WESS General Membership Meeting

Rebecca R. Malek-Wiley, Secretary

WESS Newsletter
Fall 2005
Vol. 29, no. 1

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WESS General Membership Meeting
ALA 2005 Annual Conference, Chicago

Monday, June 27, 2005

Minutes

Attending

Gordon Anderson (University of Minnesota Twin Cities), Helene Baumann (Duke University), Yvonne Boyer (Vanderbilt University), Paula Carns (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Charles Croissant (Saint Louis University), John Cullars (University of Illinois at Chicago), Sam Dunlap (University of California San Diego), Thom Edlund (Brigham Young University), Michelle Emanuel (University of Mississippi), W. Gerald Heverly (New York University), Sarah How (Cornell University), Tom Izbicki (Johns Hopkins University), Charlene Kellsey (University of Colorado at Boulder), Tom Kilton (University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign), Dennis Lambert (Villanova University), David Lincove (Ohio State University), Thea Lindquist (University of Colorado at Boulder), Eudora Loh (University of California Los Angeles), Rebecca R. Malek-Wiley (Tulane University), Shawn Martin (University of Michigan), Candace Miller (James Madison University), Heleni Pedersoli (University of Maryland), Louis Reith (Georgetown University), Bryan Skib (University of Michigan), Paul Vermouth (Harvard University), Brian Vetruba (Washington University in St. Louis), Heather Ward (University of Oregon), Sarah G. Wenzel (Massachusetts Institute of Technology)

WESS Member-at large Thea Lindquist opened the meeting at 1:36 PM, welcoming every one.  She said that an hour and a half would be available for this meeting (in contrast with the hour time slot at the 2005 Midwinter meeting in Boston), so there would be less of a rush to go through the agenda.  Fourteen reports, in addition to several updates and announcements, were listed.

Thea then invited WESS Chair Tom Izbicki to make a few comments, praising him for his very deft leadership over the past year.  He began by saying that the WESS Executive Committee, like other units within ALA, would be spending increasing amounts of time working on action plans; they would be fitting WESS activities into ACRL’s strategic plan.  He urged each person to consider becoming the next WESS Newsletter editor or to recommend an editor.  A team of co-editors would also be possible.  Outgoing editor Sarah Wenzel was very willing to help the new editor or editors learn the job.  He asked people to send in any WESS Directory updates.  He suggested that people think about applying for the Coutts-Nijhoff International West European Specialist Study Grant to pursue a research project.  He ended by expressing his thanks and appreciation to all vendors who had supported WESS, all of the ACRL liaisons with WESS -- in particular ACRL Associate Director Mary Jane Petrowski -- and the WESS Executive Committee.

Heather Ward, Chair of the 2005 WESS Program Planning Committee, asked every one who had not already done so to fill out the evaluation form for that morning’s program, "Digitizing Medieval Manuscripts: East and West."  She said that the information gained should help out future program planning committees.  They had a fairly accurate count of the number of people who had attended.

Discussion Group Reports

Cataloging:  Chair Thom Edlund reported that the group had met on Sunday, 4:30-6:00 PM.  Attendance (13 people) had been slightly off due to scheduling conflicts, including the WESS cruise.  Unfortunately, the main invited presenter, who was to have spoken about OCLC Connexion, had cancelled his appearance.  There had been interesting ad hoc discussions based on Charlene Kellsey’s description of her continuing experience with a cataloguing intern at the University of Colorado-Boulder, as well as, more generally, problems of recruitment and potential ways of encouraging student and paraprofessional workers to enter the profession.

Classical, Medieval and Renaissance:  Reporting for Chair Karen Green (Columbia), W. Gerald (Jerry) Heverly said that the group had met on Saturday, 4:00-5:30 PM, with 30 people in attendance.  The first order of business had been the election of a new chair, Paula Carns (University of at Urbana-Champaign).  Second had been a presentation by Elizabeth O'Keefe, Director of Collection Information Systems at the Pierpont Morgan Library, who had described the integration of Index of Christian Art records and manuscript images into the Morgan's OPAC.  She had discussed incorporation issues such as image creation, non-MARC-to-MARC mapping, data integration, funding, and the steps in the conversion process.  At the project’s completion, the Morgan’s OPAC would have 75,000 digitised images from 30,000 manuscript pages, accessible in individual item records; six years into the project, they had produced two-thirds of those images.

