BOARD DOC # 21: Review Materials for Book Awards & Selected List Groups

At ALA Midwinter 2017, YALSA’s Board of Directors discussed and accepted item # 29 Selected List Transition board document. Besides defining the plan for transition of Amazing Audiobooks for Young Adults, Popular Paperbacks for Young Adults, and Quick Picks for Reluctant Young Adult Readers to the Hub, it also required future lists to note when titles are available in Spanish and use e-versions when reviewing nominations.

In an effort to expand this procedure and make it consistent across all Selected Lists and Awards Committees, the Board will discuss piloting the use of digital titles for all selection groups as well as including availability of non-English translations and other formats (e.g. Braille, large print) in annotations for winner/nominees.

The use of digital versions allow inclusion of books from smaller or independent publishers that may not be able to print and ship physical copies of their titles, broadening the pool of nominations and promoting diverse selections. Since eBooks are easily available and accessible, committee members will receive titles promptly and directly.

Adding availability in other languages and formats to winner/honoree annotations will greatly assist those working with non-native English speaking or visually impaired communities.

For more information, see board document # 21 to be discussed on Saturday and the agenda for 2017 Annual Conference. Have questions? Post them here or contact any of the Board members.

Hope to see you at conference!

Trixie Dantis, 2016-2017 Board Fellow

Board Doc #18: Creating a YALSA Liaison to ALA Groups

Networking is a vital part of our work.  One way that YALSA has been able to network is by assigning liaisons to the various 18 ALA Groups that meet throughout the year and at conferences. This allows YALSA to share information and find out what everyone else in ALA is doing.  It’s how I got involved with YALSA.  However, the assigning of members and keeping track of their work has been a difficult task for the YALSA Board.

During the latest round of strategic planning, the Board was in general agreement that YALSA would benefit from cultivating stronger ties with ALA. One strategy for achieving that is refocusing the work of the Executive Committee to allow for this group to devote more of its time to relationship building within ALA. Another possible strategy for YALSA to pursue is better leveraging YALSA’s representative role on 18 specific ALA committees, assemblies, and other groups.

Thus the Board Standing Committee on Advocacy has brought forth the proposal of creating a Liaison position that would be tasked with being YALSA’s liaison to a small number of groups that didn’t correspond with the YALSA Executive Committee’s traditional counterparts in larger ALA activities.

In a nutshell, the position that will be created will be someone who attends both annual and midwinter conferences and will liaison with a few different groups.  To help relieve the cost of conferences YALSA will help defray some of the cost of attending conferences which will create greater accountability for the Liaison.  Current liaison positions don’t require conference attendance, yet most of the groups do the bulk of their work at the conference.  For more information check out Board Doc #18.

Being a liaison is a great way to find out about another division or groups and how their work aligns with ours.  Like I said, I started off as a Liaison from the GLBT-RT to YALSA, it was a great way to discover how the YALSA Board worked.  And I was able to share with the GLBT-RT what YALSA was doing for GLBT youth and how we could work better together.  I encourage you to read the Board Doc and if you’re interested in a becoming a Liaison or volunteering in general for YALSA let us know.

If you’re in Chicago stop by the YALSA Booth or come by a YALSA Board meeting to see what else is happening in our division!

Franklin EscobedoYALSA Board of Directors, 2016-2017

YALSA Board @ #alaac17: Membership Meeting & President’s Program

If you’re attending Annual, I hope you can join us Monday, June 26, from 10:30-noon, in the Convention Center, room W184bc, for the Annual YALSA Membership Meeting and President’s Program!

During the membership meeting, you’ll meet the current YALSA Board of Directors, as well as next year’s Board.  We’ll recognize grant and award winners, as well as donors.  I’ll give a brief update of board actions over the past year, and the incoming president-elect, Sandra Hughes-Hassell, will discuss her initiative for next year.

Directly after the membership meeting, my presidential program task force chair, Valerie Davis, will lead a panel discussion on the theme of “Real Teens, Real Ready” about college/career readiness and adulting.  She had great help finding these speakers–her task force members were Lisa Borten, Lisa Dettling, Jeremy Dunn, Katie Guzan, and Ellen Popit.

