RUSA Update Summer 2010

RUSA Update, Summer 2010

Emily Ford, Elizabeth Stephan, Editors

In this edition:

RUSA Division Report
RUSA Section Reports

Message from MARS
RSS Review


Message from the RUSA President


This is finally my last writing stint as your President. We are all gearing up for Annual about now, and I know I am eagerly looking forward to the conference in Washington, D.C. RUSA is offering three pre-conferences, fourteen programs, and fifteen discussion groups in at ALA Annual in D.C.! There is something for everyone! But most important, we are providing you with opportunities for professional growth and networking with your colleagues.

We are offering programs on the use of screencasting software for instruction, budget friendly software to enhance your library’s services, and ways to expand your library’s virtual reference services to mobile devices. Panelists will share their experiences with international borrowing and lending, shared collection development practices, digitizing historical collections. There are programs on electronic reference product development, green business practices, and the role of unions in promoting democracy and economic prosperity. The very first readers’ advisory research and trends forum will be held as well as the well respected Reference Research Forum. There is also a program that focuses on implementing collection centered programs and an opportunity to view and discuss the film So Long Are You Young: Samuel Ullman’s Poems and Passion.

Please join me at the RUSA Presidents’ Program: “For the Love of Reference” and remember why you became a reference librarian.

RUSA @ Annual Conference, is available on the RUSA Blog. RUSA’s conference guide provides complete descriptions of all RUSA programs and discussion group meeting locations and a handy D.C. map of the ALA Hotels. I would like to thank Liz Markel and Susan Hornung from the RUSA office for their excellent work in the creation of this guide.

As I leave the President’s office, I want to address some of the challenges we will be facing in the future.

  • Encourage the facilitation of more electronic participation. I recently received the RUSA E-Participation Task Force Final Report which recommends: “The time is now for RUSA to shift towards one Annual conference and to focus on how E-participation can help to strengthen, streamline and sustain the Division.” Although the RUSA Board has not had an opportunity to vote on this recommendation, I believe it will define our work for the near future. I would publically like to take this opportunity to thank all the members of the Task Force for their hard work and dedication to RUSA in this report. The members include: Celica Ross (Chair), Elisa Addlesperger, Shelley Arlen, Jaclyn Bedoya, Bobray Bordelon, Laura Jordan, James Langan, Daniel Mack, Janice Schultz, Erin Silva, and Charles Thurston.
  • Encourage and facilitate the creation of new professional development opportunities to be delivered via webcasts.
  • Continue the development of the RUSA website by encouraging all RUSA Committees to participate in the “Five things Every Librarian Needs to Know About” project.

Before I go I would like to recognize several RUSA Members for their dedication, service and commitment to RUSA this year. These individuals were always there for me, responded to emails quickly, and gave feedback when asked. So here goes, in spontaneous memory order, Lianne Luckman Taylor, Joe Thompson, Barb Mann, Celia Ross, Kathleen Kern, Dave Tyckoson, Wayne Bivens-Tatum (because I owe him).  I also thank all the members of my President’s Program Planning Committee: Lisa Horowitz, Chair, James A. Benson, Christy Donaldson, Gale S. Etschmaier, Harriett Green, Shannon Jones, Mary Mintz, Jessica Moyer, and the technological genius of Alec Sonsteby who all worked so hard.I would also like to recognize the support of the RUSA Office Staff, Susan Hornung, Liz Markel, and Chris Cieslak.  Please join me in congratulating RUSA’s newly elected officers. I want to personally thank everyone who ran in the election. Being nominated is a reflection of your impact in the profession and the confidence your peers have in your ability to lead. I also want to thank everyone who participated in the RUSA elections by voting. It is an important responsibility and obligation of members in a professional organization. I look forward to working with all of you!

Susan J. Beck

RUSA President

RUSA Election Results


  • Gary W. White—President Elect, RUSA (see below for more information on White)


  • Judy Solberg
  • Wayne Bivens-Tatum


  • Chris Lebeau—Vice Chair/Chair Elect
  • Kevin Harwell—Member-at-Large


  • Wayne Bivens-Tatum—Vice Chair/Chair Elect


  • Megan M McCardle
  • Asia Gross
  • Donna M. Colamatteo

History Section

  • Janice Lindgren Schultz—Vice Chair/Chair Elect
  • Thomas Jay Kemp—Member-at-Large


  • Both bylaw changes were approved
  • Anne M. Houston—Vice Chair/Chair Elect
  • Erin Elizabeth Rushton—Secretary
  • Stephanie Joy Graves—Member-at-Large

Reference Services Section

  • Liane Luckman Taylor Vice Chair/Chair Elect
  • Marjorie Schreiber Lear—Secretary
  • Virginia Cole—Member-at-Large


  • Heather Welton—Vice Chair/Chair Elect
  • Bethany Badgett Sewell—Secretary
  • Geneva R. Holiday—Member-at-Large

Gary White elected RUSA Vice President/President-Elect

Gary White, acting head of the department of reference, collections and research at Pennsylvania State University, has won election as vice president/president-elect of RUSA.

White joined the faculty of the University Libraries at Penn State in August 1992 and became head of the Schreyer Business Library in April 2000. He holds a Master of Library Science from Kent State University, a Master of Business Administration from the University of Akron and is currently pursuing a Ph.D in Higher Education at Penn State. He has been a prominent leader within RUSA, including serving on the Board of Directors (2006-2009). He has been active in the Business Reference and Services Section (BRASS) of RUSA for more than fifteen years, serving as chair in 2003-2004. He received the Gale Cengage Award for Excellence in Business Librarianship, a distinction bestowed annually by BRASS, in 2008.

In addition to his professional association activities, White served as editor of the Journal of Business & Finance Librarianship (2005-2010), was editor of The Core Business Web: A Guide to Key Information Resource (Haworth, 2003) and is co-author of Using Microsoft PowerPoint: A How-To-Do-It Manual for Librarians (Neal-Schuman, 1998). He has published numerous book chapters and articles, including publications in College & Research Libraries, Journal of Academic Librarianship, Reference & User Services Quarterly, Reference Librarian, Collection Building, and The Journal of Marketing Management. In addition, he has published proceedings and made presentations at many national conferences including the American Library Association, Special Libraries Association, National Online, Internet Librarian, Computers in Libraries, Online World, and Integrated Online Library Systems.

“I am honored to be given the opportunity to work with the membership of RUSA in the coming years,” said White. “As the premier organization of reference and user services professionals in the United States, RUSA is at the forefront of providing professional development resources, advocacy, and support to our communities. In today’s environment, librarians and libraries are facing great challenges and also opportunities, and I look forward to working with RUSA leaders and members to provide the best resources we can to assist our membership.”

White will begin serving in the vice-president capacity following the 2010 ALA Annual Conference.

Literary Tastes Breakfast: Amazing author lineup is complete!

Sunday, June 27, 8:00-10:00 A.M.; Grand Hyatt Washington—Independence A

The final author lineup for the 2010 Literary Tastes is set! We’re rolling out the red carpet for five noteworthy and award-winning authors, and invite you to join us for breakfast while these amazing writers speak about their work and the craft of writing.

The 2010 lineup:

  • Adriana Trigiani, author of Very Valentine, a 2010 Reading List top pick for Women’s Fiction
  • Dan Chaon, author of Await Your Reply: A Novel, a 2010 Notable Books List selection
  • Laney Salisbury, co-author of Provenance: How a Con Man and a Forger Rewrote the History of Modern Art, also a 2010 Notable Books List selection
  • David Small, author of the graphic novel Stitches: A Memoir, also a 2010 Notable Books title
  • Melvin Konner, author of The Jewish Body, the 2010 Sophie Brody Medal for Jewish Literature honor book

Purchase tickets online now! (login required)

Tickets are $55 for RUSA members, ALA student members and ALA retired members. Non-members pay $60. You do not have to register for conference in order to attend this event!