Finally, the discussion topic had addressed the issue of microform collections in a digital world.  Group members saw no reason to curtail purchases of appropriate microforms, despite patron resistance to the medium in many institutions.  Libraries that had acquired microform readers with scanning capability, in fact, had seen an upsurge in microform usage.

College and Medium-Sized Libraries:  Guest convener Dennis Lambert, who had substituted for committee Chair Hank Harken, reported that the group had met on Saturday, 2:00-3:30 PM, with 8 attending.  The main discussion topic had been the existence of free (or inexpensive) online encyclopedias in French, German, or Spanish, expanded to include examples of online dictionaries, some of which were listed on WESSWeb.  Examples included eGallica [http://gallica.bnf.fr], the BNF interface for historic dictionaries and encyclopedias; Wikipedia (they had debated its authoritativeness and had noted the astonishing number of articles being contributed to its various foreign-language versions); resources provided by ARTFL [Project for American and French Research on the Treasury of the French Language] at the University of Chicago [http://www.lib.uchicago.edu/efts/ARTFL/], including a version of Diderot’s Encyclopédie and historical French dictionaries (a recent compilation being TLFi [Le Trésor de la Langue Française Informatisé]); and the Austrian Österreich-Lexikon at AEIOU [Annotierbare Elektronische Interaktive Oesterreichische Universal-Informationssystem], http://www.aeiou.at/aeiou.encyclop.intro.  He would send out a more complete report of the meeting on WESS discussion lists.

Germanists:  Chair Sam Dunlap reported that 30 people had attended the group’s meeting on Sunday, 10 AM-12:30 PM.  The theme had been “The State of German Librarianship after Unification, with Emphasis on the Eastern States,” covered by a panel of four speakers.  The keynote speaker, Jens Lazarus, Direktor, Bibliothek der Hochschule Merseburg, had been sponsored with the generous support of the Goethe-Institut in New York.  He had spoken on “Rebuilding an Information Landscape: the Transformation and Developments of East German Librarianship since the Wende” (German reunification).

Ron Patkus, Associate Director of the Library for Special Collections at Vassar College, had followed with his presentation, "Research Libraries in Eastern Germany since Reunification: the Examples of Weimar, Gotha, and Halle."  Michael Seadle, Assistant Director for Systems and Digital Services at Michigan State University, in "The Electronic Great Chain of Being in East German Libraries," had discussed electronic developments in Germany overall, including some collaborative efforts in the eastern German states.  Finally, Dale Askey had provided an overview of collections and services issues based on his personal experiences at eastern German libraries, particularly the Staatsbibliothek zu Berlin--Preussischer Kulturbesitz. 

Because Dale would soon leave his current position as Librarian for Germanic Languages and Literatures at Yale for one at Kansas State University (as Web Development Librarian) that did not have a Germanist focus, Sam said that the Germanist Discussion Group would need a new incoming chair in his place. 

Romance Languages:  Chair Bryan Skib reported that the group had met Saturday morning from 11:30 AM to 1:00 PM.  [34 people had signed the attendance sheet.]  The initial topic had been a brief introduction to ISiS (Iberian Studies in SALALM), given by Adan Griego (Stanford) with contributions by Eudora Loh.  Many librarians in Iberian studies also had responsibilities in Latin American studies, yet it was often difficult to attend both SALALM and ALA.  To encourage colleagues in these overlapping areas to pool and share their energies, people primarily active in SALALM were being invited to participate on the WESS Romance Languages Discussion Group e-list (WESS-Rom), to submit articles to the WESS Newsletter, and to contribute to WESSWeb.  E-mail traffic had already increased, as messages that began on the SALALM list [LALA-L] were passed over to the WESS-Rom list and vice versa.  It was proving to be a very fruitful way to collaborate.

