RILA Logo 2011 v.3
In This Issue
RILA Conference 2011
Summer Reading 2011
Open Meeting Summit
Teen Volunteers
Using Wordpress to Create a Website
Judging National History Day
A New Library for Johnston
Better Know a Librarian
News From the Field
Rhode Island
Library Association
The Rhode Island Library Association is a professional association of Librarians, Library Staff, Trustees, and library supporters whose purpose is to promote the profession of librarianship and to improve the visibility, accessibility, responsiveness and effectiveness of library and information
services throughout
Rhode Island.

Contact us at:
PO Box 6765
Providence, RI 02940


Have you registered for the RILA conference yet? Today is the last day to take advantage of the early-bird special. Don't miss your chance to receive a discounted registration rate for this year's conference. Sign up here!

There's good and bad news about Rhode Island libraries this month. We'll give you the good news first: The Mohr Library in Johnston just opened a brand-new building and it's gorgeous. Congratulations to the staff, and to the people of Johnston who should surely feel pride in their new facility.

Now onto the bad news...both the West Warwick and Pawtucket public libraries are fighting to save library service in their communities. Sadly, libraries' budget battles never seem to end. We wish West Warwick and Pawtucket the best of luck as they face these difficult times.

Although our state's libraries are struggling, our librarians are doing great things. We're glad to brag about their accomplishments in our humble little bulletin this month. We want to hear about what's happening at your library! Don't be shy about getting in touch with us to share information for future issues.

Thanks for reading, and happy (finally) spring!

Andria Tieman & Corrie MacDonald
RILA Communications Committee Co-Chairs

RILA Conference 2011: The Next Big Thing

By Paula Anderson

Children's Librarian, Warwick Public Library 

Thursday, June 2 & Friday, June 3

Unistructure-MRC Wing, Bryant Universitybryant arrow



Books are dying! Reference service is dying! Libraries are dying!


Wrong. Books, service and libraries are changing. But change doesn't mean death--it means growth and innovation.  Hear what's good, new and ground-breaking about libraries at the upcoming RILA conference. There's no shortage of information to share.


The conference offers programs for all types of libraries on how to keep providing novel and cutting-edge services.  Learn about showing films or having fun with animation. Take the library mobile to engage users on the go. And who are your users? Find out and make it easier to target your services. Utilize Web 2.0 to develop information literacy in students.


No matter how high tech we get, though, we still we maintain the human connection and help people. Learn how to create safe spaces for LBGTQ youth. Empower yourself to be ready for the next time you encounter a patron in crisis with Mental Health First Aid. Find out what to do if a patron is being cyberbullied or stalked.  Children's personnel can debate the harm consumerism does to our youngest patrons.


In that same vein, no one should be surprised that reading still matters. Stories will never go out of style. Feed the need and learn about a different sort of book club. Keep up with the latest teen literature. Talk graphic novels, and learn how to use the illustrations and design of a picture book in storytime.


With all that's fresh, let's not be afraid to tell our patrons what's really going on in their libraries and work on shaping our own image. Discover how to optimize your website for better visibility. Get the maximum from your print and e-publications. Get inspired by the research of Dr. Donald King who has lots of promising results to share.


There are plenty of behind-the-scenes developments to examine, too.  Track how systems librarianship is changing. Get inspired to create an environmental sustainability program. Discuss unionization in the current climate. Fine tune your resume and pick up some tips on productive job hunting. Learn the specifics of IMLS and LSTA funding.

Most of all, keep a sense of humor about it all when Bill Barnes and Gene Ambaum of Unshelved fame deliver their talk on Surviving the Public.


This year, too, the RILA Conference is making some change--you won't want to miss the debut of a new feature: poster sessions on topics ranging from Signage that Works to Using Jing in IM Reference!

What's the next big thing? We are. Register today online at or print out the form and send it in by May 13 for the early bird rate.


Pawtucket and West Warwick Libraries

Battle for their Budgets

There are bills pending in the Rhode Island House of Representatives that would exempt the communities of Pawtucket and West Warwick from funding their libraries at the level currently required for them to receive state aid. Should these proposals pass, the libraries' ability to meet the minimum standards for public libraries in Rhode Island would be compromised. Their participation in the Ocean State Libraries consortium would also be threatened.  


