United for Libraries Committees

United for Libraries members may serve on a variety of division level committees. The United for Libraries Vice-President/President-Elect selects committee members and chairpersons in mid-May each year, with terms of service July 1-June 30.

Committees

  • Awards & Honors Committee
  • Finance Committee
  • Governance Committee
  • Leadership Development Committee
  • Membership Committee
  • Nominating Committee
  • Partnership & Fundraising Committee
  • Programs Committee
  • Public Policy & Advocacy Committee
     

Get Involved & Volunteer

  • Current personal members of ALA and United for Libraries*
  • Submit the committee interest form here

*United for Libraries group members are not ALA members, and therefore cannot serve on committees. If you are currently an United for Libraries group member and wish to purchase ALA/United for Libraries membership, please call (800) 545-2433, ext. 2161, or email united@ala.org.

 

Committee Charges, Deliverables, Expectations of Members, and Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Expertise
 

Awards & Honors Committee

Committee Charge

Exercise oversight of all aspects of award administration and promotion including but not limited to: application materials and procedures; evaluation of costs and benefits of current or new awards. Coordinating with the Leadership Development Committee, ensure awardees are cultivated as member-leaders and with the Partnerships and Fundraising Committee pursue corporate sponsors for awards and honors. Ensure all activities and efforts are in alignment with the ALA Awards Policy.

In alignment with United for Libraries’ EDI statement, the Awards Committee will endeavor to work with internal and external partners to promote opportunities in a way that will recognize diverse awardees/honorees and reach a more diverse audience.

Deliverables

- Review and update the list of existing awards/honors.
- Make changes, as needed, to application materials and procedures.
- Create a publicity plan and collateral materials for all awards/honors.
- Make recommendations to board for new award/honors programs and/or termination of old programs, if deemed necessary.
- Make recommendations to board for approval of awardees/honorees in accordance with committee’s charge.

Expectations of Members

Attend 4-6 committee meetings per year. Actively participate in committee meetings and engage honorees/awardees as appropriate.

Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Experience

Have basic working knowledge of and/or a willingness to learn about all awards and honors United for Libraries bestows.

Finance Committee

Committee Charge

To oversee financial planning and reporting in collaboration with the Executive Director of United for Libraries. Work with other United committees and United’s Executive Director to identify appropriate use of funds or revenue-generating opportunities. The committee will be chaired by the Fiscal Officer of United for Libraries.

Deliverables

- Draft and present to the board an annual budget
- Perform budget analysis and fiscal planning on behalf of the Board
- Represent United for Libraries at ALA budget meetings
- Identify revenue & expense goals for membership, programs, etc.
- Communicate United’s financial position to board on a regular basis
- Present mitigation measures to ensure United is a net positive contributor to ALA financially
 

Expectations of Members

Attend 4-6 committee meetings per year. Actively participate in meetings. Act as liaisons to other United committees, as needed. Assist in educating board members on United’s financial position and its position within ALA.

Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Experience

Knowledge and experience with budget development and financial planning. Basic understanding of Profit and Loss statements, balance sheets, etc. helpful.

Governance Committee

Committee Charge

To conduct an annual review of United for Libraries’ bylaws, standing rules, operating procedures, and organizational structure, and to recommend to the board such amendments and changes deemed necessary. To ensure membership receives adequate factual information regarding proposed bylaw amendments prior to voting thereon. To ensure United for Libraries’ standing rules and operating procedures are adequately documented and up-to-date. To ensure United for Libraries’ operating procedures are not in conflict with those of ALA.

In alignment with United for Libraries’ EDI statement, the Governance Committee will endeavor to incorporate inclusiveness and diversity in all governing documents.

Deliverables

- Review bylaws annually and propose bylaws amendments as needed.
- Up-to-date documentation of standing rules and operating procedures and proposed changes thereto.
- Proposed changes to organizational structure, as needed.

Expectations of Members

Attend at least 2 meetings per year, more if changes are actively under discussion. Members will stay up to date on governance changes within ALA and initiatives within the broader organization.

Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Experience

Basic understanding or experience in nonprofit or organizational governance. Willingness to participate in and share insights as new best practices are identified.

