From the President: Conference Schedule News

Some of you know that I had planned to visit Trinidad last week, and hoped to report back with fresh conference news. Unfortunately, my flight (Boston-New York) was cancelled and I never made it! I hope to reschedule very soon.
Meanwhile, preparations for our conference are well advanced, and I’d like to share the following scheduling information with you. Almost all committee meetings will take place on Saturday, June 16, with the exception of the second meetings of the Executive Board and Finance. Panels will run from Sunday through midday on Tuesday, and E-SALALM, Town Hall, Business and Executive Board 2 will take place in the afternoon. We don’t expect to end until about 5:30 on Tuesday, so please plan on attending the entire day if you are on the Board.
As you know, SALALM will take place over 4 days this year, instead of the traditional 5. This change was made to address concerns about the cost of attending SALALM in recent years, and as an experiment in a (somewhat) new format. In order to accommodate this shorter timeframe I have asked the following groups and committees to meet either virtually or off-schedule (at meals, for example): LANE, MOLLAS, LASER and CALAFIA; Nominating, Medina and Cuban Bibliography. Official Publications is not meeting this year due to lack of membership in recent years; and Gifts and Exchange is being considered for permanent cancellation due to lack of activity.
In addition, I have eliminated the following Substantive Committee meetings this year: Acquisitions, Access and Bibliography, and Library Operations and Services. These meetings have (in recent years at least) served only to collect reports from their respective subcommittees. Those reports can be submitted privately to the Chairs, who then report to the Executive Board. So please note: chairs of Library/Bookdealer/Publisher Relations, Serials, and Marginalized Peoples should submit reports to the Chair of Acquisitions before the end of the meeting; Chairs of Cuban Bibliography and Electronic Resources should report to the Chair of Access and Bibliography; and Chairs of Audio-Visual, Bibliographic Instruction, Cataloging, and Reference should report to the Chair of Library Operations and Services.
The Libreros’ Reception will be held on Sunday evening; and the Host Reception at UWI on Monday evening.
Changes have been made on our website (thanks Melissa and Daisy!) so that the conference website is now linked to from the photograph of the UWI Trinidad on the main page. I hope that this will improve visibility. Please check the page for schedule updates, which will be posted regularly.
Lynn Shirey
Harvard University

From the Secretariat

                November and December is usually downtime at the Secretariat, the calm before the storm, as preparations for the conference begin in full swing after the New Year.   And now, as we approach mid-February and head into Carnival season here in New Orleans, we are about to begin the registration process for the conference in Trinidad.  This year, for the first time, online registration is made possible via Paypal on the conference web site, in addition to traditional forms of payment.  Many thanks to Carol Avila and Melissa Gasparotto for setting this up.  Elmelinda and Lynn have been very busy planning a great event, and we are all looking forward to June in Trinidad.   
Personal and institutional membership renewals for the current year continue to trickle in.  Carol and I have continued to examine the issue of lapsed memberships, especially for institutional members, and we will have a report in a couple of weeks.
                Aside from collecting dues and gearing up for the June conference, the Secretariat mailed out posters to various library schools in the U.S. and Canada on behalf of the Scholarship Committee chaired by Peter Johnson.   The program has been highly successful.  The committee already selected two awardees in the fall.  The new information we mailed out announced another round of fellowships in the spring, and applications have been arriving steadily.
                I’m also very happy to report that some of our backlogged publications are finally out and in the mail.  The SALALM 53 Papers, Encounter, Engagement and Exchange:  How Native Populations of the Americas Transformed the World, from the meeting held in New Orleans in the spring of 2003, came out last week.  Also, in December we sent out volume 57 of the Bibliography Series, Bibliography of Latin American and Caribbean Bibliographies. Annual Report, 2004/2005-2005/2006 by Gayle Williams.  Congratulations to John Wright and Gayle for their publications, but also to our Chair of Editorial Committee, Orchid Mazurkiewicz, for shepherding these projects through.
Hortensia Calvo
Executive Secretary

