AALL eNewsletter / February 2008


It’s February, and though winter continues with a vengeance for many of us, I hope this eNewsletter will bring warm thoughts as we take a first look at plans for our July Annual Meeting in Portland! It also provides an update on the Executive Board’s review of AALL vendor relations, announcement of a new special committee to review the Washington Affairs Office and of a new Washington Affairs blog, and reminders about the Day in the Life Contest and a host of opportunities for scholarships, grants, and publishing opportunities, as well as a preview of AALL’s first Leadership Academy. We say “Happy Birthday” to Law Library Journal, as volume 100 begins publication, and announce a partnership between AALL and HeinOnline to make our early newsletters available electronically.

Vendor Relations Update

In November I reported to you on discussions about AALL and vendors that took place at the fall Executive Board meeting. Since that time, a working group of five Executive Board members has been busy developing new approaches to help AALL deal more effectively with vendor relations. The group has completed its report, and the board will consider its recommendations at its April board meeting.

The matters reviewed by the working group include possible changes to the Guide to Fair Business Practices, development of an AALL sponsorship policy, AALL’s approach to association antitrust, ways to encourage and promote greater competition and enhanced customer service in the legal information industry, and ways to improve communications with vendors and with the membership. Watch for further information about the outcome of this meeting in April. In the meantime, please be sure to visit our AALL and Vendors Web page, which now has its own graphical link from the AALLNET home page.

Special Committee to Review Washington Affairs Office

Nearly 20 years ago, Bob Oakley helped create AALL’s Washington Affairs Office (WAO) and for 18 years served as AALL’s Washington affairs representative. With Bob’s tragic death last fall, change is on the horizon for the WAO. As a result, I recently appointed a Washington Affairs Office Review Special Committee to tackle this new challenge for the Association.

The special committee will assess the evolution and current role of the WAO as the center of AALL’s government relations activities and will make recommendations for the future direction and continuity of those efforts. The committee will consider a number of factors, including staffing for the WAO, the role of the WAO in advocacy, succession planning, and whether the WAO should continue to be located at Georgetown Law School.

The committee will prepare an interim report for the summer 2008 Executive Board meeting and a final report for the fall 2008 Executive Board meeting. Members of the committee include Chair Sally Holterhoff, Tim Coggins, Mary Lou Hess, Keith Ann Stiverson, Maryruth Storer, Kay Todd, and Gail Warren.

David Pogue to be Keynote Speaker at AALL Annual Meeting

I am very pleased to announce that David Pogue, the personal-technology columnist for The New York Times, will come to Portland this July as the keynote speaker for the Opening General Session at the AALL Annual Meeting. Each week Pogue contributes a print column, online column, and an online video for the Times. His daily blog, Pogue’s Posts, is the Times‘ most popular blog. He is also an Emmy award-winning technology correspondent for CBS News, a frequent guest on NPR’s “Morning Edition,” and a regular on CNBC.

Pogue studied music, English, and computer science, and after college, he spent 10 years conducting and arranging Broadway musicals in New York. When his computer teaching skills turned out to be in more demand than his musical ones, he started teaching the Broadway community how to use their Macs. Since then he has written or co-written seven books in the For Dummies series, as well as the Missing Manual series, a line of printed manuals for computer products that don’t come with any.

Registration for the Annual Meeting opens February 25. Keep an eye out for the e-mail blast that will announce the official opening and allow you to register for the meeting and then go directly to the housing site to book your hotel reservation. The Preliminary Program for the Annual Meeting will mail out to AALL members on February 22 with the March issue of AALL Spectrum.

Check out AALL’s New Blog

The AALL Washington Affairs Office is pleased to announce its new blog! The blog, named AALL’s Washington Blawg, will highlight bills we’re tracking in Congress, Action Alerts, interesting articles and Web sites, exciting events we’re participating in, and more. You can keep up with our regular updates by subscribing to the RSS feed or by visiting the blog for the latest news. We hope the blog serves as another way to keep you informed about the Washington Office. Please let us know what you think.

