At the 2007 Midwinter Meeting candidate for ALA President-Elect, Nancy Davenport, visited YALSA’s Board of Directors. Here is a summary of what she had to say:

For her presidency she would encourage members to think about library as place. In Nancy’s opinion, libraries should be everywhere—even in people’s kitchens. Libraries should extend themselves and collaborate and create connections (create connections is her theme). She feels ALA really needs to find librarians to work with young people because there’s a shortage. According to Nancy, ALA hasn’t done recruitment fairs—she thinks ALA should do them as a part of national conferences. She mentioned she went to YALSA’s Gaming Night at the Midwinter Meeting, and feels it’s important to listen to youth and find out what they want from libraries. She talked about DC Public libraries and working with them to increase programming for teens—she worked to get money from the mayor to stay open later and do teen programming.

The Board asked Nancy three questions. Here is how she responded. Please note, these responses are paraphrased here. They are not exact quotes.

What do you feel the divisions’ relationship is with ALA?
Nancy felt that the divisions are getting richer and the association was getting poorer.

How would you ensure that the youth divisions would be equitably represented on ALA committees? There are 3 different youth divisions, but ALA often treats them as one entity.

Nancy said that each division brings a different perspective and that each voice should be represented at the table. She would do it by “inviting you to the table.”

Can you tell us about a time when your supported library service to teens?
She said that she has worked to help the school librarians as a parent. As interim director of library services at DC Public, she created a safe place for teens. She has hired teens to work in libraries as a means of luring other teens to the library.

The ALA/YALSA Election begins March 15th. Don’t forget to vote! Go to the 2007 Election page to learn more.
-Beth Yoke

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