Panelists include:

  • Tiffany Boeglen and Britni Cherrington-Stoddart, Charlotte Mecklenburg Library – Non-Traditional Career Paths
  • Laurel Johnson, Skokie Public Library – Neutral Zone/Peer Guided Conversations
  • Lisa Borten, Brooklyn Public Library – Youth Council/Urban Art Jamm
  • Jennifer Steele, Chicago Public Library – (PRO)jectUS, creative workforce development/partnerships
  • Emmanuel Pratt, Sweet Water Foundation, Chicago – Neighborhood Development for Youth

The presentations are going to be awesome, so be prepared to find ideas that you can implement in your community!  See you there!

YALSA Board @ Annual: Measuring the Impact of YALSA Groups

Many exciting changes have taken place to YALSA’s structure since our new Organizational Plan went into effect in 2016. As things continue to change, Organization & Bylaws must investigate new ways to adequately measure the success and impact of the committees, juries task forces, and advisory boards.

To that end, O&B has put together a proposal to investigate industry standards and best practices related to measuring the outcomes and impact of members and volunteers. O&B will present their findings and make a list of recommendations at the Midwinter Meeting in February 2018.

At the same time that O&B is researching best practices, they will be working with the YALSA Board and YALSA staff to institute an exit survey for group members to complete as they finish their terms. Survey results will be made available to Standing Board Committees for review. The exit survey will be instituted on a trial basis, beginning in July 2017 and ending June 2018.

This effort supports the following areas of the Learning Agenda, which is included in the Organizational Plan:

  • An exit survey would provide additional information about the appointed group experience beyond the quarterly chair report. Feedback from individual group members can give insight into the efficacy of intra-group communication, clarity of a group’s assigned charge, evaluation of virtual environments, and more.
  • Leveraging research into industry best practices to develop recommendations for an outcomes measurement plan for YALSA will allow the Board to ensure the goals outlined in the Organizational Plan are being met.

If the Board accepts the proposal from the Organization & Bylaws Committee, work would begin immediately following Annual.

Organization and Bylaws has submitted the following board doc, http://www.ala.org/yalsa/sites/ala.org.yalsa/files/content/MeasuringImpact_AN17.pdf which will be discussed at Board I Sat. June 24 from 1:00-5:30 pm, convention center room W176c. If you have any questions about this board document or any others, please contact YALSA President Sarah Hill at gsarahthelibrarian@gmail.com or Executive Director Beth Yoke at ​byoke@ala.org

Melissa McBride is the Chair of Organization & Bylaws and a Board Member. She is a librarian at Southold Elementary School on the North Fork of Long Island.

Board Doc #20: FY18 Implementation Plan

YALSA’s Board of Directors adopted a new, three year Organizational Plan in April 2016. The Organizational Plan is supplemented by an Implementation Plan, which outlines the specific tasks YALSA will undertake each year to achieve the goals outlined in the Organizational Plan. The Implementation Plan also designates the resources (financial, human, and organizational) needed for each activity and describes how the Board will measure and monitor progress.

The Board will be reviewing the FY18 Implementation Plan at our Saturday Board meeting during Annual. In our discussion we will be considering major projects in progress that support the plan, changes in the library landscape or larger environment within in which teens and libraries function which might impact the plan, as well as YALSA’s capacity to carry out the activities in the plan. We will also be looking at how the FY18 Implementation Plan builds on the 2016-2017 Implementation Plan.

For more information check out board document #20 located here. You might also want to review board document #28 located here which focuses specifically on building YALSA’s capacity to support the Implementation Plan. Have questions? Post your comments here.

If you are traveling to Annual, make sure to stop by the YALSA booth!

As always, thanks for all you do for YALSA and for teens!

Sandra Hughes-Hassell, President-Elect

Board Doc # 32: Teen Tech Week and Teen Read Week

Teen Read Week and Teen Tech Week have done a great job of getting the word out about two specific areas of teen services. But feedback from these two celebrations demonstrates that there are needs of the community that are not being met. One of these needs is that for nearly a decade members have been asking for more examples of low-cost and no-cost programming that works with these and other topics for teen services.  Another is to create more awareness and advocacy opportunities for teen services.

To meet these needs, this board doc offers a re-envisioning of TRW and TTW. It offers several options for thinking about the role TRW and TTW serve for YALSA members. One option is to combine TRW and TTW into one month long celebration of teen services, as a public awareness campaign to raise awareness about the value of teen services. The document outlines modeling it in part on the Lights on Afterschool celebration.  It also emphasizes the importance of selecting a month that supports school and public libraries can celebrate.  The month long celebration offers flexible participation, opportunities to try new things with the longer celebration time, and  structure for celebrating in a way that best fits each libraries needs. It broadens the focus to cover all areas of teen services so that you can customize for your community and your teens.