In a letter to Helio Melo, the Chairperson of the House Committee on Finance, RILA stated that, "Abrogation of those requirements in one community will adversely affect library users in every community." Should these bills pass, all public library staff and patrons should be concerned about the future implications. Stay tuned for further developments.   

Summer Reading 2011

By Adrienne Gallo
Branch Librarian, Oak Lawn Branch, Cranston Public Library
SRP 2011 LogoThis summer, kids and teens will hit the road when they visit their local libraries with the globetrotting theme of this year's summer reading program. Kids and families all over Rhode Island will celebrate the season with One World, Many Stories.

Featured this year are library storytimes, reading and writing programs for older kids, arts and crafts and much, much more, including the usual terrific slate of performers. Between June and August, children can look forward to magic with The Great Baldini; stories and music by Christopher "Kavi" Carbone; the tales of the Narragansett tribe from Loren Spears; piņata workshops provided by the
Piņata Center; writing programs with local author Steve Krasner; African dance with Michelle Bach-Coulibaly; Indian dance with Shanti Muthu; fun and silliness from musician Greg Cooney; and a hands-on animal program with Dave Marchetti of Animal Experiences.

Like the program for children and families, teens can participate in travel-themed activities in the upcoming summer season. You Are Here, the teen summer reading program kicks off throughout the state with reading clubs, electronic gaming, field trips and much more. Performances include writing workshops with Steve Krasner; art exhibits from the RI Museum of Art; storytelling, music and dance from Loren Spears; arts and crafts with Moira Richardson; dance with Michelle Bach-Coulibalyl; and watercolor painting with Pam Santos.

Summer 2011 at Rhode Island libraries promises loads of fun for kids, teens and families, so be sure to spread the word!

Open Meeting Summit

By Mary Anne Quinn
Reference Librarian, Warwick Public Library
RI judicialThe Office of Rhode Island's Attorney General, Peter Kilmartin, recently held an "Open Government Summit" at CCRI.  The summit was held for elected officials, city clerks, school committee members, or anyone working in city or state government, as well as the general public. The purpose of the summit was to familiarize attendees with two very important laws in Rhode Island, The Access to Public Records Act and The Open Meetings Act. These laws affect us as librarians in helping the public with questions regarding what types of documents they have access to as citizens.

The Access to Public Records Act portion did not cover vital records or census, but rather all kinds of state and local government records, how to access them and how to file a complaint if access is denied and the citizen feels that the denial is against current state law. The Open Meetings Act portion detailed how public bodies (school committees, city councils, etc.) must post agendas, make their minutes available to the public and be very cautious in discussing any work of the public body outside of public meetings.

APRA Act (Access to Public Records) = RIGL 38-2-1 et seq.
What is a public record? There is not always a simple answer, but under Rhode Island Law, any record from any public agency is public unless it is exempt under one of 25 categories, detailed in RIGL 38-2-2, or exempt under the "Balancing Test"(does the public interest outweigh the privacy interest or vice versa?). Unfortunately, this leads to some interpretations by city or town officials. The 25 exemptions cover records such as library records that reveal the identity of the library user, tax returns, credit card numbers in the possession of state or local government and many other exemptions. The exemptions are spelled out quite clearly, however the balancing test is a bit more ambiguous. The term "public interest" refers to the public at large, not the party requesting the material.

If a citizen wants to request a public record, they need to do so in writing from the agency or board that the record comes from. There are three possible responses. The public body can turn over the record; ask for an extension (The response time by law is ten days, but if requested, can be extended for an addition 20 days, for a total of 30 days); refuse to release the material. If a request is refused, the denial must be in writing. If an official or group takes too long, or refuses to release the material, the person requesting can file a complaint with the AG's office, who will then investigate. If the two parties cannot agree, the matter moves to the courts, an event that happens fairly regularly.

