EMIERT (Ethnic and Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table)

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  • To serve as a source of information on recommended ethnic collections, services, and programs.
  • To organize task forces, institutes, and workshops to carry out the functions of the Round Table as defined in the petition.
  • To develop for Annual conferences forums and symposia programs that deal with the key issues of ethnicity and librarianship.
  • To maintain a liaison with the Office of Library Outreach Services and cooperate with other ALA units, including the caucuses in joint projects for the betterment of outreach services.
  • To disseminate the work of the Round Table through a program of publications

Learn more about EMIERT on the ALA website.

EMIERT_executive-board- minutes_Sept. 27  

Oct 05, 2013 07:06 AM

Minutes for EMIERT

Friday, September 27, 2013

Skype   12:00 CST


In attendance:  Leslie Hime, Jonda McNair, Lori Mestre, Tess Tobin, Katherine Trouern-Trend,


Katherine welcomed everyone and acknowledged Leslie as the new Vice President and Lori as the new secretary. 


Katherine reminded everyone that executive board members are required to attend both the midwinter and annual conferences.  She then discussed roles for the vice chair and secretary.

  • The roles of the vice chair include working closely with the chair and past chair on initiatives and the annual program planning.  The platform for inputting information for the program should be available by November. Tess will contact John and Ms. Mclean regarding deadlines and pass the information on to Katherine and Leslie.   Once the membership chair is in place for the program, Leslie will serve as the liaison to the board for EMIERT program planning

  • The secretary takes minutes and transcribes and distributes them to the board members.  There was a discussion of whether to also post the minutes to the membership, in order to be more transparent and to let the membership be more aware of the activities and discussions.  All agreed.  Once minutes have been approved, Lori will post to ALA connect and on the web page. She finished Drupal training and is awaiting confirmation to proceed with editing the EMIERT website.

ALA Connect space

Katherine reviewed the ALA connect site, including the space for executive board members and for the general membership.  There was a discussion of the benefit of using the online documents area for group editing of documents and populating the site with past and current minutes, agendas and documents.  Lori is creating folders for these and Tess will upload documents she has as well.


There was some brainstorming on the types of resources that could be added to the website to make it more of a clearinghouse of information beneficial to the membership.  This included EMIERT member created resources, as well as linking to resources from ALA affiliates.  Katherine will create a space in ALA connect (executive board space) for us to add suggested resources.  Some categories and ideas included:


There was a discussion of resurrecting the EMIERT bulletin [http://www.ala.org/emiert/emiebulletin/emiertbulletin], but in the form of a newsletter.  For a number of years EMIERT included a bulletin (bibliographies) “Multicultural Review”.  However, due to expenses (nearly $6,000 a year) that was ceased after a survey to the membership approved discontinuing the practice of receiving the “Review” as part of their dues.  An initial discussion of categories for a newsletter included: a letter from the chair; columns with activities and updates from task forces, committees, annual program; pictures from events such as meetings, program, a couple of bibliographies. social hours; column for the Coretta Scott King Book award.

It was agreed to plan for two issues a year, with consistent categories and contributions from task forces and committees.  The newsletter will be distributed both through ALA connect and on the EMIERT website.  The group agreed to post initial contributions to the ALA connect (executive board) space that Katherine will create by November 1 so that it can be compiled and uploaded by November 15.


Webinars have been great fund generators and the goal has been to do a couple per year.  ALA provides software and support for the webinars, with a cost of around $20.00 per person.  Webinars are usually about an hour in length and can be repeats of existing presentations. Katherine asked for ideas for future webinars (one for December and one for April).  An initial thought was something related to the Coretta Scott King 45th anniversary linking the Common Core with the books.  Jonda will send out an email to gauge possible speakers for this. Please let Katherine know of other ideas.


Previously EMIERT had two awards per year:  The Distinguished Librarian award and the David Cohen/EMIERT Multicultural Award.  These awards will now be offered in alternate years with the David Cohen award being offered in 2014.  The announcement for deadlines for nominations for the award will most likely be in January 2014 at midwinter. Hazel Walker is the chair of this committee.


Katherine reported that there has been some positive responses to recruitment for task forces and committees, including the Electronic Communication Committee, the Directory of Libraries Serving Multicultural Populations Task Force, the Electronic Resources for English Language Learners Task Force and Guidelines for Selecting Multicultural Materials Task Force.We are still in need of additional volunteers to complete these groups but will move forward with those who have already committed to serve in these new roles.  Katherine will now recruit people to fill out the committees and task forces, based on areas of expertise and/or interest. Please let her know of possible members.


Sonal was not present to provide a budget updatebut later communicated that reports won't be available until later this fall and that she should be able to report any updates by December.

MidWinter Social

Because social events are popular, there was a discussion of providing one at midwinter.  A possible idea would be to hold one after the membership meeting that occurs on Saturday evening.  One idea was to find a place close by for “happy hour”.  We can continue this discussion in ALA connect for a venue, reserving tables, and communicating with the membership.

Annual Programs

There has been a request to host a program for annual by the Coretta Scott King Book Awards Committee in honor of the 45th anniversary.  Jonda, as chair of the committee and the vice chair of the committee would like to propose a panel of past recipients of the award, which could be moderated by Andrea Pinkney.  Jonda was asked to think about which day and time for the program since the software to submit proposals will soon be available. Once Katherine and Leslie get the information for submitting proposals they will let Jonda know. 

Katherine mentioned that Elliot Gertel, chair of the EMIERT Jewish Information Committee, might also have a program to propose.  Another possible program of interest might be one pertaining to selecting multicultural materials.  The task force is one piece to promote this, but there could be a program as well, including publishers, selection etc.  Each program costs $1,000 (for AV etc.).


Jonda asked if there was some way on the EMIERT membership form to have people check off interest in committees, such as the Coretta Scott King (CSK) Book Awards committee or discussion list.  Katherine mentioned that on the electronic volunteer form it is possible to select committees, but she can follow up on that.  Jonda said they are looking for new members.  Katherine can do a post in the ALA connect membership space to announce that CSK is looking for new members.

It was decided that the EMIERT Officers will meet once a month.


Submitted by Lori Mestre, EMIERT secretary


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