Vol.10-24   6.15.10

Executive Director Search Reopened

Search Committee Reopens Search for New MHLS Executive Director: Last week the Board of the Mid-Hudson Library System (MHLS) announced the expansion of its search for a new Executive Director due to the retirement of current Executive Director Josh Cohen at the end of June. An interim director will be named. Application review will begin August 1st. The full position announcement is posted in the Job Openings section of this issue of the MHLS Bulletin.

MHLS Announcements
Counties Honor Retiring MHLS Executive Director Josh Cohen: The Columbia County Library Association took an opportunity at their annual meeting in May to recognize the contributions to their libraries made by Josh Cohen, MHLS Executive Director. Sally Alderdice, long-time executive board member of the Columbia County Library Association and director of the Claverack Library, spoke from the heart about what Josh has done for small and developing libraries in Columbia County over the years to help them find sustainable funding and to keep up with the growing service demands on smaller libraries. Josh was presented with a hearty, standing ovation and a beautiful oil painting done by Sally's late husband. Last week the Ulster County Library Association invited Josh to their meeting where he was surprised with a citation from the Ulster County Legislature in recognition of his hard work and dedication to libraries in the county.

Power @MHLS: After the City of Poughkeepsie was hit with two power outages in less than a month MHLS will be refreshing a quote for a generator to keep the Millennium and related servers going during power outages and exploring funding options for this equipment. In the meantime libraries may want to review their business continuity plans and procedures. A reminder that the MHLS Resource Sharing Standards, approved by the Directors Association, requires all libraries to have an up-to-date copy of the offline circulation client installed. The client should be used only for offline checkout (not check-in or patron entry). Instruction sheets for installing the offline circulation client are available on the MHLS web site: http://midhudson.org 'Resource Sharing & Millennium then Offline Circulation or get there directly at http://midhudson.org/resource/millennium/offline/offline.htm

NYS Budget Update: The NYS Budget is now more than two months overdue. Michael Borges, Executive Director of the New York Library Association shared this update with the NY Library Community last week:
"Dear Library Advocate, the State Budget impasse continues and as a result the Governor has proposed including agreed upon budget cuts (not Education/Library funding) in the one-week extender bills he sends the Legislature to keep state operations funded. The Legislature would either have to accept the Governor's cuts or vote down the one-week budget extenders, which would result in the shutdown of state government."
There is still an opportunity for library supporters to speak up against the proposed cut to library funding on the NY's Library: Essential web site: http://www.protectnylibraries.org/

Building Your Base Online Grant Received: The New York State Division of Library Development has approved our grant request for the "Building Your Base Online" project. The goal of the grant is to help member libraries communicate effectively online through library web sites and Web 2.0 interfaces. Kathy Dempsey, author of The Accidental Library Marketer and Nancy Dowd, author of Bite-Sized Marketing - Realistic Solutions for Overworked Librarians, will be consulting with MHLS Staff on the project this summer and conducting a workshop for member libraries this fall.

Professional Development
"…A great way for libraries to survive the financial turmoil is to use these eager souls. Volunteers can be crucial to our operations, our standing in the community, and our ability to seamlessly accomplish all of our "invisible" work." -"Those who can, do. Those who can do more, volunteer," by Alan Jacobson, American Libraries, May 2010
Don't miss the chance to attend Friday's workshop: "Recruiting & Managing Volunteers Effectively" presented by Peggy Wadsworth, Certified Volunteer Administrator. $10 for member libraries and Friends; $20 for all others. Register online at http://calendar.midhudson.org/

Customer Service Workshops begin next week! This workshop will be held in all five counties this month. "Have a Great Day! Customer Service that Works for You & Your Patrons" presented by Sue Hermans, Head, Reference and Adult Services & Coordinator, Central Library Services at the Poughkeepsie Public Library District is designed for all staff who interact with patrons. It will help you develop your ability to please your patrons and provide quality library service to your community.
Please register online at http://calendar.midhudson.org/

Marketing, Advocacy & Funding
Neighbors Online Report Released from the Pew Internet & American Life Project: Americans use a range of approaches to keep informed about what is happening in their communities, and online activities have been added to the mix. Face-to-face encounters and phone calls remain the most frequent methods of interaction with neighbors. At the same time, internet tools are gaining ground in community-oriented communications. In a poll conducted at the end of last year, we asked about online connections to communities and neighbors and found that in the twelve months preceding our survey:

- 22% of all adults (representing 28% of internet users) signed up to receive alerts about local issues (such as traffic, school events, weather warnings or crime alerts) via email or text messaging.

- 20% of all adults (27% of internet users) used digital tools to talk to their neighbors and keep informed about community issues.

Overall, physical personal encounters remain the primary way people stay informed about community issues. Nearly half of all the adults we surveyed (46%) had talked face-to-face with their neighbors about community issues in the preceding twelve months, making it the most common activity we measured in this study.

Read more at http://pewinternet.org

Job Openings
MHLS Executive Director: The Mid-Hudson Library System is a state-supported cooperative/ interdependent system of 66 large and small local libraries in a five-county region of the mid-Hudson River valley. 17 full-time and 8 part-time employees provide a wide range of catalogue, circulation, program, support, and technology services to the member libraries. Program Plan of Service and annual budget application require State approval. The Executive Director reports to the Board of Trustees and will provide oversight and leadership for the staff in developing these programs and services. Extensive communication and interaction with the Directors and Boards of the member libraries is required to determine the specific mix which will best meet the needs of the member libraries. The Executive Director will represent the system and member libraries at NYLA and in other professional venues. The successful candidate will:
- Be a visible leader willing to become thoroughly acquainted with our system needs and the needs/personnel of the member libraries
- Be an exceptional listener and communicator with outstanding interpersonal skills
- Be an administrator who empowers others but remains accountable for all areas of planning, oversight, personnel, and budget
- Be a public librarian with the exceptional experience, flexibility, and vision to help our system provide continuing high levels of service to our member libraries in our current economic climate, and to help our system evolve to meet future needs and constraints
Qualifications: Hold a Master of Library Science (MLS) degree from an ALA-accredited institution; Hold or be eligible to hold a New York State Public Librarian Certificate; Have eight or more years of professional library experience (post MLS) at least two years of which shall have been in an administrative capacity; Be familiar with, or demonstrate the ability to become familiar with the unique relationship between local libraries and library systems in New York State. Pay Range: $105K/year - Negotiable depending on experience. Competitive benefits. To Apply: Please submit a cover letter, resume, and three professional references to: MHLSsearch@gmail.com Application review to begin on August 1, 2010.

MHLS recommends that the minimum starting salary of a full or part-time librarian with an MLS degree be at least equal to that of a teacher with a master's degree in the same community.

Member Libraries are welcome to submit items of interest and job openings to the MHLS Bulletin: bulletin@midhudson.org. The MHLS Bulletin is available on line at http://midhudson.org/bulletins/main.htm.