Instructions on how to register can be found on the RUSA Blog.

RUSA’s 2010 ticketed events include:

Interlibrary Loan Statistics: What We Gather, How We Use Them, and Who We Provide Them To

Friday, June 25, 8:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M. Event Code RUS4

Behind the Genealogy Reference Desk: Our Capital’s Hidden Genealogy Gems

Friday, June 25, 8:30 A.M.-5:00 P.M. at the Daughters of the American Revolution Library. Event Code RUS2

Reference Evolution: Envisioning the Future, Remembering the Past
Friday, June 25, 9:00 A.M.-5:00 P.M. Event Code RUS3

Registration for programs and preconferences ends on June 20. Instructions on how to register can be found on the RUSA Blog.

Back to Top

RUSA Division Report

RUSA President’s Program Committee: For the Love of Reference: 2010 RUSA President’s Program

Monday, June 28, 2010; 1:30-3:30 P.M.; Washington Convention Center, 202A Reference and readers’ advisory work are among the most engaging specialties in librarianship. It inspires great devotion among its practitioners and fans. Like practitioners, researchers who dig for information as part of their job find the same satisfaction as reference librarians. At this year’s RUSA President’s Program, explore the twin appeals of information discovery and serving users that inspires this love of reference and readers’ advisory work. Three dynamic speakers will lead the discussion:

  • Nancy Pearl, author of many books on the pleasures of reading and star of her own television show, Book Lust with Nancy Pearl, presents on “Gifts our Patrons Give Us.”
  • Joseph Finder, New York Times best-selling thriller author, will share his experiences as an information digger in researching for his work, including award winners Killer Instinct and Company Man.
  • Peter Bromberg, Assistant Director for South Jersey Regional Library Cooperative (SJRLC), will talk about the future of reference and why we will still love it.

A short video with clips of interviews of librarians discussing their love of reference and a running backchannel of twitter commentary will complement the presentations. We’re also experimenting with a polling tool. Bring your cell phones, iPads, Droids, whatever! We hope to see you there!

RUSA Membership Committee: Learn more about RUSA!

New to RUSA? Interested in getting more involved? Learn more about RUSA and how it can work for you! Brief “RUSA 101” sessions will be held in the membership pavilion in the exhibits area, with exact times to be announced. Stay tuned! We’ll be posting our schedule on RUSA-L, on the RUSA blog, and many listservs. If you have any questions, contact Liane Taylor, RUSA Membership Committee Chair at ltaylor [at] txstate [dot] edu.


Expand your business reference horizons at ALA Annual in Washington, D.C. by attending our BRASS programsall are free and open to any attendees. Highlights include “The New Breed of Entrepreneur: Meeting Their Research Needs” on Saturday; “The State of Accounting Research Databases” BRASS Publishers’ Forum on Sunday; and our BRASS program, “Clean, Green and Not So Mean: Can Business Help Save the World?” on Monday (featuring a free (!) breakfast sponsored by Standard & Poor’s). For more details on these and other BRASS events, including times and locations, please see the BRASS Notes section of this RUSA Update or check your ALA schedule.  And, in E-participation news, BRASS completed a successful “virtual Midwinter” experiment earlier this year. BRASS’ report to RUSA, can be found on ALA Connect. The BRASS experiment was part of a larger investigation into E-participation and you can read the RUSA E-Participation Task Force’s final report.  Finally, if these topics or events strike your fancy, consider joining the almost-10,00 members strong BRASS section! Will you be the lucky 1000th person to join us? For more information on BRASS, please feel free to visit our Website or contact the Chair, Celia Ross: caross [at] umich [dot] edu.

Harriet Green

RUSA Division Liaison

Emerging Leader Report

The Emerging Leaders program has been a fulfilling experience for me and my group. It has given me the chance to work with some amazing librarians in putting together a grant application for ASCLA. The program has opened up many professional opportunities for our group. My fellow group member, Jennifer Walker (Mississippi Library Commission), and I were named as 2010 Library Journal Movers & Shakers. In Rhode Island, I was honored to receive a citation from Cranston Mayor Allan Fung for being named an Emerging Leader (an article appeared the Cranston Herald). I was also asked by my alma mater, the University of Rhode Island, to serve a three-year term on the Advisory Board of the Graduate School of Library and Information Studies.

Our project is to revise a grant proposal for ASCLA to be submitted to the IMLS Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program in December 2010. The original proposal was to create scholarships for prospective MLS students with disabilities. After reading the reviewers comments our group had several strong ideas to improve upon the original grant proposal. We want to expand the reach of the scholarship program by adding scholarships not only for students with disabilities but for those students who are interested in working with library patrons with disabilities. We decided to try more data to show the need to this scholarship program. We did this by conducting two surveys. One survey was sent to Deans of ALA-accredited MLS programs and focused on the availability of assistive technologies and scholarships at their institutions for students with disabilities.

The second survey was sent to various library-related listservs across the country. It was targeted toward MLS students. The survey received 459 responses. Some things we learned:

  • 5.9% of respondents had a physical or mental impairment that substantially limits one or more major life activities.
  • 17.4% of respondents had an interest in having a significant portion of their professional duties working closely with people with physical or mental impairments.
  • 27.9% would apply for a scholarship for students with disabilities or for those interested in working with people with disabilities.

We are integrating the data we learned from the survey into our grant application. Our efforts are continuing and we will have a completed grant proposal to submit to ASCLA and present at the Emerging Leaders poster session at ALA Annual. Make sure you mark your calendars to come check out all the work from the Emerging Leaders groups on Friday June 25!

Edward Garcia

RUSA Emerging Leader
Back to Top

RUSA Section Reports


Carol E. Smith, Editor

Message from the Chair

Greetings BRASS members and friends and fans of BRASS!

BRASS will be in our nation’s capital in full force this June for ALA Annual. Interspersed amongst the schedule of sure-to-be exciting and productive BRASS Committee meetings, there is also an amazing slate of planned events. Choose from the following (or just come to them all!):

Friday night, June 25:

  • 5:30-7:30 P.M.: BRASS New Members Reception, generously sponsored by InfoUSA and organized by the BRASS Membership Committee, will be held at the Capital City Brewing Company (downtown location) 1100 New York Ave. NW. Start your conference of with free food and drink…oh, and it’s also a great opportunity to meet other BRASS members!

Saturday, June 26:

  • 1:30-3:30 P.M.: BRASS Forum: The New Breed of Entrepreneur: Meeting Their Research Needs. This year’s forum has been organized by the BRASS Business Reference in Academic Libraries committee. Come listen to a panel of librarians from various library settings as they discuss how libraries are seeing a change in the type of user looking for business startup information. Location: Capital Hilton—Congressional Room.

