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Complete Library Trustee Handbook - The Library Marketplace

Complete Library Trustee Handbook

ALA Neal-Schuman

  • $80.50

Sally Gardner Reed and Jillian Kalonick

ISBN-13: 9781555706876

141 pages • 8 ½" x 11"
Year Published: 2010

Give your trustees the tools needed to translate their experiences and interests into strong results on behalf of their libraries. Current executive director of the Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations (ALTAFF) and former public library director Sally Gardner Reed draws on her years of success leading Friends of Libraries USA to provide trustees with straightforward, easy-to-read, guidance on how to make the most of their vital role. She guides readers through important issues including sustainable fundraising and advocacy, hiring and evaluating a library director, strategic planning, director-trustee collaboration, and policy development. Readers of The Complete Library Trustee Handbook will be brought up to speed on optimizing board effectiveness, board ethics issues, conflicts of interests, and efficient meeting management, and a chapter on key issues for libraries addresses intellectual freedom, user privacy, pay equity for library workers, privatization of public libraries, and funding.


Reviewed by Rudi Denham, St. Thomas PL

This handbook is targeted at new trustees, therefore the content is somewhat simplified. At a mere 100 pages (plus appendices and samples) it can hardly be expected to be "a complete guide", however it does have very some useful sections.The initial chapter focuses on the philosophical and legal foundations of the role as Library Trustee. The division of responsibilities in Chapter 3 is excellent, providing information on CEO hiring, evaluations and firing, and includes sample interview questions. The chapter on board best practices—orientation, agendas, and effective meetingsy—is rather basic, and the strategic planning chapter is disappointing. The SOLS Guide to Strategic Planning is a better resource. The policies chapter has some good information and food for thought on the philosophy behind policies. The final chapter focuses on key issues facing libraries, including intellectual freedom, user privacy and pay equity. Privatization is identified as another issue, which overall, does not apply to most Canadian public libraries.

The American perspective reduces some of its value. In the United States, library funding by local authorities is often in jeopardy, and that is reflected in the arrangement of this book, where fundraising is the second chapter. The appendices include suggestions for more reading, grouped by subject, and there are lots of sample policies. The author is Executive Director of ALTAFF, the Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations (the American equivalent of the OLBA) and author of a number of books on library management. Coauthor Jillian Kalonick is the Marketing and PR Specialist for ALTAFF.

Overall a useful resource, though as a supplement to the SOLS Library Board Development Kit. Recommended for mid-sized libraries.

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