Membership Meeting Minutes - Midwinter 2004

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Membership Meeting Minutes - Midwinter 2004

by Jim Niessen, Secretary

WESS General Membership Meeting
ALA 2004 Midwinter Meeting, San Diego
January 13, 2004, ACRL Suite, Manchester Grand Hyatt, Penthouse Suite #3906, 8 A.M.
Attending
Gordon Anderson, Bryan Baldus, Laura Dale Bischof, Nancy Boerner, Roger Brisson, James Burgett, John Cullars, Dick Hacken, Hank Harken, Martha Hsu, Tom Izbicki, Sean Knowlton, Dennis Lambert, Jeffry Larson, Thea Lindquist, Rebecca Malek-Wiley, Jim Niessen (recorder), Joy Pile, Kati Radics, Beth Remak-Honnef (chair), Kathy Rutter, Sue Roberts, Pam Snelson (ACRL Board liaison), Ann Snoeyenbos, Sarah G.Wenzel;

1. Reports from WESS discussion groups:

Cataloging Discussion Group:
Rebecca Malek-Wiley reported that the discussion group featured an account by Charles Croissant of cataloguing-related meetings at the IFLA Conference in Berlin [in August 2003] and an IFLA preconference in Frankfurt. He described several ongoing international projects, including work on a "Statement of International Cataloguing Principles." The group also discussed the ongoing concern about the recruitment of catalogers to the profession and the establishment of cataloging internships, for instance at Brigham Young University.

Classical, Medieval and Renaissance Discussion Group:
Jerry Heverly reported that 21 attended the meeting on Saturday. Maria Tantaba of UC Irvine spoke about the TLG (Thesaurus Linguae Graecae). Karen Green was elected as incoming chair. As new topics, the group suggested the role of subject specialists and conflicting demands upon their time.

College and Medium-sized Libraries Discussion Group:
Hank Harken reported ten attended the session, whose topic was “finding foreign publications when you don’t have approval plans or slips.” Sources include faculty traveling abroad for research, academic conferences, and atall.com. In answer to a question about jobbers for Scandinavian materials, nobody could name one. The discussion group did a group process to create a New Selectors FAQ. It will be posted to the email list, and eventually to WESSWeb.

Germanists Discussion Group:
James Burgett reported that close to 40 attended the meeting, including Elmar Mittler and Hildegard Schäffler from Germany. Reports on the German Resources Project meetings in Munich in August and at Midwinter highlighted the growing emphasis on reciprocal benefits for North American and German partners. Mittler noted that the new e-journal package DigiZeitschriften will have a price cap of 4000 Euros for the largest German libraries. There will be a free trial of this product for North American GRP members in 2004. Charles Croissant reported at the discussion group on the cataloging meeting in Berlin, ad Gordon Anderson on the Frankfurt Book Fair. Brian Vetruba gave a presentation on the recruitment of people with language skills into the profession with a PowerPoint that will eventually be on the Web. In the course of discussion it was emphasized that language skills often lead librarians after they’ve been hired to activities that weren’t in their original job descriptions.

Romance Languages Discussion Group:
Emily Stambaugh reported there were over 30 in attendance. The main topic was collection development for Romance languages, with examination of how to set up approval plans, electronic slip management, and IP access to European newspapers. Group members expressed enthusiastic interest in updating the French section of WESSWeb. Bryan Skib and Jeffry Larson distributed handouts that will be disseminated electronically.

Scandinavian Discussion Group:
Gordon Anderson reported a good turnout (20) for the meeting. Special guest Dr. Ulf Brynjestad, the Swedish consul in San Diego, welcomed the group to Southern California and briefly related the history of Swedes and Swedish-Americans in the area. He also reported that the Welcome to the Vasa Order of America (a Swedish-American fraternal organization) will be sponsoring a doctoral dissertation fellowship in Scandinavian studies. (Gordon will report the news via Nord-Lib and WESS-L after the announcement is official.) Gordon spoke about Scandinavian collections at Minnesota and Minnesota’s memorandum of understanding with Wisconsin. The discussion group will continue to have its main meeting at Midwinter.

Social Sciences and History Discussion Group:
Thea Lindquist reported that chair David Lincove organized a panel discussion about Title VI-funded National Resource Centers for European Studies. The panelists described their centers and grant writing experiences. David prepared a list of centers that he will post to WESSWeb [the list is now online at http://www.dartmouth.edu/~wessweb/NRCWESS.html].

The Special Topics Discussion Group did not meet.

2. Reports of WESS Committees:

2004 Conference Planning Planning:
Laura Dale Bischof reported that the program will be entitled “Scholarly Communication in Europe.” It will take place at 8 A.M. on the Monday of the Annual Meeting in Orlando, because it will be co-sponsored by the ACRL Scholarly Communication Committee, whose own program will follow in a hopefully nearby room.

