GODORT 2008 Midwinter Meeting Highlights
Philadelphia, January 11–14, 2008
Philadelphia was the site of the 2008 Midwinter Meeting and what better place for GODORT members to come together to work on issues as well as have some fun. The Rare and Endangered Government Publications Committee arranged a wonderful tour of the Library Company, which was founded in 1731 by Benjamin Franklin as a subscription library. Then it was down to business.
The Awards Committee announced the following recipients: James Bennett Childs Award—Larry Romans; LexisNexis/GODORT/ALA “Documents to the People” Award—Mary Webb Prophet; Bernadine Abbott Hoduski Founders Award—Lily Wai; NewsBank/Readex/GODORT/ALA Catharine J. Reynolds Research Grant Award—Judith Downie; and the W. David Rozkuszka Scholarship—Ray Walling.
The Bylaws & Organization Committee worked on two bylaws changes. Membership approved the reduction of members in GITCO (Government Information Technology Committee) from 12 to 9. The Development Committee submitted a request to extend the term of the Development Committee Chair from one year to two years.
The Cataloging Committee reported that publication of RDA (Resource Description and Access)—which will replace AACR2—is set for next year, with the initial release at IFLA in Quebec. The committee also heard a report from GPO’s Laurie Hall who reported a misperception in the community regarding the quality of the EPA Harvesting Pilot Project as “perfect” documents. Her group is spending a lot of time trying to decide if retrieved items are (1) complete documents and (2) in scope. Ms. Hall also covered other items that have been announced on various electronic discussion lists recently.
The Conference Committee was hard at work planning the reception in Anaheim, which will be hosted by Chapman University.
The Development Committee introduced The Draft Guidelines for Managing Solicitations to Vendors and a Draft Solicitation Letter to Steering II. Work also began on a development plan of annual solicitation letters to GODORT members and others that will list several donation choices. Initial contact asking for contributions will be in February 2008.
The Education Committee held a discussion session on instructional technology and government information where participants shared what they are doing with course management software, webcasts, tutorials, podcasts, wikis, and widgets. A subgroup of the committee will revise a survey soliciting opinions on core competencies for new government information specialists and general government information competencies for non-specialists. The committee began the transfer of the GODORT Clearinghouse & Handout Exchange to the GODORT wiki. Once complete, new content will be solicited. The committee will be constructing virtual program proposals to submit to GPO for production using GPO’s OPAL (Online Programming for All Libraries) license.
The Membership Committee began a survey that will help the strategic planning process. Several focus groups will be held this next year to allow members to share their thoughts with the Ad Hoc Strategic Planning Committee.
The Nominating Committee had the following slate approved by Steering: GODORT Assistant Chair/Chair-Elect: Amy West and Valerie Glenn; Secretary: Yadira Payne and Kathy Brazee; Awards Committee: Laura Sare, Lynda Kellam, Dan Barkley, and Sarah Maximiek; Bylaws Committee: Barbara Miller and Aimee Quinn; Nominating Committee: Mark Scott, David Griffiths, Beth Clausen, and Marilyn Von Seggern; Publications Committee Chair/Chair-Elect: John Stevenson; Federal Documents Task Force Assistant Coordinator/Coordinator-Elect: Kristen Clark; Federal Documents Task Force Secretary: Laura Horne; International Task Force Assistant Coordinator/Coordinator-Elect: David Oldenkamp and Richard Guajardo; International Documents Task Force Secretary: Sandhya Srivastava and Susan Bennett White; State and Local Documents Task Force Assistant Coordinator/Coordinator- Elect: Suzanne Sears and Rich Gause; State and Local Documents Task Force Secretary: Samantha Hager and Annalise Sklar.
The Program Committee had a program and a preconference approved for the 2009 Annual Conference. The program will be focused on government documents for kids tentatively titled “GovDocs Kids Group Presents: Learn and Have Fun with Government Documents.” A preconference focused on urban planning from 1909 forward was approved and will be very timely in Chicago because itis the site of the American Planning Association.
The Publications Committee continues to be very busy with the new book edited by Andrea Morrison, Managing Electronic Government Information in Libraries: Issues and Practices due out in March 2008 and published by ALA Editions on behalf of GODORT. Plus, a new “Occasional Papers” series was approved and contributions will be solicited. The DttP editor’s term is over with issue 2 in 2009, so those of you interested in editing, please look for the job description coming soon.
The task forces were busy with the State & Local Documents Task Force voted to work with the Rare and Endangered Government Publications Committee to form a working group to develop a plan for creating a list on the wiki of state projects on preserving/ capturing born digital documents. The International Documents Task Force created an ad hoc working group to explore the possibility and interest in adding non-governmental organization information into the purpose of the Task Force to create a place for the discussion of NGO information. And the Task Force for Electronic Archiving looked at ways to archive GODORT’s web and electronic communications. Their report is available on the GODORT web site.
The GODORT Treasurer reported that at the end of the ALA fiscal year (Aug. 31, 2007) GODORT was doing well. Many people contributed to the Rozkuszka Scholarship and the endowment. We collected $246 in change at the Membership meeting for the Rozkuszka Scholarship.
The Steering Committee approved extending the term of the Ad Hoc Strategic Planning Committee for two more years. And once again, the GODORT@ala.org electronic discussion list was discussed and a new proposal to make this list more of a discussion list led by Steering members was approved by GODORT membership.
E-government was a hot topic with the Legislation Committee working with the Government Information Subcommittee of ALA’s Committee on Legislation (COL-GIS). Their discussion raised the issue for a need for clarity on a definition of e-government and for a venue within ALA for discussing e-government; that the discussion on e-government needs to bring in voices from across the association, including (especially) public libraries; and that e-government is important at the state and local levels as well as federal. COL-GIS agreed to devote a two-hour meeting at the Annual Conference in Anaheim for a deliberation on e-government to frame these issues.
Both Legislation Committee members and the GODORT Councilor were extremely busy working on six resolutions which were endorsed in principle: (1) Resolution on Tribal College Library Membership in the Federal Depository Library Program, (2) Resolution on Government Printing Office FY 2009 Appropriations, (3) Resolution on Full Funding of the Federal Digital System, (4) Resolution on Safeguarding Electronic Government Information and E-Government, (5) Resolution Acknowledging the Courage of Mr. Bassem Youssef; and (6) Resolution Opposing Postal Rate Increases for Small Circulation Publications. A Memorial Resolution Remembering Robert Oakley was still being developed. Two controversial topics were also discussed by ALA Council. The opening up of the electronic lists of ALA units was referred to the Task Force on Electronic Communication. The Task Force will report in 2009. Meanwhile the Protocol for Responding to a Formal Request for an ALA Position was tabled.
In Memoriam: GODORT lost two colleagues last year. Robert Oakley, AALL Washington affairs representative and director of the law library and professor of law at Georgetown University, died unexpectedly September 29, 2007,
and Vivian Moorhouse of GPO. Bill Sleeman called for a moment of silence to honor the memory of Moorhouse, who died on December 7, 2007. Sleeman read a statement in her honor recognizing her forty years of service to the GPO and the Library Programs Service.
For the complete minutes, please see the GODORT web site at www.ala .org/ala/godort/godortminutes.—Aimée
C. Quinn, GODORT Past Chair