The main topic (which had arisen out of the group’s Midwinter meeting, refined by Sebastian Hierl) had been "Cooperative Development of Digital Resources in the Romance Languages."  Shawn Martin, Outreach Librarian for the Text Creation Partnership (TCP) at the University of Michigan, had described the history and structure of the TCP and its value as a model for pooling resources to create encoded electronic texts.  Sebastian Hierl, Bibliographer for English and Romance Literatures at the University of Chicago  (although with an impending move to Harvard as Germanic Studies Librarian), and Mark Olsen, Assistant Director of the ARTFL Project, had discussed ARTFL as a form of collaboration and facilitator of further collaborations; Mark had spoken eloquently about his experiences working with French partners.

The next Romance Languages Discussion Group Chair would be Dominique Coulombe (Brown University).

Scandinavian:  Chair Gordon Anderson reported that the group had met early on Sunday morning, 8:30-10.  Ten people had signed the attendance sheet.  The featured presentation had been "Building Connections and Collections: an American Librarian in Denmark," by Jeff Sundquist, Associate Librarian, Share Print & JSTOR Archive, UCLA Libraries.  This young librarian had put together a program combining Scandinavian studies and librarianship, then had received a Fulbright grant to spend a year in the library at the Statsbiblioteket at Aarhus Universitet.  At the meeting, he had given a lively and engaging report on his experiences as a foreign librarian there and his observations on Danish library culture as compared to that in North America.

The group had also briefly discussed its meeting schedule; it would probably meet only once next year, either at the Midwinter Conference in San Antonio or the Annual Conference in New Orleans (as neither venue was known for its Scandinavian connections).  It did plan to meet at the 2007 Midwinter Conference in Seattle.

Gordon also reported that four people had gone to Andersonville at noon on Sunday, for a tour of the Swedish American Museum Center [www.samac.org]. This impressive museum had given them an opportunity to learn about the experience of immigrants from Sweden coming to the Midwest (primarily Chicago); a children’s “hands-on” section had also been very interesting.

Gordon announced that he would continue as group chair for the 2005/2006 year, then Jeff Hanks (Western Illinois University) would become chair for 2006/2007.

Social Sciences and History:  Secretary/Chair-Elect Louis Reith, who had convened the meeting in place of Chair David Duncan (Wichita State University), reported that 10-15 people had attended the SSH meeting on Sunday, 4:30-6:00 PM.  The discussion topic had been dealing with foreign vendors.  The group planned to handle the election of a new secretary/chair-elect electronically and was interested in suggestions on how best to do so.

Louis said that he would write up and distribute notes from this meeting.

Special Topics:  While Chair Jane Faulkner was not present, Tom Izbicki noted that the meeting [held Saturday, 2:00-3:30 PM] had consisted of an excellent presentation by David Hirsch, Librarian for Middle Eastern and Central Asian Studies at UCLA, about [Middle Eastern ethnic and] Islamic publishing in Europe.  He had described his encounters with representatives of different Middle Eastern émigré communities in Europe and had shown many slides; it had been interesting to see the diversity of groups and locations, from Malmö and Stockholm in Sweden to Rome in Italy.  Rebecca Malek-Wiley added that, in addition to Islamic groups, the talk had covered a wide range of non-Muslims (Armenian, Coptic, Zoroastrian, etc.).

Committee Reports

2006 Conference Planning:  Co-Chair Sam Dunlap reported that the group (including Co-Chair Ann Snoeyenbos) had met on Saturday, 11:30 AM-12:30 PM.  The 2006 program topic would be the themes of ethnicities and immigration in historical research in New Orleans.  Two speakers had already been lined up:  John Magill, Curator of Collections, Historic New Orleans Collection, and  Bill Meneray, Assistant Dean for Special Collections at Tulane University’s Howard-Tilton Memorial Library.  The committee also planned to contact a third potential speaker, a local faculty member working with primary source materials relating to immigration and ethnicity in the New Orleans area.  Details would be forthcoming about this excellent program.

Collaborative Initiative for French and North American Libraries:  Chair Tom Kilton first provided some background.  About a year previously, WESS had established an ad hoc committee to develop what was then known as the French-North American Resources Project.  This committee had been charged with drawing up and presenting a feasible plan to Eudora Loh, director of the Global Resources Network (GRN), and James Simon, Director of International Resources within the Center for Research Libraries (CRL).  It had submitted a report in March 2005; a 15-member GRN steering committee had very much liked the gist of the report and had essentially endorsed the project in substance.

