Trustee

Summer 2008

The Trustee communicates issues affecting libraries and library services. Once a library and systems join LTA, all their trustees automatically receive this quarterly publication published by LTA. To learn more about membership in LTA, Click Here.

Government Leaders Read About "Revolution in the Stacks"

By State Senator Hugh T. Farley, Chair, Senate Subcommittee on Libraries, and Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, Chair, Assembly Committee on Libraries and Education Technology

Summer 2008 issue of Trustee

By State Senator Hugh T. Farley, Chair, Senate Subcommittee on Libraries, and Assemblywoman Amy Paulin, Chair,
Assembly Committee on Libraries and Education Technology

The June 2008 issue of Governing magazine, a monthly publication read by 280,000 federal, state, and local government leaders, featured a story about libraries' efforts to appeal to a new generation of young, tech-savy readers.

The story describes such "Library 2.0" initiatives as multi-media programs in Charlotte-Mecklenburg, library book vending machines at commuter rail stations in California, and a newly-built event-oriented library in Salt Lake City which has become that community's second-most-visited tourist attraction.

For most in the library community, this news is not entirely new.

But, with its featured position in the national magazine and high visibility on Governing's website, www.governing.com,  the story has reached tens of thousands of political leaders, public administrators, and other government workers who may not have regular contact with library planning and technology.

This creates several excellent opportunities for trustees to showcase what your library does, is planning to do, or could do with sufficient resources.

You can use the publication to open, re-open, or continue dialogues with federal, state, and local elected officials, public administrators, and other public servants. "Did you read the article in Governing?" is a fine way to start a conversation. Certainly you'll be talking with mayors, supervisors, and legislators. But think about transit administrators, tourism promoters, and other government workers whose fields are connected with libraries in the story.

You can share the national story with local editorial writers and news commentators, and show parallels to your local accomplishments or plans. When an issue receives national attention, a local angle makes a good local story.

And, you can be sure that your patrons are aware of this and other media coverage of twenty-first century library initiatives. People take very personal ownership of their local library, and often have little means to compare services with libraries in other communities. National news coverage offers a "hook" for demonstrating local successes, and for building patron support for new initiatives.

News reporters and editors are among libraries' biggest boosters, as their jobs and their personal interests in reading nd research focus on your reason for being. This is a good example of the value of a good news story.


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