Sunday, June 27:

  • 10:30 A.M.-12:30 P.M.: BRASS Discussion Group: “Out with the old, in with the new: Our changing collections and services.” Librarians are grappling with what traditional resources and services we should discontinue versus what new resources and services we should embrace. Join us for a lively discussion on e-books, promoting collections and more. Location: Hilton Washington—Georgetown East Room
  • 1:30-3:30 P.M.: BRASS Publishers’ Forum. The theme of this year’s Publishers’ Forum is accounting resources. Representatives of some of the major vendors of accounting databases will be on hand to give us the inside scoop and answer our questions about their products. Location: Hilton Washington—International Ballroom West

Monday, June 28:

  • 8:00 A.M.-12:00 P.M.: BRASS Program: “Clean, Green and Not So Mean: Can Business Help Save the World? Come for the free Standard & Poor’s sponsored breakfast, stay for the exciting speakers who will cover corporate social responsibility, peace through commerce, green IT, and other related topics! Speakers include Dr. Timothy Fort, Executive Director of the Institute for Corporate Responsibility at the George Washington University School of Business, whose recent publications have focused on the concept of peace through commerce; Lisa Hall, Executive Vice President and Chief Lending Officer of the Calvert Foundation, which funnels investment capital to social enterprises; and David Deal, CEO of Community IT Innovators, a “not-for-much-profit” company that provides Green IT and other IT consulting services to social mission organizations (businesses and NPOs); and Michael Matos, Business and Economics Librarian at American University. Location: Washington Convention Center—room 151B
  • 4:00-6:00 P.M.: RUSA Awards Ceremony and Reception. Do you like honoring our colleagues, hanging out with winners, and enjoying free snacks? Then please join us at the RUSA Awards Ceremony and Reception as we recognize our BRASS winners and other RUSA awardees. Location: Washington Convention Center—room 207 A/B
  • 6:30 P.M.-Whenever!: BRASS Dinner. This is always a nice way to relax after a busy conference and hang out with old BRASS colleagues and make new BRASS friends. This year, we’re going back to the Old Ebbitt Grill (675 15th Street NW) where we’ll be able to order off of the regular menu and have separate checks. Look for an RSVP posted on BRASS-L shortly.

Thanks to all of the current committee members, committee chairs, support position volunteers, and Executive Committee members for their excellent work for BRASS over the past year. And thanks to all of our (almost 1000!) members for making BRASS such a productive, collegial and fun section. It has been great to be able to serve as Chair over the past year, and I hope to always call BRASS my ALA “home.”

Celia Ross
BRASS Chair, 2009-2010


BRASS Gale Cengage Student Travel Award Winner

Congratulations to Nancy Poole, this year’s recipient of BRASS Gale Cengage Student Travel Award. Poole is a Library & Information Studies graduate student at the University of North Carolina, Greensboro.

Poole has a demonstrated commitment to business librarianship, having served an internship as a business reference librarian at the Jackson Library of UNCG in the Fall of 2009 and in working on projects with the business teaching faculty at UNCG. Poole has an MBA from Florida State with a concentration in Management and Finance and has taught business management and business reference at Appalachian State University and Florida State University. She’s currently working on an article that has been accepted for publication in a forthcoming Academic BRASS newsletter, which discusses trends in business reference teaching and liaison work with business faculty. In recommending Poole for the BRASS Gale/Cengage Student Travel Award, a business librarian at UNCG commented that “Nancy impressed me with her knowledge of business research and resources, but also, perhaps more significantly, her understanding of what it’s like to be a class instructor, and her experience of how research assignments can increase learning and further connect the business school to the library.”

The full press release can be viewed here.

Congratulations again and best wishes for continued success in business reference!

Diana Wu, Chair

BRASS Emerald Research Grants Winners

Kevin Harwell, Associate Librarian at Schreyer Business Library, Pennsylvania State University, and Tao Jin, assistant professor at the School of Library and Information Science, Louisiana State University, are the 2010 recipients of the BRASS Emerald Research Grants. These grants, generously supported by Emerald Group Publishing, Inc., provide $5,000 to each winner in support of proposed research in the field of business reference.

Harwell’s and Jin’s research proposals represent diverse but equally important questions for the business reference profession. Harwell’s research will focus on work environments and job satisfaction, while Jin’s research involves gaining valuable information about microenterprise owners, a previously unexplored segment of the patron population.

The full press release from April 27, 2010 can be viewed here.

Congratulations, Kevin and Tao!

Jennifer Boettcher, Chair

Committee Reports

BRASS Business Reference in Academic Libraries Committee

Come join the committee at the BRASS Forum it is hosting at ALA Annual. The panel discussion this year will be on “The New Breed of Entrepreneur: Meeting Their Research Needs.” Many of us are seeing a change in the type of user looking for business startup information at our libraries. More entrepreneurs without business backgrounds are turning to libraries for help for a variety of reasons, including a cross-curriculum emphasis on entrepreneurship at many academic institutions and a tough job market pushing people to seek alternate ways to earn a living. Helping this new type of entrepreneur may require a different approach. The forum panelists will be talking about the innovative solutions used at their libraries from which we can all learn.

The forum will be held on Saturday, June 26, 1:30–3:30 P.M., in the Congressional Room of the Capital Hilton.

The committee has also published two new issues of its online newsletter, Academic Brass. These contain short articles of a practical nature on topics related to academic business librarianship. The new issues address such topics as: government resource alternatives to expensive online subscriptions, open access in the field of business, team teaching trends among business librarians, and tiered business research instruction as a requirement. Check them out the next time you are online.

Lydia LaFaro, Chair

BRASS Business Reference in Public Libraries

The Business Reference in Public Libraries Committee has published the first quarter issue of the Public Libraries Briefcase. “Networking for Business Librarians” was written by Elizabeth Malafi, Coordinator of the Miller Business Resource Center at the Middle Country Public Library, Centereach, New York. This informative article is full of hints and tips to make networking easier for all librarians. By the time of this update, we should have published the second quarter issue as well. David Hanson, Systemwide Services Manager, Johnson County Library, Overland Park, Kansas, has written an article about a unique community outreach program that engages in partnership opportunities with an immigrant community in Johnson County, Kansas.

Tera Moon, Chair

BRASS Business Reference Sources Committee

The committee continues to work on its nominations for the Outstanding Business Reference Sources column, and it will meet at ALA Annual on Saturday, June 26, from 10:30 A.M.–12:00 P.M. in the Massachusetts Ballroom of the Capital Hilton, located at 1001 16th St. NW in Washington, D.C., to further narrow down this list.

The Business Reference Sources Committee is also working on the final touches for its annual Publisher’s Forum, taking place at ALA Annual this year. This year’s forum has a working title of “The State of Accounting Research Databases” and will include presentations from representatives of PriceWaterhouseCoopers, BNA, and Thomson Reuters. The Publisher’s Forum is scheduled for Sunday, June 27, from 1:30–3:30 P.M., and will be located in the International Ballroom West of the Washington Hilton at 1919 Connecticut Ave. NW near DuPont Circle in Washington, D.C.

Nathan Rupp, Chair

BRASS Education Committee

At the ALA Annual Conference, the committee will be discussing the new and ongoing transformation of the “Best of the Best Business Websites (Free Resources)” and “Selected Core Resources” to the LibGuides platform, as well as planning for the BRASS Preconference in New Orleans (Annual 2011). We will also be discussing opportunities for collaborating with RUSA on continuing professional development activities. Leticia Camacho will serve as the next chair of the Education Committee after the annual conference. The BRASS Education Committee will be meeting on Saturday, June 26 from 10:30 A.M.–12:00 P.M. at the Washington Hilton Hotel in room Columbia 9. Please join us!

Paul Brothers, Chair

BRASS Membership Committee

The BRASS New Members’ Reception will be held Friday, June 25, 5:30–7:30 P.M.; Capitol City Brewing Company (downtown location), 1100 New York Ave., NW, Washington, D.C.

The BRASS Membership Committee cordially invites all new members to our New Members’ Reception held at the downtown location of the lively Capitol City Brewing Company, within walking distance of the D.C. Convention Center. Whether you are new to BRASS, interested in getting more involved, or would like to meet up with fellow BRASS members Friday night, please come join us for cocktails and hors d’oeuvres at this event generously sponsored by InfoUSA. This is a great way to kick off Annual. Please join us!