Along with this month long celebration, the document also focuses on implementing teen services and programs year-round teen programs and services. This will support library staff in all sizes of libraries to more easily support teens in the library, no matter what their staffing situation.

For more information check out board document #32 located here! Have questions? Post your comments here!

Crystle Martin, YALSA Secretary, 2017-2018 President-Elect

 

ALA Annual Visit: Eating in Chicago with Special Diets

Chicago offers a smorgasbord of delicious food options, even to those with dietary restrictions. While you should be able to find at least one option that fits your diet at most restaurants, a great thing about the city is that there are all kinds of people and we have restaurants for every taste. Here are some restaurants that specialize in vegan/vegetarian, gluten-free, Kosher, or Halal options.  In addition to names and addresses, I’ve listed each restaurant’s distance on foot from McCormick Place.

Eleven City Diner, 1112 S. Wabash, 1.7 miles – Kosher

This Jewish deli serves up corned beef, pastrami, beef brisket, and lox.  For breakfast, try the Eleven City French Toast.  They also have several vegan/vegetarian options.

Chicago Curry House, 899 S. Plymouth Court, 2 miles – Halal

Chicago Curry House offers Nepalese and Indian cuisine, including a full buffet.  Try the momo and naan.  They also offer a large selection of vegetarian meals.

Jason’s Deli, 1258 S Canal St, 2.2 miles – Gluten-free, Vegan/vegetarian

This health food deli has both a vegetarian and a gluten-sensitive menu.  Their website also include a Special Diets Wizard that allows you to search for items without the common allergens of your choice. Continue reading

YALSA Board @ #alaac17

Happy LGBTQIA Pride Month!

YALSA’s Board has been hard at work since their last face-to-face meeting in Atlanta: continuing the work of the organizational plan, working on these projects, and planning for ALA Annual in Chicago!

Now, the Annual Conference is fast approaching, and I’m looking forward to the Printz Ceremony on Friday night, honoring Sarah Dessen at the Edwards Award Brunch on Saturday morning, talking with members at our Membership Meeting and President’s Program and so much more! You can find the details about these events and many more YALSA activities on the YALSA wiki.

In lieu of a happy hour this conference, YALSA is co-sponsoring The Other (Invisible) Refugees – Supporting Central American Children in Crisis on Saturday, June 24, from 4:30-6:30 pm in McCormick Place, W178a.  Join us for viewing a film from IBBY & REFORMA, and learn about the Children in Crisis Project, which seeks to raise awareness about these vulnerable youth and to provide resources to them. Donations are accepted at the door.

The Board agenda is up online, and more documents will be posted soon. Members can check them out in advance and send comments or feedback to me at gsarahthelibrarian @gmail.com. If you’ll be in Chicago for the conference, the first ten minutes of each of our board meetings are open to public comment. If you have a question for a particular board member about a document they’ve written, you can reach out to them here.

Be on the lookout for more blog posts in the two weeks from fellow Board members about the topics up for discussion and action.

You can stay up to date with all the conversations by following Executive Director Beth Yoke (@yalsa_director), myself (@glibrarian), and/or other YALSA board members for live tweets of adopted actions and discussion highlights. In addition, there will be follow-up blog posts explaining decisions and board actions once the conference is done.

Thanks for all that you do to make YALSA an awesome association, safe travels and hope to see you in Chicago!

ALA Annual: Chicago Pride

Pride balloons

While you prepare for ALA Annual this summer (or any summer), it’s always worth taking a look to see what other events are going on in the city that you can enjoy before, during, and after.  This year, the conference will overlap with one of my favorite annual events in the city, the Chicago Pride Parade.  The parade will kick off for the 48th year on Chicago’s north side, where it will wind its way through Chicago’s famous Boystown neighborhood and out towards Lake Michigan.  For less mainstream festivities, you can also check out the Chicago Dyke March, taking place on Saturday the 24th in the Little Village neighborhood.  Whether or not you attend one of these events, this is the perfect weekend to enjoy LGBTQ Chicago.

