Thursday, June 29, 2006

Summer Reading Recommendations: "Forecast: Hot Reading Ahead"

Each summer for the past several years UT-Austin features recommended summer reading for adult readers in one of its banner news columns. I contributed to this year's lists. You'll find my reading recommendations linked from Just follow the link under "Read this Story."

Tuesday, June 27, 2006

Members of Senate Commmerce Committee

1. Sen. Ted Stevens (AK)
2. Sen. John McCain (AZ)
3. Sen. Conrad Burns (MT)
4. Sen. Trent Lott (MS)
5. Sen. Kay Bailey Hutchison (TX)
6. Sen. Olympia Snowe (ME)
7. Sen. Gordon Smith (OR)
8. Sen. John Ensign (NV)
9. Sen. George Allen (VA)
10. Sen. John Sununu (NH)
11. Sen Jim DeMint (SC)
12. Sen. David Vitter (LA)

1. Sen. Daniel Ionuye (HI)
2. Sen. Jay Rockefeller (WV)
3. Sen. John Kerry (MA)
4. Sen. Byron Dorgan (ND)
5. Sen. Barbara Boxer (CA)
6. Sen. Fill Nelson (FL)
7. Sen. Maria Cantwell WA)
8. Sen. Frank Lautenberg (NJ)
9. Sen. Ben Nelson (NE)
10. Sen. Mark Pryor (AR)

Call now: "The ALA Message on S. 2696"

Here's the text of information provided to ALA Council II this morning.
Councilors took a mid-morning break during which many members called members of the Senate Commerce Committee. I'll send the members' names in the next blog entry.

Senate Switchboard: 202-224-3121

"Save the E-Rate
1. E-rate discounts are working in our libraries by making affordable telecommunications services available to serve our library users.
2. Oppose Ensign and Sununu amendments or other proposals that seek to cut E-rate funds, limit service covered by E-rate or otherwise restructure USF to weaken E-Rate;
3. Support a permanent exemption for USF programs, including the E-Rate, from compliance with government accounting rules in the Anti-Deficiency Act;

Pass Effective Nework Neutrality.
1. Support Snowe-Dorgan proposals and other amendments that will preserve network neutrality (NN);
2. NN is needed to keep the telecommunications owners from controlling all Internet content and from discrimination against content providers that cannot, nor should not have to pay for assurd public access to their content;
3. Libraries are creators, users and distributors of information and cannot afford to pay for assured access to their services by the American public--example: library web sites and E-government serivces;
4. Public sector concerns have not been adequatley addressed; libraries, eductation, local, state and federal government agencies, as well as other public and non-profits could be discriminated againts and "tiered" into levels of service that deny or delay access to E-government and others services for the American public."

Saturday, June 24, 2006

Greetings from ALA in New Orleans!
How fortunate we are to be here in New Orleans where we are warmly welcomed to this lovely Crescent City.

I'll try to snatch time to send a few blog entries while here.

1. Time to plan for the JCLC conference

The registration for the Joint Conference of Librarians of Color was extended to mid-July, so there's still time to get ready to attend the JCLC in Dallas, 11-15 October.
Anyone is invited to attend and members of the 5 organizations affiliated with ALA can apply for scholarships. Each of the 5 affiliates (e.g., REFORMA, Black Caucus) has five $1000 scholarships. The program looks terrific and you won't want to miss it! If I've promoted you to register and attend, then send me an email at I'll bring you a special gift reflecting indigenous culture!

2. Thanks, megwitch, all of you who attended my election party last night in Leslie Burger's suite in the Hilton. The word was it was the best ALA Prez-Prez party in 10 years!

More soon!

Tuesday, June 20, 2006

Welcome to Austin, 47th Annual RBMS Preconference

RBMS, a section of ACRL, opened it's 47th annual preconference on "Libraries, Archives, Museums in the Twenty-First Century: Intersecting Missions, Converging Futures?" today here in Austin. Attendees spent a first day in workshops on fundraising and touring area libraries and museums. The event continues through Friday with many attendees traveling on to ALA/NO. Find out more about this event at I attended a bit of the orientation session, offering my Tex-Minnesotan welcome to the city.

Off to NO!

Monday, June 19, 2006

Library Visit #10; Happy Juneteenth!

Owen (now 16 years old) started his two week video game production class today. After class, we took a quick trip over the Carver Branch of the Austin Public Library and caught up with New Orleans native Cynthia Charles, Branch Director. Owen and I visited the Carver Museum next door. Carver developed the first permanent exhibit in the country on Juneteenth. Juneteenth, June 19, celebrates the arrival of the news of Emancipation to Texas, news that took almost 2 1/2 years to arrive. Here in Austin, where Juneteenth is a state holiday, it is celebrated with a Battle of the (marching) bands. This took place last Friday with 8,000 audience members.

Saturday, June 17, 2006

Megwitch, TLA/ALA Student Chapter! Let's hear it for WGBH-Boston!