Presidental Message

December 1, 2011
SALALMistas have been active travelers in the past few months: the LIBER book fair in Madrid was attended by several of our members, and even more attended (FIL) in Guadalajara. Our colleagues Michaela Chavez Villa (Colegio de México) and Adán Griego (Stanford) were among 25 librarians from Mexico and the United States honored for their contributions to FIL over the past 25 years.
LANE (Latin America North East) met recently at NYU’s Bobst Library for a productive meeting. Of special interest was a presentation given by Bobray Bordelon of Princeton on Latin American and Caribbean Data Resources. A few intrepid lanistas visited the Occupy Wall Street library after hours, and narrowly missed being caught up in the eviction later that night!
Plans are also underway for electronic elections for SALALM officers, thanks to Ana María Cobos, Stephanie Miles and Jesús Alonso-Rodríguez of the Nominating Committee.
Conference News:
Many thanks to those of you who have proposed papers for our upcoming SALALM Conference dedicated to Popular Culture: Arts and Social Change in Latin America and the Caribbean. Please continue to send me your ideas and to spread the word to interested colleagues, especially those in Latin America.
Planning for SALALM LXVII in Trinidad & Tobago is underway, and the Conference website will be available very soon. In the meantime, and since I have received several requests for information about costs and transportation from members who need to make their travel funding requests early, I will give you a sneak preview:
Hilton Trinidad and Conference Centre (June 16-19)
Rooms have been reserved for participants at a special rate of US$129.00 (single) and US$139.00 (double occupancy) plus 10% service charge and 11.50% tax. Room rates are inclusive of breakfast and internet access.
Transportation:
Travel arrangements should be made as soon a possible to take advantage of lower fares. June 19 is Labour Day, a public holiday in Trinidad and Tobago which may be a busy travel period. Trinidad and Tobago’s, main airport, Piarco International Airport is served by a number of airlines, from destinations in the Caribbean, Canada, Central America, South America, Europe and The United States.
Please consider organizing a panel or a single paper for the Conference!
Felices fiestas,
Lynn Shirey
Harvard University

From the Secretariat

There are so many initiatives and new projects happening within the organization, it’s hard to keep track!  For one, we have this brand new enhanced website, thanks to the Communications Committee: Alison, Orchid, Daisy and Melissa.  It looks & feels great, and it is a much more accurate reflection of the dynamism, varied interests, and engagement of our members.   Kudos to all who continue to work so hard on the site.  It is also exciting that the call for applications to the new SALALM library student fellowship is underway and applications are beginning to arrive.
At the Secretariat, we are in the midst of a campaign to update our membership payment records, especially for institutional memberships.   Messages to personal members seeking their help to update contacts and other information at their institutions were sent out three weeks ago, and we have already begun to identify some problem areas.  Thanks to all who have responded promptly.  I suspect we’ll be able to increase the number of sponsoring memberships as a direct result of this process.   We will report back on the results.  Membership renewals (personal and institutional) have started to trickle in, but it is still too early to report any figures.  As of August 31, the end of fiscal year 2011, we had 213 personal members and 92 institutional members, including 17 sponsoring members, for a total of 305 members.  These figures are significantly down from 2009-2010 when we closed with 347 members (241 personal; 106 institutional, including 17 sponsoring).  This year, for the first time, we are handling online payments through Paypal, along with check and credit card payments.  It’s now much easier and quicker to renew, so don’t delay your renewal!
Hortensia Calvo
Executive Secretary

Presidential Message October 2011

Dear SALALM members:
I would like to thank Daisy Dominguez and Melissa Gasparotto for all their work on the new SALALM website! As you know, the SALALM Newsletter has been incorporated into the site, and will no longer be published in print form. Several questions remain about content, advertising and updating of the site; these will be addressed throughout the year and at our next meeting. Please contact Daisy or Melissa if you notice any errors or omissions.
Planning is underway for the 57th annual meeting in Port of Spain, Trinidad & Tobago. As I hope all you know by now, we will meet June 16-19, 2012, and our theme will be Popular Culture: Arts and Social Change. Please see the complete description on the Conference section of this website. I look forward to your proposed papers, panels and presentations. I am also counting on your assistance in advertising the conference with colleagues at your institutions in the U.S. and elsewhere.
I am happy to report that the University of Miami and Florida International University have issued a joint invitation to SALALM for the 58th annual SALALM meeting in 2013. The Executive Committee has accepted this invitation on a provisional basis, pending the vote of the full Executive Board next June. We are very grateful to be able to rely on this early offer, which will aid considerably with future planning!
Please note that a new SALALM Scholarship has been established “to encourage professional and leadership development in Latin American and Caribbean Studies librarianship.” It is intended for master’s candidates in information or archival studies programs in the US. $1000 will be awarded annually, commencing in December 2011. The award will include a one-year SALALM membership. Please see the application on this website, and share it widely with colleagues in your area.

