Re-Tooling Academic Libraries for the Digital Age:
Missions, Collections, Staffing

California Academic & Research Libraries
Third Annual Conference

Librarians As Leaders

Introductions: Bonnie Gratch, Session Chair and Mary Ellen Bobp, Moderator

Joanne Euster, University Librarian, UC-Irvine
"The Director's Role in Mentoring and Developing Librarian Leadership."

Judy Clarence, Music/Instructional and Interpretive Services, CSU-Hayward
"A Fresh New Voice: Librarians as Leaders in Academic Planing and Policy."

Najwa Hanel, Head of Reference and Information Services, Science and Engineering Library, University of Southern California.
"Bridging the Academic Gap."

Lorrita Ford, Instructional/Network Serviees Librarian, Diablo Valley College.
"Those Darn Committees: Partipation for Preservation and Growth."

Bonnie Gratch, Head of Information and Instructional Services, Saint Mary's College.
"Influencing Curricular Reform Without Faculty Status."

Comments/Questions and Strategy Summarizing. Seek appointment on library advisory committee; Friends of the Library; campus curriculum committees; committee task forces charged with projects that interest you or impad the library; or nomination to academic senate. Once appointed, be an active member.

Volunteer to edit your library newsletter and solicit articles from academic administrators and faculty.

Create alliances with other units to co-staff or co-plan workshops, information technology training, and information fairs (e.g, library and faculty development director; library and academic computing stati; library and student affairs staff.)

Participate in campus academic colloquia and celebratory events, such as fluid-raising activities sponsored by the campus development office.

Solicit and involve disciplinary faculty and students to help plan and implement user/use studies.

Take initiative in preparing or coordinating a written response to academic documents in draft form, such as academic strategic plans' accreditation self-studies, campus technology plans, etc.

On a regular basis, request time on department agendas to keep disciplinary faculty informed of library developments and to stay current with curricular changes.

Seek involvement and endorsement of library research/information literacy objectives at all appropriate levels-library director, disciplinary faculty, curriculum committees, and academic senate.

Increase your visibility and contacts by seeking more informal outlets, such as lunching more often at the faculty dining room and participating in campus faculty/staff recreational and cultural activities.

As a committee member, use your library research skills to do bachground research to help advance the work of the committee.

Join and become active in disciplinary and higber education professional associations.

Attend leadership development workshops and institutes.

Instigate and participate in programming activities that promote library, media center, and disciplinary partnerships.
Some of these ideas are taken from the upcoming, November 1995, article in C&RL News by Stephanie Bangert and Bonnie Gratch, "Accreditation: Opportunities for Iiibrarian Leadership."

Session A: Libraries as Leaders Stories From the Field

As a result of a posting to several listservs, the following individuals shared their stories and tips for getting involved as librarian leaders. Common themes that emerge are:
  1. Get out of the library, get involved in campus governance and other activities, become visible.
  2. Volunteer and take initiative in the library and on campus, such as chairing committees.
  3. Promote, publicize, and share information. Never assume that others know about library/media center resources and services.
  4. Be political and strategic in building partnerships/alliances, whlle preserving neutrality and openness so that disciplinary faculty can depend on our perspective being broad and nonterritorial.

Gabrida Sonnta-Grigera, Coordinator of Information Literacy Program, CSU-San Marcos Initiative: She and her colleagues took a "top-down" approach to having an information literacy component included in all the lower-division general education courses.

Strategies: Invited thefr Provost to Redlands conference where Evan Farber "sold" them on curriculum-integrated model of library instruction. Provost then emphasized information literacy to faculty committee developing general education program. Gabriela was a member of this committee and so actively influenced committee to have information literacy included in all the lower-division general education courses. After Academic Senate approval, she was voted chair of the General Education Committee.

Comments/Tips: Very supportive library colleagues and library dean "talked up" the program with other administrators. "It was a constant conversation trying to educate admimstrators and disciplinary faculty about meaning of information literacy and library's role. Important to be diplomatic, prepared for any opportunity and persistent." Check out her homepage

Kristin Ramsdall, Coordinator for Library Instructional Services, CSU-Hayward

Initiative: Chaired the University Committee on Instruction and Curriculum during the time that we completely revamped the process for course and program approval. Consequenty, the library's efforts to have new course approval have been greatly facilitated

Strategies: "I was elected from the library to the committee and served four years. I was a vocal and active member, and in the last year I was nominated by one of the other committee members to chair."

