Executive Director’s Report
Annette DeFaveri.

Working on the BC Library Conference has been a crazy pleasure this year. Most interesting and invigorating is the new approach the Conference Planning Committee took to build the overall conference program. In years past the BCLC program grew primarily out of submissions from the library community. This was an effective process and many world class sessions emerged from this pool of proposals. This year we also curated sessions delivered by people who were not necessarily from the library community but whose work and experience intersects the library community. For example we asked Shannon Daub, Director of Communications for the Canadian Centre for Policy Alternatives’ BC Office and former library board trustee, to share her extensive knowledge on how best to articulate the value of an institution outside of its traditional sector. Especially interesting will be Shannon’s discussion on using story based narrative to convey value and purpose.

Another example is Devon MacFarlane, Manager for Community Development and Service Integration at Island Health. We invited Devon to talk about Photovoice, a tool and program he developed as “a means to cultivate conversation and change.” While Photovoice is interesting in itself (imagine something like this with teens!) the community development approach used to grow Photovoice is an equally significant approach for library programs. This is an excellent example of how a non-library sector is using a community development processes to yield community based programs and services.

At the same time we looked for library professionals outside of BC who do interesting and relevant work and asked if they would speak at the BC Library Conference. We invited Susan Downs, Chief Librarian and CEO of the Innisfil Public Library to talk about the technologically savvy and innovative work she has done in her town of 33,000 people. We also invited John Pateman, the new Chief Librarian at the Thunder Bay Public Library to talk about his work generating and implementing Community-Led philosophies. John’s presentation will draw examples from his 2013 co-authored (with Ken Williment) book “Developing Community-Led Public Libraries”.

We have an exciting slate of speakers and topics for the conference and have added some new events as well. This year BCLA will sponsor a Newcomer’s Continental Breakfast for individuals new to the library sector. The BCLA Board, the BCLC Planning Committee as well as invited guests will host newcomers to our field at this “meet and greet” event. We decided to mount this event so we could intentionally and overtly provide an opportunity for newcomers to meet people with experience and a depth of knowledge about our field and our work. To register, and for more information about the 2014 BCLC program:

Annette DeFaveri is BCLA’s Executive Director.