The ad hoc committee had met on Sunday [2:00-4:00 PM] to work out more details, considering that the project could begin now in practice, although some further details would still need to be resolved at the 2006 Midwinter meeting in San Antonio.  The committee hoped to complete its work by then.

One basic decision adopted at Sunday’s meeting had been to change the name of the project, to the Collaborative Initiative for French and North American Libraries (CIFNAL).  A brief introductory description had been drawn up, giving its goals and a sample of projects in the areas of collection development, document delivery, bibliographic control, reference services, and individual international exchanges.  At the same time, participants realised that to be successful, they needed to have French partners who conveyed their own understanding of their needs and projects that they would like to see accomplished.  One short-term objective was to confirm a French-Canadian partner (in Montreal); partners in France were also actively being sought.  The eventual goal was to extend the scope to other Francophone areas around the world.

Since the 2005 Midwinter meeting, the three working groups had been active.  The French Partners Working Group (on the identification of French partners) was chaired by Sarah Wenzel.  The Potential Sources of Funding Working Group, [chaired to date by Sebastian Hierl and] to be chaired by Sarah Sussman, was exploring ways for the project to generate funding itself as well as appealing to other organisations for support.  The Goals Working Group, chaired by Kati Radics, was coming up with a list of effective goals and projects.  There had been a great deal of enthusiasm in this rather large ad hoc committee and a strong response to its work.

Tom Kilton announced that he would be stepping down as chair (since he would be on sabbatical).  Sarah Wenzel would be the incoming chair; he expressed his gratitude to her for taking up this position.  He also thanked a number of others:  Eudora Loh from GRN; James Simon, Bernard Reilly, and Elizabeth Darocha Berenz from CRL; ARTFL representatives including Director Robert Morrissey and Assistant Director Mike Olsen (Sarah How had worked with them, and ARTFL had been providing good ideas about financial support and potential French partners); the French Consul General in Los Angeles, with whom Kati had met, together with the French Cultural Attaché and Deputy Cultural Attaché; WESS itself, for forming this ad hoc committee and for its continuing interest in the project; and Bryan Skib, who had been very helpful in alerting the committee to the ACRL action plan that would enable it to apply for project funding, with an August 15 deadline.  The group would keep WESS members apprised of its progress.

Paris conference proceedings:  Tom Kilton also announced that the Paris WESS conference papers would be issued as an ACRL publication, Migrations in Society, Culture, and the Library, shortly following this ALA conference.  It would include about 30 papers, from all but one presenter, as well as all keynote speeches, and promised to be very interesting.  An e-mail announcement would go out as soon as the book became available.

Membership:  Thea first thanked Membership Committee Chair Candace Miller and her committee for the wonderful cruise [on Lake Michigan] the previous night, and there was a round of applause.  Candace then reported that the committee had met Saturday morning at 9:30.  The first part of the meeting had consisted of housekeeping matters.  WESS membership statistics had risen somewhat, from 590 in 2004 to 598 in 2005.  An overall jump in ACRL membership might be reflected in a greater increase in WESS membership in the near future.  Candace would be rotating off as committee chair, while David Lincove would become chair for 2005/2006; she was sure that David would do an excellent job.

A discussion had followed about the impact of retirements.  While the professional literature continually referred to an overall “greying of the profession,” they were not sure how much of a genuine trend was involved.  There was anecdotal evidence that former librarian positions were being converted to non-librarian positions that covered the same work.  Additional research into this question would be useful.  As librarians and library staff in a variety of positions were doing work relevant to WESS issues, WESS should do more outreach.

John Cullars inquired whether the paraprofessionals referred to were generally already present in the libraries or whether people were being brought in as non-librarians.  Candace responded that she had heard anecdotal reports that the jobs were very technically oriented.  People were being hired based on their technical skills, then asked to do library work as well.  (At their own institutions, John and Candace noted, the primary systems people were not given librarian responsibilities.)

Candace expressed her support for the formation of a proposed fundraising committee that would take on part of the work of the Membership Committee.  [Secretary’s note:  The WESS Executive Committee, in its meeting immediately following this general membership meeting, approved the formation of a WESS Fundraising Committee.]

