Kenneth Rudolf, Chair
For me, the most rewarding element of the FCIL SIS is the people who make up the section. This conclusion has been strengthened this year as I have relied on many of you to carry on the work of the FCIL between our annual meetings in Orlando and Seattle. I have been gratified by the willingness of members to volunteer for committee work or to respond graciously to my requests to assist in some project. So this column is a tribute to all who are participating in the work of the FCIL this year. Until I became chair, I was really unaware of how many people keep up the work of the section between annual meetings.
Strategic Planning. The SIS has been engaged in strategic planning for several years, but the departure of the committee chair for another continent brought the process to a halt. Fortunately, our able Vice Chair, Jean Wenger (Cook County Law Library), agreed to chair a reconstituted committee to bring this process to culmination. The new committee, consisting of Jean Davis (Brooklyn Law School), Jolande Goldberg (Library of Congress), Mary Rumsey (University of Minnesota), and Dan Wade (Yale Law School), is busy looking through the material that has been gathered and is striving to have a document ready to present to the membership at the Seattle business meeting.
Bylaws. Several recent vacancies have shown that the bylaws do not adequately cover all the situations that can arise, so a committee on bylaws has been formed to recommend appropriate changes. Jonathan Franklin (University of Washington) is leading this committee consisting of Anne Burnett (University of Georgia), Bill Ryan (American University), and Katherine Topulos (Duke University).
Publications. In Orlando, the Electronic Issues Interest Group suggested that enhancements be made to the FCIL web page. Anne Burnett, who functions as our publications committee chair and webmaster, is the leader of this group. Additional members are Stephanie Burke (Boston University), Mark Engsberg (Yale Law School), Lyonette Louis-Jacques (University of Chicago), and Victoria Szymczak (Brooklyn Law School).
Clearinghouse for Internships and International Personnel Exchanges. This standing committee assists librarians who would like to experience librarianship in another country find suitable situations. In addition, it works to identify potential libraries willing to host foreign librarians. David McFadden has led this group for several years, and this year a number of people have volunteered to assist in compiling a new list of libraries and in publicizing the service the Clearinghouse offers. The volunteers include Carole Hinchcliff (Ohio State University), Wei Luo (Washington University), Pedro Padilla-Rosa (University of Puerto Rico), Lee Peoples (Oklahoma City University), and Mary Strouse (Catholic University of America).
Foreign Law Librarians. Tracy Thompson, our Immediate Past Chair, is spearheading an effort to provide more information and mentoring to foreign librarians who attend the Annual Meeting. This is in response to an unofficial request that our SIS expand on our welcoming reception. In time we may ask for volunteers to serve as liaisons to foreign librarians, introducing them to the culture of an AALL Annual Meeting. In addition, as this Newsletter goes to press, a committee is being formed to administer the Schaffer grant for a visiting foreign librarian to the Annual Meeting.
A very special tribute goes to Stephanie Burke, our intrepid Newsletter editor, who is undertaking this huge job for the second year. In many ways this is a thankless job, but it is also a vital one, keeping the members informed of activities within the SIS.
Another huge thank-you goes to our nominating committee this year, consisting of Jean Davis (Brooklyn Law School), Rhonda Gold (Nova Southeastern University), and Wei Luo (Washington University). Their task is to provide the members with a slate of officers that will move the SIS forward, and they have performed nobly this year. The people they have chosen are committed to giving their time and energy to maintaining a high level of service in the SIS.
It is gratifying to have
the names of Mirela Roznovschi (New York University) and Mary Rumsey (University
of Minnesota) on the ballot. Mirela has been our intrepid secretary-treasurer
for the past two years and is now the candidate for vice chair/chair-elect.
She specializes in electronic sources for foreign and international law at her
library, and I have relied on the web pages she created and maintains on more
than one occasion. They are a tremendous resource for our entire profession.
Mary Rumsey, candidate for secretary-treasurer, has served on the former and
the current strategic plan committee and on the first Schaffer grant committee.
She has also been active in developing training materials for international
researchers. Both of these people have been involved with FCIL for several years
and have the depth of experience to be strong candidates. (Note to
all you lurkers: If your initials are M.R., you had better watch out. The nominating committee may be coming after you next!)
My greatest fear in writing a column like this is that I have omitted the names of even more of you who work selflessly for the FCIL. (I have intentionally omitted all the Interest Group coordinators—stay tuned for the May issue.) However, my primary reason for listing these names is to show how many people contribute to the work of FCIL. I think everyone who is volunteering this year and who has served in the past deserves a huge vote of appreciation.