Open Meetings Act = RIGL 42-46
There are three requirements for the Open Meetings Act to apply. First, is there a public body? Second, is there a quorum? (A quorum is a simple majority of the membership). Third, is there a meeting? Sub-committees, working sessions, and workshops are all considered public meetings if there is a quorum at that session. For instance, if a three-member sub-committee of a school committee is assigned a topic to discuss, it is considered a public meeting if at least two are present. Emails among members apply, as long as a quorum is included in the email. Each meeting of a public body shall be open to the public. Very little business should be discussed via email or phone. This is because the public has a right to see the process.

Agendas must be very specific. Each item to be discussed must be listed and posted in several specific places 48 hours before a meeting. School committees have the additional burden of posting their meetings in the newspaper. All public bodies must keep minutes of their meetings, including a record of all votes taken, listing how each individual member voted. The minutes are public record and must be available to the public.

Any citizen of the state who is aggrieved as a result of violations of the provisions of this act may file a complaint with the Attorney General. The Attorney General will investigate and if it is determined that the complaint has merit, the Attorney General may file a complaint in Superior Court against the public body.

Librarians are, in many cases, public servants. It is important to be aware of the rights of our citizens that help make our country a viable democracy. If a library or a patron would like to have a copy of the Access to Public Records Act and the Open Meetings Act, including "findings", or instances where public bodies violated these laws, go to the Attorney General's website.

Teen Volunteers: A Win-Win Situation

By Aaron Coutu
YA Librarian, Greenville Public Library
Teen Volunteers


As we shift into summer mode, we are reminded that it is also time to prepare for the annual summer rush.  No ... I am not talking about the fun and excitement of summer reading.  I am referring to the onslaught of requests from teens for volunteer opportunities to meet the requirements for graduation, confirmation and other religious rites, girl/boy scout achievement, and court orders.  Admit it, just thinking about it can send a shiver down your spine.


Well, I am here to let you know that you don't have to let that fear get the better of you.  Whatever reason teens are coming to you, they can be a big boon for the library by helping to free up staff to do specialized jobs while leaving the more simple and tedious (though crucial) tasks for these volunteers. Remember, they are choosing to ask to do the time at the library because it is a place where they feel comfortable and would have the best experience for their community service requirement.


The most important thing is to be ready for these volunteers before they even arrive. First, you need to make plans for how to answer requests by teens to do their hours at the library. Policies need to be set up for application forms, the interview process, mentoring, and rules for the potential volunteers. If this planning process is not done, the volunteer coordinator will quickly become overrun with managing teen volunteers.


It would be natural for the young adult librarian to become the coordinator for these volunteers, particularly if the library does not already have a volunteer services coordinator. This librarian already knows and works with teens, in general, and probably with the individual teens looking to volunteer. This would also provide a chance for the teens to work specifically toward improving the space, collection, and services provided for young adults in the library. Whether it is painting a mural, shelving books, or helping organize the area, the teens will get a feeling of ownership over that part of the library, creating a special place for it in their hearts. Can the library be that uncool, if you helped make it what it is?


As with employees of the library, you want to make sure to fully train all volunteers on the task they will be completing. This starts with deciding what tasks they are able to complete based on their skill set. It is not fair to the volunteer, and may actually cause more trouble than assistance, if he or she is not properly trained. It is important to make sure volunteers are comfortable and willing to work on the assigned tasks. If they are bored or unhappy with an assignments, volunteers (and, in all honesty, anyone) are likely to do a poor job. Also, feel free to ask the volunteers what they might want to do. Doing so might allow you to find a talented bulletin board artist, a web designer, or a veteran storyteller. Draw upon their talents!


When instructing on specific tasks, you should start by demonstrating how the project can be completed. This should be done while providing the instructions verbally, illustrating what you are saying. Feel free to have them duplicate what you have done so you can offer comments if necessary. Also, emphasize that they should always feel free to ask questions. Supervisors should periodically check in with the volunteers from time to time for two reasons:

  1. It gives the supervisor an opportunity to check on quality and progress 
  2. This shows an interest in the volunteer and gives her/him a chance to ask any questions. Often, volunteers feel that they are asking "stupid" questions. Reassure them that this is not the case. The most important thing is to have tasks completed correctly.