About the cruise, Candace reported that there had been a very good turnout:  171 people had registered and 163 had attended.  While she still needed to confirm the balance of sales relative to expenses to be certain of the financial outcome, she expected that there would be a surplus.

Publications:  Since Chair AnnMarie Mitchell was not present, incoming Chair Sarah How gave a brief informal summary of meeting topics.  The committee had discussed two topics already covered at this membership meeting:  the need for a new Newsletter editor (perhaps a person relatively new to WESS could be encouraged) and the publication of the Paris conference proceedings.  Another topic had been plans to revise the WESS brochure.  There would be a two-track approach:  for the short-term, the current content (in a file to be provided by Beau Case [a former Publications Committee chair]) would be updated for a version posted on WESSWeb and available to take to the Frankfurt Book Fair; at the same time, committee members would investigate whether ACRL could provide funds for printing a new, redesigned brochure. 

Tom Izbicki offered to pass around a design for a new ACRL brochure, as an example.  He also commented that the idea of virtual communities had been mentioned at the Publications Committee meeting.  It had been pointed out that any collaborative work that involved people (such as vendors and scholars) outside of ALA could not be handled this way, since they would not have access to [restricted portions of] the ALA Web site.

Heleni Pedersoli reminded people to send in any updated information for their WESS Directory entries to Bruce Swann [ bswann@uiuc.edu ].  Sarah Wenzel added that any one not in the Directory should send in an entry.

Recruitment to the Profession:  Chair Jerry Heverly reported that the committee had met on Saturday, 8:00-9:30 AM.  A total of 13 had attended, including five guests, all of whom had participated and offered helpful suggestions.  The committee had discussed and agreed on final revisions to the recruitment Web site that it had been constructing over the past two years; these revisions would all be made by 1 September.  It had also discussed and agreed on final revisions to a draft toolkit intended to encourage and help established librarians make recruitment presentations on campus (e.g., at college career fairs) or at meetings of learned societies.  The revisions to the toolkit would be made this summer, and the finished toolkit would be added to the committee’s recruitment Web site by 1 September.

A draft news release publicizing the committee’s Web site and toolkit had been discussed.  This draft would be rewritten during the next month or so and finalized by 1 September.  Beginning in mid-September, the news release would be sent to various library and learned society outlets, including, for example, American Libraries, WESS-L, the American Council of Learned Societies (ACLS), and the American Council for the Teaching of  Foreign Languages (ACTFL).  A committee member specified in the release as the contact person would field inquiries arising from such distribution.

Several members of the committee had recently aided the cause of recruitment through initiatives of their own.  During the spring semester, Charlene Kellsey had mentored a graduate student intern at her institution who wanted to explore a career in cataloguing.  In May, Karen Green had conducted a panel session on library careers at the International Medieval Studies conference in Kalamazoo, Michigan.  Brian Vetruba had recently published an article [at http://www.liscareer.com/vetruba_language.htm] on librarianship and foreign languages on the site LIScareer.com, an online career development center, and Todd Gilman (Yale) had published another article about academic librarianship in the Chronicle of Higher Education [v. 51, issue 37, 5/20/2005 “A Matter of Degrees”].

Jerry said that as chair he wanted to publicly thank all of the committee’s members for their continuing enthusiasm, hard work, and good humor.  This committee would not meet face-to-face at ALA Midwinter in San Antonio; instead, it would hold an asynchronous e-mail “meeting” in early January, over the course of a few days.  A report of that meeting would be forwarded to the WESS Chair in time for her review and discussion with her before the Midwinter conference.

Research and Planning:  Chair Charlene Kellsey reported that the committee had met Saturday afternoon, 2:00-4:00.  Since the session of presented papers and research in progress at the Boston Midwinter meeting had met with a very enthusiastic response, another one had been held in Chicago.  There had been two somewhat developed papers:  Sara Harrington (Rutgers University), had spoken on “Alcohol as Enemy: Graphics of the French Temperance Movement,” while Margit Smith (University of San Diego) had discussed  “The Medieval Girdle-Book Documentation Project,” which documented 24 known instances of this particular kind of mediaeval book in Northern Europe.  Agnes Widder (Michigan State University) had then talked about her current research on the history of childhood and had asked for suggestions from attendees.  The Research and Planning Committee wanted to provide this type of opportunity for librarians to present their work in progress and get feedback from the audience.