Lynn Shirey
Harvard University

Presidential Message August 2011

I would like to congratulate our colleagues for organizing an interesting, efficient and enjoyable conference in Philadelphia this past May. The theme “Preserving Memory: Documenting and Archiving Latin American Human Rights” was timely and of interest to us all. Many excellent presentations were held, thanks to the work of our past president Nerea Llamas. Many thanks as well to our excellent hosts, Joe Holub and David Murray of the University of Pennsylvania and Temple University libraries and our very generous sponsors.
Several important issues were expressed this year at the two Executive Board meetings, the Business meeting and at Town Hall. Executive Board Member-at-Large Sean Knowlton (Columbia University) presented a list of proposals compiled by Patricia Figueroa (Brown University) that represent concerns voiced by SALALM members in recent years:

  • that SALALM change its name to reflect the reality of the work we accomplish; i.e. a name that is more general in nature and by default more inclusive
  • that the SALALM conference be limited to 3 days instead of 5
  • that we eliminate panels and themes from our meeting so that we can devote more time to our committees, regional meetings and vendors
  • that we meet and celebrate SALALM in conjunction with LASA, mimicking the arrangement that MELA and MESA have for their yearly congresses. This arrangement would provide an outlet for SALALM members who must present a paper in order to receive funding to attend. The conference need not take place at the same hotel as LASA, but rather the same city and dates.

While some of these concerns have surfaced at various moments in our organization’s history, the present economic crisis has brought them to the fore once again. We are faced with a shrinking membership; our institutions provide less professional development funding than in the past; and conference costs are rising.
In order to address these proposals, I have named an ad-hoc Membership Survey Committee to collect information, opinions and ideas relating to the above issues. Members include Anne Barnhart (chair), David Block, Mary Jo Zeter, John Wright and Patricia Figueroa. Please respond thoughtfully to their survey which will be sent out in early fall.
A second committee will work concurrently with the Survey Committee to investigate the consequences, cost and feasibility of a name change for the organization. Ideas for new names or new meanings for our existing acronym will be explored. Should the membership agree on the desirability of a name change (via the survey process), the work of this committee will provide helpful information. The SALALM Name Change Committee includes Sócrates Silva, Melissa Gasparotto, Stephanie Miles and Sean Knowlton.
Treasurer Peter T. Johnson put forward a related proposal geared toward increasing membership in our organization. An initial SALALM scholarship of $1,000 will be awarded to a student enrolled in an MLS program (in the U.S.) who intends to work in the field of Latin American Studies, and who will join our organization.
In response to some of the concerns expressed above, I plan to experiment with the format of next year’s SALALM meeting. We will we return to a slightly more economical 4-day schedule; at the same time, I would like to create more time and space to work with each other and with our vendors, who are an integral part of our organization. I plan on repeating a version of the successful Libreros Workshop which was held in Philadelphia and organized by John Wright, Ellen Jaramillo and Stephanie Miles. Based on the feedback I heard, it provided a necessary forum for communicating information about the technological changes we face in our professions. Although I will continue to organize panels, workshops and committee meetings, there will be fewer of them. I encourage committees and affiliated groups who meet or work outside of our annual meeting to consider foregoing a meeting at SALALM if at all possible.
And last but not least, for those of you who have not yet heard, SALALM LVII will be held in Trinidad and Tobago (T&T!), from June 16-19, 2012. Our hosts will be the University of the West Indies, Trinidad and Tobago and the Library Association of Trinidad and Tobago (LATT) and meetings will be held at the Hilton Trinidad & Conference Centre, Port of Spain. Our theme will be “Popular Culture: Arts and Social Change in Latin America.” I hope that we will be able to attract colleagues from across the Caribbean as well as from South America. A call for papers and will be released soon, and I look forward to receiving your ideas and contributions!
 

Lynn Shirey
Harvard University

Presidential Message June 2011

As I write this message, SALALM LVI is one short week away. Joe Holub, David Murray and I continue to finalize last minute details such as conference packets, room set-ups and menus. For those of you who enjoy statistics, there are 20 panels, 37 meetings and 6 miscellaneous sessions scheduled. It never ceases to amaze me that we carry out such a full schedule in just a few days! With regard to the program content, I draw your attention to the keynote address, “Forensic Archivists and Active Archives: Advancing the Cause of Human Rights in Latin America through Archival investigation,” which will be delivered by Peter Kornbluh of the National Security Archive. There is a wonderful selection of panels addressing memory and human rights as well as others exploring library trends and developments. This year we also have five panels dedicated to documentary screenings. I am very excited about the program and hope you will enjoy the content and mix of formats.