If you do plan on attending the Pride Parade, you can find a map and more information at Chicago Pride Parade website, and should keep a few things in mind.  First, the middle of the parade in Boystown (along Halsted and Belmont) will have the biggest crowds – up to six or seven people deep on the sidewalks.  If you prefer a more laid-back viewing experience, try Broadway near the beginning of the parade route or Diversey near the end.  Second, it’s long!  Be prepared for about two and a half hours of fun, and another half an hour or hour of staking out a spot before the parade.  For me, this usually means bringing a camp chair, cold drinks, snacks, and lots of sunscreen.  Lastly, this is always a joyous event, so be prepared with smiles, cheers, and a camera.

Pride flag

If you want to skip the parade crowds but still enjoy the LGBTQ scene in Chicago, there are a few ways to do that.  Chicago’s Center on Halsted offers critical services as well as fun events for the city’s LGBTQ population, and will be celebrating Pride weekend with a party.  Or get busy thrifting at one of the Brown Elephant locations – proceeds support the Howard Brown Health Center, which provides crucial health services for LGBTQ individuals.  If you’re looking to avoid the Boystown crowds entirely, head north to Andersonville, where you can get a great meal at Hamburger Mary’s and enjoy their Dining with the Divas drag queen performances.  And of course, there’s always Chicago’s various flavors of LGBTQ bars, in Boystown or throughout the city.

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ALA Annual Visit: Eating Out in Chicago

Heading to Chicago for ALA? Bring your appetite!  It would be impossible to create an objective list of the best food in Chicago, so this post will focus on two categories: food near the McCormick Place convention center, and a small selection of some of the most iconic, representative, or renowned restaurants within reasonable distance of McCormick Place.  Be sure to ask other Chicagoans for recommendations when you’re here; you’re sure to hear something different from everyone!

 

Near McCormick Place

Unfortunately, McCormick Place isn’t in a great location.  Food choices near there are sparser than in many other parts of the city.  (Chinatown, one mile away, is a noteworthy exception.)  Still, there are some great options if you know where to look.  Below I’ve listed recommended restaurant names, addresses, and distance on foot from McCormick Place.

Baderbräu, 2515 S Wabash Ave, 0.7 miles

A large taproom and 11 beers brewed on-site.

Reggie’s Chicago, 2105 S State St, 0.8 miles

Live music, lots of beers, and tasty inexpensive pub food just a 15 minute walk from McCormick Place.

Acadia, 1639 S Wabash Ave, 1 mile   

This well-respected upscale restaurant serves contemporary American cuisine, including an excellent burger.  It’s a pricier option, but beloved of foodies.

Café Bionda, 1924 S State St, 1 mile

You can’t go wrong with Italian food, and Café Bionda is just a 20-minute walk from McCormick Place.

Harold’s Chicken Shack, 612 S Wabash Ave, 1 mile

This local fried chicken chain is known for their delicious selection of sauces.

MingHin Cuisine, 2168 S Archer Ave, 1 mile

The dim sum and pork dishes are highlights of this Cantonese restaurant in Chinatown.

Opart Thai House Restaurant, 1906 S State St, 1 mile

This family-owned restaurant serves authentic Thai food.  When I asked some friends their favorite restaurants in the city, this place came highly recommended, and it’s only a mile from McCormick Place.

Qing Xiang Yuan Dumpling, 2002 S Wentworth Ave, 1.4 miles

Dumplings including a huge variety of meats, with vegetarian options too.  The lamb is especially liked by customers.

Bongo Room, 1152 S Wabash Ave, 1.5 miles

Bongo Room is the place to go for breakfast and brunch.  Try the White Chocolate and Caramel Pretzel Pancakes or the Chocolate Tower French Toast.

Go 4 Food, 212 W 23rd St, 1.5 miles

Delicious Chinese-fusion food at great prices in Chinatown.

 

Worth a Trip

These restaurants will require a longer commute, but they’re well worth it!  If you want to venture out and experience some of the best Chicago has to offer, give these a try.

Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria, 805 S. State Street, 2 miles

If you try one local dish in Chicago, make it the deep dish pizza.  There’s a lot of debate about where to get the best pie, but Lou Malnati’s Pizzeria is one great option not too far from McCormick Place.

Manny’s Cafeteria & Delicatessen, 1141 S Jefferson St, 2.3 miles

President Obama is a fan of this Jewish Deli serving gigantic corned beef sandwiches.

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