Law Library Journal Turns 100

Law Library JournalThe Winter 2008 issue of Law Library Journal was recently published and mailed to all AALL members and LLJ subscribers; it is also available on AALLNET. This issue marks a major milestone, as it is volume 100, number 1. Throughout 2008, LLJ will celebrate its 100th birthday with special features about its history. This issue is the first for LLJ Editor Janet Sinder and includes a guide to “The Essential Law Library Journal” by former Editor Frank Houdek.

This issue also features two winning articles from the 2007 AALL Lexis Nexis Call for Papers competition by Margaret A. Leary and by Connie Lenz and Helen Wohl. Other article topics include how to protect the law library’s core missions through updated quality assessment standards, best practices in academic law library hiring, and whether office e-mail is a burden or blessing.

CRIV Tip: Successful Exhibit Hall Experience

The Committee on Relations with Information Vendors member Robert Myers, manager of serials and collections access at Case Western Reserve University School of Law, presents CRIV Tip No. 6 about making the best of the Exhibit Hall.

Do you ever come back from the AALL Annual Meeting feeling that while you gained invaluable information from attendance at various programs and meetings, your forays into the Exhibit Hall weren’t all that beneficial? Would you like some guidance on how to benefit more from the Exhibit Hall? Consult CRIV Tools’ Making the Best Use of the Exhibit Hall.

Day in the Life Photo Contest Closes Next Week

Time is running out to snap the perfect shot of law librarians in action. A Day in the Life of the Law Library Community Photo Contest closes next Friday, February 29.

This month AALL members have been taking a wide range of photographs of law librarians working, meeting, teaching, and doing all that law librarians do in a given day. Entries are due by the end of the month, February 29, and they will be judged online by the AALL membership in April. Winners will be recognized on AALLNET, in the July 2008 issue of AALL Spectrum, and during the AALL Annual Meeting in Portland.

Visit the Day in the Life site for complete contest rules, photography tips, and to view the winning photos from 2005 and 2007.

Last Call for Papers

The AALL/LexisNexis Call for Papers Committee is soliciting articles in three categories for its annual competition:

  • Open Division: for active and retired AALL members with five or more years of experience
  • New Members Division: for recent graduates and AALL members who have been in the profession for less than five years
  • Student Division: for students in library, information management, or law school. Participants in this division need not be members of AALL.

The winner in each division receives $750, generously donated by LexisNexis, plus the opportunity to present a description of his or her research and writing process during the 2008 AALL Annual Meeting in Portland, Oregon. Winning papers are also considered for publication in Law Library Journal.

Submissions must be postmarked March 1. For more information, please visit AALLNET. If you have any questions, please contact a member of the Call for Papers Committee: Chair Joe Gerken, James M. Donovan, or James S. Heller. Good luck!

Government Secrecy is Open for Discussion on March 19

Sunshine Week is just around the corner, and AALL’s Washington Affairs Office encourages law libraries to sign up as host sites for the Third Annual Dialogue on Open Government and Secrecy on March 19. As in past years, AALL is co-sponsoring the event, and we are looking for sites to show the national program and organize programs tailored to open government issues in their communities.

This year, the national program will consist of two panels of experts who will address executive branch power and secrecy, Congressional rights and responsibilities, and new and exciting ways to find and use government information. For more information, please see the flyer on our Web site.

Attend the Annual Meeting with an AALL Grant

The AALL Grants Committee invites qualified applicants to apply for AALL’s Annual Meeting/Workshop Grants and the Minority Leadership Development Award.

  • Annual Meeting and Workshop Grants are awarded to cover the Annual Meeting registration fee or the registration fee for workshops presented at the Annual Meeting. Preference is given to applicants who are new to the profession and are active in AALL or one of its chapters.
  • The Minority Leadership Development Award was created to ensure that AALL’s leadership remains vital, relevant, and representative of the Association’s diverse membership. The award provides up to $1,500 toward the cost of attending the Annual Meeting, an experienced AALL leader to serve as the recipient’s mentor, and an opportunity to serve on an AALL committee during the year following the monetary award.