Seventeen people had attended, a somewhat smaller number than at Midwinter (probably due to the many conflicting meetings).  Because more responses to the call for papers had been submitted than could be accommodated during this meeting, with the upcoming call for papers for the meeting at 2006 Midwinter, the committee would probably give priority to people who had applied previously.

The second half of the session had been a business meeting.  Continuing a topic from the Boston meeting (which Kati Radics had originally brought up), the major issue had been trying to determine how best to provide some kind of connection between people in Europe looking for internships in US libraries and interested institutions.  They sought a method that would contribute towards this goal without being unrealistically burdensome.  The Research and Planning Committee would present some alternative ideas to the Executive Committee for further discussion.  Information would later be sent out on WESS-L.

Charlene finished by saying that she would continue as chair for one more year.  After that, the committee would need a new chair, so she encouraged people to consider serving.

Updates, Issues and Matters Arising

New WESS Officers:  Tom Izbicki introduced the WESS officers recently elected for 2005/2006:  Bryan Skib would be the new Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect, Laura Dale Bischof would be Secretary, and Sarah Wenzel would be Member-at-Large.  He was grateful to all of them for being willing to serve, as well as to the other candidates for having been willing to run and to the Nominating Committee [chaired by Sam Dunlap] for having drawn up such an excellent slate, yet again.  He congratulated all of the new officers, including incoming Chair Helene Baumann, and promised them an exciting year as they helped WESS to move forward.

Update on 2004 Coutts-Nijhoff International West European Study Grant Project:  Helene Baumann, the 2004 Coutts-Nijhoff award recipient, referred to an anecdotal feature in the Spring 2005 WESS Newsletter [http://www.dartmouth.edu/~wessweb/nl/Spring05/translations.html] about her project with the Bildarchiv der Deutschen Kolonialgesellschaft.  The quite substantial translation part of her project was not yet loaded, because of the retirement of the curator of African Studies at the University Library at Frankfurt (Afrika-Asien Abteilung der Universitätsbibliothek Frankfurt) and the surgery undergone by one of the main technical support staff at the Hochschule füin Dresden.  Once it had been loaded, she would send out an announcement on WESS-L.  In the mean time, the Web site of the Bildarchiv [http://www.stub.bildarchiv-dkg.uni-frankfurt.de] was freely accessible.  She had also submitted the abstract for an article to the African Studies Association.

The content of the Bildarchiv der Deutschen Kolonialgesellschaft could be juxtaposed with other archives that included information about comparable topics, such as missionaries going to Africa.  The photographic collection was now slowly being digitised.  55,000 digital images would be freely available, although they would not be high-quality; if one wanted to use them for publication, it would be possible to write to the project administrators, pay a small fee, and obtain a higher-resolution image that could be published together with proper credit.

Helene thanked Coutts-Nijhoff International for having given her the opportunity to spend two wonderful weeks in Frankfurt in the fall [11-23 October 2004].  She had also worked on her project prior to and following her trip to Frankfurt.

2005 Coutts-Nijhoff International West European Study Grant Award Winner:  Tom Izbicki again congratulated Award winner Charlene Kellsey, who had been formally presented with this year’s award during the WESS program.  All attending the Membership Meeting applauded her.  [She will be spending two weeks doing research at the municipal library in Arles, France, looking at documents for the mediaeval monastic history of Arles, to gain a better understanding of how a French municipal library organizes and provides access to its unique documents, in comparison with US special collections libraries.]

Other Announcements

WESS Newsletter:  Newsletter editor Sarah Wenzel displayed printed copies of the most recent issue, asking people to take them.  She had additional copies at home, which she could send people who contacted her.  For the Fall 2005 issue, content would be due to her by September 9, including the WESS meeting minutes and the WESS Chair’s notes to the membership.  Returning to the call for a new editor, she explained that her term would expire in only five days; however, she would be willing to work through one more issue with the new editor.  She would no longer have responsibility for the newsletter’s Spring 2006 issue, but she would still be willing to help as a resource for the new editor.  She was available to talk with anyone interested about the work, which she said had the advantage of being systematically planned and scheduled, so the editor knew exactly when it would be necessary to take time to do certain work.