Louise Feldmann, Chair

BRASS Conference Program Planning Committee

The committee is putting the final touches on this year’s exciting BRASS program, “Clean, Green and Not So Mean: Can Business Help Save the World?” on Monday June 28 from 8:00 A.M.–12:00 P.M. Ethical business has become a focus of research and is inspiring the next generation of entrepreneurs. Corporate social responsibility, green business, and social entrepreneurship are trends impacting the business world from the boardroom to the grassroots. The program, featuring practitioners, academics, and librarians, will reveal trends in the marketplace and the information landscape that librarians need to understand in order to serve their communities. And thanks to the generous sponsorship of Standard & Poor’s, attendees will enjoy a free breakfast! Washington Convention Center―room 151B.

Andy Spackman, Chair

BRASS Publications Committee

The core responsibility of the Publications Committee is to review manuscripts submitted by BRASS members or committees that wish to create an official ALA publication. We help you move through the process and advise BRASS Executive and RUSA Publications and Communications Committee on publishing your work. We encourage members and committees to think about any of their activities that could lead to a publication. When BRASS members publish RUSA Occasional Papers or other ALA publications, there is always a strong demand. If your committee is exploring new resources, services, or other areas that are relevant for professional development, please consider a manuscript and we can help you get it published via ALA.

This summer, our committee will propose changes to BRASS Executive about other responsibilities currently listed in the BRASS Handbook for the Publications Committee. Due to concerns about privacy, RUSA no longer wishes to release BRASS membership data. The BRASS Membership Directory will no longer be compiled and our committee would like to eliminate the position of Directory Manager. The new “Member Communities” available from ALA Connect is now being explored as an alternative.

RUSA has also taken over the various brochures published by sections for publicity at Annual and Midwinter. Our Publications Committee previously did all the editing, design, and coordination for creating and distributing the BRASS Brochure. While we are still able to provide input about the contents of this brochure for BRASS, and could have a greater a role in distribution, the BRASS Brochure is no longer the responsibility of the Publications Committee. We hope to clarify our role regarding the BRASS brochure at Annual this year.

For many years, our various Member Publications List Managers made consistent efforts to solicit new entries for the BRASS Members Publication List. The Publication List still attracts a handful of entries every decade, but has become dormant and seems to have less value for ALA members given the new forms of communication available. Our committee believes this charge needs to be eliminated.

A possible new charge for the Publications Committee is increased oversight for the BRASS website. Our BRASS Webmaster is already an ex-officio member and our committee members helped to build the content for the Index to Business Databases Tutorials now available via new ALA Connect platform. We strongly believe the BRASS website would benefit from ongoing review by the Publications Committee. Our members are in a good position to test links, review written descriptions, or create metadata that might help users find the great content that BRASS makes available for professional development.

Proposals to change the purpose of the BRASS Publications Committee will be presented to the BRASS Executive Committee at Annual in Washington DC. If you are interested in new forms of communication or have ideas about promoting BRASS content via the web or formal publications, please attend our meeting at Annual, Saturday, June 26 from 4:00–5:30 P.M., Washington Hilton—Columbia 7. Or email your comments to houls001 [at] umn [dot] edu.

Van Houlsen, Chair

BRASS Calendar for ALA Annual Conference

For your convenience, here is a list of all of the BRASS meetings and events, including times and locations, for the upcoming ALA Annual Conference in D.C. You can also access this list on the RUSA Website.

Friday, June 25

5:30-7:30 P.M.: BRASS New Members Reception, Capital City Brewing, 1100 New York Ave. NW

Saturday, June 26

8:00-9:00 A.M.: Executive Committee Planning Session (Closed meeting)

Washington Hilton—Columbia 10

9:00-10:00 A.M.: New Chair Orientation;
Washington Hilton—Columbia 10

10:30am-12:00 P.M.: Business Reference Sources Committee

Capital Hilton—Massachusetts

10:30am-12:00 P.M.: Education Committee

Washington Hilton—Columbia 9

1:30-3:30 P.M.: Business Reference in Academic Libraries Committee
Capital Hilton—Congressional Room NOTE: ALA schedule will read Washington Hilton—Columbia 9 for this meeting, but BusRef in Academic Libraries committee will meet in the Capital Hilton, immediately following the Forum)

1:30-3:30 P.M.: Business Reference in Academic Libraries Forum: The New Breed of Entrepreneur: Meeting Their Research Needs
Capital Hilton—Congressional

1:30-3:30 P.M.: Business Reference in Public Libraries Committee

Capital Hilton—California

4:00-5:30 P.M.: Conference Program Planning—New Orleans 2011 Committee I

Washington Hilton—Columbia 10

4:00-5:30 P.M.: Conference Program Planning—Washington DC 2010 Committee

Washington Hilton—Columbia 6

4:00-5:30 P.M.: Publications Committee

Washington Hilton—Columbia 7

Sunday June 27

10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M.: Business Reference Services Discussion Group: Out with the Old, In With the New: Our Changing Collections and Services
Washington Hilton—Georgetown East

1:30-3:30 P.M.: Business Reference Sources Committee Publishers’ Forum
Washington Hilton—International BR West

4:00-5:30 P.M.: Conference Program Planning—New Orleans 2011 Committee II

Capital Hilton—Pan American

4:00-5:30 P.M.: Membership Committee (BRASS)

Beacon Hotel—Presidential Library

Monday June 28

8:00 A.M.-12:00 P.M.: Clean, Green and Not So Mean: Can Business Help Save the World?
Washington Convention Center—151B

4:00-6:00 P.M.: RUSA Awards Ceremony

Washington Convention Center 207 A/B

Tuesday June 29

8:00-10:00 A.M.: Executive Committee (BRASS)
Washington Convention Center—149 A/B

Back to Top



Daniel Mack, Editor

Annual Programs

How Shared is Shared?  Remote Storage and Cooperative Collection Building

Sponsored by RUSA CODES/STARS Cooperative Collection Development Committee
Sunday, June 27, 2010, 10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M.; Walter E. Washington Convention Center—147B

Libraries are challenged to balance the costs and benefits of maintaining print collections at the local level and are moving increasingly toward shared management of print materials with partner institutions. The RUSA Cooperative Collection Development Committee has invited three national leaders to provide perspectives on building shared collections housed at off-site storage facilities. Lizanne Payne, Emily Stambaugh, and Constance Malpus will speak to national and regional efforts and will discuss models for retention policies and service agreements. Panelists will address how shared print holdings inform collection development decisions for acquiring, managing, and withdrawing items from on-site collections and will highlight strategies for future directions.

Featured speakers:

  • Lizanne Payne, Print Archives Program Manager, Center for Research Libraries
  • Emily Stambaugh, Shared Print Manager for the California Digital Library
  • Constance Malpus

Yem Fong and Dallas Long, Co-Chairs

The A-Z of Electronic Reference Product Development

RUSA CODES Reference Publishing Advisory CommitteeSaturday June 26 4:00-5:30 P.M.; Washington Convention Center—147B  Learn more about electronic reference product development—from conception to product launch—from speakers with substantial experience in reference publishing. Find out how you can help shape product development that best suit our user needs. The panel discussion will be moderated by Kay Cassell, Director, Master of Library and Information Science Program, Rutgers University.