And let me take this opportunity to thank Joe Holub and David Murray for their hard work in planning the local arrangements for SALALM LVI. Local arrangements require a great deal of dedication and attention to detail. Joe and David have truly done their utmost to ensure a successful conference.  It has been a great pleasure working with both of them; I couldn’t have asked for better partners in this venture.

In other news…

Encouraged by the membership, the SALALM Executive Board sent a letter to Secretary of Education Arne Duncan voicing SALALM’s concern over proposed cuts to Title VI funding. Many SALALM member institutions benefit in a variety of ways from the Title VI program. Because of the short time frame, we needed to act quickly. My thanks to David Block for drafting the letter and to the other Executive Board members for quickly commenting and voting. As you know, the letter was sent on April 29th. Though there has been no news about Title VI funding yet, we hope that SALALM’s voice will be heard.

SALALM will host a booth at the ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans June 24-27, 2011. I encourage those of you who will attend to volunteer to staff the booth. In conjunction with ALA, SALALM has been invited to participate in the Spectrum Leadership Institute’s Professional Options Fair. The fair, which will take place on Thursday, June 23rd from 7:00 p.m.-9:30 p.m. at the Royal Sonesta, is an opportunity for SALALM to outreach to Spectrum Scholars who are library school students from underrepresented groups. Both the booth and the Professional Options Fair are excellent opportunities to promote SALALM and its activities.

Congratulations to the newly elected SALALM officers, President-Elect, Martha Mantilla and Members at Large Paul Losch and Mary Jo Zeter. Welcome to the Executive Board! And, thank you to the Nominating Committee for once again gathering a great slate of candidates.

Finally, I am looking forward to reuniting with old friends and making new ones in Philadelphia. Planning the SALALM LVI program has been incredibly rewarding for me personally. I hope that you will be as pleased as I am with the results!

Nerea A. Llamas

University of Michigan

Message from the Executive Secretary April 2011

Things are starting to gear up for the final stretch before the Philadelphia meeting in late May. From what I have seen from working with Nerea, Joe and David, I have no doubt it will be a memorable one. Conference packets were e-mailed out on February 1, and registrationsare pouring in.
I am delighted to report that our new SALALM Treasurer, Peter Johnson, spent a few days here in New Orleans last week working with Carol and me as he takes the reins of the position before the May meeting. We spent some time going over financial reports and other regular communication that takes place between the Secretariat and the Treasurer, but we also took the opportunity to streamline some processes and think through some new ways of conducting business for the organization, all with an eye towards cost savings. Peter plans to present a list of recommendations for discussion in Philadelphia. We should all be grateful to Peter for taking on this important position, as he brings a keen mind and financial savvy to the organization.
In other news, the José Toribio Medina Award nominations were e-mailed on March 23. Please be sure to print out your form and return via snail mail to Víctor F. Torres at the address provided. And election ballots were mailed out on February 8. The Nominating Committee composed of Jesús Alonso-Regalado, Kaydee McCann and Ana María Cobos, has done a great job of reminding everyone to vote, vote, vote, so at this point I hope everyone has done so.
Looking forward to seeing everyone in Philadelphia.
Hortensia Calvo
Executive Secretary

Presidential Message April 2011

As I begin this message, I am struck by how quickly my term as SALALM President is progressing.  Although several weeks remain until the presidency changes hands, I want to take this opportunity to reflect on my experience. It has been a genuine pleasure to serve as SALALM President. I have had the opportunity to learn in-depth about the organization and its function; engage more broadly with my fellow SALALMistas; and represent SALALM at both the Ferias del Libro in Bogotá and Guadalajara last year. I also greatly appreciate serving at a time of change within the organization. In my years as a SALALM member, I have seen many changes in SALALM, none perhaps as extensive as those proposed under the e-SALALM initiative. In short order, SALALM will not only revamp its communications and outreach models, but also modernize routine functions. It will likely take a couple of more years for all of the changes to take effect, but I am confident that we will accomplish this goal. This is truly an exciting time to be a SALALM member and officer. For anyone considering future service as SALALM President, let me say that it is truly a rewarding opportunity.