Book Buddies, Craft Buddies, and some of the other inter-age and inter-generational programs can be used to fill such hours. Teens love to mentor and offer their special knowledge to others who need it. Teen advisory boards can also be used for such a purpose and can be a bonus to the library for bringing in teens with opinions that might differ from those of regular library users.  Recently, I utilized a number of teen volunteers to complete a themed book lists, aka Radical Reads to assist young adults (and others) with searching the novels in the young adult section. The teens are able to not only see how their work is helping others, but some have even had the opportunity to use the lists themselves to locate a novel for an assignment or pleasure.


As with employees, you do need to have a procedure for dealing with volunteers who are providing unsatisfactory service. Such challenges can include sloppy work, low productivity, inconsistency, disrespect, and behavioral issues. It will likely parallel that for employees, but it should provide for termination if it is necessary. Libraries should never feel required to keep volunteers. If the volunteer is serving to earn a scout badge or medal, for community service requirements, or for court ordered sanctions, there is an unspoken understanding with the referring agency that the volunteer needs to meet certain levels of service.


Finally, you want to make sure to always show your appreciation. Everyone needs validation. Whether we get paid or are volunteering, we all appreciate a pat on the back every once and a while. Supervisors, and other library staff, should always offer thanks for the volunteer's help. This can be taken a step further by offering an annual (or more often) awards ceremony to honor the service of regular volunteers. Often regular volunteers will receive small, appropriate gifts of recognition.

Now, you can feel free to take this friendly advice and have fun while helping the teens complete their community service requirements.  They will get to have a positive experience at the library, and hopefully give them a sense of ownership, and you will have extra sets of hands to get all those projects you wanted to get to completed.   


If that isn't a win-win situation, I don't know what is.

Using Wordpress to Create a Website

By Kieran Ayton

Web Services and Reference Librarian, Rhode Island College

WP logo

I recently went to a workshop on content management systems (simplified systems for administering and entering web content using templates) and learned that there are many libraries around the country making their websites on WordPress Blogs.  Some libraries, especially public ones, are using them to create up-to-the minute web content that requires very little or no knowledge of HTML and CSS code.  One of the speakers demonstrated this public library website she created entirely from WordPress


Blog entries were used to create the announcements that run down the home page.  Then, the "Pages" feature available on the "Dashboard" that you can access when you log into your WordPress account was used to create tabbed inner pages (see the top of the Beverly Library homepage) .  These are the "Calender," "Ask a Librarian," "Services," and "About Us" tabs.  


One of the biggest challenges when making any website is the graphic design - making the website look pretty.  In WordPress, you choose various templates which add color, structure, and design to the information you put on your webpages.  There are hundreds of templates to choose from.  Each template will organize your website or blog in a different way.


To use WordPress, a free account can be created on the site. will host your blog/website for you.  Or you can download and host your own WordPress site using if you have a web server that supports PHP and MySQL.  


If you want to see more examples, check out this list of libraries that have used WordPress to create their websites.

Judging National History Day

by Nomi Hague
Cranston Public Library & URI GSLIS Instructor
National History Day

National History Day is a yearly event where students select a research topic based on a theme and then produce an exhibit, web site, performance, documentary or paper. Students compete within their school and the winners are selected to compete at the state level. Fifteen Rhode Island school districts were represented at this year's statewide competition on April 30 at Providence College where both judging and a run-off competition took place. The statewide winners from each category will then compete nationally at the University of Maryland this June.


I've always loved helping students with National History Day Projects at the Reference Desk. Whether I was assisting a class of Providence seventh graders with the subject headings related to immigration in the RI Index at Providence Public Library or directing a Bayview high school student to a collection of primary sources on the Vietnam War in a Reference volume at the East Providence Public Library, I never tired of taking students on a hunt for the most relevant sources for their projects. I'm sure any Reference Librarian would agree that the only thing that could make this process even more rewarding would be to touch base with these students later on and find out how they incorporated their research findings into their projects, perhaps even getting the chance to read a paper or two.