Featured Speakers:

Rebecca Cullen, Senior Online Product Development ManagerOxford University Press

Rolf A. Janke, Vice President and PublisherSAGE Reference

Frank Menchaca, Executive Vice President, PublishingGale, A part of Cengage Learning

Kevin Ohe, Editorial Director, ElectronicABC-CLIO

RUSA CODES/RSS Dual Assignments Discussion Group Meeting

Something to Talk About: Changes in the Selection, Promotion and Use of Reference Collections
Saturday, June 26, 2010, 10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M.; Beacon Hotel—Overlook Room This CODES/RSS Dual Assignments Discussion Group will focus on all aspects of reference collection development. How are selection decisions made? Are electronic resources always preferred? How are budgets determined? Are staffing changes at reference desks affecting use of materials? How are libraries promoting reference collections? Reference services are rapidly changing in libraries throughout the country and accordingly reference collections are affected in many ways. Please join us for an interesting and lively discussion as we talk about all aspects of print and electronic reference collection development—what’s going on now and what can can we anticipate in the future. All registered attendees are welcome.

Committee Reports

Collection Development Education Committee

The committee is planning for a future program on digital collections and a community toolkit for new collection librarians.

Liaison with Users Committee

The Liaison with Users Committee is currently awaiting final approval on its updated document “Guidelines for Liaison Work in Managing Collections and Services.” In addition, the committee is updating its Bibliography of Liaison Resources and putting together submissions for a future panel discussion on liaison issues, including the impact of Library 2.0 technologies. The Liaison with Users Committee will meet on Saturday, June 26 from 4:00-5:30 P.M.

CODES Communications Committee

The committee met virtually rather than in person for the ALA 2010 Midwinter Meeting. The committee discussed ways to facilitate communications within CODES as well as between CODES and RUSA and its other sections. The committee also collaborated on its part of the CODES Section Review. The CODES Communications Committee will meet in Washington, D.C. on Saturday, July 26, 2010 from 1:30-3:30 P.M., Sheraton—BRIV. The committee will discuss ways to facilitate communications within CODES and between CODES, RUSA, and other RUSA sections.

CODES Materials Reviewing Committee: New Appraisal Tool for Reference Book Reviewers

Despite the inroads that electronic databases, Internet search engines and other new technologies have made into the domain of print reference, there likely will always be a need for facts in book form. All reference titles were not created equal, of course, but one could hardly draw that conclusion based on the almost universally positive reviews appearing in the professional literature. Superlatives such as “monumental,” “gold standard” and “comprehensive if not exhaustive” are commonly bandied about as each new crop of dictionary and encyclopedia sets come on the market. This is akin to the restaurant reviewer who never ate a meal he didn’t like and gives every two-bit beanery and hole-in-the-wall hash house a five star rating.

The members of CODES Materials Reviewing Committee are fighting back against subjective writing and rubberstamp reviewing with a “Reference Book Reviewing Checklist.” This document lays out the important quality-control criteria of author qualifications, information validity, timeliness, and so forth, which should result in an informative and objective reference book review. The idea is to instill some analytical rigor into writing that is too often ill-considered and unfocused. The committee means no disrespect to those careful and concise reviewers that have honed their skills over the years; rather, this document is offered in the spirit of quality improvement, especially for those new to this field who may lack training or a consistent set of standards whereby to judge reference material. This checklist may be accessed on ALA Connect (no login required). It is the hope of the Materials Reviewing Committee that this checklist will enable reference book reviewers to produce more meaningful reviews that in turn will enable collection development and reference librarians to make better informed decisions as to which titles to acquire or consult and which to avoid.

Mike Bemis, CODES Chair

Back to Top



David Langenberg, Editor

Preconference Programs

At the upcoming ALA Annual, a pre-conference and two programs should be of particular interest to members of the History Section and others in RUSA.

Behind the Genealogy Reference Desk: Our Capital’s Hidden Genealogy Gems

Sponsored by the RUSA History Section (HS) and made possible with generous support from ProQuest.Friday, June 25, 8:30 A.M.–5:00 P.M.; Daughters of the American Revolution Library, 1776 D. Street NW, Washington, D.C.

Speakers and topics will include Daughters of the American Revolution (DAR) staff members Eric Grundset, library director on the DAR Library’s digital projects, and Terry Davis Ward, director of genealogy on lineage papers as a research tool; Megan Lewis, reference coordinator from the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum and an expert in Native American research. Additionally, noted genealogist John Humphrey will show us how to make the most of our time and resources when researching in our nation’s capital. Event Code RUS2

Advance Registration: RUSA member, $100; ALA member, $145; non-member, $220; student and retired members, $75. Onsite Registration: RUSA member, $125; ALA member, $170; non-member, $245; student and retired members, $100.

Annual Programs

To Protect and Serve: Is Digitization Good for Your Historical Collections?

Sunday, June 26, 10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M.; Renaissance—West A/B

The large primary source digitization projects created by archives, larger public libraries, and state agencies have come of age, and this program presents an opportunity for future  managers of projects large or small to learn from their challenges and successes. A panel of librarians and staff from the various types of libraries and archives who helped make these sites possible will discuss ways to fund, manage, and gather materials in your state or at your institution, as well as how to promote your own historical materials.

One Poem Enriching Lives Across the Globe: Samuel Ullman, Gen. Douglas MacArthur, and ‘Youth’

Sunday, June 26, 1:30-3:30 P.M.; Washington Convention Center—Room 147A

Judith Schaefer’s documentary So Long Are You Young: Samuel Ullman’s Poems and Passion tells the remarkable story of the serendipitous international influence of one poem. The inspiring documentary highlights Ullman’s life (1840-1924), community humanitarian and civil rights work, and personal courage as a Jewish immigrant in Birmingham, Alabama. The film shows how his philosophy influenced General Douglas MacArthur, postwar Japanese society, and world leaders like Robert Kennedy. Ullman biographer/historian Margaret Armbrester will facilitate audience discussion following a screening of the film.

Back to Top


Messages from MARS

Newsletter of the RUSA MARS: Emerging Technologies in Reference Section

Missy Clapp, Editor

Message from the Chair

They say there is no constant except change, and that has certainly been true for MARS this spring.

The Section voted overwhelmingly to modernize its name, to reflect the Section’s focus on emerging technologies in reference. MARS members can now proudly identify themselves as members of the MARS: Emerging Technologies in Reference Section. The main page of the MARS Website has already been updated and more updated pages are coming soon.

Congratulations also to the newly elected MARS officers:

  • Anne Houston—Vice-Chair/Chair Elect
  • Erin Rushton—Secretary
  • Stephanie Graves—Member at Large

This spring the Executive Committee also reluctantly accepted the resignations of two of its members: Laura Jordan, MARS-L Moderator and Messages from MARS editor, and Matt Bejune, the incoming Chair of the Section. As sorry as we were that they found it necessary to step down, we are pleased to report that the following members have stepped forward to ensure that there is no break in MARS leadership.

Starting with this issue of Messages, Missy Clapp, in addition to continuing to serve as the Chair of MARS Publications, will be doing double-duty as the MARS-L Moderator and Messages from MARS Editor for the next year.

Anne Houston, who was elected this Spring as the incoming Vice-Chair/Chair Elect has agreed, in accordance with MARS bylaws, to step into the vacant Chair position a year early after Annual 2010, but has requested that she only serve one term rather than the two stipulated by the bylaws in such a circumstance.

In response to Anne’s request, the Executive Committee has appointed Dianna McKellar, recently appointed MARS Scheduler, and former Co-Chair of the MARS User Access to Services Committee and of the MARS Products and Services Committee, to serve as Vice-Chair/Incoming Chair, effective after Annual 2010. The Section owes a big debt of gratitude to each for their willingness to help ensure the strength and continuity of MARS leadership as we move forward.

