Libraries Transform

Because All Libraries Can Make the Campaign Their Own

Like most nonprofit organizations, the Catholic Library Association (CLA) has a unique set of concerns when it comes to marketing. How do you best promote what you do? How do you reach audiences, especially new ones?

Sigrid Kelsey, who advises the association on its marketing efforts and is the general editor of “Catholic Library World,” said she had been thinking about these very questions when the former president of the CLA forwarded her information on the ALA’s Libraries Transform campaign.

Because College Is Just the Beginning

DePaul University (Chicago) Librarian Scott Walter remembers what he was thinking when he heard ALA President Julie Todaro announce her “expert in the library” focus for the Libraries Transform campaign, “It struck me as a perfect platform for deepening academic library engagement.” Around the same time, Walter’s colleague, Ashley McMullin, assessment and marketing librarian at DePaul, and her team were working on a plan to share more information about librarians with the campus through a new initiative called “library spotlights,” which shows how individual librarians are transforming the university. After learning about the Libraries Transform’s “expert in the library” theme, Walter asked McMullin to combine these ideas together in a campaign to highlight the expertise of academic librarians and all they bring to the DePaul community.

Because the Best Ideas Are Generated over Lunch

That’s what staff from the Huntley Area Public Library in Illinois discovered. As they were enjoying their midday meal, they began talking about the potential of using the Libraries Transform campaign.

“At that point, we were not using the Libraries Transform campaign,” said Doug Cataldo, marketing and media developer, Huntley Area Public Library. Cataldo continued, “But during lunch we brought up the possibility of incorporating the Libraries Transform theme for National Library Week and tossed around ideas that could show not only how libraries transform people but also how people transform libraries.”

Because You Never Know Whose Life You Might Transform

Touger Vang had no previous experience with libraries before coming to the United States as a refugee from Laos in 1982 at the age of 10. Today he is a public services coordinator for the Yolo County Library in West Sacramento, California, where he manages early literacy programs and adult services program and outreach activities. In his role, he also looks for opportunities to collaborate with local schools and nonprofit organizations on partnership activities. He credits his high school librarian, Eileen L. Brewer, for being a role model. He says, “Ms. Brewer’s influence during my early years inspired and instilled in me what a librarian should be. She showed me that a librarian is someone who is kind, humble and puts the mission of helping others at the forefront. We still keep in touch.”

The Sky is the Limit for One Library in Big Sky Country

It is no coincidence that the Missoula Public Library recently received overwhelming voter approval for a $30 million referendum for a new library; library patrons are well acquainted with the many ways the library reaches out to the community. The new library will triple its circulation from 200,000 items to around 600,000. Given its transformative nature, the library has adopted the Libraries Transform campaign. Library Director Honore Bray said the Libraries Transform campaign is a perfect fit for her library. The Libraries Transform Because statements played a part in the library’s push for a new building – one Because statement informed the public “Because 1 in 4 Missoulans doesn't have access to a utility called the Internet.” The new library will triple its capacity for Internet connectivity and computer use.

Transformation at the MidPointe Library System

Earlier this year, the MidPointe Library System in Middletown, Ohio, was in the process of completing two major building projects: the first new branch in more than 40 years and an expanded and updated library. That’s when library director Travis Bautz realized the American Library Association’s Libraries Transform campaign could be a helpful marketing tool in opening the new spaces to the public.

Organizations Welcome Librarians After Town Tackles Parks, Jobs and Safety

The Spokane County (Wash.) Library District is known for its customer service, material lending and management of public dollars. So when a new library director suggested a community-oriented initiative to staff members in 2012, some rolled their eyes. But after some initial skepticism, the changes have been overwhelmingly positive: Librarians see community engagement work as part of their fundamental responsibilities, and the library has been invited to participate in the community in new and exciting ways.

Students Can Also Be Experts in the Library

School librarian Kristina Holzweiss was flipping through the American Library Association’s (ALA) graphics catalog when she saw the Libraries Transform campaign’s “I’m an expert in” badges. The first thought that came to her mind was, “How can I use these in my school library?” Rather than she being the only one to wear a badge, Holzweiss decided to try them out with her student “techspert” team at Bay Shore Middle School (BSMS) in Long Island, N.Y. At BSMS, Holzweiss works with “techspert” students throughout different periods of the day. They help her in the library with everything from wrangling robots to creating websites and organizing the makerspace.

Beginning a New Chapter

When Kimberly Tate-Louie, a graduate MMLIS student at the University of Southern California (USC) became president of her American Library Association Student Chapter in May 2016, she vowed to put the chapter on the map. “We wanted to make a name for the chapter and make it known that there are passionate students involved in the program at USC and involved in the chapter,” she said. She said she was inspired by articles in American Libraries magazine about the Libraries Transform campaign. “What I like about Libraries Transform is that it’s based on how libraries are still relevant and continue to be relevant. They are more than relevant,” she said, especially in a digital environment.

Fixing a Stop Light Leads to Getting a Green Light for Community Action

The traffic light victory began with Red Hook Public Library Director Erica Freudenberger’s goal to change the perception of the library. Freudenberger said, at the time, many residents thought the library was a “musty old building that was best to be avoided.” With this in mind, the library director united staff members, politicians and local civic engagement specialists to make the library an agent of change.

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