BCLTA Bulletin




You are receiving this Bulletin because you are either your library board chair or the chief librarian. BCLTA and your trustees rely on you to circulate the Bulletin to all of your trustees. Please forward it by email or print and include with your monthly board package correspondence. Thank you for your assistance in helping BCLTA serve all its members.



President's Message 

Hello everyone,
This Bulletin begins with a big “Phew!”

Phew, is it ever hot! I don’t know about where you are, but here in the Kootenays our high temperatures are 10 degrees higher than normal. Bright, sunny days but a bit worrisome too.

And, phew, our conference/AGM is behind us! That deserves a “Hooray” as well, because we believe it was a great success. We offered challenging and important learning opportunities; we celebrated four super trustees, a library advocate and four outgoing board members; we continued to build relationships; and we have a dynamic board with several new members.
We also had great music, lots of time for conversation, and inspiring fun with our Lightning Talks! And we appreciated ADM Ramona Soares joining us, as well as Libraries Branch director Mari Martin and other branch consultants.

Such events take months of planning and hard work, and I want to again thank our E.D. Barb Kelly and our A.A./bookkeeper Jan Thomas for all their work – done cheerfully, professionally and creatively! We look forward to doing it all again next year, with some changes no doubt. But for now, we get to move on to other projects (having taken five minutes to breathe).

I was honoured to be acclaimed as your president for another year. We have lots planned, and I look forward to reporting on that as we proceed and at the 2017 conference. And, just to make it really special, next year is BCLTA’s 40th birthday – so we’ll certainly be celebrating that!
One of our focuses this year is to strengthen the BCLTA board. In the spring, directors completed a self-evaluation, of themselves and of our board, and we had a good discussion about the results prior to the conference. Like any board, we need to make continual improvement and we’ve identified some areas to get started on. The stronger our board, the better we can serve our membership – you!

Thanks, as always, for your good work – and don’t forget to start planning to attend our 2017 conference!

Best wishes,

Donna Macdonald
President, BCLTA   


JUNE 2016 













Executive Director's Message

Summer is on its way and BCLTA is wonderfully busy! We are a membership driven organization and that means that all we do is about you and your work as trustees. As the executive director my role is to, well execute the work of the board’s strategic action plan. Over the next few months this includes working with our partners (ABCPLD, BC Libraries Cooperative, and BCLA) on organizing our presence at the September UBCM convention, participating on the Advisory Committee for the Libraries Branch strategic planning process (along with trustees Donna Macdonald, Roberta Burris and Tim MacDonald), the annual survey (this year its governance, which is my favourite topic!), the Trustee Learning and Development Framework project (L&D project), a communications strategy, a funding plan, and a policy review. I look forward to connecting with and hearing from all of you on how these initiatives can best bring value to your role and work as trustees.

June 21st is National Aboriginal Day and many of your libraries will be busy with programming and supporting community events. We are also coming up to one year since the release of the Truth and Reconciliation report; libraries, local government, the business community, and the provincial government are having critical discussions on what this means for working with Aboriginal peoples and for community social and economic development. Below, in the Bulletin, there are a few resources to support your strategic planning and board discussions on this important issue. There are many more resources available and conversations to join. I encourage you to share your findings and thoughts with us on twitter @BCLTA #Reconciliation.

Please keep in touch, as the more I hear from you, the better I can serve the association.

Babs Kelly







2016 Conference

Libraries Connect!

Thank you for being part of a fabulous 2016 BCLTA reception and conference!

A conference is like a dinner party in that it is only as good as the people around the table and in the kitchen. On behalf of the BCLTA Board of Directors and staff, I extend our appreciation to each and every one of you who contributed your energy, thoughts, and good humour to the conference. You all made the theme of connection come alive and the event the success that it was.

In the Membership section of our website you will find the Trustee’s Round Table Report along with power point slides and handouts that the presenters have shared. These are for your use as you report on the conference to your boards or take time for reflection on what was a very busy two days. We also hope that those of you, who missed the conference this year, will take a look and think about joining us next year. Photos can be found at https://flic.kr/s/aHskAvjK4H.

Planning for the 2017 conference will soon be underway and your emails, comments, and online conference evaluation responses will inform the 2017 experience from continuing to seek out the latest thoughts on leadership, board development and strategic thinking in libraries to having more time for networking and conversations. We will also be celebrating BCLTA’s 40th anniversary in 2017!











Annual General Meeting

An 8am starting time, breakfast, financial reports and elections drew a full-house to the 2016 AGM! The 2015-2016 BCLTA Annual Report can be found here.

There was an impressive slate of nominations and the membership elected Kyla Epstein (Vancouver Public Library), Tom Duncan (Vancouver Island Regional Library), Erin Carlson (Okanagan Regional Library), David Carter (West Vancouver Memorial Library), and Paul Tutsch (Whistler Public Library) to the BCLTA Board of Directors. Donna Macdonald was acclaimed as President. You can read their bios and see their photos, along with returning directors Ernie Ingles, Jerrilyn Schembri, Roberta Burris, Manjit Kang and Susan Koch, here









TOP and Chairing the Board

Upcoming TOP sessions:

  • June 25, 2016 at the Salmo Public Library 

And don’t forget to check out the TOP workbook and webinars available in the Member section of the website!

TOP webinar part 1 covers areas such as trustee responsibilities and governance versus management. Part 2 then continues the orientation with core board responsibilities such as external relations, oversight of the library, and establishing practices for board development.