Finally, MARS is planning some exciting programs for Annual 2010, which you will find described below, including the first ever hands-on session to try out free or low cost programs such as Skype and Jing. A complete list of MARS events at Annual is available on the MARS blog. A PDF for the schedule can be found here.

It has been an honor to serve as your Chair this past year, and I’m looking forward to seeing many of you in June!

Carolyn Larson

MARS Chair, 2009-2010

clar [at] loc [dot] gov

General MARS News

RUSA selects Kathleen Kern to receive “My Favorite Martian Award”

Kathleen Kern, Associate Reference Librarian and Associate Professor of Library Administration, University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, is the 2010 recipient of the MARS: Emerging Technologies in Reference Section Recognition Certificate, also known as the “My Favorite Martian Award.” The award is given to an individual to recognize excellence in service to MARS.

An active member of MARS, Kern, in addition to serving on several MARS committees, has served as MARS Chair, Vice Chair, Past Chair, Scheduler, and continues to represent MARS and RUSA as a RUSA Councilor.

Carolyn Larson, MARS Section Chair, writes, “Kathleen, your dedication to the profession and to MARS is recognized and appreciated! We thank you for your excellent service.”

The certificate will be presented at the MARS Chair’s Program, “Smart Technologies for Tough Economic Times,” on Sunday, June 27, 2010, at 10:30 A.M. during the 2010 ALA Annual Conference held in Washington, D.C.

Acknowledgment will also be made at the RUSA Awards Ceremony & Reception, Monday, June 28, 2010, 4:00-6:30 P.M. during the 2010 ALA Annual Conference.

MARS Goes to Facebook

Look for the new RUSA MARS Facebook site, coming soon to social networking screens near you!
Questions or suggestions? Please contact Arlie Sims, Chair, MARS Outreach, asims [at] colum [dot] edu.

Smart Reference Technologies for Tough Economic Times

Mark your calendars now to join us Sunday, June 27, from 10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M. for a lively panel discussion featuring Chad Boeninger, Reference & Instruction Technology Coordinator, Ohio University; Nicole Engard, editor of the book Library Mash-Ups & Director of Open Source Education at Bywater Solutions; and Diane Kresh, Director, Arlington County Public Libraries about the use of free and inexpensive technology tools to enhance reference services. And don’t forget that we start the program with the awarding of the My Favorite Martian Award for 2010!

As libraries everywhere face budget cuts, investigating new technologies may not seem like a top priority. However, technology does not need to be expensive; free or low-cost software programs can enhance and extend your library’s services, regardless of your library’s size and budget. If your service goals are colliding with the realities of budget, time, staff, and IT support, come hear librarians working in diverse settings describe how they have used budget-friendly technological solutions to meet such challenges.

  • Boeninger will focus on using social networking tools to build social capital and to increase awareness of library resources to maximize their benefits.
  • Engard will highlight open source tools that work well for public computers.
  • Kresh will share information on how Arlington County provided training for their staff and how they pair youth volunteers with seniors to help the seniors master technology.

We will also be offering a hands-on “poster session” at Gelman Library, George Washington University on Monday, June 28, from 11:00 A.M.-1:00 P.M. to let folks try various low cost programs such as Skype and Jing. Space for this one is limited, so please RSVP to Donna Scanlon at dscanlon [at] loc [dot] gov and indicate your name and institutional affiliation. Transportation will not be provided, but the library is conveniently located two blocks from the Foggy Bottom Metro stop on the Blue/Orange metro lines.

Hope to see many of you in D.C.!

Debbie Bezanson, Chair

MARS Program Planning Committee

bezanson [at] gwu [dot] edu

MARS Best Free Reference Web Sites 2010

The MARS Best Free committee invites you to preview the winning Best Free Reference Web Sites for 2010! You will find sites devoted to traveling, abbreviating, government tracking, baby naming, car shopping, president electing, e-book reading, and more.

Sites are selected based on their “ready” reference capabilities, their ease of use and the usefulness of the information they provide.

A PDF of the 2010 winners list can be found on the MARS section page, where you can also check out past years’ winners as well.

Kay Cunningham and Amy Boykin, Co-Chairs

Best Free Reference Web Sites

kay.cunningham [at] cbu [dot] edu, awboykin [at] cnu [dot] edu

Taking Mobile to the Next Level

Are you interested in developing new features for your library’s mobile site? Are you looking for new ways to reach out to iPhone users and mobile-savvy patrons? If so, join us for the MARS Hot Topics Discussion Group at Annual Conference in Washington D.C., on Saturday, June 26, from 1:30-3:30 P.M. in the Beacon Hotel Overlook Room. Our topic will be “Taking Mobile to the Next Level” and we’ll have presenters from several libraries who are doing new and cool things with their mobile sites. Among the topics discussed will be interactive maps, QR codes, dynamic hours information, and mobile interfaces to databases, as well as discussion about how to make these features go live when your library has limited time and resources. There will be time for Q&A, so come to learn more, or to share your library’s experiences.

Anne Houston, Chair

Hot Topics Committee

ahouston [at] virginia [dot] edu.

Taking the Library With You: VR Going Mobile

Interested in finding budget friendly ways to expand your library’s virtual reference services to include mobile devices? Attendees will hear from and be able to talk to innovative leaders in our profession who will describe how their institutions are offering virtual reference services via mobile devices, including the tools they use and their successes and challenges. Efforts of individual libraries and cooperatives are represented, as are SMS/texting and other mobile applications.

Our facilitator is Marie Radford (Rutgers) and the other scheduled speakers are Pam Sessoms [LibraryH3lp] (Univ. of North Carolina, Chapel Hill), Lori Bell [Infoquest] (Alliance Library System), and Cathy Sanford [LibAnswers] (Contra Costa County Library).

The program is scheduled for Monday, June 28, 10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M. and the format will be five minutes of introduction, five to seven minutes for each speaker, forty-five minutes of prepared questions, and fifteen minutes of Q and A.

Alicia Korenman, Chair

wordnerd [at] gmail [at] com

Discovery Systems: Solutions a User Could Love?

The MARS Local Systems & Services committee is hosting a discussion forum at ALA Annual 2010 called “Discovery Systems: Solutions a User Could Love?” The forum will continue the conversation that began at our very successful Midwinter forum by the same name. Marshall Breeding will provide an introduction and overview of the relevant issues, and several panelists will share their experiences with user testing of and feedback regarding discovery systems (examples of this new technology include Encore, Primo, and EBSCO Discovery Service).

The forum will be held on Sunday, June 27, 2010, 1:30-3:30 P.M., in the JW Marriott Capitol Ballroom E/F.

Amy Fry, Chair

MARS Local Systems & Services Committee

afry [at] bgsu [dot] edu

Happy Hour

The Annual MARS Happy Hour is Friday, June 25, 5:30-7:30 P.M.

Complimentary hors d’oeuvres will be served, and there will be a cash bar. The Library has been reserved for us at Fado Irish Pub, 808 7th St. NW Washington, D.C. (Adjacent to the Gallery Place/Chinatown Metro station).

Please come and invite others! Whether you’re a current member of MARS or just thinking about getting involved, the Annual MARS Happy Hour is your opportunity to enjoy good company, meet other MARS members, and learn about the work of the Section.

This MARS Happy Hour is sponsored by Alexander Street Press.

Arlie Sims

asims [at] colum [dot] edu

Back to Top



Cindy Levine, Editor

Message from the Chair

Greetings, all! I hope that everyone has been enjoying a good spring. Time is fast approaching for the ALA Annual Conference to be held in Washington, D.C.

