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I am running for American Library Association President and would welcome your ideas, suggestions and concerns.

To contact me off-blog, feel free to e-mail me at  either my personal e-mail <> or my campaign e-mail <> 

I'd love to hear from you--Sara


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Where IS Nancy Pearl?

I haven't logged on to LM_NET for a bit but get the LM_NET Select service, too, so that I don't miss "the good stuff." This morning's Nancy Pearl Flickr series by Dr. Mary Ann Bell is one of them! She's posted the travels of her Nancy Pearl action figure on her Flickr site and it IS hard to find Nancy in some of them. Such fun! Here's the URL: <>

I have both versions of Nancy Pearl on my desk, along with other library toys (Greenwood bobble-heads, Edgar Allen Poe action figure) just to make kids talk about libraries and librarians. And they do!  The Nancy Pearl doll was even written into a murder mystery in which the librarian was killed (I did a cameo and had a great deal of fun overacting) and the "substitute" librarian said that now she could play with Nancy Pearl more. I also have a photo of myself with her on the desk to prove to kids she's real. It starts the conversation--with faculty and staff as well as the students. And that's an important advocacy concept.

I've also said many times that one measure of a librarian's sense of humor is whether they can laugh at  him or herself enough to have a Nancy Pearl action figure on the desk. Many, many good librarians wouldn't have Nancy Pearl on their desk because they see it as perpetuating the stereotypes of librarians as dowdy.  I see the  Nancy Pearl doll actually fighting the stereotypes by thumbing her nose (you can make her do that!) at such perceptions of our profession.

Do I cringe and object to the stereotypes? You betcha! I've long belonged to a Plattsburgh, NY-area group called "The Subcommittee to change the Image of Librarianship" which meets irregularly in a bar to talk, laugh and support each other. Before the days of pervasive e-mails (or even phones in every library!), we could call each other's schools and leave a message with the school secretary, "Please tell Glenda there is a subcommittee meeting at 4pm on Friday at Anthony's" with no questions.

BUT, one must be able to laugh at oneself and most of the people with whom I would want to spend time outside a conference workshop fall into the category of those who have--or would have--Nancy on their desk. Mary Ann Bell is even taking her outside! I'll keep checking for updates.

Here's Nancy and me at the New York Library Association conference in October:

nancy pearl at nyla.jpg



The challenge from ALA pres-elect Leslie Burger's blog...

I keep coming back to this: 

"How do we build on the concept of a social network, the speed and ease of communication and information sharing of the bloggers? How do we make ALA a more attractive outlet for people who want to make a difference, for those who need help and ideas to bring back to their libraries, and make it a more welcoming, social organization. ...

"I don't have all the answers to these questions but I do know that if we don't address these issues we run the risk of losing a whole generation of librarians who are the future leaders of ALA."


 Ideas?  Reactions?


2006 SLMS Conference Blog!

Who knew!  I missed THAT announcement, that's for sure!

 As a result of getting "tagged" today, I found out that the upcoming 2006 SLMS/NYLA Conference has a blog. Whoopee!

I knew that conference info is available on the RASL (Rochester Area School Librarians) website: <> but not that there is a blog.

Check it out: It's at <>