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CONNECTION ~ Issue 41, Winter 2006
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In this issue:

Update from the State Librarian

State Librarian of California,
Susan Hildreth

I would like to send all our readers my best wishes for a healthy and happy 2006. I have been quite busy since our fall issue of CSL Connection. I would like to thank all who attended the State Librarian’s Breakfast in Pasadena in November. We had a great turn-out at that early Saturday morning event. The conference theme was “honoring everyday heroes,” and at the breakfast we focused on volunteers in our libraries. It was a great opportunity to see and hear the moving stories of some very special volunteers and the commitment they have made so that their libraries are successful. Thanks to Valerie Reinke, Library Development Services, for serving as the key organizer for that event. We are committed to creating another great breakfast program for 2006 in Sacramento.

From November 28 through December 8, Library Development Services Chief Tom Andersen and I traveled to Sacramento (not much of a journey!), Redding, San Jose, Santa Barbara, Fresno, Pasadena, and San Diego to attend focus groups in which each region’s library administrators and staff discussed the current status and future of cooperative services and resource sharing programs that California Library Services Act (CLSA) systems offer to public libraries.  Maureen Sullivan, a library consultant who has worked with cooperative systems in other states, led the focus groups.  Maureen’s synopsis of the wealth of information that was shared during the focus groups will be available early this spring and posted on the CSL website. I hope her report will begin a discussion of how we can make our cooperative systems work better for California libraries.  I gained great satisfaction in sharing in these pro-active gatherings of our colleagues.  I was again reminded of the unique mix of priorities and service needs that exist among the diverse regions of our state.

"Julian Winter Sports" circa 1950

- Photo courtesy California State Library, California History collection

On December 7, I was very excited to virtually attend a focus group that included five different sites in the state. We connected librarians in Palm Springs, Imperial County, San Luis Obispo, Modesto, and Del Norte and had a great, virtual discussion about cooperative systems and services. Thanks to Dan Theobald and the Rural Initiative for coordinating this focus group and to the Pasadena Public Library for serving as the host site.

Also on December 7, I had my quarterly State Librarian's Webcast. To see the webcast, go to URL I talked about the “Library as Place,” which is a role that is becoming more and more critical for the success of our libraries. I’ve really enjoyed my quarterly webcasts because they give me the opportunity to share our state news with everyone in our California library community.  We are planning more webcasts for 2006. They are scheduled for March 1, June 13, September 20, and December 12. Thanks to Holly Hinman and everyone at Infopeople for opening this great virtual door.

Finally, I wanted to make sure that everyone was aware of an important report that was recently issued by OCLC, “Perceptions of Libraries and Information Sources.” Through Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) funding, one copy of this report is being sent to each public library jurisdiction in the state. Please check it out at The report provides the findings and responses from an online survey in an effort to learn more about:

• Library use
• Awareness and use of library electronic resources
• The Internet search engine, the library and the librarian
• Free vs. for-fee information
• The "Library" brand

The findings indicate that information consumers view libraries as places to borrow print books, but they are unaware of the rich electronic content they can access through libraries. Even though information consumers make limited use of these resources, they continue to trust libraries as reliable sources of information. A critical read in the report is its concise summary of conclusions. You will find it at:

As we settle into 2006, I look forward to another challenging year as your state librarian. In February and March, I will be speaking at the California Library Trustees and Commissioners (CALTAC) spring training sessions in northern and southern California. We are in the midst of reviewing LSTA projects for 2006/07 and are planning for the Library Directors’ Forum set for May in San Diego. I will continue to travel throughout our state to meet library customers and supporters and to make sure the critical mission of our libraries is articulated clearly.

Table of Contents

California State Library Special Collections Head Gary Kurutz lauded at gala luncheon

Victorian illuminated manuscripts shine in California State Library exhibit

State Spotlight:  California Film Commission

One student's crusade to change derogatory cataloging in California libraries

Elaine Yamaguchi named director of California Civil Liberties Public Education Program

Ameri-Corps works for literacy

NAAL report shines light on California literacy programs

Cultural Crossroads:  Historias at San Diego Public Library

California Library Association conference:  View from the California State Library

San Diego Literacy Coordinator named one of San Diego's "Top 50"

Mountain View Public Library wins Putnam award

California Cultural and Historical Endowment funds new gallery to display California's prehistoric legacy

Heyday authors available for author events at public libraries

Two California librarians honored by New York Times

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