Please join us for the RSS Open House and All Committee meetings to be held Saturday, June 26, from 8:00-10:00 A.M. in the Washington Convention Center, Room 146 A/B. Come and enjoy your morning coffee/tea and light refreshments, sponsored by Emerald Group Publishing Limited, and good conversation. Come and hear about the exciting work of RSS and, if you are not already involved, find out about ways to become involved.

You are also welcome to attend the first RSS Board meeting to be held on Saturday, June 26, from 10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M. at the Mayflower-Renaissance in the Pennsylvania Room. We will be talking about the RSS section review, e-participation opportunities and strategic planning for the future.

The second RSS Board meeting will be held virtually on Thursday, July 8, from 3:00-4:30 P.M. EDT via Wimba Live Classroom. This virtual meeting will take the place of the second RSS board meeting that was to be held on Monday, June 28, and will provide board members with opportunities to attend programs at Annual. We will be able to continue our business after we return and things “sink in.” As the second RUSA Board meeting will be on Tuesday, June 29, I will also be able to report on what occurred then. More information will be shared in regards to this meeting via the RSS-L listserv and ALA Connect as it gets closer to the actual meeting time. All RSS Board meetings are open and all are invited to attend and participate.

As we continue our RSS work into spring and summer, I once again want to reiterate my goal for RSS that we focus on creating and providing educational offerings in a wide variety of formats. What kinds of products and services can we offer our membership and the library community at large in regard to reference and user services?

Please also continue brainstorming possibilities of workshops that we can offer to RUSA members as well as to the library community at large. These workshops can be offered for a fee or perhaps shorter workshops and/or chat sessions at no fee to RUSA members.

As always, I am most grateful for all that you do for RUSA/RSS and the profession! Please do not hesitate to contact me if you have comments or suggestions to make. Joe Thompson, the incoming chair of RSS, is currently seeking volunteers to serve as RSS committee members. Please see the RSS Website for more information about the work of the various committees and how to volunteer. Please consider becoming a part of this dynamic organization!

I look forward to seeing you in D.C. Safe travels!

Barb Mann

RSS Chair

bmann [at] umuc [dot] edu

RSS Events at Annual Conference in Washington, D.C.


Reference Evolution: Envisioning the Future, Remembering the Past

Friday, June 25, 9:00 A.M-5:00 P.M.; Renaissance Washington—Grand BR Central

The event is an opportunity to participate in a lively discussion of the current state of the profession, to see beyond the hype and identify where things are actually headed. The speakers, Joe Janes, Stephen Francoeur, and Amy Vanscoy, and will offer a “state of the union” on the profession, acknowledging traditional reference tools and skills that remain relevant, and projecting how newer technologies will better serve patrons.

Programs and Discussions

Ethical and Legal Issues Discussion Group

Saturday, June 26, 1:30-3:30 P.M.; Capital Hilton—Senate
What are the legal issues facing libraries today? Discuss the issues that your library might be facing currently and in the future. As resources are becoming more digital will librarians have to know about legal issues or the law? Come and discuss your experience with legal issues in your library, share and learn with others in the field.

Nancy A. Bunker, nbunker [at] whitworth [dot] edu

Danielle M. Colbert-Lewis, dcolbertlewis [at] gmail [dot] com

Hot Topics in Frontline Reference, Discussion Group: Tick Marks, Tally Marks, Mouse Clicks – Oh, My!: Why We Count What We Count

Saturday, June 26, 4:00-5:30 P.M.; Capital Hilton—Congressional
Please come and join your colleagues in a lively discussion of library statistics in a changing environment. The following people will kick off the discussion:

  • From Kansas State: Jason Coleman, Service Coordinator, Melia Erin Fritch, Reference Generalist, and Laura Bonella, Reference Generalist
  • From University of West Georgia: Diane Fulkerson, Instruction Services Librarian
  • From University of Portland: Heidi E. K. Senior, Reference/Instruction Librarian
  • From Longwood University: Tatiana Pashkova-Balkenhol, Assistant Instructional Design Librarian

Suzy Szasz Palmer

Suzy [dot] Palme [at] lva [dot] virginia [dot] gov

Cataloging and Beyond: Publishing for the Year of Cataloging and Metadata Research

Sponsor: ALA, ALCTS, Cataloging & Classification Section (RSS co-sponsor)
Sunday, June 27, 8:00-10:00 A.M.; Washington Convention Center—147A

Is publishing part of your job? Something you’ve always thought about doing? Do you have questions about whether your research ideas might be good ones? Come hear the experts share research ideas for meeting the challenges of a new decade in cataloging, cataloging standards, and online catalog design. Panel members will reflect on how 2010, the Year of Cataloging and Metadata Research, can jump start new era in research for catalogs, cataloging, and beyond.

16th Annual Reference Research Forum

Sunday, June 27, 1:30-3:30 P.M.; Grand Hyatt Washington—Constitution B

The Reference Research Forum is one of the most popular and valuable programs during the ALA Annual Conference. At this year’s Forum, researchers will be presenting their findings on the impact of LibGuides on student research and academic performance; the results of a two-year ethnographic study of undergraduate library use in a university setting; and the results of a study of generational differences in attitudes towards reference service in academic libraries.

Liane Taylor

ltaylor [at] txstate [dot] edu

Reference Services in Large Research Libraries Discussion Group

Sunday, June 27, 1:30 pm-3:30 P.M.; Doubletree—Terrace East
Among other topics the discussion group will be looking at: 1) Long-time standard reference sources that are being cancelled in the current climate of budget retrenchments and technological change. 2) Reference support for users of next-generation catalogs. Other topics are welcome. This is an open forum for sharing ideas. Please come and contribute your thoughts.

Scott Garton

s-garton [at] northwestern [dot] edu

Catalog Use Committee Discussion Forum

Sunday, June 27, 4:00 pm-5:30 P.M.; Embassy Suites Convention Center—Capital A

The RSS Catalog Use Committee is hosting a lightning round at its discussion forum at ALA Annual 2010. The theme: Innovations in Catalog Use. We are seeking five to six speakers who will speak for five minutes each, with a Q&A segment after each speaker. We are interested in presentations about the library catalog (broadly defined), including but not limited to user education, interface design, public access (including mobile access) and integration with other library services. We are interested in successful innovations, but we are also interested in hearing about failures: what didn’t work and why.

Steve Ostrem

steve-ostrem [at] uiowa [dot] edu

Performance Issues for Reference/Information Librarians Discussion Group

Monday, June 28, 8:00- 10:00 A.M.; Grand Hyatt Washington—Constitution A

Rebecca Jackson

rjackson [at] iastate [dot] edu
Crystal Lentz

crystal [dot] lentz [at] sos [dot] wa [dot] gov

Taking the Library With You: VR Going Mobile

10:30 A.M.–12:00 P.M.; Washington Convention Center—Room 150B
Interested in finding budget friendly ways to expand your library’s virtual reference services to include mobile devices? Attendees will hear from, and be able to talk to innovative leaders in our profession, who will describe how their institutions are offering virtual reference services via mobile devices, including the tools they use, and their successes and challenges. Efforts of individual libraries and cooperatives are represented, as are SMS/texting and other mobile applications.
Contact: Crystal Lentzcrystal [dot] lentz [at] sos [dot] wa [dot] gov

Committee Meetings

Each committee will have a designated table at the All Committee Meeting session following the Open House on Saturday morning:

Open House and All Committee Meeting (RSS)

Saturday, June 26, 8:00 am – 10:00 am; Washington Convention Center—146A/B

The following are additional RSS Committee Meetings:

Saturday, June 26

Executive Committee MeetingI (RSS Executive Committee and RSS committee/discussion group chairs)
10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M.; Mayflower Renaissance—Pennsylvania
[Note: Executive Committee Meeting II will be held virtually on Thursday, July 8, from 3:00pm-4:30 P.M. EDT via Wimba Live Classroom.]

