General Membership Meeting Minutes
(revised March 2004)

Candice Miller, Secretary

WESS Newsletter
Spring 2004

Vol. 27, no. 2

Editor: Sarah G. Wenzel

Association of College & Research Libraries
©American Library Association

ALA Midwinter Conference
Philadelphia, January 28, 2003
Convention Center 204A

Bryan Skib, Member at Large, called the meeting to order at 8:35 A.M. Attending were Sarah G. Wenzel, Barbara Walden, Heleni Pedersoli, Katalin Radics, Hank Harkin, Kathleen Hunter Rutter, John Warner, Jane Faulkner, Gordon Anderson, Jonathan Marner, Rebecca Malek-Wiley, Thea Lindquist, Yvonne Boyer, John Cullars, Nancy Boerner, and Candace Miller.

Reports from Discussion Groups:

Jon Marner reported for Cataloging. They heard an update on the completion of the German translation of AACR2 2d ed. rev. Charles Croissant reported on this and on the IFLA project to create a Multilingual Dictionary of Cataloging Terms. Charlene Kellsey from the Research & Planning Committee met to discuss the work of R&P’s Subcommittee on Recruitment. Also on the agenda was discussion of topics for the Toronto meeting and for the need to maintain a continuum in the group’s leadership. Jon asked for a volunteer to take over as chair following Annual in Toronto.

Rebecca Malek-Wiley reported for Classical, Medieval and Renaissance. Bruce Swann has asked for a volunteer to take over the WESSCMR-L listserv. Rebecca reported that chair Rebecka Lindau had thanked the past chair, Heather Ward, for her help with the L’Année Philologique database. Margaret Schaus, Haverford College, discussed Feminae: Medieval Women and Gender Index. Kathryn Chew, of Princeton University, gave a talk on accounts of early Christian female martyrs, comparing their techniques with popular Greek fiction of the time in their "marketing" of the Christian faith. They have several possible topics for their meeting in Toronto, including the changing role of subject specialists and a tour of the Pontifical Institute of Mediaeval Studies.

Hank Harken reported for College and Medium-Sized Libraries. They called for a new chair and would like for WESS to organize a pre-conference on recruiting for leadership roles in the section. They need to develop a FAQ list to address questions that repeatedly come up. They are inviting French language materials vendors to their meeting in Toronto.

Yvonne Boyer reported for Romance Languages. Some of the Group’s members presentations: AnnMarie Mitchell, “Portuguese Women Authors”; Jennifer Vinopal, “Humanities Computing Centers in Libraries: Reaching out to Humanists”; and Sebastian Hierl, “The Italian Women Writers Project”. They also discussed guest speakers for their meeting at ALA Annual in Toronto.

Nancy Boerner reported for Scandinavian. Two speakers gave presentations: the director of the Swedish-American Museum in Philadelphia and the librarian of the Danish Immigrant Museum in Elk Horn, Iowa. At the Annual Conference in Toronto the Group plans an informal discussion of the Scandinavian national libraries.

Rebecca Malek-Wiley reported for Social Sciences & History. She urged members to subscribe to the WESS-L discussion list. Barbara Walden and her graduate student Joseph Tomich presented a database that they have put together, Historical Research in Europe: a Guide to Archives and Libraries. It is free to all users. Jim Niessen noted that he and Jennifer Schwartz were trying to revive the H-Hist-Bibl list. Dick Hacken announced that Eurodocs: Primary Historical Documents from Western Europe had recently been expanded, and it was announced that the Royal Historical Society Bibliographies and the Jahresberichte für deutsche Geschichte were now available free online. Cooperative collection development for European-language materials was mentioned as one possible discussion topic for a collaborative meeting with another WESS group in Toronto.

Thea Lindquist reported for Germanists. The meeting opened with Tom Kilton reporting on the German Resources Project. Gordon Anderson gave an update on the Frankfurt Book Fair for 2003. Laura Dale Bischof, Erika Banski, and Graham Walden reported on the Goethe-Institut / Bibliothek und Information International study tour of German libraries held in November 2002. Thea and Ann Snoeyenbos gave presentations on, respectively, “Favorite German History and Social Science Reference Sources.”

