining
      1. Two versions of the resolution with differing resolved clauses; strong suggestion to include only a single resolved clause.
    5. Other ALA Council Resolutions
      1. Resolution in opposition to charging prisoners to read.  Jane Cothron moved, Stavroula Harrissis seconded. 1 abstained. Passed.

[Request copies of the final resolutions to add to website.]


  1. ALA Executive Board Report
    1. Ed Garcia, Executive Board Liaison - 8:40 –  8:55am
      1. Al Kagan: Badge obverse says “Badge remains property of ALA Midwinter Meeting. Failure to comply with Staff/Security directions will result in badge revocation.” Ed will look into where this came from. Addendum: In email followup: “I am responding to a question from this morning’s Action Council. I was told the language in question is standard language that has been on the badge for several years.”
      2. Julie Winklestein: The ALA scheduler has a very invasive privacy agreement—to retain personal information in perpetuity and from all sources.  Julie will convey her concerns to Ed.
      3. Council approved sustainability to be included in all future conference registrations.  New ALA director begins in February 2020.
      4. SCOE group ends with Midwinter 2020. Name change/new group called Forward Together.  Many recommendations will need to be researched and are being postponed for evaluating impact on organization. PLA and ACRL Board letters to Council severely critical of SCOE report.


  1. ODLOS Report and other items - 8:55 – 9:10am
    1. Briana Jarnagin, Program Coordinator, Community Engagement, Office for Diversity, Literacy, & Outreach Services, ODLOS
      1. ODLOS report sent out last Tuesday. Grant for EDI research applications due April 15, 2020. See guiding principles from EDI report. Coretta Scott King and Virginia Hamilton awards will have 25th anniveraries in June. Ticketed celebrations.  (Question about having ticketed prices in addition to registration, sliding scale tickets not supported by current conference mechanisms.) Planning committee working on buddy system for members to support students by purchasing tickets—no support for non-students. From Round Table Coordinating Committee meeting, Melissa Walling (Director of Membership) is working on dues structure.  Social media guidelines for round tables are being finalized. 1. Any organizational account must share logins with ODLOS office [includes Facebook (Brianna would need to be an administrator), Twitter (requires generic organizational email), etc.] 2. No endorsements of candidates. 3. Must say it’s an official account for SRRT.
      2. Stavroula Harrissis volunteered to create Facebook page and Twitter account for SRRT. Full social media guidelines not yet available from ODLOS office. Stav sent the following January 25, 2020 email announcement:

-Twitter: @SRRT_ALA


Note that the Facebook page above is distinct from the long-standing SRRT Facebook "group" ( Both will continue to exist but with slightly different purposes. The "group" will continue to be a place for SRRT members to post articles and converse with each other. The new "page" will be focused on promoting SRRT activities to a broader audience, both to amplify the impact of our work and hopefully to attract new members.”

    1. SRRT website Revision Report (April Sheppard)
      1. All SRRT content moved from old website (now closed) and data/ link cleanup in progress.  The Wayback Machine has been invaluable.  Thanks to ALA’s Patrick Harrington and Brianna Jarnigan for all their support.
  1. Elections
    1. ALA President-elect
      1. Steven Yates: Assistant director of U Alabama Library Studies. ALA needs internal groups to advocate for each other. EDI has been moved by a few people; that needs to be flipped so that most of us are working on EDI.  ALA needs to focus on training, access to technology. Need to remove the sometimes perceived and sometimes real barriers between members and ALA. Sees a need to focus on groups that are pushing BDS legislation and find ways to counter those messages.  Cannot see supporting the BDS resolution if it will damage the lives of librarians across the country or by alienating partnerships. Teaches core values, but sees the need for students to have jobs. Discussion of how discussion of core values as an absolute needs to be balanced with pragmatism.  Need to think of revenue streams for the Association and need to be aware of how people might need to be active without using expensive resources.  Need to have different levels of involvement that are not depending on the pocketbook. Meet and greet, Saurday Jan. 25, 6-7:30 Marriott Salon I.
      2. Patty Wong: Director Santa Monica Public. Active in ALA and California Library Association. Change is coming to ALA—must manage the change, not let the change manage the organization. Strong advocate for EDI and for rural communities. Began as a youth services librarian. Currently on Conference committee and can start working on membership and sliding dues. Wants to activate membership, to grow and foster new membership, to encourage activism.  Wants to see more partnership between staff and membership.  Commitment to core values. Sees a need to reinvigorate the relationship with the Library of Congress and IMLS. Believe in the importance of partnerships.  Sees a need to coordinate EDI initiatives among ALA goups. “Strategic intentionality” (who are we centering).  Ask for study on how many round table and division members cross over and how many ALA members only belong to a round table.  SCOE recommendations will need to be taken in pieces; needs to be a more nimble organization grounded in democracy. Current democracy in ALA is through the filter of who can attend; needs to be a hybrid of SCOE proposals and more democratic structure, but with better representation.  Has website for additional questions.