Cooperative Reference Services, Committee II
1:30-3:30 P.M.; JW Marriott—Congressional/Senate

Sunday, June 28

Management of Reference Committee II
10:30-12:00 P.M.; Hilton Washington—Columbia 8

Marketing and Public Relations for Reference Services II
10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M.; Hyatt Regency Washington on Capitol Hill—Columbia A

Monday, June 29

Catalog Use Committee II
8:00-10:00 A.M.; Renaissance—Meeting Rm. 07


RSS is pleased to announce the 2010 RSS Honor Roll Members:

  • Pam Morgan
  • Jill Moriearty
  • Liane Taylor
  • Lori Smith Thornton

Congratulations to our latest members!

You might be asking yourself, “How do I become a member of this very important group?” If you have served the section in three or more capacities (for example, served on a committee, led a discussion group, served as a liaison for RSS, or volunteered to upstart a new project), then welcome aboard! Just send Sarah J. Hammill (hammills [at] fiu [dot] edu) an email with the three ways you have served RSS. Not only will you become a member of this esteemed group, you will also be recognized at ALA Annual in Washington, D.C.!
Back to Top



Katharine Calhoun, Editor

calhoun [at] gatech [dot] edu

Message from the Chair

As the Chair of RUSA STARS, I have been privileged to work with many wonderful, sharing individuals in the interlibrary loan/resource sharing community. STARS gave me the opportunity to serve in the interest of the members and to work on the various projects of the section and RUSA. I appreciate the many valuable relationships that have been forged over the past year and look forward to continuing to work with STARS members in the future.

Conference Update

RUSA STARS has a full slate of activities for the upcoming Annual Conference in Washington D.C. STARS is sponsoring, “Interlibrary Loan Statistics: What We Gather, How We Use Them, and Who We Provide Them To” and co-sponsoring with ASCLA, “Giving People What They Want: Information Access in Libraries and Beyond”, preconferences scheduled for Friday, June 25. RUSA STARS is also sponsoring/co-sponsoring three programs at the annual conference:

  • “International Interlibrary Lending and Borrowing: Getting Started and Moving Forward,” Saturday, 1:30-3:30 P.M.
  • “Multiple Formats & Copies in a Digital Age: Acceptance, Tolerance, Elimination,” Saturday, 1:30-3:30 P.M.
  • “How Shared is Shared? Remote Storage and Cooperative Collection Building,” Sunday, 10:30 A.M.-12:00 P.M.

The STARS All Committee meeting will be held on Saturday, June 26 from 8:00-10:00 A.M. Anyone interested in learning more about RUSA STARS is welcome to attend this meeting. The Executive Committee of STARS will be meeting on Monday, June 28 from 8 A.M.-12:00 P.M.

Section Activities

The STARS Codes, Guidelines, and Technical Standards Committee posted the recently developed “Guidelines for Natural Disasters” document for public comment. The document has been forwarded to the RUSA Standards and Guidelines Committee and the RUSA Board for review and approval.

The STARS Education and Training Committee has been working on an online interlibrary loan course for RUSA. The Committee has contacted several ILL leaders and practitioners to develop and lead the class sessions. Further development will be needed.

Joining in the initiative of Susan Beck, RUSA President, to identify “Five Things a New Librarian Should Know (About Interlibrary Loan – added by STARS), a message was sent to the membership through ALA Connect and the STARS list. After compiling the recommended “things to know”, a survey was designed and members were asked to vote on the five most important “things”. A chat session was held on June 10 to discuss those items and other concerns of STARS members.

Denise A. Forro, Chair 2009-2010

forro [at] msu [dot] edu

Committee Reports

Boucher Award

Cherié L. Weible, the Head of Interlibrary Loan and Document Delivery at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has been named the winner of the 2010 Virginia Boucher/OCLC Distinguished ILL Librarian award. For further information, please see the announcement on the RUSA Blog.

Amy Paulus, Chair

amy-fuls [at] uiowa [dot] edu

Membership Committee

RUSA STARS has launched an initiative to discover the most important Five Things a new resource sharing librarian needs to know. We’ve been gathering ideas far and wide, and on Thursday, June 10 the first ever RUSA STARS simultaneous chat session was held to debate and discuss. Eventually, we will be creating a “Five Things” website, which will be a tool for anyone new to the field.

Nora Dethloff, Chair

ndethloff [at] uh [dut] edu

Rethinking Resource Sharing Policies

The Rethinking Resource Sharing Policies Committee has been working on developing a checklist that, when completed by a library, will provide library staff in Interlibrary Loan departments or beyond a window into the policies and processes that comprise the resource sharing service they provide. Using the checklist, libraries can gain a new perspective on how they are providing services to their local community and to the resource sharing community as a whole. The list is designed to be aggressive, challenging library decision-makers to live on the front lines of rethinking resource sharing. There is no expectation that a single library will meet every item in the list.

The checklist is almost complete. When approved by RUSA STARS, it will be announced at ALA Annual and offered to libraries via the Rethinking Resource Sharing website. Libraries that complete the checklist and reply “yes” to 80% or more of the activities listed will become a “Rethinking Resource Sharing STAR” and will receive STAR recognition in the form of letters, to the library Director and whomever else staff completing the checklist specify, complimenting the library on providing outstanding resource sharing services.

Complementing the checklist, the Rethinking Resource Sharing Policies Committee will embark on developing a toolkit that libraries can use to learn how to begin working on checklist activities which they were not engaged in at the time of submission. Work on this toolkit will begin after ALA Annual.

Evan Simpson, Chair

evan.simpson [at] tufts [dot] edu

ALA Annual Activities

STARS Happy Hour

Please save the date of Friday, June 25, from 6:30-9:00 P.M. for the STARS Happy Hour! Your favorite colleagues and fellow STARS members will be there for fun and fellowship.

The place for the event is TBD, so if you know DC well and have a suggestion, please let the Membership Committee know by emailing Nora Detholff: ndethloff [at] uh [dot] edu.

More info to come!

Nora Dethloff, Chair

Membership Committee


Interlibrary Loan Statistics: What We Gather, How We Use Them, and Who We Provide Them To
Friday, June 25, 8:30 A.M.-12:30 P.M.; Grand Hyatt—Independence H/I

Giving People What They Want: Information Access in Libraries and Beyond
(Co-sponsored with ASCLA)
Friday, June 25, 9:00 A.M.–5:00 P.M.; Renaissance Washington—Renaissance East


International Interlibrary Lending and Borrowing: Getting Started and Moving Forward
Saturday, June 26, 1:30-3:30 P.M.; Grand Hyatt—Independence H/I

Multiple Formats & Copies in a Digital Age: Acceptance, Tolerance, Elimination
Saturday, June 26, 1:30-3:30 P.M.; Washington Convention Center—147B

How Shared is Shared? Remote Storage and Cooperative Collection Building
(Co-sponsored with RUSA CODES)
Sunday, June 27, 10:30am-12:00 P.M.; Washington Convention Center—147B

Discussion Groups

Interlibrary Loan
Saturday, June 26, 10:30am-12:00 P.M.; Marriott Metro—Grand Ballroom E
Topics to be discussed include green ILL, serving distance learners, and an update on the IDS Project

Hot Topics
Saturday, June 26, 4:00-5:30 P.M.; Renaissance Washington—Auditorium
Topics TBA

Back to Top

Leave a Comment

You must be logged in to post a comment.