The YALSA web site went live today (Wed) in ALA’s new content management system. As expected there are some problems that we are working with ALA’s IT Dept. to fix. The largest chunk of information that did not get carried over with the conversion is everything in the For Members Only portion of the web site. This is not deliberate–it was a technical error that we are working to fix. Other issues are with the Teens’ Top Ten pages, the Teens and Library Use Study info and the Young Adult Literature Symposium pages. We have these in queue and will get them resolved as soon as possible. If you notice other problems, please report them to Stephanie Kuenn at or 1.800.545.2433 x2128. Thanks for your patience as we work through this web conversion!
-Beth Yoke

Please take a moment to call your Congressional Representative and Senator’s offices and ask that they cosponsor the SKILLs Act by signing on to Grijalva and Ehlers “Dear Colleague Letter.” This legislation is critical to the future of libraries.

On Thurs. Aug. 2, Representatives Raul Grijalva (D-AZ) and Vernon Ehlers (R-MI) sent a Dear Colleague letter asking Members of Congress to co-sponsor H.R. 2864, The Strengthening Kids’ Interest in Learning and Libraries or SKILLs Act. This Act would encourage all schools to hire a professionally trained library media specialist (LMS) as well as include LMSs in the “highly qualified” category that classroom teachers are in. Without the “highly qualified” designation which was created as part of No Child Left Behind, schools have been opting out of hiring and/or retaining LMSs in recent years. As a result, youth are losing access to libraries and librarians.

More information, talking points and a copy of the letter are provided on the ALA Washington Office blog.

To find the phone number for your Congressperson’s office, go to and type in your zipcode in the box on the left.

Thank you for all that you do to ensure young people have access to excellent library services and resources!
-Beth Yoke


The Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) is seeking a Member Editor for its quarterly journal, Young Adult Library Services. The deadline for applications is September 3, 2007.

The Member Editor will be responsible for the textual and pictorial content of the quarterly publication, and will work closely with YALSA’s Editorial Advisory Board, committees, members and designated YALSA staff to solicit articles and information. The Member Editor will also edit and proof all copy for each issue.

Applicants must have editorial and writing experience, excellent communications skills, the technical capacity to work in an electronic environment, and be YALSA members. Experience in library service to young adults is preferred.

For a complete description of the position and list of qualifications, please see below.

The Member Editor will be selected by November 2, 2007. The term of the appointment is three years beginning with the Summer 2008 issue and ending with the Spring 2011 issue. The Member Editor will receive an honorarium of $500 per issue and $500 to attend each of ALA’s Midwinter and Annual Conferences.

Candidates should send a cover letter, resume which includes editing experiences, and two samples of published work to: Stephanie Kuenn, YALSA Communications Specialist, at All resumes, etc. must be submitted via email. For further information contact Stephanie Kuenn by email or phone: 1-800-545-2433, extension 2128.



The editorship is a professional appointment made by the president of the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA), with guidance from YALSA’s Executive Committee and Editorial Advisory Board. Extending for a period of three years, the appointment carries the possibility for renewal. An honorarium of $500 per issue (4 per year) plus $500 in travel support for each of two ALA conferences per year will be paid. The Member Editor reports to the Communications Specialist of YALSA and works closely with YALSA’s Editorial Advisory Board, and is responsible overall to YALSA’s Board of Directors.


  1. To serve as a vehicle for continuing education for librarians and library workers serving young adults, ages 12 through 18
  2. To publish articles of current interest to the profession
  3. To showcase research and best practices in the field
  4. To provide news from related fields
  5. To spotlight significant events of the organization, including but not limited to awards and booklists
  6. To offer in-depth reviews of professional literature and resources
  7. To serve as the official record of the association


1. Excellent oral and written communications skills.
2. Must have the technical capacity to work in an electronic environment.
3. Editing experience in publishing and/or journalism, sufficient to enable the individual to solicit and select refereed and non-refereed articles that will result in a high-quality publication that addresses the diverse interest of the readership.
4. Dynamic, self-motivated individual.
5. Ability to delegate.

