Wednesday, April 03, 2013

WAPL Conference is Getting Closer!

What better way to spend the beginning of May in the lovely city of Lake Geneva?
The 2013 WAPL Conference, “50 Shades of Libraries,” will be held May 1-3 at the beautiful Grand Geneva Resort and Spa.  We’re going to explore how libraries have changed in different ways and shades.

Advance registration can be done online or through the form by April 15th!

Wednesday, May 4 begins with the WAPL Conference Chair’s Reception: Apps ‘n’ Apps at 7 pm. This will informally showcase some of the amazing apps available for mobile devices. We’ll have apps to eat and apps to tap.  Be ready to share your favorite app and you will be rewarded!

Start your Thursday, May 5th, off right with Mindfulness: A Guided Meditation Experience either at 7 am or 7:45 am.  This 30-minute session led by a Buddhist nun, Bhikkhuni Vimala, will teach you meditation techniques to be more attentive in your daily life.

Carolyn Brewer
The keynote presentation, “50 Shades of Laughter,” will be given by Carolyn Brewer at 9 am. Carolyn is a former social worker and currently the Executive Director for the North Texas Library Partners. She will entertain and enlighten us on why it's important to maintain a sense of humor in library land.

Morning sessions will take place, followed by a luncheon with Wisconsin’s newest Poet Laureate, Max Garland. Max will read from his poetry and discuss how libraries can select poetry, promote it, and support Wisconsin poets. 

More fantastic sessions will take place in the afternoon, covering everything from programming to building websites.

Lesley Kagen
The conference continues on Friday, May 6, with morning sessions, followed by a luncheon Wisconsin author Lesley Kagen. Her books will be available for purchase and signing after she speaks.

As if the conference content weren’t enough, the room rates of $99 a night at the Grand Geneva Resort and Spa might be enough to lure you. Your conference room rate includes amenities such as:
     free wireless Internet in guest rooms and meeting rooms
     valet parking, if needed, or free parking throughout the resort
     trolley transportation on the grounds via regularly scheduled routes and times
     access to the fitness center, locker room, sauna, steam room, lap pool and classes
     local, credit card and toll-free calls
     2 bottled waters per day
     daily paper
Hotel reservations can be made through the WLA website by April 8.

So what are you waiting for?  Get your registration in now, or check out the WAPL conference page on the WLA website for more information.

See you in Lake Geneva!

Friday, June 15, 2012

WLA's Blog Has Moved!

WLA has a new website at and a new blog.

Some features of the site include:
  • New design to improve overall look and usability of site (in case you didn't notice)
  • New sections on careers and marketing
  • Search box to help you find what you need
  • Better organization of favorites, like the WLA Literary Awards winners
  • Improved integration with MyWLA - your online profile and other features from MemberClicks
Because the site is built in Joomla!, an open-source content management system, it will be easier to make changes in the future. We look forward to your feedback to help us improve usability, select new features and build content.

Take our quick MyWLA poll about your first thoughts.

If you have comments about things you like, ideas for improvements, or questions about some aspect of the site, please use the comments feature of this blog article. Or, email Lisa Strand, WLA Executive Director, at

Stay tuned for more improvements and added features in the coming months.

Thanks to the many individuals who helped build this website:
WLA Communications Advisory Committee (Barbara Kelly, Chair; Pete Gilbert, Karen Dunn, Tasha Saecker and Julie Fricke)
WLA Foundation Campaign Action Committee (Peter Gilbert, Chair; Martha Gammons, Mark Ibach, Kris Stabo, Lia Vellardita, Anne Rauh, Valerie Edwards, Pat Eschmann)
Joy Schwarz, Casey Schacher, Cheryl Nessman, unit leaders, and many other members who contributed insights about the usability of the site (an ongoing project)
And especially, thanks to Susan Lewandowski, The SWC Group, for putting it all together.

Friday, May 25, 2012

WeLead Mentorship Program Now Accepting Applications

MADISON, Wis. – The WeLead Task Force is seeking applicants for its revised initiative to identify and mentor four new or emerging librarians.  Established in 2004 by the Wisconsin Library Association (WLA), the Task Force’s mission is to foster leadership skills in a select few members of the next generation of library professionals, be they public, academic, school or special librarians.  Chosen participants will receive financial support to attend WLA conferences, be assigned a designated mentor, and be provided professional development opportunities.