Volunteering to judge for this year's National History Day event seemed like the perfect opportunity to learn about the end result of a student's project and to further support the efforts of our state's budding young historians. I let our one of our state coordinators- Marie Parys of the Rhode Island Historical Society- know that I was interested in judging the high school historical papers category. I then received a very hefty packet of eleven papers with relevant judging material related to this year's theme, Debate and Diplomacy in History: Successes, Failures, Consequences.  


Topics ranged from the slave trade and 1950s pop music to the Marshall Plan and the Yalta conference and I set about the task each night of reading papers and checking their source material. Although I couldn't come to any final conclusions without interviewing the students or conferring with the other two judges assigned to my team, it became evident that in all but a few instances that these students were not availing themselves of the in-person or remote use of their libraries or of the many excellent authoritative websites containing primary sources.


The day of the judging event I convened with the two other judges for my division and we discussed each paper, came up with our interview questions, and started the ranking process. Although a few papers shone-they were well-written, historically accurate, widely researched, and demonstrated fine analysis and interpretation, etc.- my judging team found the majority of student source material used in these papers to be sorely lacking in quality, accuracy, and authority. This in turn of course affected the quality of those papers and their historical veracity.


A question that I consistently asked each student was "How did you go about researching your topic?" No librarian would be surprised to hear that nearly each student began his or her research with a Google search but I was surprised that more than half of the students never went beyond Google. I often followed up with a question like, "Did you go to a library or speak with a librarian?" Only one student replied that he actually visited a library and spoke with a librarian. Several students claimed they visited either their school or public libraries but did not ask for help and several explained that they did plan to search for books at the public library but had no means of transportation.


Although I found this disappointing, interviewing the students was instructive and overall very enjoyable. They were all well-spoken and passionate about their topics. They clearly each worked very hard and learned a great deal from the process of writing a historical research paper. One of these students even chose to participate in History Day on his own, meaning it was not required for class credit. I'm sure the students we interviewed could all write excellent history papers with better awareness regarding public library resources.


According to the National History Day National Program Evaluation Executive Summary, several studies found that national History Day students "outperform their non-NHD peers on state standardized tests in multiple subjects, including reading, science and math, as well as social studies," and "are better writers" than non-national History Day students. I highly recommend participating as a History Day Judge at the municipal or state level and becoming a part of this learning process. It's a fun, interesting and positive way to support the research endeavors of some of our young library patrons.



Further Reading:  

National History Day 

National History Day Executive Summary

RI National History Day  


A New Library for Johnston

By Jon Anderson
Director, Marian J. Mohr Library, Johnston
Mohr New Exterior
The Mohr Library is entirely new construction built on the same large lot as the former library, which is now being extensively renovated to serve as a municipal court.  The older library was built in 1961, and had two small additions, but was woefully cramped and did not meet code or funding requirements.  Renovation as a modern library was deemed impractical.  The new building was designed to meet basic requirements for library service in the town. 


The exterior of the new building is grey stone with a granite-like finish designed to be attractive and durable.   A major feature is a two-story, semi-circular tinted glass wall that extends over most of south-east side, and can be seen from a distance down Atwood Avenue.  Inside, the natural light and open view provides a very comfortable and aesthetically pleasing area to sit at tables and lounge chairs.  


A high glass entryway with two sets of double doors is also a striking and attractive feature, and helps with busy times, especially when there are deliveries or a lot of young people going in and out or waiting for rides.  The building is built into a slope with access to the outside from both floors.  This was to maintain harmony with the landscape, but it also goes with the way we operated in the older building.   The lower level exits are for access to outdoor programs, and otherwise meet requirements for egress.


The elevator and code-compliant stairwells are new to us.  The lower level of the old provided a children's library and program area, as it does in the new.  The new has 450 square feet of dedicated space that can be enclosed by a partition.  Open, the program can extend another 250 square feet into the Children's area.  There are three small conference rooms in the upper level which help provide quiet or contain noise.


At 11,000 sq. ft it is over twice the size of the older and provides over twice the user seating.  There is space for a collection of about 50,000;  the older library had more items but was meant to hold 30,000.  We went from 8 to 11 public computers, and are trying to add more with laptops.  There are two large television screens that can interface with our network and gaming consoles and we are applying for free television access through Cox.  Video surveillance is installed.  We are considering RFID and other anti-theft systems.


