ARCHIVED: Developing Law Librarians for the Future Special Committee

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View the Committee Roster

View the Committee Report - 2009

The profession is aging, and while the mass retirement exodus has not yet arrived, it seems certain that it is coming. We need to insure that there are well-trained law librarians ready to move into the positions that will eventually be vacated by the baby boomers. AALL has several committees that deal with various aspects of recruiting and developing new members, but of necessity their focus is on the limited time periods of their terms.

AALL needs to develop a comprehensive, long-range program to be sure that the best and the brightest learn about law librarianship as a career option, that they get the education they need, that they are helped in locating jobs, and that they are mentored and developed not just at the beginning, but throughout the formative years of their careers.

CHARGE: The Special Committee is charged with:

  • Researching methods used to recruit and develop members in other organizations and recommending any that should be adopted by AALL.
  • Developing current, effective, and professional-looking career literature and working with headquarters on establishing annual national distribution
  • Reviewing the functioning of the member-related committees, and identifying any overlaps or gaps in coverage; recommending any future changes in structure to help facilitate their functioning (in coordination with the Special Committee on Committee Structure)
  • Developing a comprehensive web site of law library career-related information that encompasses what is currently available on various committee sites
  • Establishing a national network of trained AALL career representatives, coordinating with existing chapter programs, and recommending structures for continuation on a permanent basis
  • Recommending headquarters staff support that may be needed to carry out the recruitment and member development program on a long-term basis
  • Coordinating with the ongoing activities of the member-related standing committees
  • Suggesting any other methods that will enhance AALL's recruitment and new member development program and provide for its continuance into the future

The Special Committee will prepare a preliminary report for the Spring, 2008 Executive Board meeting, an interim report with recommendations for Board approval for the Fall, 2008 Executive Board meeting, and a final report covering implementation plans for the Spring, 2009 Executive Board meeting.

SIZE: The Special Committee will consist of a Chair and 6 members, who will serve a 2-year term beginning in July, 2007. Ex-Officio members will include the current chairs of the Recruitment, Mentoring, and Membership and Retention Committees. A non-voting Executive Board liaison and a staff liaison will be appointed.

Relationship to existing standing committees and other groups

Several standing committees are involved in member development, especially the Recruitment, Mentoring, and Membership and Retention Committees. Other related committees include Diversity, Grants, Scholarships, and Placement. Other AALL-related entities particularly involved in this work include the Council of Law Library Educators, the Gen X / Gen Y Caucus, and many chapters. They do excellent work, but are limited in their opportunities to develop long range, comprehensive plans. To ensure the future of the law library profession, a broader, long range view is needed. The Special Committee is charged with developing this comprehensive approach. Additional resources may be provided as needed to enable them to perform this important work.