Thursday, November 20, 2014

Official Welcome to our Blog/President's Message

Hello!  And welcome to our new FLAG format! 

I am very pleased and excited to serve as the 2014-2015 FLA President.  As you may have seen already, this year’s Executive Board is working hard to deliver many changes in programming and services.  Over the years FLAG has been delivered to members through a variety of ways (mailed paper, emailed pdf, we have ventured into blog territory in the past, back to pdf...) and we have decided as a group to give the blog another shot.  We hope that this change encourages participation for those who would like to contribute, and facilitates the delivery of library and information news to members (and to the public) with greater frequency.   If you feel like there is something missing from the blog, or if you would like to contribute an article, feel free to contact myself, or one of our Blog Editors ( 

It is approaching December, if you can believe it.  Our 4 days of fall have come and went, and with that we were proud to host two great events and we are very happy to host our third next week.  Our AGM took place at the beginning of September and was hosted by the lovely people at Peasant Cheese and Kensington Wine Market.  We saw many familiar faces attend, as well as some new faces, which was great.  We tried to stay true to our 5 minute format, and presented our 2014-2013 financial statements to the group, and also voted in favour to support a new charity, The Calgary Women’s Shelter.

The Bubbly Brunch was held last month at Fort Calgary.  With the temporary closure of the Deane House, we had the great pleasure of being able to indulge in some delicious brunch items that were originally on the Deane House menu.  We are also pleased to report that we conducted a very insightful and effective focus group to inform our vision and value statement.  Over the summer, the Executive Board thought it was time to revisit the organization’s overall vision, and we would like to articulate that into something concrete and publicly visible over the next few months.  We have completed our first two stages of consultation.  First, we had sent out a survey to members, and then extended that survey to the public. At the Brunch we held a focused conversation about our current “objective” that is stated on the website (to bring together individuals within the Calgary library community to share and promote the concerns of the library and information professions) in relation to what those who attended thought our vision or future goals as an organization could or should be. We have a few more stages of consultation before we are ready to finalize our vision statement, and we will be sure to keep everyone posted. A big thanks to Melanie Sucha, our webmaster, who facilitated the focus group at the Brunch, as well as all of the people who have contributed their thoughts through attending the focus group and answering our surveys.

And, what else is in store for FLA this year? We are holding our annual Holiday Swap at Bottlescrew Bills Pub this Tuesday. I think the weather forecast this year does not call for a “Snowmageddon” on that night or, I think the technical term for it is polar vortex, but either way it looks like we will have a really good turnout for this year’s event. We also plan to continue with Trivia Night as a mainstay in our programming in partnership with the Rotary Club. We plan to hold Calgary Librarians in Action in the spring and our executive board has a few more events in the works, so please stay tuned and we will update folks as we have a finalized version of those details.

If we won’t see you next week at the Book Swap, please consider joining us for one of our future events. You don’t have to be a member to attend our events, and just a reminder, that FLA is here to support information professionals of all types, so don’t be shy to come out and say hi. We are a pretty friendly bunch.

Madelaine Vanderwerff, FLA President, 2014-2015

Photo Credit: "Keeping one eye on the news" (c) Nick Kenrick. (CC BY-NC-SA 2.0)

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