6. Strong organizational skills.
7. Ability to set and meet deadlines.
8. Strong interpersonal skills and the ability to work in a team environment.
9. Experience in library services to young adults.
10. Membership in YALSA.

Member Editor:

  • Deliver to YALSA a final set of copy for each issue according to previously set deadlines, satisfactory to YALSA in content and form and ready for typesetting.
  • Set the scope and tone of the journal both textually and visually.
  • Work with YALSA’s Editorial Advisory Board to develop a yearly editorial calendar, solicit manuscripts and assist them with the referee process.
  • Provide regular input to YALSA’s Communications Specialist about content of upcoming issues so she can solicit ads.
  • Work with YALSA’s Communications Specialist and production services to determine schedules for publication.
  • Provide input to production services so they can develop a cover for each issue.
  • Manage editorial office and write editorials.
  • Manage the work of columnists and reviewers.
  • Aggressively encourage the submission of high-quality articles according to current activities and interests of the field and maintain and develop positive relationships with authors and potential authors.
  • Using the input of referees where appropriate, complete a thorough review of all submitted manuscripts in light of the philosophy, purpose and general style of the publication.
  • Corresponds in a timely manner with authors regarding acceptance, rewriting, or rejection of articles.
  • Edit all copy (including rewriting, reorganizing, validating information in content, etc.).
  • Work with the Communications Specialist to determine association news to be included in each issue of the journal.
  • Prepare each issue for publication by planning the table of contents, writing introductory notes, identifying text to be highlighted in pull quotes, determine the placement of images, etc.
  • Secure copyright as necessary for articles, images, etc.
  • Thoroughly review and edit galleys and page proofs for both first and second passes.
  • Communicate with production services and the YALSA staff regularly.
  • Communicate with the editor of YAttitudes and the Blog Manager and collaborate when appropriate.
  • Attend ALA’s Annual Conference and Midwinter Meeting, including meetings of YALSA’s Editorial Advisory Board, to assist YALSA with promoting the publication and also to solicit authors and advertisers.
  • Prepare an annual report for YALSA’s Board of Directors, to be turned in one month before ALA’s Annual Conference.
  • Answer questions and inquiries about the journal.
  • Perform other relevant duties as needed.


1. Works with production services to maintain the template for the journal.
2. Works with production services and the Member Editor to develop a publication schedule and comply with it.
3. Handles all financial transactions for the journal.
4. Communications Specialist communicates regularly with editor to provide support and facilitate work.
5. Works closely with the ad rep to ensure that ad revenues meet targeted goals.
6. Promotes the publication through appropriate venues.

YALSA’s 50th Anniversary Taskforce needs your help in compiling its “Librarians’ Choice: 100 Super Summer Reads for Teens” list. If you know of a great summer read, please add it to the list we’ve just started on the YALSA wiki. You can access and add to the list from the Summer Reading page on YALSA’s wiki.

After completing a school year of assignments and required reading, these titles are meant to offer some lighter leisure reading. Thanks for helping us celebrate 50 years of YALSA!
-Beth Yoke

Disney Minnie Grants Available to Support Youth Service Projects

Deadline: August 30, 2007

From the web site:
“The Walt Disney Company and Youth Service America are pleased to announce grants of up to $500 to support youth-led service projects. These grants support youth (ages 5-14) in planning and implementing service projects in their community. Teachers, older youth (15-25), youth-leaders, and youth-serving organizations are also eligible to apply, provided that they that engage younger youth (5-14) in planning and implementing the service. Service can take place between October 1 and November 26, 2007. Projects can address themes such as the environment, disaster relief, public health and awareness, community education, hunger, literacy, or any issue that youth identify as a community need.”

Since literacy is listed as an area of support, perhaps libraries can apply for funds to support their Teen Read Week efforts. Learn about Teen Read Week online at
-Beth Yoke

The International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) is looking for librarians and library workers to share their best practices in serving young adults. Submissions will be compiled and shared via the IFLA web site. If you’d like to participate, just download the online form, fill it out and return it to IFLA. To learn more about their best practices effort, visit their web page. Questions can be directed to Ms. Ivanka Stricevic, whose contact information is available on IFLA’s Libraries for Children & Young Adults Section’s web site.