    1. SRRT Action Council
      1. Nominations and Write-In Candidates
        1. Jane Cothron
        2. Charles Kratz
        3. Wendy Stephens
        4. Write in candidate – Al Kagan
  1. Reports
    1. Membership Committee (Al Kagan)
      1. Social for Annual Conference – do we want to schedule a social for Annual?  Last year, we held it on Saturday during Conference.  If yes, what should we budget for it?  Should we approach SustainRT on a joint Social?**Sunday discussion decided not to request a joint Social to accommodate the SRRT business meeting required in bylaws.


    1. Task Forces
      1. Feminist Task Force (Sherre Harrington)**Changing the name of the Amelia Bloomer list to Rise, a feminist book list.  Katelyn has been doing the Tumblr Women in Library History for several years, and needs to stop.  Newsletter and book reviews faded away when wikispaces died.  Perhaps can consolidate FTF news into SRRT newsletter.
      2. MLK Jr. Holiday Task Force (LuJuan Pringle)**Sunrise celebration will be Monday, 6:30 am, keynote speaker Imani Perry.  Could use help to expand the scope of the committee.  Perhaps a book club or book review via ALA Connect. Julie Winklestein volunteered. 
      3. International Responsibilities Task Force (Al Kagan & Tom Twiss)
        1. Program: Libraries in Gaza: Between Despair and Hope (SRRT-IRTF)

Saturday, January 25, 1-2 pm -Pennsylvania Convention Center     Room 113-C

      1. Hunger, Homelessness, and Poverty Task Force (Julie Winklestein)**working on the toolkit; finalized Poor People’s Policy; would like to see more commitment from ALA about addressing Hunger, Homelessness, and Poverty and how libraries can work on these EDI issues; have been adding content to their web site (web committee can help with website)**possible program on homeless students (University of Tennessee Knoxville has food pantry programs, supports for homeless students)**call for ALA to create an office to address these needs
    1. SRRT Newsletter Editorial Board Report (Melissa Cardenas-Dow and Julie Winklestein)**Move to Sunday**
    2. Herb Biblo Outstanding Leadership Award for Social Justice & Equality (Al & Howard)
    3. Planning & Budget Assembly Report (April reporting for Lisa)
    4. Round Table Coordinating Assembly (April)
    5. Endowment**will be meeting with SRRT and Sustainability members to discuss endowment
  1. Open Forum / Conclusion


Sunday, January 26th

Pennsylvania Convention Center Room 106-A

2:30 -3:30 pm

Attending: April Sheppard, Sherre Harrington, Tom Twiss, Julie Winklestein, Melissa Cardenas-Dow, Stavroula Harrissis, Mark Hudson, Tara Brady, Al Kagan, LaJuan Pringle, Jane Cothron, Patrick Frownfelter

  1. Treasurer’s Report  – **Lisa has run into difficulties with the report. We will email this out as soon as it is available. **
  2. Future of Midwinter Conference

No information currently available on actual status of Midwinter Meeting.  Rumor is rife. Lack of transparency is a real problem.

  1.  Seattle Public Library stance on anti-trans organization (All)

See Seattle Public Library statement. Refer to SRRT statement on hate speech and libraries.


  1.  Resume other agenda items where we left off from Action Council I
    1. Social for Annual Conference – do we want to schedule a social for Annual?  Last year, we held it on Saturday during Conference.  If yes, what should we budget for it?  Should we approach SustainRT on a joint Social?


Need to have SRRT Membership meeting (in the bylaws); possibly use the beginning of the all-task force meeting for membership meeting, then break into individual task forces. (Al Kagan moved; Julie Winklestein seconded) Motion to hold membership meetings during Friday night all task force meeting[Passed unanimously]. Suggestion to move meeting time to 7:00 pm.


April Sheppard will explore budget and we will need space/plan for Social.  Try SRRT-ony social.


    1. SRRT Newsletter Editorial Board Report (Melissa Cardenas-Dow and Julie Winklestein)
      Co-editor changes and discussion


Melissa needs to step down, leaving Julie Winklestein as sole editor.  Co-editors have worked well, with the multiple tasks and skills requirements.

