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Rural Libraries Conference
The 2014 Rural Libraries Conference will be held April 30-May 2 on Mackinac Island at the Grand Hotel. This will be the event's 28th year! Rural Libraries Conference is a specially crafted conference whose goal is to reach the informational needs of small and rural library staff members from every area of the state. The three day conference features vendors, awards, keynote speakers and an array of sessions all geared to rural and small libraries.
We will be looking for conference logo submissions soon and opening the call for programs this summer. We hope you plan to join us in 2014.
Stay tuned to this site for more information on the 2014 event.
This year's Steering Committee members include:
Technology - Trixie McMeeking
Award Winners 2012
The Trustee/Friend Award is given to a trustee of friend of a library for distinguished service to small/rural library development on the local, state, regional or national level. The 2012 recipient, Joan Shively friend of the Alcona County Library, works tirelessly for the greater good of her library. In addition to organizing, publicizing and scheduling volunteers for the Friends of the Library book sales, Joan actively seeks out staff input on items to be purchased with funds raised, items that would really be appreciated by patrons and staff. The Library hosts regular art shows to highlight local artists throughout the year. Joan prepares a special reception for each artist or artist group. Through her efforts she conveys honor and respect to each artist and a warm welcome to each attendee. Besides providing desert for the monthly book club meeting, she supervises the set up and cleanup for each meeting. Joan participates in the annual Youth Art Parade to kick off the summer reading program and volunteers her time to maintain and weed the Library's Children's Garden. With her assistance on the application process, the garden became a certified Wildlife Habitat through the National Wildlife Federation. Joan is warm and welcoming to Library patrons and is crucial to making the relationship between the Library and the Friends Group cooperative, efficient and enjoyable. Joan has a positive attitude, can do spirit and she never misses an opportunity to tell people how wonderful her local library is.
The Outstanding Small/Rural Librarian Award
The Outstanding Small/Rural Librarian Award recognizes a librarian who is an outstanding leader in the profession, has made a significant contribution to his or her library and has invested him or herself in efforts to bring about positive change in the small/rural library community. The 2012 recipient, Virginia Woods Roberts former director of the Suttons Bay-Bingham District Library, met the criteria and more. Working with limited financial resources and only two part time employees, this individual has made her library a vital part of the community. She consistently looks for ways to improve and enhance library services for the benefit of the public she serves. Recently Virginia oversaw extensive renovations to the library resulting in a more efficient layout of the facility. She has coordinated numerous programs in the past year including but not limited to Wiggle Story Hour, Investor Education in Your Community Classes, Invasive Species in Your Back Yard, Summer Reading Program, Internship Training for Volunteers, National Gaming Day at Your Library and in conjunction with the County Commission on Aging, the Library on Wheels program serving home bound seniors. Under her leadership, the library has reached out and offered assistance to other community organizations. Virginia has helped teachers in the local school district locate resources to support their curriculum when a lack of funding precluded the district's ability to provide the materials. She has increased services to the neighboring tribal community with weekly reading programs and language assistance and has submitted an assessment and recommendation for the Grand Traverse Band Heritage Library that will be key to future funding and partnerships between the two organizations. With limited financial resources this individual is actively and constantly researching grant opportunities. Within the past year she had written and submitted the following grants to help support the Library's operating budget:
Small/Rural Library Excellence Award, Sponsored by the Roger and June Mendel Fund
Awarded to the Wolverine Community Library
The Wolverine Community Library is well-deserving of the Small/Rural Library Excellence Award for its impressive service to its rural community. The Wolverine Community Library meets the needs of its patrons despite many obstacles, including no school libraries in the library service area and 77% poverty level in children. To supplement its low resources, the Library has formed successful partnerships to serve the needs of their community.
The Library of Michigan Foundation generously supports the Rural Libraries Conference through administration of Loleta Fyan funds.
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