Leadership Development Committee

Committee Charge

To engage and support member-leaders in the work of United for Libraries; build a pipeline of member talent to aid in board succession planning; and provide for the orientation and continuing education of United for Libraries board members. The committee will be chaired by the Immediate Past-President.

In alignment with United for Libraries’ EDI statement, the Leadership Development Committee will endeavor to recruit a diverse group of leaders, taking into consideration role, library type, geography, demographics. Furthermore, it will ensure an inclusive and accessible orientation process.

Deliverables

- Cultivate new member-leaders for United for Libraries through targeted initiatives and programs, including but not limited to ALA’s Emerging Leaders.
- Support the President of United for Libraries by recommending member-leaders for committee appointments.
- Provide a packet of information annually to all new and existing board members.
- Develop/maintain current and accurate board member orientation packet.
- Develop/implement annual new board member orientation process.
- Develop/implement opportunities for board continuing education.

Expectations of Members

Attend 4-6 committee meetings per year. Attend/lead new board member orientation meetings. Identify other board members who will connect with and engage new members to guide them in their first year as a United board member. Commitment to identifying and developing leaders throughout ALA and United for Libraries.

Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Experience

Committee members must have a willingness to share their experiences with others and seek best practices in communicating United’s strategic goals/plans to current and potential board members. Members are committed to and cognizant of United’s EDI statement. They will create a collegial and welcoming atmosphere and remain active in library communities.

Membership Committee

Committee Charge

To develop and pursue a continuous campaign to recruit and retain United for Libraries members; to engage members to improve the membership experience; to advise the United for Libraries board on policies relating to membership, dues, and member benefits. The chair of the committee will serve as liaison to ALA membership services and the ALA Membership Committee.

In alignment with United for Libraries’ EDI statement, the Membership Committee will work to diversify recruiting strategies and to engage diverse prospective members.

Deliverables

- In coordination with the Finance Committee, set targets for member retention and new member recruitment, and monitor progress against goal.
- Develop member recruitment and retention plan and support United for Libraries staff in execution thereof.
- Develop recommendations on policies relating to membership, dues, and member benefits.
- Identify and make recommendations on improvement of member experience to staff or board, as appropriate.

Expectations of Members

Attend 4-6 committee meetings per year. Willingness to do membership outreach and promotion, as needed.

Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Experience

Members have experience within other membership-based organizations and a working knowledge of recruitment of and service to member organizations; robust written or oral communication skills are a plus, as well as working knowledge of the use of social media and other forms of communication to recruit and engage members and potential members.

Nominating Committee

Committee Charge

To promote and publicize leadership opportunities on the United for Libraries board. To prepare a slate for open positions for United for Libraries Board approval and inclusion on the ALA election ballot. To maintain an up-to-date board recruitment matrix that informs United board members of strategic criteria for recruitment of new members. The committee will be chaired by the President-Elect of United for Libraries.

In alignment with United for Libraries’ EDI statement, the Nominating Committee will endeavor to recruit a diverse group of leaders, taking into consideration role, library type, geography, demographics.

Deliverables

- Solicit recommendations and recruit nominees for open Board positions.
- Educate nominees about United for Libraries and expectations of the positions for which they are being considered.
- Obtain permission from all nominees considered for office to be placed on ballot.
- Finalize slate of at least one person for each open position to be presented for approval at the summer United for Libraries board meeting.
- Ensure that all nominees complete the ALA forms necessary for placement on the ballot by ALA deadline.

Expectations of Members

Attend 2-4 committee meetings per year. Speak with candidates to educate them about United for Libraries and answer their questions.

Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Experience

Strong networking abilities. Knowledge of United for Libraries’ organizational structure, goals, and needs.

Partnership & Fundraising Committee

Committee Charge

To plan and implement fundraising appeals and campaigns; to promote and coordinate board giving; to identify, pursue, and recommend to the board opportunities for partnerships, both corporate and non-profit; to advise the United for Libraries board on policies relating to partnership and sponsorship; to identify, pursue, and maintain positive relationships with current and prospective corporate sponsors; to coordinate with the Programs Committee in identifying prospective corporate sponsors for United programs; to coordinate with the Awards and Honors Committee in identifying prospective corporate sponsors for awards.

