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Providing Healthcare Information Services in Small and Rural Libraries

by Jacqueline F. Rammer, Library Director, Lakeview Community LibraryRandom Lake, WI — jrammer@monarchlibraries.org As librarians working in rural and oftentimes small libraries, our days consist of so many things. From being the town warm-up center during a frigid snowstorm to hosting a never-ending number of bake sales, our plates are full. So, when it comes […]

Public LIbraries Sept/Oct 2019 Feature Article

PLA Leadership Development Programs Offer Lessons for a Lifetime

About the Authors MARY ANNE BOWMAN is Deputy Director, St. Mary’s County (MD) Library. RENEE DI PILATO is Deputy Director, Alexandria (VA) Library. KIMBERLY B. KNIGHT is Central Area Manager, Prince George’s County (MD) Memorial Library. DENISE LYONS is Deputy Director of Statewide Development, South Carolina State Library. DONNA WALKER is Executive Director, Jefferson County […]

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Gordon Chang on the Amazing Accomplishments of the Ghosts of Gold Mountain

Gordon H. Chang’s Ghosts of Gold Mountain: The Epic Story of the Chinese Who Built the Transcontinental Railroad is a phenomenal work of historical research, giving readers an unprecedented look at the daily lives of the Chinese workers whose ingenuity and perseverance led to the construction of the transcontinental railroad. Chang dives into the workers’ lives both in China and in the U.S., providing insight into what motivated the workers to move across the ocean as well as the unimaginable working conditions they faced once in the States. Critics have heaped praise on Chang, with The Wall Street Journal stating that “he has written a remarkably rich, human and compelling story of the railroad Chinese” and Publisher’s Weekly calling his work “vibrating and passionate.”

May/June 2019 Cover of Public Libraries Magazine

A Fresh Approach to Job Rotation

Whose library practices job rotation? Anybody? Job rotation, or “the systematic movement of employees from one job to another,” is more common in corporate or academic settings than in public libraries. But a discussion at our library opened the door just enough for the idea to slip in while our branch managers were wrestling with issues of burnout and
job satisfaction.

PUBLIC LIBRARES JANFEB 2019 FEATURE ARTICLE

The Mission-Informed Library–Internal Marketing to Improve the Organizational Climate in the Public Library

by Amy An, Instructional Services II Librarian at the Boca Raton (FL) Public Library. Contact Amy at aan@myboca.us. “We treat coworkers and other colleagues with respect, fairness, and good faith, and advocate conditions of employment that safeguard the rights and welfare of all employees of our institutions.”—American Library Association (ALA) Code of Ethics [1] Library […]

PUBLIC LIBRARIES MARCH APRIL 2019 FEATURE ARTICLE

If You Want to Figure Out What America Is Go To a Library – An Interview with Jose Antonio Vargas

By BRENDAN DOWLING, Assistant Editor of PublicLibraries Online. Contact Brendan at brendowl@gmail.com.Brendan is currently reading The Sympathizer by Viet Thanh Nguyen. Pulitzer Prize–winning journalist Jose Antonio Vargas made headlines when he came out as an undocumented U.S. citizen in 2011. In his recent memoir, Dear America: Notes of an Undocumented Citizen (HarperCollins, 2018), he details […]

public libraries nov dec 2018 feature article

We Are All Welcome in Libraries – A Conversation with Eric Klinenberg

By BRENDAN DOWLING, freelance writer living in LosAngeles. Contact Brendan at brendowl@gmail.com.Brendan is currently reading Middlemarch byGeorge Eliot. Sociologist Eric Klinenberg’s Palaces for The People: How Social Infrastructure Can Help Fight Inequality, Polarization, and the Decline of Civic Life (2018) persuasively and forcefully argues that the strength ofcommunities is in direct proportion to the strength […]

PUBLIC LIBRARIES MARCH APRIL 2019 FEATURE ARTICLE

Librarians Respond to Humanitarian Crisis at the Border

By Patrick Sullivan, Emeritus Librarian at San Diego State University. Contact Patrick at sullivan@sdsu.edu. Patrick is currently reading Ellos Nos Cuidan by Omar Delgado. Librarians Oralia Garza de Cortés and Lucía González first raised their voices at the 2014 REFORMA meeting held during the American Library Association’s (ALA) Annual Conference in Las Vegas, challenging fellow […]

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ALA Annual Conference: Welcome to Washington, DC!

What does the Washington, DC location add to the 2019 ALA Annual Conference? Here are a few opportunities to consider.

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Mean Girls

The movie Mean Girls turns 15 this year. For those who might not be familiar, the plot tells of a homeschooled teen entering a public high school to interact with peers for the first time. Being the nerdy newbie she is treated poorly until she infiltrates the ‘in-group’ with the intent of turning the tables. In doing […]

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Go Make Something Great Happen: Jason Barron on How Doodling Helped Get His MBA

Jason Barron combined entrepreneurial skills with artistic panache to create The Visual MBA: Two Years of Business School Packed into One Priceless Book of Pure Awesomeness. Barron used sketchnotes, a visual note-taking process, to retain information in his MBA program at Brigham Young University. The result turned to be so popular with professors and students alike that Barron turned the notes into a book, first through an incredibly successful Kickstarter campaign and then through a publisher. The book is designed for anyone with a passing interest in the business world, and Barron’s lively illustrations make the most complex principle accessible to the lay person.

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Readers’ Advisory Survey Now Open

As part of its ongoing work to measure the impact of libraries on author/title discovery and book sales, the Panorama Project has launched a new survey focused on collecting data on readers’ advisory services. The survey (available here) is open to all U.S. public libraries and public library staff and takes 15 to 20 minutes […]

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Esther Wojcicki on Parenting, Teaching, and Why its Okay to Smile Before Christmas

In How to Raise Successful People: Simple Lessons for Radical Results, Esther Wojcicki distills the techniques she’s developed for over fifty years as an educator and parent to help readers raise self-reliant children. Combining research and reflection, Wojcicki’s outlines how her method, TRICK (for Trust, Respect, Independence, Collaboration, and Kindness), empowers children to develop skills to be resilient members of society. Wojcicki is the founder of the Media Arts programs at Palo Alto High School as well as the CEO of Global Moonshots in Education, a non-profit which aims to instruct teachers and business leaders in the TRICK methodology.

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Rage Programming: Anger as Program Inspiration

One day, the sidewalks were empty. The next day, they were everywhere. The scooters. Dockless electric scooters, to be exact. They had suddenly appeared on the sidewalks of the DC metro area, where I live and work. They were scattered haphazardly: some on front lawns, some in driveways, some blocking wheelchair ramps. Some were standing upright, some lying on their sides like roadkill. And those were just the dormant ones. When in use, they were ridden in the streets, in and out of bike lanes, and on the sidewalk. Often, I saw children who were obviously below the minimum age for riders (18 years) riding two at a time. It was absolute chaos, and it made me livid.

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New Podcast! Libraries Connecting You to Coverage

We talk with Rachelle Brandel, Adult Services Librarian at the Ferguson (MO) Public Library about PLA’s ‘Libraries Connecting You to Coverage’ initiative and the Ferguson Library’s efforts to help their community members enroll in health insurance during the Affordable Care Act’s open enrollment period.