Eligible applicants must be students, paraprofessionals and professionals currently in the field of library science and have demonstrated potential to be future library leaders.  To qualify for this program applicants may either 1) never been a member of the Wisconsin Library Association or 2) have been a member for three years or less (not including student memberships).  More information is available at the online application.

Since WeLead began, three classes of protégés have completed the program.  A member of the first class, Jennifer Snoek-Brown, a Reference & Instruction Librarian at Mt. Hood Community College in Gresham, Oregon, notes, “I appreciated and enjoyed my WeLead experience during my three years as part of that initial cohort; I appreciate my WeLead experience even more now, looking back.”  She goes on, “WeLead provided me a mentor I am still in contact with today; colleagues who became friends; a path into professional committees and further friendships I could not have anticipated; support for ideas and passions I wanted to explore but didn't know quite how to get started; in short, a beginning.”

There have been changes to the program since that initial class.  The revised WeLead Initiative now requires only a two year, rather than a three year commitment.  As a result, mentors and protégés will have the opportunity to build their relationship while focusing on a WLA committee assignment, which now occurs within the first year of the program.  Potential mentors, who also receive complementary registrations for the WLA conference, are encouraged to apply.

Another former protégé, Katharine Clark (Madison Public Library-Sequoya Branch), concludes, “Being a part of the WeLead program was an outstanding experience for me. It gave me the opportunity to meet librarians from all over the state and become involved with WLA in a more direct way than just paying my membership dues. I continue to be impressed with the supportive people I've met through WLA and look forward to attending conferences and serving on committees in the future.

If, like Katharine, you’re looking for an opportunity to become more involved in a professional organization - to grow as a librarian and a leader - please consider applying for this program.  The application deadline is July 31, 2012.

For more information, please contact Pamela O’Donnell, Chair of the WeLead Task Force for the Wisconsin Library Association by telephone, 608-263-2014, or email:

WLA Foundation Scholarships Available: Apply by June 15

Save yourself some cash; apply for a continuing or library education scholarship by June 15.  The WLA Foundation offers 2 continuing education and 4 library education scholarships each year. If you are working towards your MLS or need extra support to attend an upcoming conference, take advantage of the opportunity to earn one of these scholarships.

In addition, some WLA units offer grants to attend the WLA Conference. Deadlines for these grants vary.

Awards Nominations Due June 1: Recognize Excellence!

Recognize excellence in libraries by submitting a nomination for a WLA award by June 1. Librarians, trustees, friends, community leaders and libraries are all eligible to be nominated for one or more of these awards:
  • Library of the Year
  • DEMCO/WLA Librarian of the Year
  • Citation of Merit
  • Special Service Award
  • Highsmith Award
  • Muriel Fuller Award
  • Trustee of the Year
Check out more information about each award, including nomination forms, and help WLA recognize excellence!

Tuesday, May 22, 2012

Book Your WLA Hotel Accommodations Now!

Book Your WLA Hotel Accommodations Now!

The 2012 Wisconsin Library Association Conference, “Libraries: For the Common Good,” is quickly approaching!  Mark your calendars for October 23-26 for a great educational sessions, opportunities to network with your colleagues and a chance to visit with exhibitors.

Hotel lodging will be available at the Radisson Hotel La Crosse, located at 200 Harborview Plaza, La Crosse, 54601.

You can reserve online or by calling the hotel.

To reserve online, go to Radisson Book a Hotel at (this is the link for Radisson‚s Book a Hotel/Redeem Gold Points).  The online reservation promotional code is: WILIBR

Under Book a Hotel/Redeem Gold Points, enter your date for Check-in and Check-out plus # of Rooms, Adults, Children
Below is a box labeled Promotional Code: enter WILIBR
Far right of Check-in and Check-Out, click on Find Rate (this provides the standard hotel rate of $129, plus upgrades)

To call in, phone the Radisson Hotel La Crosse at (608) 784-6680 or their national toll-free reservation line at (800) 333-3333.