Water in the lower level of the old library was a major issue.  From some preliminary digging, we were prepared for a high water table and budgeted removal of 500 cubic yards of ledge.  We removed over 550.   The 42-space parking lot was designed with galleys to help create a site with little or no runoff.  The roof is flat with drains going through the middle of the building.   All of the heating and cooling systems are installed on the roof to save space.  Although the building is not LEED certified, which we had considered, the systems are efficient and we gained several thousand dollars in energy rebates.


Our Trustees and staff members worked so hard planning this facility and working for approval.  We touted our rank in programs and program attendance, which contrasted sharply with our size, and we pointed out the size of our facility in relation to the community, which had doubled in population since the library was conceived.  We made due with limitations on our programs and went without repairs that could not be justified for over ten years.  We got a lot of support from Karen and Howard at OLIS in the form of lengthy and sometimes difficult meetings, and endless questions and requests for backup.  People from the Champlin Foundations helped fund, but also met with us a number of times and were supportive in other important ways on this long road.  Town Council was always ready to hear our case.  People from other Johnston town departments were also supportive, and our Mayor took a crucial leadership role.  Members of our Friends were always there, and the people of Johnston voted over 60% in favor, and filled our parking lot and our new building on opening day.

Better Know a Librarian

Donna DiMichele
Program Manager, Office of Library and Information Servies

"Diverse" - that is how I like to think of my reading choices. And that's probably a good way to describe the path I took to librarianship.


Throughout my undergraduate education at URI, an internship at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago, and enrollment in a graduate program at The American University in D.C., I wanted to be an applied anthropologist. This meant I planned to work as an anthropologist in an organization, but not necessarily teach. Through my internship at the Field Museum, I became passionate about Native American ethnohistory, particularly the evolving perceptions by whites about Native Americans. I did extensive research about this subject using historical photographs and a wide array of popular culture materials, such as tourist publications, maps, advertising, and ephemera. I looked forward to a career in museums.

Donna DiMichele
OLIS's Donna DiMichele

Toward the end of my graduate program I was fortunate to begin a job as an illustrations researcher for the "History of Indian White Relations" volume of the Smithsonian Institution's Handbook of North American Indians. Finding authentic images and writing captions to be used in articles about Indian-white relations was enthralling. When the project ended, I transitioned into the Smithsonian Institution Archives to work on the series Guide to Photographic Collections at the Smithsonian Institution. At some point it finally dawned on me that I loved working with documents and being a professional archivist was right for me.


I began to think about any next steps I might need to take when, oops, I become a "trailing spouse" when my husband and I moved to North Carolina . . . Turns out it was a great move! I took a job in Special Collections in the Duke University Library and was able to get my MSLS at UNC- Chapel Hill. Basketball rivalries aside, UNC and Duke were a great professional combination for me.


My husband and I decided that we wanted to move closer to family, so we moved to RI where I spent the first 22 years of my life. After a couple of project archivist positions in RI, I accepted the position of first Head Archivist at the Mashantucket Pequot Museum and Research Center. All my background in Native American ethnohistory, archives and special collections, and museums came together in this position. After developing the collection and seeing the archives emerge as research facility, I pulled up stakes and in February 2000 took my current position as Program Manager at the Office of Library and Information Services.


I opened this piece with an observation about my reading choices. If forced to choose only one genre to read, I would choose contemporary literary fiction. Thankfully,  none of us have to make such choices! I also enjoy historical fiction, fantasy, history, Christian fiction, and thrillers - dead serious ones (pun intended) as well as fun ones. I think that both Lisbeth Salander and Stephanie Plum rock!

News From the Field


Laura Marlane
Laura Marlane has been selected as the new Executive Director of Providence Community Libraries.  Laura has twenty-four years of library experience in special, public and academic libraries and received her Masters of Library and Information Studies from the University of Rhode Island in 1998. Ms. Marlane has been the director of the Central Falls Public Library, worked as the Technology Coordinator and Systems Administrator for the West Warwick Public Library, been a Reference Librarian at Bryant University and been an Associate Director of and Head of Technical Services for the Rhode Island Historical Society Library. She is past-president of Ocean State Library and the current president of the Rhode Island Library Association.