Now for a few updates…
First and foremost, I want to welcome Peter Johnson to his new role as SALALM Treasurer. As I mentioned in my announcement on LALA-L, Peter brings extensive experience with the Finance Committee and Investment Working Group. As a long-time SALALM member, Peter also has an intimate understanding of the organization. SALALM is facing significant challenges in the coming years. I feel confident that Peter is well-positioned to lead SALALM in matters of finance.
Hard to believe, but SALALM LVI is just around the corner! I am working on the program, which  is coming together nicely. The theme appears to have struck a chord not only amongst SALALMistas, but also with colleagues in Latin America. I received and accepted many interesting paper and panel proposals. Soon Roberto Delgadillo and I will be calling for moderators and rapporteurs. Please consider participating in one capacity or the other.
Some of you have asked about the keynote speaker. It is a pleasure to announce that Peter Kornbluh will be the SALALM LVI keynote speaker. Peter is Senior Analyst and Director of the National Security Archive’s Cuba and Chile Documentation Projects. Peter will share his perspective and experience in documenting human rights at the Archive. In turn, Peter expressed interest in talking with SALALMistas about the archive and its uses in research and instruction. Therefore, I have also arranged a session on Monday afternoon for a conversation with Peter.
SALALM LVI will also host a meeting of GPLASC: the Greater Philadelphia Latin American Studies Consortium (http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=148270935213286). GPLASC is a co-sponsor of SALALM LVI and hopes to connect with librarians and libreros alike.
Lastly, to follow up on the many e-SALALM initiatives, I scheduled an update on Sunday, May 29th. I hope you will join us to learn about proposed changes to the SALALM Newsletter and website; recommendations for intra-SALALM communication and routing functions; and an update on the initiative to produce SALALM sponsored webinars.
I look forward to seeing you in Philadelphia!
Nerea A. Llamas
University of Michigan

 

Presidential Message- April 2011

As I begin this message, I am struck by how quickly my term as SALALM President is progressing. Although several weeks remain until the presidency changes hands, I want to take this opportunity to reflect on my experience. It has been a genuine pleasure to serve as SALALM President. I have had the opportunity to learn in-depth about the organization and its function; engage more broadly with my fellow SALALMistas; and represent SALALM at both the Ferias del Libro in Bogotá and Guadalajara last year. I also greatly appreciate serving at a time of change within the organization. In my years as a SALALM member, I have seen many changes in SALALM, none perhaps as extensive as those proposed under the E-SALALM initiative. In short order, SALALM will not only revamp its communications and outreach models, but also modernize routine functions. It will likely take a couple more years for all of the changes to take effect, but I am confident that we will accomplish this goal. This is truly an exciting time to be a SALALM member and officer. For anyone considering future service as SALALM President, let me say that it is truly a rewarding opportunity.

Now for a few updates…

First and foremost, I want to welcome Peter Johnson to his new role as SALALM Treasurer. As I mentioned in my announcement on LALA-L, Peter brings extensive experience with the Finance committee and Investment Working Group. As a long-time SALALM member, Peter also has an intimate understanding of the organization. SALALM is facing significant challenges in the coming years. I feel confident that Peter is well-positioned to lead SALALM in mattes of finance.

Hard to believe, but SALALM LVI is just around the corner! I am about the program, which is coming together nicely. The theme appears to have struck a chord not only amongst SALALMistas, but also with colleagues in Latin America. I received and accepted many interesting paper and panel proposals. Soon Roberto Delgadillo and I will be calling for moderators and rapporteurs. Please consider participating in one or other capacity.

Some of you have asked about the keynote speaker. It is a pleasure to announce that Peter Kornbluh will be the SALALM LVI keynote speaker. Peter is Senior Analyst and Director of the National Security Archive’s Cuba and Chile Documentation Projects. Peter will share his perspective and experience in documenting human rights at the Archive. In turn, Peter expressed interest in talking with SALALMistas about the archive and its uses in research in instruction. Therefore, I have also arranged a session on Monday afternoon for a conversation with Peter.

SALALM LVI will also host a meeting of GPLASC: the Greater Philadelphia Latin American Studies Consortium (http://www.facebook.com/group.php?gid=148270935213286). GPLASC is a co-sponsor of SALALM LVI and hopes to connect with librarians and libreros alike.

Lastly, to follow up on the many E-SALALM initiatives, I scheduled an update on Sunday, May 29th. I hope you will join us to learn about proposed changes to the SALALM Newsletter and web site; recommendations for intra-SALALM communication and routing functions and an update on the initiative to produce SALALM sponsored webinars.

Nerea Llamas, University of Michigan