Update from the State Librarian
Librarian of California,
This fall issue of CSL Connection looks at how
Californians of all ages and backgrounds benefit from learning in
libraries and from library-sponsored programs. The issue shows
readers how California State Library (CSL) projects, from the Tribal
Libraries “Boot Camp,” to the California Civil Liberties Public
Education Program to the LSTA-funded Live Homework Help (among many
others!) help support Californians’ efforts to learn in today’s
I believe that the fall, when people come back
inside, is a wonderful time for all of us who work in, and for,
libraries to consider how we can make our libraries destinations –
places for community members to meet and greet each other and share
their thoughts and ideas. At the annual American Library Association
(ALA) Conference in Chicago in June, I was proud to be a panel
member of ALA President Carol Brey-Casiano’s program, “Library
as Place.” The transcript of this program is available at www.ala.org.
A video is available as well on the ALA
web site. I have also prepared an article about this topic for
the California State Library Foundation Bulletin.
On August 3rd I enjoyed the second in my series of
casts thanks to the wonderful services of Infopeople.
In that web cast I discussed the new initiative funded by the Bill
& Melinda Gates Foundation, the Public Access Computing Hardware
Upgrade Program (PAC HUG – how about that for an acronym!). I also
reviewed the OCLC/Google project in which public library holdings
are being made available through Google and other search engines.
Another aspect of this project is the creation of the California
Libraries Catalog on OCLC that contains over 15.8 million records
representing the holding of over 1,200 libraries. Please visit the
Capitol as seen from the
California State Library
summer, as well as traveling to Chicago for the ALA Conference in
June, I was fortunate to be able to spend two weeks on vacation in
Italy in July. This was my first two-week vacation in seven years
and it was great. I came back to California and was very busy
interviewing candidates for positions at the California State
Library. In early August, I
was able to participate in the exciting focus group discussion
regarding an emergent literacy program being planned for fiscal year
06/07. This focus group was ably assisted by Phoenix Public Library’s
Elaine Meyers, a national expert on emergent literacy. I also was
able to attend, on August 13th, the dedication of the National City
Public Library, the second Proposition 14 building to be completed.
In July, I was pleased to attend one of the
reference focus groups sponsored by the California State Library in
partnership with the Metropolitan Cooperative Library System. These
focus groups on the future of first - and second - level reference
services were held in locations from San Diego to Sacramento.
Similar discussions were held last fall in the Bay Area. The report
from these meetings is featured on our homepage
or you may click directly on California
Reference Service Focus Groups – First and Second Level Reference:
Current Trends and Future Needs (PDF 258 KB).
These discussions represent one of the steps that
the California State Library will be taking in the next year to
determine the future of resource sharing in this electronic Internet
age. In late November and early December, further discussions on the
future of public library resource sharing and cooperative services
will be held in a number of locations in the state. Maureen
Sullivan, a library facilitator and consultant from Maryland, will
lead these discussions. Maureen has worked in academic libraries and
consulted with many library systems. Maureen will also prepare a
report that will clarify topics for discussion at a stakeholders’
convocation that will be held sometime in 2006. I believe that it is
critical for the California State Library to strategically plan how
to provide and fund cooperative services in the 21st century. I
would encourage you to attend these workshops.
On August 17th, I had elective foot surgery that
derailed me a bit. I expect to be back to work at full capacity by
the time you will be reading this edition of CSL Connection!