The application deadline is April 1. For more information, contact AALL Grants Committee Chair Julie Kimbrough at 919/843-5118 or AALL Headquarters at 312/939-4764, ext. 210.

Apply for a Research Grant

The AALL Research Committee is accepting applications through April 1 for research grants from the AALL Research Fund, totaling up to $5,000.

The committee will award one or more grants to library professionals who wish to conduct research that supports the research/scholarly agenda of the profession of librarianship. The grants program funds small or large research projects that create, disseminate, or otherwise use legal and law-related information as its focus. The AALL Research Agenda offers suggestions for possible research projects.

The AALL Research Fund was established with a generous endowment from LexisNexis in July 2000. Grant application and complete guidelines are available on AALLNET. The submission deadline for applications is April 1. For more information about the grants, please contact AALL Research Committee Chair Susan Lerdal.

AALL Offers Money for Law School, Library School, and Continuing Education

Need money to support your educational goals? The AALL Scholarships Committee wants to give you that opportunity. Every year, AALL awards thousands of dollars in scholarships to law school and library school students and AALL members. The following scholarships are awarded annually:

General Educational Scholarships, supported by AALL and the LexisNexis John R. Johnson Memorial Scholarship Fund:

  • Graduate Library School Scholarships
  • Law School Scholarships
  • Scholarships for Library School Graduates Seeking a Non-Law Degree
  • Scholarships for Continuing Education Classes

Additional Scholarships:

  • AALL/Thomson West George A. Strait Minority Scholarship
  • James F. Connolly LexisNexis Academic and Library Solutions Scholarship

The application deadline for all scholarships is April 1. Visit AALLNET for complete information, instructions, and applications. For further information, contact AALL Scholarships Committee Chair Holly Riccio (415/984-8761) or AALL Headquarters (312/939-4764, ext. 210).

Authors Wanted for AALL Publication Series

The Publications Committee seeks authors for the AALL Publications Series, a series of reference works related to legal information or law librarianship. Visit AALLNET to learn more about the proposal process or to see a list of titles currently in the AALL Publications Series. If you would like to discuss a potential publication or have an interest in updating a specific title, please contact Chair Annmarie Zell.

Tell AALL Members about Yourself

You can now provide additional information about yourself in your membership profile in the Members Only Section of AALLNET. By creating a PDF document that is posted to your profile, you may list additional AALL activities not already included on your profile, non-AALL activities, or your resume. The only restriction is that your PDF document must be less than one MB in size.

Uploading a PDF document is easy:

  1. Log into the Members Only Section.
  2. In the “My Current Activities” box, click on “My Additional Information.”
  3. Browse for your PDF file, and then click “Upload.”

Now, whenever a member views your profile and you have a PDF file uploaded, the profile will include a new link called “Additional Information.”

HeinOnline Offers AALL Newsletter Archives to AALL Members

HeinOnline recently partnered with AALL to add the American Association of Law Libraries Newsletter (1970-1996) and the American Association of Law Libraries President’s Newsletter (1954-1970) to HeinOnline. The complete volume sets are available to AALL members for free through the Members Only Section of AALLNET.

HeinOnline’s new AALL Collection also includes full issues of AALL Spectrum (1996-present) and Law Library Journal (1908-present). This collection is a valuable archive of AALL publications through the Association’s 100-year history.

Take the Lead: AALL Leadership Academy October 3-4

New law librarians in the early stages of their careers can get out in front in the profession by attending the first AALL Leadership Academy, October 3-4, 2008. The academy program will develop and train law librarians for leadership roles by equipping them with the strategies and techniques needed to achieve success and professional excellence.

Barbara MackoffThe program will feature speaker Dr. Barbara Mackoff, leadership educator and widely-acclaimed expert in understanding the way leaders think. Her presentations involve each participant in identifying the foundations of his or her unique potential and learning to respond to the challenges of change. She is the author of five books, has been featured on “The Today Show” and “All Things Considered,” as well as in The New York Times, USA Today, and the Washington Post, and was a keynote speaker for the Special Libraries Association.

Watch for more announcements about the application process coming soon.