Wednesday, August 09, 2006


Editorial note first: For those who read this and are not familiar with the ALA process, here's the deal. The President Elect (Loriene Roy this year), posts a call for volunteers. The forms are collected by the ALA Office into the fall. There are two types of "big ALA" Committees. One has people appointed by the Committee on Committees (four Council members, elected by Council, Chaired by the ALA President Elect) and the other the Committe on Appoinitments (the President-Elect from each Division, again chaired by the ALA President-Elect).

Now, if you submit today, it will be about 7 or 8 months before you hear anything at all. Here's what is happening based on my experience of serving on the Committee on Committees when Mitch Freedman was President-Elect (2001-2002).

At Midwinter, the Committee met with a spreadsheet which included the composition, charges, and vacancies on each of "our" committees. There was a notebook with the volunteer form of each person who had sent one in. (Of course, in those days there was lots of paper, too.) The Committee met (once or twice, I don't remember which), and worked our way through the list. Some committees have lots of volunteers (Intellectual Freedom, International Relations) and there are tough choices. Others historically have few (Committee on Organization, Resolutions), and are fairly easy to get appointed to.

Many committees have interns, and that is a great way to start. When an intern's term ends (2 years) one of the things we asked the staff liaison and the outgoing chair was for a report on their work. We also asked if that person should be given a full term on the committee. Many were appointed that way. Also, there are electronic members, but much of that was worked out after my tenure on COC.

Here is the official announcement, with the links imbedded. Go for it folks!


ALA President-elect Loriene Roy is seeking applications and nominations for appointments to 2007-2008 ALA and Council committees.

She will fill slots on the following committees: Accreditation; American Libraries Advisory; Awards; Budget Analysis and Review; Chapter Relations; Conference; Constitution and Bylaws; Council Orientation; Diversity; Education; Election; Human Resource Development and Recruitment Advisory; Information Technology Policy Advisory; Intellectual Freedom; International Relations; Legislation; Literacy; Literacy and Outreach Services Advisory; Membership; Membership Meetings; Nominating; Organization; Orientation, Training, and Leadership Development; Policy Monitoring (current Council members only); Professional Ethics; Public and Cultural Programs Advisory; Public Awareness; Publishing; Research and Statistics; Resolutions; Rural, Native and Tribal Libraries of All Kinds; Scholarships and Study
Grants; Status of Women in Librarianship; Website Advisory; ALA-Children's Book Council (Joint); ALA-Association of American Publishers {Joint) and ALA-Society of American Archivists-American Association of Museums(Joint). Committee charges can be found in the ALA Handbook of Organization.

All applicants must complete and submit the electronic 2007-2008 ALA Committee Volunteer Form.

The deadline for submission is December 4, 2006.

Geographical location, type of library, gender, ethnicity, previous committee work (not necessarily with ALA), ALA and related experience, and other factors are considered when the committee slates are compiled in order to ensure broad representation and diversity on all committees.

The ALA Committee on Committees and Committee on Appointments will assist Dr. Roy in making appointments. Committee appointees will receive appointment letters after the 2007 ALA Midwinter Meeting in Seattle. Appointees will begin their committee service after the 2007 ALA Annual Conference in Washington, DC.

Questions concerning appointments can be directed to Dr. Roy at or Lois Ann Gregory-Wood, Council Secretariat, at


  1. How about a committee that would deal with the grey literature produced in our cities' public libraries?... Grey literature produced by consultants and Departments' curators are routinely delayed or denied enquirers. Intellectual freedom principles and public records principles are flouted by supervisors, managers and executives. Public reports of consultants, public reports of BPL departments' curators to the BPL Board and President are examples of this censoring. When these reports are public whether or not they are internal they should be a part of the respective archives of our cities' public libraries own institutional archives.

  2. Michael,

    This is a great overview. I'm going to shamelessly cross-post on the ALA Membership Blog - - with credit of course.