To find out more about TOP training and to register, please visit bclta.ca/trustee-education.  If you would like a TOP session in your area, please click on the “Request a Training Session” link and Jan, our Administrative Assistant, will respond to your questions and ensure that everything is in place for a successful session. A minimum of 10 participants is required for the session to proceed. It’s affordable! It’s enjoyable! It’s valuable!











Annual Survey

The BCLTA is committed to supporting trustees throughout the province, and to better understand your needs we conduct an annual survey. This year the survey is about governance.

You will notice that the survey asks about the size of community you serve and in what region. This information will allow member library boards to compare themselves to other library boards while maintaining confidentiality. The information you share in the survey is not connected with your library’s name.

We appreciate that each board is going to take the time to fill out the survey.  We are aiming for a 100% response rate knowing that the results from these surveys are important and are used by boards to inform planning and policies. BCLTA uses the results to direct strategic priorities and in forming key advocacy messages.  Previous survey reports, including the 2013 Governance and Planning survey, can be found under the Member Services section of the BCLTA.

BCLTA sends a big shout out to Sarah Felkar for her work on survey design and upcoming analysis. Thank you Sarah!

Please contact Barbara with any questions about the survey or if you need a Word document of the questions to share with your board.









Trustee Learning and Development Framework

Your input into this project is needed!

To get started on connecting you with this project please visit the first quick survey at http://fluidsurveys.com/s/June_survey_LDproject/. This survey will take less than 10 minutes and includes the option of leaving your contact information to participate in an interview or focus group. Everyone, including trustees, library directors and our partner organization colleagues, are invited to participate in the survey.

What is this project?

Trustees have asked for greater support in their roles and in developing their boards. In response, and with project funding support from the Libraries Branch, the BCLTA is developing a Trustee Learning and Development Framework. The purpose of the project is to build a province wide approach to learning and development opportunities for trustees. The results of this project will be improved access to trustee learning opportunities and an evidence-strengthened and outcomes-based delivery of TOP.

Over the next few months, trustees, library directors, federation staff, Libraries Branch staff, and partner organizations (BCLC, BCLA and ABCPLD) will all have the opportunity to contribute to the framework development through quick surveys, focus groups and one-on-one interviews. Stakeholder representatives, such as local government, will also have the opportunity to let us know what is important to them about trustee and board development and how they might support this development.

The final report is due in December 2016 and will be shared with the membership in early 2017.

Your questions and input into this project are very welcome! Don’t wait for us to ask you, let Barbara know at execdir@bclta.ca if you have something to say about trustee learning and development. 









Linking with your Library World

Canadian Federation of Library Associations - Fédération canadienne des associations de bibliothèques (CFLA-FCAB)

On May 26th CFLA-FCAB Chair Paul Takala sent out this letter regarding the evolution of CFLA-FCAB. 

BC Libraries Cooperative Annual General Meeting and eBook Summit

The AGM is 10:30 to 12:00 Pacific in Vancouver and via teleconference and will be followed by lunch and the 5th Annual Ebook Summit. Visit the BCLC website for more details and registration.

Northwest Library Federation

Earlier this year the NWLF launched a refreshed website and federation name and now they have a newsletter – very nice! Find out more at http://nwlf.ca/.

Reports and Plans

We all want to know what other library sector boards are up to and so each month we will bring you a few select links to board documents. BC is large, diverse, and has over 700 trustees – we have much to learn from each other!

Okanagan Regional Library

Connecting Curious Minds, Strategic Plan 2016-2019

When we tweeted that this plan was thoughtful, readable and pretty, ORL responded with “@BCLTA thank you!  Above all, we hope it will be a living document that helps us focus on what's most important to our communities.”

We are sure it will be, and it is readable and pretty!

Salmo Valley Public Library

2015-2020 Strategic Plan Quick View

What a great idea for a quick guide, and a different way to think about the strategic plan, for trustees, staff, library users and community partners. Makes you want to tack it up on the wall for easy reference and guidance!

The full strategic plan is here.   

Vancouver Public Library

VPL did a flipbook for their 2015 Annual Report.. Very cool!

Board Development Resources

We will regularly share a few resources to support your trustee and board development. Given that June 21st is National Aboriginal Day, we are celebrating by sharing the following:

Truth and Reconciliation Commission

Reconciliation Canada  

  • A generous partner in supporting library programming with resources and guidance.

Library and Archives Canada

  • Library and Archives Canada and the National Centre for Truth and Reconciliation sign agreement to safeguard residential school records LAC announcement (announced June 2, 2016).
  • This is a significant step for LAC. Read the full announcement here

UBCM: Truth and Reconciliation at the Local Level

Working Effectively with Aboriginal Peoples

BC Ministry of Aboriginal Relations and Reconciliation

BC Ministry of Education

  • There have been significant changes in education regarding Aboriginal world views and reconciliation.
  • The Ministry has provided many links and resources that can be found here. 







Final Words and Thank you

At the conference, we heard from Bill Walters from Diversity onBoard – Vancouver. I was struck by his “diversity within diversity” model (see conference documents in the Member section) and Bill’s comment that “people are complicated”. I believe that where it is complicated is where the possibilities are found. The work that you do representing community, providing governance, understanding the needs of funders and other stakeholders, and brining your very unique selves and diversity within diversity to the board is complicated, and therefor is full of possibilities. Your work makes a difference to libraries, individuals and communities.

 Thank you for reading this Bulletin,  sharing it, and getting back to us on what matters to you in your world of public library trusteeship. 

Barbara Kelly

If you have feedback about this Bulletin or would like to contribute an item to the Around BC news, please contact us at bulletin@bclta.ca.









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