Frankfurt Book Fair, 2005:  Gordon Anderson reported that he had made a reservation for an ACRL booth  at the Frankfurt Book Fair, which would be held in mid-October [19-23 October], later in the month than usual.  As a nonprofit group, ACRL was eligible for a slight discount on the booth, although prices for booths were rising slowly.  It would be in the International Libraries Center, where it had always been.  He was collecting information about reasonably priced accommodations, and the pass to the Fair included free transportation.  He encouraged people to come to Frankfurt and to help work at the ACRL booth, which would be up for five days.  It was a wonderful experience that would provide an opportunity to support WESS and ACRL.  ACRL stipends would again be available this year; they would be discussed at the Executive Committee meeting.  Since Gordon hoped to wind down his own commitment to working at the Frankfurt Book Fair, any one else interested in coordinating this project would be welcome.

As Gordon later clarified, a knowledge of German, while helpful, was not required to work at the booth or to apply for a stipend.

Helene asked what WESS needed to do so that ACRL would continue to fund the awards.  Gordon replied that participation in the Fair would need to be put into action plans [in coming years]; the WESS membership also needed to demonstrate a strong commitment to it.  Helene said that the scope of the Fair was quite exciting:  the stipends were open to all in ACRL, and the Fair covered a broader area than just Europe.  Gordon informed the group that the host country for this year would be Korea.  Tom Izbicki added that the broad appeal was important for leverage when seeking ACRL support.

Gordon said that a symposium would also be held this year in conjunction with the Fair, sponsored by the University of Frankfurt Library (StUB) and directed by Dr. Andreas Werner.  After a brief discussion, he offered to confirm whether it would be open to all or only to invited speakers.

Reference Reviews Europe:  Because RRE editor Nancy Boerner was retiring, Gordon announced, the publication would need a new editor in the coming year.  She had agreed to stay on for one more semester.  Other WESS members continuing their involvement with RRE would be Gordon himself, Laura Dale Bischof (University of Minnesota), James Burgett (University of Kentucky), Beau Case (University of Michigan), and Jeffry Larson (Yale).  Contributions were also welcome; while a knowledge of German was needed for the bulk of the content, translations of German reviews, issues also included original reviews in English.  For the latter, Jeffry should be contacted.

Study Tour to Eastern Germany:  Thea announced that a study tour focussed on eastern Germany was planned for March 2006.  At either end, it would incorporate the Leipzig Book Fair [Leipziger Buchmesse] and the Bibliothekartag in Dresden.  Visits were also being planned to eastern German libraries, including the Deutsche Bücherei, in Leipzig; the Universitätsbibliothek Leipzig; the very modern Sächsische Landesbibliothek--Staats- und Universitätsbibliothek Dresden (SLUB); and the Anna Amalia Library (Herzogin Anna Amalia Bibliothek) in Weimar, to see its reconstruction following the [2 September 2004] fire.  There might also be a chance to present papers in Dresden, at the Bibliothekartag [21-24 March 2006], where the theme would be “Netzwerk Bibliothek”; more information would be available in August.

Thea was working on planning the tour as the WESS contact with Marilen Daum of the Goethe-Institut in New York as well as several others.  At this point, the planning group was thinking in terms of about eight days in length and was hoping to be able to send 10 people.  Participation in this tour would be open to any WESS member with a German studies component to her or his position (a broader criterion than those for participation in the last [November 2002] German study tour, which had been designed for relatively new librarians). 

An announcement about the tour would be posted in August to WESSWeb, WESS-L, and German-E.  There would be a September deadline, so those interested would have about a month to apply.  People with any questions should feel free to e-mail Thea (thea.lindquist@colorado.edu).

Closing

Concluding the meeting, Thea thanked every one for attending and reminded them that the WESS Executive Committee meeting would follow at 3:00 PM.  She also thanked secretary Rebecca Malek-Wiley for her excellent job taking minutes over the year.  The membership meeting ended at 2:48 PM.

Respectfully submitted,

Rebecca R. Malek-Wiley

WESS secretary 2004/2005


Editors: Sarah G. Wenzel, Paul Vermouth

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