Early Bird Registration for APALA MidWinter Tour and Social Dinner Ends Soon

Dear APALA Members and Friends!

Early bird registration for APALA’s MidWinter tour and social dinner ends on Friday, January 17th! It’s not too late to still take advantage of the reduced rate!

On Friday, January 24th, we’ll be visiting the Asian Arts Initiative, where we’ll hear about SAADA from Samip Mallick and Philadelphia’s Asian American community (in particular, their Chinatown) from Amanda Bergson-Shilcock of the Welcoming Center for New Pennsylvanians and Mary Yee of Asian Americans United. We will be serving lunch catered from Philadelphia Chutney Company. Learn more at http://www.apalaweb.org/apala-tour-and-talk/

On Saturday, January 25th, we’ll be hosting authors Ellen Oh (The Prophecy Series, originally The Dragon King Chronicles), Soman Chainani (New York Times bestseller The School of Good and Evil) and publisher Phoebe Yeh of Crown Books for Young Readers. (Phoebe is allegedly the first Asian American woman in publishing to have her own imprint.) We’ll be meeting at Karma Restaurant & Bar at 5:30 for dinner with our guests. Learn more at http://www.apalaweb.org/meet-ellen-oh-soman-chainani-and-phoebe-yeh-at-the-apala-social-dinner/

Please register at http://www.apalaweb.org/resources/registration/ We will have great food and company and a healthy dose of Asian American activism and solidarity. Also, please encourage people to sign up and spread the word!

Ariana Hussain Selected as APALA 2014 Emerging Leader

The Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association’s (APALA) Scholarships and Awards Committee is proud to announce Ariana Hussain as the 2014 Emerging Leader for the Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association. APALA will provide funding to support her attendance and participation in the Emerging Leaders program at the 2014 ALA Midwinter Meeting and Annual Conference.

“I congratulate Ariana on being selected as APALA’s 2014 Emerging Leader,” says 2013-2014 APALA President Eugenia Beh. “Ariana joins a long list of participants from APALA, and very deservedly so. I am pleased that we are able to continue our support of the Emerging Leaders program, which has benefited so many of our members.”

Ariana has a long history of community, civic and public services ranging from involvements in grass roots groups to feed the hungry of the greater Los Angeles areas to participation in literacy programs such as The Talk Story Program, which reaches out to the Asian Pacific American and American Indian/Alaska Native children and their families. Her current position as a children’s librarian at the District of Columbia Public Library in Washington DC, includes many different kinds of civic engagements such as collaborations with the local Housing Authority/The office of Resident Services in outreach, programming and library awareness to at-risk youth.

Ariana writes, “I am an Indonesian-Japanese Muslim American public librarian, in a headscarf, working in a primarily African-American neighborhood branch library. Though I know that I do not represent the entire spectrum of diversity in the field, I do know that in appearance I am a bit of an anomaly… I entered the library field because of my interest and belief in the power of libraries, as well as to provide information and dispel misinformation. I thought that it would be empowering for the public to see a person who looks like me at their local level, that I may provide them an important service but also engage in casual interaction.”

According to Ariana, effective leadership is established through needs assessment, vision, planning, commitment, communication and accountability. She states, “Of these principles of leadership, I believe that effective leadership begins with needs assessment. There are the needs of the community, first and foremost, and the needs of those who are serving the community. As an effective leader, one needs to take into consideration both sets of needs in order to excel as a team and to receive buy-in from its stakeholders. Needs assessment also ensures that the community feels involved in the planning process and can voice their opinions.”

Ariana believes that every librarian working with the public has the opportunity to serve the community as a leader. She states, “It had not occurred to me that the role of leadership takes on many forms and that different roles are constantly being added to my work. I lead daily, whether it’s providing a book club or talking to our young adults and tweens, providing a space for them to become involved with the community and in their development. I encourage parents and caregivers to actively engage with their children to develop literacy skills.”

Ariana holds a BA in Political Science/History and a Master’s in Library and Information Science from the University of California, Los Angeles.

Congratulations, Ariana!