Glocester Manton/Harmony

Effective July 1, 2011, Joan Hackett, Director and Children's Librarian of the Harmony Library, will be retiring after 30 years of service to the Glocester community.  The Boards of Trustees of the Glocester Manton and Harmony Libraries have taken their long standing record of cooperation one step further by "pooling" their resources and restructuring their two full-time professional positions as shared positions.  Gayle Wolstenholme has been appointed Director of the Glocester Libraries, and Allison Dimbleby has been appointed Children's Librarian.


Lexi Henshel (North Kingstown Public Library) has been appointed to the 2013 Printz Award Committee."I love YA lit, and can't believe I will be part of the search for "a book that exemplifies literary excellence in young adult literature!" she said. 

Ed Garcia (Cranston Public Library) was elected to ALA Council in the recent elections.  his three-year term begins at the annual conference in New Orleans this June.  There are 100 total ALA councilors at large who are responsible for voting on and determining the policies of the American Library Association. 


RILA has retained the services of RI Capitol Strategies, a government relations, consulting and lobbying firm. The former State Legislators and lawyers at RI Capitol Strategies specialize in representing client's interests to the Rhode Island General Assembly members, statewide elected officials and local municipal officials. RILA hopes this new relationship will assist in promoting awareness of the importance of libraries among our lawmakers.     


The RILA Intellectual Freedom Committee is looking for more members.  The Intellectual Freedom committee is responsible for maintaining an awareness of intellectual freedom among librarians, and others who work in libraries, and trustees. In addition, awareness of the meaning of intellectual freedom should be fostered among local officials and citizens of Rhode Island. The committee should plan and coordinate one program for the Spring Conference. Interested parties please email Carla Weiss:

The URI Robert L. Carothers library on the Kingston campus had to close early May 8th due to raucous, flash mob-like gathering of about 400 students.  Around 9:50pm, a number of students were studying quietly outside of the Galanti Lounge when a huge crowd of people rushed into the building, started jumping, hollering and eventually crowd surfing.  Campus police and the Kingston Fire Department removed the students and the library closed.  Naturally, one of the students posted a video on Youtube.  More information.

Former Rhode Island State Representative Ray Rickman recently wrote an opinion piece to the Providence Journal advising against de-funding libraries and continued funding of out-dated and unecessary: 

"Libraries, for example, are required to level-fund from year to year to qualify for state aid. In the case of the West Warwick Public Library, a budget cut from the town would be compounded with a state funding cut of $171,000.

Although the recession has shut off many educational opportunities to many members of the community, libraries have continued to offer an invaluable array of learning services."

Full article  




Kids Reading Across Rhode Island is Saturday, May 14th at the Statehouse from 12-3pm.  Families of students in grades 3-6 are welcome to come kick off the 2011 Summer Reading Program with loads of fun activities for attendees, including a book talk about Where the Mountain Meets the Moon by award-winning author Grace Lin.


The National Endowment for the Humanities and the ALA Public Programs Office have extended the deadline for the submission of applications for the "Lincoln: The Constitution and the Civil War" traveling exhibition to Wednesday, May 18, at 11:59 p.m. CST.


If you had planned to submit an application, but were not able to complete your application by May 5, we invite you to submit your application by May 18. The application and guidelines may be found online

The RILA Bulletin is produced by the RILA Communications Committee.  The RILA Communications Committee is responsible for publicizing and supporting Rhode Island Library Association activities using a variety of communication tools. Responsibilities including publishing the RILA Bulletin, managing social media platforms such as Facebook and Twitter, and exploring other mediums as needed. The Communications Committee may cooperate with the publicity efforts of the Public Relations Committee to promote library services statewide.

Rhode Island Library Association members can contribute content to the RILA Bulletin by emailing the editors:

Corrie MacDonald & Andria Tieman
RI Library Association
This is the fine print text where you might tell your customers how the item will be shipped and, for example, if they are overseas that there will be additional shipping charges and must contact you.