-Beth Yoke

This is just a quick note to let you know that World Wrestling Entertainment will be hosting a wine and cheese reception just for YALSA members at the ALA Annual Conference. It will be held at the Westin in the National Ballroom from 5-7PM on Sunday June 24. The event is free, but we’re asking that you please help us out by RSVPing so we know how much food, wine and beer to plan for. Please take a minute and RSVP online.

WWE will have a couple of their wrestlers on hand for you to meet as well as some fun freebies. The purpose of this event is to launch our 2006-2007 WrestleMania Reading Challenge (which is an extension of Teen Read Week).

See you in DC!
-Beth Yoke

The 06-07 ALA Emerging Leaders project will conclude on Friday, June 22 with a poster session and the reception from 3-5 PM in theWashington Convention Center, Room 144 A. Please stop by and view the presentations, especially the YALSA sponsored ones: “Gurus and Greenhorns: Mentoring the Next Generation of School and Youth Services Librarians” and “A Marketing Plan for the New Odyssey Award.”
YALSA will sponsor one Emerging Leader for the 07-08 session. Applications will be available online July 1, 2007 at: . Deadline for submission will be August 15, 2007.

-Beth Yoke

On Tuesday, June 26, 2007 ALA members and library workers are encouraged to participate in “Library Day on the Hill” and visit their their members of Congress to advocate for libraries. ALA will have one-page leaflets about the benefits of libraries on hand for you to give them. YALSA also has a Legislative Advocacy Guide and Talking Points available from the YALSA wiki. You can make appointments directly with your Congressperson’s office; however, there is no need to have an appointment to visit your Member’s office. To find out who your representatives in Congress are, or to get their contact information, go to ALA’s Take Action page.
Take this opportunity to educate your Congresspersons about the important work that you do! To participate, please register (it’s free) via the ALA Annual Conference site. Advance registration for the conference closes May 18, 2007. We hope to see you on the Hill on June 26th!

-Beth Yoke

In the April 2007 issue of American Libraries there is an article called “Buying into Gossip” by Jennifer Burek Pierce on page 76. Since YALSA and its Past President were mentioned, Judy Nelson felt that it was important to respond. Today she sent the following letter in to American Libraries at

On behalf of YALSA’s Board of Directors, I would like to express my disappointment in Jennifer Burek Pierce’s April article entitled “Buying into Gossip.” Pierce concluded that the Young Adult Library Services Association (YALSA) was not “endeavoring to lure them [teens] to a more high-brow literature” than Gossip Girl. This conclusion was based solely on the fact that in early 2006 YALSA disseminated a list of Gossip Girl “read-a-likes.” If Pierce had examined the list, she would have noticed that of the ten titles all but one were either recognized by an award or had been included on one of YALSA’s recommended lists.

It is even more puzzling that Pierce came to this particular conclusionconsidering that YALSA produces seven annual lists of recommended reading, listening and viewing for teens as well as four literary awards. YALSA’s Michael L. Printz Award for excellence in young adult literature is the only national book award specifically for the young adult literature genre. This award was established precisely to promote and reward literary excellence in the genre as a means of ensuring that teens would have access to a wide variety of age-appropriate literature, including literature of high literary quality. To say that YALSA doesn’t encourage teens to read “high-brow” literature is simply not correct.

As adults and librarians, it also bears mentioning that teens should not be expected to read a steady diet of “high-brow” literature, however that may be defined. Teens, like adults, want to read what interests them when they are choosing materials for recreational reading. Sometimes that means reading Virginia Wolf and other times that means reading Us Weekly. To hold teens to a standard that adults don’t adhere to is unreasonable, and a library that excludes popular titles from its collection is not customer focused.

On behalf of the 5,548 YALSA members who are not only dedicated to
ensuring that teens have access to excellent library services and
resources, but to helping teens become life-long readers and thinkers, I would hope that Pierce would retract her statement about YALSA.

Judy Nelson, YALSA President

(posted by Beth Yoke)