From the Desk of Will Stuivenga.
The Washington State Library recently hosted the first ever face-to-face User Group Meeting for members of the Washington Digital Library Consortium, a group of 44 (soon to be 45) of the state’s mid-sized and smaller public libraries that provide the OverDrive-powered Washington Anytime Library to their patrons.
61 people (including Cindy Aden, State Librarian, and 4 additional staff from the State Library) attended the event, with all but a handful of member libraries represented. The event ran all day September 27, and through lunch on September 28. Libraries represented at the meeting were from as far away as Camas, Clarkston, Lincoln County, the Olympic Peninsula, Richland, Walla Walla, and pretty much everywhere in between.
The event was organized and coordinated by Will Stuivenga, Cooperative Projects Manager for Library Development at the Washington State Library, a division of the Office of the Secretary of State. Will manages the consortium’s day-to-day operations with the assistance of a 3-person Executive Advisory Committee. Funding provided by the State Library comes from the Library Services & Technology Act (LSTA), administered through the Institute of Library and Museum Services (IMLS). Currently, member libraries contribute most of the regular ongoing funding for the organization.
As a result of this meeting:
- Washington Anytime meeting participants now have a much better understanding of the challenges facing their collaborative;
- Advisory votes were taken on the several important questions regarding the governance of the consortium and customer service issues;
- 26 individuals volunteered to serve on committees to undertake necessary work in the following areas:
- Collection development,
- Curated title lists for the Anytime Library;
- People came away with a better knowledge of the support which the State Library has provided to organize, grow, and financially subsidize the consortium and its Anytime Library collection.
Attendee reviews of the event were universally positive. People said they especially enjoyed the opportunity to meet and discuss important issues with their peers from other libraries, both small and large, and many expressed hope that similar events can be scheduled in future.
For more pictures from the event, visit our Flickr Album