Over the past few days there’s been a number of good posts on the programming at AALL and comments on what some members would like to try differently in the future. I know that there are many AALL members that probably feel that the AALL Executive Board and the conference programming committees have been “picked on” by the criticism and suggestions (and maybe they have), but to look at Catherine Lemann’s response, you see that she and the other members have been paying attention, and compiled an excellent FAQ webpage that lays out, in great detail, the processes they took as well as other answers to questions that have been floating around the blogosphere this week.
This type of proactive, honest and detailed response is exactly what AALL leaders needed to do. Notice that this wasn’t put out to stop the discussion, but rather to put facts out in order to keep the discussion going. Some of the vendors that snap back at critics with answers like “there’s a lot of misinformation floating around” as a way of deflecting issues, could learn a thing or two from the actions taken by Catherine Lemann and others at AALL.
Go check out the FAQ… it has a lot of great details on the process along with some other information that members have been asking about.
Here’s Catherine’s note to the members of the Private Law Libraries listserv:
There have been a lot of great online discussions taking place among AALL members about how to make the Annual Meeting even better, especially its educational content. This discussion is wonderful to read, because it underscores how active and invested our members are in the law library profession and in AALL.
It is important we challenge each other to make things even better, so we can continue to develop our skills and gain knowledge from each other. I, and the rest of the Executive Board, have been listening and reading and thought more information about how the current process works would be beneficial to the discussion. So we have worked to put together an FAQ to answer some of the questions that have come up in these conversations. I hope you will find this information helpful. We welcome the discussion and your input. Thank you for your commitment to AALL and your colleagues in the profession.
I also like the section of the FAQ that asks:
What are the top three things I can do to ensure that programs meet my needs?
- Propose a program.
- Work closely with your SIS’s Education Committee.
- Always respond to AALL surveys which solicit member opinions and ideas.
AALL is successful because of the involvement, enthusiasm, and creativity of you, its members. AALL strongly encourages you to volunteer to help support the professional needs of your law librarian colleagues.