Need to decide where to site different kinds of SRRT information: news, minutes, agendas, announcements. Do we put out a call and ask for volunteers?


Need more members for the editorial board, currently there are 4 members and bylaws(?) call for 5 to 8 members.  April suggests virtual meeting of social media, newsletter, and website group. Do the task force web managers need to be included?


    1. Herb Biblo Outstanding Leadership Award for Social Justice & Equality (Al & Howard)


Approved by ALA Awards committee. Award is very broadly conceived—for specific project or for lifetime achievement.  Award is a certificate and $2000 per year (amount may be split among multiple recipients). Fundraising needed to achieve $50,000. Fundraising committee needed, three year commitment and can be renewed if the members want to keep working. Need simple application form and guidelines; rubric for deciding award winners. Charles Kratz to appoint committee.


    1. Planning & Budget Assembly Report (April reporting for Lisa)

FY2019 had a $4 million deficit—$1.6 more than the expected deficit. Combines with the impetus for Forward Together. Several groups (LITA, PLA, etc.) have had their financial reserves raided to pay for ALA debts. There was no communication with the affected groups before the monies were appropriated. ALA Headquarters building sold for $6.7 million; $5 million went into the endowment.

    1. Round Table Coordinating Assembly (April & Tara)


Discussion of how SCOE/Forward Together will affect round tables; how will groups be counted; how will the 1% rule affect round tables.  Group is unhappy with SCOE; question—do we need an open letter that would address changes to round tables?  


  1. Other Business


    1. Dewey Award is now named the ALA Medal of Excellence.


    1. IFC put forward a resolution to form Working Group to Align Vendor Privacy Policies with ALA Policies and Ethics.


    1. BDS Resolution: IFC will not recommend. COL will not recommend. IRC supports, but does not feel it is in their purview.  It will go to Council, but will probably not go anywhere.  Possibly to be discussed at Council Forum, Monday. Tom Twiss to speak on resolution at joint IFC/COL meeting Monday.


    1. Square resolution passed, motion to apply to all ALA events. Passed unopposed.


    1. April Sheppard will investigate the SRRT trunk at ALA office. Since the ALA offices are moving, arrangements for round table and division materials stored at the offices will need to be made.

VI.                 Open Forum / Conclusion


Saturday, 8:40 – 8:55am – Ed Garcia, Executive Board Liaison

Saturday, 10:00 – 10:15am – Patty Wong, President-elect candidate

Saturday, 10:30 – 10:45pm - Steven Yates, President-elect candidate

Saturday, 8:55 – 9:10am - Briana Jarnagin, ODLOS report



SRRT Meeting during ALA Midwinter – please join us.

Friday, January 24, 2020


12:00 PM - 4:00 PM
Amelia Bloomer Project Committee Meeting I (SRRT-FTF)

Location: Philadelphia Marriott Room 305


7:30 PM - 9:00 PM
Social Responsibilities Round Table All Task Force Meeting (SRRT)
*Feminist Task Force Meeting (SRRT)
*Hunger, Homeless, & Poverty Task Force Meeting (SRRT)
*International Responsibilities Task Force Meeting (SRRT)
*Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Task Force Meeting (SRRT)

Location: Philadelphia Marriott Liberty A


Saturday, January 25, 2020


8:30 AM - 11:30 AM
Action Council I Meeting (SRRT)

Location: Pennsylvania Convention Center Room 110-B


8:30 AM - 6:30 PM
Amelia Bloomer Project Committee Meeting II (SRRT-FTF)

Location: Philadelphia Marriott Room 305


1:00 – 2:00 PM
Libraries in Gaza: Between Despair and Hope (SRRT-IRTF)

Location: Pennsylvania Convention Center Room 113-C


Sunday, January 26, 2020


8:30 AM - 6:30 PM
Amelia Bloomer Project Committee Meeting III (SRRT-FTF)

Location: Philadelphia Marriott Room 310


2:30 PM – 3:30 PM
Action Council Meeting II (SRRT)

Location: Pennsylvania Convention Center Room 106-A


4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
Progressive Librarians Guild Meeting

Location: Pennsylvania Convention Center Room 106-A


6:30 PM – 8:30 PM
Progressive Librarians Guild Dinner
Location: Off Site


Monday, January 27, 2020


6:30 AM - 7:30 AM
21st Annual Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. Holiday Observance and Sunrise Celebration

Location: Pennsylvania Convention Center Terrace II Ballroom


9:00 AM - 5:00 PM
Amelia Bloomer Project Committee Meeting IV (SRRT-FTF)

Location: Philadelphia Marriott Room 310