In alignment with United for Libraries’ EDI statement, the Partnership and Fundraising Committee will endeavor to seek out partnership opportunities with organizations that also align with United's commitment to EDI.

Deliverables

- In coordination with the Finance Committee, set targets for fundraising and sponsorship and monitor progress against goal.
- Create and execute plans to increase sponsorship revenue.
- Make recommendations to board for partnership opportunities.
- Recommend policies related to partnership and sponsorship for board approval, as needed.

Expectations of Members

Attend 4-6 committee meetings per year. Hold meetings with current and prospective sponsors and partners. Support efforts to raise awareness of fundraising needs and/or goals.

Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Experience

Experience in fundraising and/or corporate partnerships is a plus. Understanding of development strategies and/or willingness to learn. Willingness to assist staff in soliciting gifts and/or contacting potential partners with whom United may collaborate.

Programs Committee

Committee Charge

To solicit, develop, coordinate, and implement programs sponsored by United for Libraries at ALA and PLA’s annual conferences that address the issues and concerns of library Trustees, Friends of Libraries, and Foundations; to determine which conferences beyond ALA and PLA should feature United programs and identify and recruit presenter talent to submit program proposals; to develop, coordinate, and implement free member programs; to develop, coordinate, and implement fee-based webinars, virtual events, and other revenue-generating programs; to plan and execute an annual United for Libraries virtual conference featuring content relevant to emerging issues among its members; to work with other United Committees and staff to funnel their work-product or content into United programs.

In alignment with United for Libraries’ EDI statement, the Programs Committee will endeavor to provide programs that reflect the diversity of the libraries (academic, school, research, public, rural, urban, suburban) we serve; ensure accessibility to all members in attendance; and be inclusive when identifying program presenters.

Deliverables

- ALA Annual Conference - successfully jury the required number of programs as dictated by ALA Conference services
- LibLearnX/Future of Libraries - provide relevant content as dictated by planners of these conferences whether in-person or virtual
- Virtual United Conference - work with United staff to present a two or three day virtual conference
- Revenue-Generating Programs - plan and execute content and programs that will generate income for United

Expectations of Members

Attend 4-6 committee meetings per year. Assist in the recruitment of programs and presentations for various conferences or events. Participate in the ALA jurying process to select programs for ALA Annual conference. Take on leadership roles in United’s own virtual conference and other in-person and virtual programs.

Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Experience

Committee members are familiar with issues facing libraries, Friends of Libraries, Library Trustees, and Library Foundations, and will utilize personal networks and spheres of influence to recruit quality programs to present on behalf of United.

Public Policy & Advocacy Committee

Committee Charge

To coordinate all advocacy-related projects of United for Libraries; lead the development of advocacy training resources and educational programming for members, coordinating with the Programs Committee where appropriate; mobilize United for Libraries leadership and members for coordinated state and national legislative action, working with other ALA units as appropriate; develop and implement sustainable solutions to meet the just-in-time advocacy needs of United for Libraries members; represent United for Libraries and our members in a close working relationship with ALA’s Public Policy and Advocacy Office, ALA’s Committee on Library Advocacy, Committee on Legislation, and other ALA units as appropriate. The Chair of the Public Policy and Advocacy Committee will serve as liaison to ALA’s Committee on Library Advocacy.

In alignment with United for Libraries’ EDI statement, the Public Policy and Advocacy Committee will advocate for diversity in library institutions, promote awareness of equity issues in library communities, and ensure inclusive and equal access to training materials for all.

Deliverables

- Training materials not limited to webinars, printed materials, electronic resources.
- Communication to members regarding specific advocacy matters related to Libraries.
- Call to action statements that amplify what other ALA units might be promoting.

Expectations of Members
Attend more than 50% of monthly committee meetings. Promote awareness of issues facing libraries and United for Libraries’ members. Assist in the creation of and encourage participation in United’s programs on advocacy, as needed.

Desired Skills, Knowledge, and Experience

Committee Members are passionate about libraries and are willing to teach and motivate others to champion library issues around funding and support. Previous advocacy skills are a benefit. Members are actively engaged to help direct, advise and  assist others in navigating legislative issues at local, state and federal levels. It would be helpful to understand the intricacies of ALA.


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