Publications Committee:
Rebecca Malek-Wiley reported an attendance of 16 including guests. The main topic was the WESS Newsletter. The committee agreed that due to the current shortfall in funding the spring issue, like the fall one, will be just 8 pages long will a fuller version on the Web. Henceforth the online version will be the issue of record. March 8 is the deadline for submissions to Sarah Wenzel for the newsletter. The committee has agreed to make some types of information in members' entries in the WESS Membership Directory optional. Bruce Swann has made progress in making revisions to the Directory format. It is possible to toggle to the fuller version, and a Web entry form will be available. A brief discussion of WESSWeb followed and then of the WESS brochures and bookmarks.

Research and Planning Committee:
Ann Snoyenbos reported that 18 attended. The Web page of the Recruitment Subcommittee (presented at the Germanists Discussion Group) will go online in March. There is hope to make this subcommittee more permanent. Jerry Heverly reported as liaison to the American Philological Association, and more liaison reports were encouraged. It was suggested that we talk more with vendors about subject/language combinations not being collected in North America. There are efforts to update the union list of newspapers in the New York area, and to establish an ad hoc mentoring arrangement for WESSies in grantwriting and research. During the last hour of the meeting there was a discussion of how WESS is fulfilling ACRL’s strategic plan.

Membership Committee:
Thea Lindquist reported the committee met on Saturday. A social is planned for Orlando at 7:30 PM on Saturday, June 26, but no cruise because vendors are already giving generously for the Paris conference. Thea continues to send paper letters to new members, and will start sending emails including signup information for the Membership Directory. There is also a project to add new members to WESS-L, and discussion of offering conference and career mentoring. The ACRL Membership Committee will have one of three programs on recruiting in Orlando, entitled “Beating the Bushes: Recruiting a New Generation of Academic Librarians” and featuring Hannelore Rader, Alice Prochaska, and Ray English.

Coutts-Nijhoff International West European Study Grant Jury:
Gordon Anderson reported there were four applications, all very good, for the CNI Award. The committee made its selection, which will be announced in March. The Committee encourages more applications next year. After reviewing the applications, the committee discussed several other matters: providing a brief critique to those who had applied; giving general advice to prospective applicants; making some changes in the announcement wording for next year; and recommending that the current committee make-up be continued: the WESS past chair, the R&P chair; a former Award recipient; and a Coutts-Nijhoff company representative. This structure does not need to be codified in the WESS Bylaws but could be provided for in the WESS Manual. This is a very important WESS award that needs to be widely publicized.

3. Update on the Paris

Jeffry Larson reported that the ACRL Budget and Finance Committee voted the previous day to continue financing of the conference despite the current risk of losses. While the result was positive, the vote was split. Bad news concerning the committee work was the passing away of Lara Moore and the illness of Helene Baumann. Tom Kilton and Ceres Birkhead be interim co-chairs of the Publicity Committee. Local Arrangements Committee chair Carolyn Szylowicz is having visa problems, so Kathy Rutter will stand in as interim chair. Sarah Wenzel is Program Committee chair. The conference will begin on Monday with an address by Jean-Claude Guedon, and conclude on Friday with a closing address by Roger Chartier. Many presentations are lined up, and site visits being arranged. Aux Amateurs is giving a dinner on Thursday, and Touzot will give a reception on Wednesday.

4. Other Business

Gordon Anderson added a report regarding the Frankfurt Book Fair. We will submit a proposal to ACRL to renew funding for participation in Frankfurt 2004. A major problem is that henceforth the cost of the booth will be several times more expensive. The theme “country” for Frankfurt 2005 will be the Arab countries. Gordon sent a report to Holger Ehling, the deputy director of the book fair, after leading the delegation in 2003, about how the book fair can attract more librarians. Roger emphasized that we need to get the word out that Frankfurt is the biggest English-language fair, covering all countries.

On another topic, Kati raised the idea of saving travel money for members by reducing the number of days on which WESS meetings will be held at Annual to Saturday, Sunday, and Monday.

Gordon reported on his meeting with the SEES (Slavic and East European Section) Executive Committee the day before. Out of concern that few of its members readily participate on committees and in meetings, the SEES Executive Committee wanted to discuss the possibility of joining with WESS. Gordon (also a SEES member) attended the meeting to speak for and about WESS. After healthy, intense discussion, SEES members voted to continue as a separate section, with some structural changes. Some SEES members, especially those in the West Slavic area, expressed an interest in working closer with WESS, particularly in light of the upcoming European Union enlargement and of the significantly different situation in the area of the former Soviet Bloc. Tom Izbicki suggested the possibility of a joint WESS-SEES program in one of the coming years.


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