The Official Publication of SWALL:
The Southwestern Association of Law Libraries
A Chapter of the American Association of Law Libraries
TABLE OF CONTENTS
FROM THE BENCH
SWALL AT AALL
of SWALL Business Meeting: Minnesota
AALL Experience: 2001
Legislative History in Texas
Legislative History Research Guide
From the CoALL Annual Holiday Party
MY AALL EXPERIENCE: 2001
The theme of this year's AALL Annual Meeting was "New Realities, New Roles", and many of the sessions were geared to looking ahead and pondering what will be in store for law libraries and law librarians. I learned that, for the most part, no one knows what lies ahead.
The speaker at the Private Law Libraries after-lunch session, Tim Green, painted an optimistic picture (in between renditions of Elvis and other performers), saying that the information profession is as visible as it has ever been. And this is a good thing - we can add value to the information we provide, and he provided several steps to help us do just that. At the other end of the spectrum was the 2nd plenary speaker, Arthur Harkins, a futurist. I thought he painted a very gloomy picture of what the future holds for information professionals (or maybe I found it gloomy because I didn't know what many of the words he was using meant).
Having decided before I went to AALL that I was less worried about the future than about the present, I tried to attend sessions that would help me in my position NOW. I attended 2 sessions on time management (and, no matter how I try to follow their advice, there are just NOT enough hours in a day). One session emphasized managing priorities, and taught us several methods for doing just that. The other session suggested using a planner to make daily to do lists, and then set priorities for the items on the list. Bits of both methods are helpful, and I hope to find some time to try them. I also attended sessions on downsizing the library, working with the marketing department, and negotiating a salary increase, to name a few.
In between sessions (and, yes, sometimes instead of sessions), I did find time to visit the exhibit hall - frequently more useful to me than a session. In addition to checking out the major vendors, I tried to talk to several of the smaller, newer services. And I found several that will be very useful - a new person locator service, and a medical document delivery service, for example. I have a stack of business cards and brochures that I know will prove useful, as soon as I find the time to review them.
And, last, but certainly not least, I would like to thank SWALL for awarding me one of their travel grants. I appreciated it, my office appreciated it, and hopefully, because I was able to keep my expense report down, I will be able to continue to attend out-of-town conferences.