Reports from WESS committees:

Barbara Walden reported for the Coutts-Nijhoff Western European Award jury. The jurors are Barbara, Sue Waterman, Fred Jenkins and two Coutts representatives. Barbara will ask the WESS Executive Committee to include independent research libraries in the Coutts-Nijhoff eligibility guidelines and change the five-year post-MLA experience requirement. The committee will announce the award winner at the annual conference in Toronto.

Thea Lindquist reported for the Membership Committee. WESS membership grew 1.3% since August 2002. Thea’s summer 2002 welcome-letter mailed to new members has encouraged some them to actively participate in WESS. The committee is adding new members to the WESS-L listserv. They also discussed the WESS cruise in Toronto, scheduled for Sunday June 22. Thea and Gordon Anderson will lead the effort to find a suitable ship for the Cruise. The Committee is investigating mentoring opportunities with NMRT. They met with the Research & Planning Committee’s Subcommittee on Recruitment to discuss possible joint efforts to recruit graduate students and recent graduates from language and area-studies programs into the library profession. The ACRL Membership Committee is contacting former members to find out why they let their membership lapse. ACRL is also inviting all new members to a reception at the ACRL conference in Charlotte in April.

Richard Hacken reported for the Nominating Committee. They would like to have at least two candidates for each office. As of today they have signed up one candidate each to run for vice chair, secretary, and member-at-large.

Louis Reith reported for the Publications Committee. Sarah Wenzel, the new WESS Newsletter editor, announced that the deadline for submissions for the next issue is February 28, 2003. The committee discussed the need to for individual web-page editors to keep their web sites updated frequently. The Chair of the Membership Committee requested the Publications Committee’s help in upgrading the WESS Membership Directory. Its current editor, Bruce Swann, has asked for a volunteer to replace him and assume charge of maintaining and upgrading the Directory. Beau Case led discussion of the recent update to WESS’s brochure.

Sharon Brown reported for the 2003 Annual Conference Program Planning Committee. The program’s title is “New Roles, New Inter-Relationships: Research Library Networks in Europe and across the Atlantic” and will feature speakers from Scotland, Canada, the U.S., Iceland and Italy. The Committee is planning for an attendance of up to 125. The speakers will be our guests on the WESS cruise.

Jeffry Larson reported on the 2004 Paris Conference Planning Committee. ACRL has approved their budget with provided a certain portion of the funds is raised by the end of February 2003. The non-governmental organizations have been slow to respond; the Committee may need to contact vendors who have provided financial support for past WESS programs. The Committee has found prospective locations for the meetings and speakers from the French book trade and also has reserved hotel rooms but needs to negotiate hotel deposits. The Goethe Institute has agreed to pay expenses for the German speakers and to act as a speakers’ bureau. The Committee is issuing a call for papers with an April 1, 2003 deadline. They should have the registration flyers ready by the Toronto annual conference in June.

Rebecca Malek-Wiley reported for the Research & Planning Committee. Charlene Kellsey is heading their Subcommittee on Recruitment. They would like to inspire graduate students in masters’ and doctoral programs in Western European studies to seriously consider librarianship as a career. They are developing a recruitment flyer. They also suggested that librarians consider getting release time to visit college foreign language classes and discuss librarianship as a career. Heleni Pedersoli talked about her Subcommittee on Internships and Exchanges.

Other updates, issues and matters arising:

Sarah Wenzel reported on and shared a few observations about the German research libraries she visited during the Goethe Institute Study Tour: The State Library in Berlin has closed stacks and places more emphasis on collection development than public service. The State Library in Berlin and the Bavarian State Library in Munich have limited circulating collections. Ancient card catalogs in archaic scripts make conversion projects particularly challenging. What happens if the Anglo world moves beyond AACR2 since the German libraries are currently converting their records to AACR2? The German libraries use a traffic-light system to indicate varying levels of access to electronic journals. A red light means the patron can’t access the journal from her IP address. A yellow light means the patron can access the journal from her IP address (if her institution subscribes to the service). A green light means anyone can access the journal.

Gordon Anderson discussed the 2003 Frankfurt Book Fair. ACRL would like to have a higher profile at the Book Fair and will award up to four travel-support stipends to ACRL members who will staff the booth. Russia will be the guest country. Friday evening hours will be expanded to accommodate the pubic from 4:00-8:00 pm. Individuals will be able to purchase books at certain times during the Book Fair, a change from past policy.

The meeting adjourned at 10:09 A.M.

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