Kevin & Sarah:

Thanks for all your great answers to the many questions posted so far! Just a few more:

What advice would you offer a Director for supporting someone wanting to work with YALSA? If Directors cannot afford to send staff to conferences, what are other ideas for encouraging staff to be involved in YALSA? Can you offer any examples – current or any time during your career, when your Director or administration was particularly helpful in supporting your involvement in YALSA?

And speaking of conferences and involvement, this brings me to a question current YALSA President, Judy Nelson, asked last year’s Presidential candidates:

Now that you’ve decided to commit yourself to YALSA for the next three years, what won’t you be doing in your spare time?

About Paula Brehm Heeger

Past-President of YALSA (President, 2007-2008) and current member of the YALSA Board of Directors (2006-2009). Past YALSA Committee Chair positions include Partnerships Advocating for Teens (PAT), TAGS, Intellectual Freedom; Past ALSC Chair positions include Notable Children's Videos; Contributing author to upcoming "Quick and Popular Reads" (ALA Editions, forthcoming)

2 Thoughts on “Support, Time Questions for Vice-President/President-Elect Candidates

  1. Sarah Cornish Debraski [Visitor] on March 1, 2007 at 12:13 pm said:

    1. I would suggest that whatever financial support they are able to give is a priority, so that the person could attend conference. Another way directors can support their staff is by showing that professional involvement is important to them too, by at least keeping up memberships and an awareness of news in the profession.

    2. A director can encourage staff to read our journals and blog, to write articles for YALS and YAttitudes, to read the articles that are published from conference presentations, as well as any posted conference handouts, to subscribe to any of the YALSA listservs, and to join any discussion groups of special interest.

    3. My previous director was very supportive with my YALSA involvement. In particular, she asked the Friends of the Library to pick up the conference costs that our library system would not. I really appreciated that she saw the value of my involvement and wanted it to continue.

    4. Right now I am not working so I do have ample time to commit to YALSA. I already set aside time each night for reading the blog and doing committee correspondence. I do intend to find part time work in the near future, though. I believe that will still give me plenty of time for YALSA.

  2. Kevin Scanlon [Visitor] on March 5, 2007 at 11:57 am said:

    I would emphasize that supporting a staff member’s active participation in YALSA is an investment, not only in the individual, but also the organization’s services to teens. The director will see a return on this investment in terms of core skills including, program ideas, outreach, and public relations/advocacy. These expanded skills will generate positive publicity within the community and the library’s stakeholders.

    If the Director cannot afford to financially support the staff member’s attendance at conference, I would urge them at least provide them the time to attend ALA conferences. Too many of our colleagues not only have to pay their own way at conference but also take vacation time. This is unfair when the beneficiary includes the employer. If the Director cannot afford to attend the member’s attendance, I would suggest that they encourage their employee’s involvement via virtual committee membership, attending YALSA online classes, and posting to the YALSA blog and listservs.

    My current employer acknowledges how important active involvement is to the success of the library. For our upcoming Nevada Library Legislative Day, the exchange of ideas and professional development at conference has allowed me to articulate how libraries benefit their constituents.

    I suppose that will do less tourist stuff when I’m at conference than I currently do.

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