Megwitch, School of Information TLA/ALA Student chapter! Students hosted an ice-cream social for me on Thursday, 15 June. Thank you for this great send-off to ALA in New Orleans. I appreciate your support and offers to continue the help you've given me over the past 6 months.

This past week I was in Boston visiting with staff at WBGH and learning more about the terrific programming that they develop. Their American Indian Head Start `Between the Lions' initiative is showing real results in helping promote early reading. Thanks, WBGH, for providing television viewers with wonderful options in programs for adults, children, and youth. My family, like many of yours, has grown up with programs such as Nova and American Experience.

A highlight today was having lunch with iSchool alumna, Christine Pouncey, fresh from her Tall Texans leadership institute. Tall Texans is an invigorating experience that draws from among the best librarians in the area. Tall Texans alum proudly wear their silver boot pins at TLA annual conferences.

Last night our friends, Ken Barker and Johanne Morin hosted a party to celebrate the arrival of their green cards. Congratulations, Ken and Johanne. You'll find some images of Johanne's recent art works at

Sunday, June 11, 2006

Tribal Leadership Institute; Library Visits #5-#9; other events

I was in New Mexico from 5 to 9 June, attending the Tribal Leadership Institute on Cultural Preservation hosted by the New Mexico State Library. The Institute was held on the campus of the Santa Fe Indian School. The itinerary included tours (I visited the School of American Research), an opening reception at the Museum of Indian Arts and Culture, and presentations on libraries, archives, museums, and language as well as poster sessions hosted by organizations and agencies. I spoke on a Libraries panel, talking about innovations in public library architecture and services, and also gave a talk on professional involvement in ALA at the closing lunch.

I was fortunate to make a number of library visits. I stopped by the Pueblo of Sandia Tribal Community Library (Library Visit #5), visiting with the new librarian who has developed a strong collection and has a number of public access computing stations. The pueblo was quiet as community members were busy preparing for a feast day. Ms. Cynthia Crespin (Santo Domingo community member) is the new librarian at the Pueblo of Santo Domingo (Library Visit #6) Tribal Community Library, having previously served as librarian at the Laguna Elementary School. Her library was very busy and she logged in 76 visits over the day. All computer stations were occupied by adults and children. She had an able library aid, a young teen from the community. Heading north of Santa Fe, I visited the Pueblo of Santa Clara. It was Indian Day at the Santa Clara Day School and I was able to visit with faculty and see the library (Library Visit #7) at the School. They have a strong collection in a lovely building on school grounds. Former librarian Robin Rodar is now Principal of the School and a long time staff member is the new librarian. The Day School is known for its student library assistant program and involvement with other northern Pueblo schools in a Battle of the Books program. I walked across the street from the school to stop in at the Santa Clara tribal community library (Library Visit #8). Santa Clara has written a number of successful IMLS Tribal Libraries Enhancement Grants and has been able to develop strong collections and collaborate on Native language initiatives.
Back in Santa Fe, I was able to tour the new library (Library Visits #9) at Santa Fe Indian School, a wonderful facility. In addition to the strong collection, key features of the library include artwork from early students at the school, an archives room, and a television production room (in need of equipment). The librarian posted pictures of winning teams at the recent Battle of the Books competition. Our reading club, "If I Can Read, I Can Do Anything," has supplied book bags and incentives for the competition over the past several years.

Back in Austin, I've been attending a number of community events including a live taping of the radio program, "A Prairie Home Companion." I also attended a wonderful benefit, "An Intimate Evening Under the Stars," organized by the Friends of the David Powell Clinic, a 501 (c) (3) non-profit organization ( that provides medical care and other services for people in the central Texas area who are living with HIV/AIDS. Live music entertainment was provided by Omar Lopez, violinist, and his superb ensemble.

Sunday, June 04, 2006

Texas Reading Club Day; Our Stories Make Us Strong and other Presentations at ALA/NO

Governor Rick Perry declared Friday, 2 June 2006, Texas Reading Club Day. Congratulations and thank you, all librarians and library workers involved in summer reading clubs!

Like many of you, I'm preparing my ALA schedule. Here are the events where I'm scheduled to speak.

22 June 2006, 1:30 - 3:00. Spectrum Leadership Institute. "Our Stories Make Us Strong."

23 June 2006, 4:00 - 5:00. Panel: "A Library Agenda for Services to Older Adults," with Nancy Kranich, Barbara Ford, and Pat Schuman. I'm speaking about the White House Conference on Aging Recommendations and Their Implications for Native Elders.

24 June 2006, 1:30 - 2:30. Poster Session: Honoring Generations, Developing the Next Generation of Native Librarians. Sandy Littletree and I will set up and she will staff the booth while I am chairing the Committee on Education meeting. In the Exhibits Hall. Rob Yazzie is also scheduled to help.

25 June 2006, 10:30 - noon. "I Don't Know Any Indians." MCC 294. Play AILAWood Squares! How many questions can you answer about Native peoples?

25 June 2006, 1:00 - 2:30. Poster Session: Building a Bridge to TexShare for Rural and Small Public Libraries. Sandy Littletree, Rob Yazzie, and I will set up and staff this booth.