The deposit policy for individual reservations is one night (plus 13.5% tax) at the time your reservation is made.  Cancellation is 48 hours prior to arrival to avoid penalties.  Parking for overnight guests is complimentary.

Your reservation in the WLA Conference Room Block supports the conference and the Association!

Rhonda Puntney Gould
2012 WLA Conference Publicity Chair

Sunday, May 20, 2012

Grand Opening: Prairie du Sac Public Library

Join the Prairie du Sac Public Library in his new location and under its new name:  Ruth Culver Community Library, 540 Water Street. 

The library plans a day long celebration with special activities on Saturday, June 16, 9:30 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.: 

  • 9:30 a.m. Ribbon Cutting & Dedication
  • 10:00 a.m. Music by Bob and Marita Kelter
  • 11:00 a.m. Little Miss Ann (Musical Children's Performer)
    Sponsored by Tracey and Patrick Taggart, II
  • 12:30 p.m. Music by Matt Brennan and an ensemble of students
  • 12:30 p.m. Meet Scoopie!
  • 1:45 p.m. Music by Wrannock (Mike Mossman & Lisa Hartmann) 
Congratulations to the Prairie du Sac library and community!

Friday, May 18, 2012

Bob Bocher, Retiring But Not Entirely (Whew)

As most probably know, Bob Bocher, Library Technology Coordinator at DPI, is retiring in mid-June. While we had an informal party for him (and colleagues Roxane Bartelt and David Weinhold) at the recent WAPL Conference, we are heartened to learn that he'll continue helping libraries through his work as an ALA OITP Fellow. Here's a tribute to Bob in a recent ALA District Dispatch:

There's a comment in the post about Wisconsinites liking beer. Everyone knows we only drink it because Bob likes it.

Monday, May 07, 2012

Don't miss the Lake Superior Libraries Symposium (and Taco Bar)!

Time is running out to join the Lake Superior Libraries Symposium (and enjoy Glorious Taco Bar.)

The 2012 Lake Superior Libraries Symposium would like to extend an invitation to our inaugural conference on June 1st, 2012 at Wisconsin Indianhead Technical College in Superior, WI.  Join archivists, technologists, librarians, directors, technicians, and students from around Minnesota, Wisconsin and the Upper Peninsula. Just consider all of the experiences, resources, and ideas that are being gathered for this unique conference!   Attendees will:

·     SEE ELI NEIBERGER, 2011 Library Journal Mover and Shaker, offer a keynote address on the future of providing materials and services entitled “Access Schmaccess.”
·     EXPERIENCE FOUR SESSIONS of informational presentations full of dynamic content featuring all aspects of librarianship. Sessions on digitization, leadership, assessment, children’s literature, collaboration, web-design, long term planning, and more.
·     NETWORK THANKS TO ample time devoted to networking and sharing ideas This is an opportunity unlike any other to collaborate, develop relationships, and help create a stronger future for libraries. Imagine this:
o   Minnesotans shaking hands with Wisconsinites!
o   Librarians from the Upper Peninsula of Michigan speaking to you! 
o   Academic librarians and public librarians exchanging pleasantries!
o   Archivists, Catalogers, and Reference Librarians conversing!
·     SHARE WITH COLLEAGUES because our Call for Posters has been extended!  Take a minute to sign up and share your research, organization, or future plans.
·     EAT DELUXE TACO BAR, an amazing amalgamation of beans, tortillas, tacos, spices, lettuce, proteins, and joy!
·     BE FRUGAL AND economical! all of this (and more) for the low, low price of 25 Dollars! A full conference experience for a webinar price! Penny Pinchers Rejoice!

So, what are you waiting for?  Register by phone by calling 715-468-2815, or online at via the WITC Classfinder.  Registration, due to fiduciary and organizational structure, requires personal information; all information is secured and used only by the state Wisconsin to better serve its community.

For more information, visit our site at

Questions, comments, suggestions and condemnations should be directed to

The Lake Superior Libraries Symposium is marketed, staffed and supported by the collaborative efforts of librarians from University of Minnesota-Duluth, WITC, UW-Superior, Superior Public Library, the College of St. Scholastica, Superior Middle School, Northern Waters Library Service, and many others!