Comments/Tips: Very important to contribute once appointed to a campus committee. It's really a matter of building trust and credibility with disciplinary faculty; they need to get to know you. "Perhaps BI librarians have an edge because we often get to know the faculty better. I think it's easier to become involved if librarians have faculty status."

Ilene Rockman, Interim Dean, Cal Poly-San Luis Obispo

Initiative: As a member of a campus-wide task force for revising the undergraduate curriculum, she helped educate the committee about importance of library resources and use. As a result of her proactive membership and presence, specific curricular goals related to information literacy skills -- "the curricula will teach students how to access and evaluate information" -- and learning outcomes -- acquisition of factual information as well as higher order mental abilities, such a critical thinking, synthesizing, analyzing, evaluating, were adopted

Strategies: She used her research skills to provide the committee with needed background information. "I also found that my formal training in curriculum development was useful in forging alliances with other faculty members." This background in curriculum development, as well as experience as a secondary school teacher, lent credibility to her comments. She attributes her appointment on the task force to many years of service on the Academic Senate curriculum committee and her ability to contribute to discussions about varying university-wide issues.

Comments/Tips: "Best strategy is to visible on campus. Networking helps--establishing a reputation through university service, as well as attending meetings faithfully and doing the work. One also must be informed and speak to other higher education issues, such as admissions criteria, quality education, teaching loads, role of staff and students in university governance, etc., to gain the trust and confidence of university colleagues. If we are perceived as only one-issue individuals (Le., the library), our credibility can be diminished."

Darrow Wood, Chief Librarian, NYC Technical College, Brooklyn.

Initiative: During his career up through the ranks, he has purposefully involved himself in academic governance in a wide variety of roles and committees. More recently as chief librarian, he has represented successfully the library point of view in curricular and budgetary areas.

Strategies: He took seriously the requirement of college service and was a member or chair of numerous committees. By so doing, he gained knowledge, eredibility, and access to individuals. "One advantage I had not coming from a teaching department was appearing neutral. I was acceptable and credible to faculty from both sides - career/technical programs vs. liberal arts."
"Get out of the library and mix with the rest of the college -not just in ways that relate to functional library responsibilities. Seek appointment to campus-wide committees and be vocal and active, such as being chairperson."
Karen Kieffer Gillette, Coordinator of Public Services, Foothill College Library.

Initiative: Very active in campus governance, she currently co-chairs with the Dean of Academic Affairs the General Education Review Committee and participates in redrafting general education area descriptions and establishing criteria. This role allows her the opportunity to keep library and information technology concerns very visible.

Strategies: She has often offered research assistance to campus committees. She also has used to advantage her broad knowledge of the curriculum in an impartial way in committee discussions.
"Volunteer. Learn and apply knowledge of the curriculum and college programs and services. Be ready and able to plug-in library resources. Listen to students and faculty and be responsive to community needs."

Judy Jones, Head Library Media Center, CSU-Sacramento

Initiatives: She and her staff have been active in increasing the number of faculty and students who use Media Center resources.

Strategies: Promoting the Media Center in every way possible! They offer multimedia demonstrations, personalized training for the technophobe, and publicize new acquisitions broadly. "Sometimes we offer theme weeks and show ftlms at lunch time, along with other programming. We have also relaxed circulation policies."
Outreach and promotion need constant attention. Be proactive about collection development using media resources to support curriculum goals.

Ellen Meltzer, Head of the Teaching Library, UC Berkeley

Initiative: During her appointment to the Board of the Center for the Teaching and Study of American Cultures she was able to represent the Library's servees and put departmental faculty in touch with appropriate librarians. She was also successtul in having the Center hire and pay for an American Cultures librarian!

Strategies: As a committee member she was conscientious and active, even attending departmental faculty meetings at times. "These are useful, as they are fairly small meetings. Talking to people about their own courses is a good strategy to uncover what library support they may need"
"Get out there on campus and make yourself seen and known. Also, take advantage: of every new thing the library offers to tell faculty about it."

Compiled and edited by Bonnie Gratch, Saint Mary's College Library,

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