APALA 35th Anniversary Planning Committees

Dear APALA members,

APALA will be turning 35 in 2015! To celebrate and commemorate this milestone, we are planning to hold the first ever APALA conference (there was a joint APALA/CALA conference in 2001) in conjunction with the ALA Annual Conference in San Francisco, a very appropriate location considering the deep history and strong presence of Asian Pacific Islanders in this city known by many names including, Gam Saan. And we need your help to make this a success!

Many of you may remember the grand time we had when we celebrated APALA’s 30th anniversary in Washington, D.C., where the activities included a tour of the White House and a gala dinner. In San Francisco, we will not only have tour(s) and a dinner, but we will hold a day-long conference that specifically focuses on the information needs and issues of APA communities.

The planning committee has met a couple of times to begin brainstorming ideas and hammering out the details, and we have formed the committees that are necessary for this event. We have listed below the main committees that will work to plan OUR conference. If you are interested in serving on one or more of these committees, please contact one of the chairs of the planning/steering committee below.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Thank you,
Gary Colmenar

Planning/Steering Committee Chairs:

Jade Alburo, jalburo@library.ucla.edu
Florante Peter Ibanez, florante.ibanez@lls.edu
Gary Colmenar, colmenar@library.ucsb.edu

Committees for APALA 35th

  • Program Committee
  • Program Booklet
  • Local Committee
  • Fundraising Committee
  • Assessment Committee
  • Publicity/Outreach Committee

APALA Travel Grant and Scholarship Award Recipients Announced

The Asian Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA) Scholarship and Awards Committee announced the following Travel Grant and Scholarship Award recipients during the ALA Annual Conference 2013 in Chicago:


Travel Grant Recipient: Linda Nguyễn

linda_nguyenI’m a 2013 MLIS graduate from St. Catherine University and 2011 Spectrum Scholar of the American Library Association. I currently work as a Communications Associate at the Women’s Foundation of Minnesota and am a Zine Collection intern at the Minneapolis Community and Technical College Library. My professional interests include transformative social justice, cultural production & preservation, and multiliteracies.


Scholarship Award Recipient: Christina Nhek

linda_nguyenMy name is Christina Nhek and I am pursuing a Master’s of Library and Information Science at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. I have a bachelor’s degree in Art History from California State University, Long Beach. My areas of interest are in archives and public librarianship. Perhaps one of the most important influences that have shaped the person I am today is my upbringing in a bicultural environment. As a child of refugee parents, access to resources were limited, mainly due to the lack of knowledge about available information. Growing up, my parents have always placed a great emphasis on education. Although our economical situation was limited, my parents believed that through hard work and sacrifice, I would be able to achieve success in anything I chose to do. One of the reasons why I want to pursue a degree in the Library Science field is to promote the importance of Khmer cultural awareness within the community. I want to help people find resources to develop their personal and educational growth. I believe in helping to enrich and educate the younger generations by providing good library resources to help their future endeavors.


What’s Your Normal?: A Discourse of Own Realities at ALA Annual 2013

If you’ll be attending ALA Annual 2013 in Chicago, learn about our essay series and join the conversation to share what your normal is.


What’s Your Normal?: A Discourse of Own Realities

Time: Saturday, June 28, 10:30am-11:30am
Location: Hyatt Regency McCormick Place, Jefferson Park 10B
ALA Scheduler: http://ala13.ala.org/node/10928


Last year, APALA launched What’s Your Normal?, a new essay series that highlights the diversity–e.g., ethnicity, language, religion, sexuality, (dis)ability, citizenship, socioeconomic status–within the Asian and Pacific American category and offers snippets of what is “normal” for the writers. With this program, we will continue and broaden the conversation and provide a forum for constructive discourse – using personal narratives as starting points, we will not only create awareness about individual realities and identities but discuss them within the larger social contexts and come up with practical and positive ideas and action items. So, what’s your normal? Let’s talk!


Based on the concept of a conversation about our different definitions of what is “normal” for us, this program takes some overarching categories of diversity and serves them up for discussion, as well as for brainstorming for practical service and program ideas.

We will begin with a very brief introduction to the What’s Your Normal? essay series and how it serves as the impetus for the session’s discourse. We will then form small breakout groups, with each group focusing on a specific topic; the bulk of the session will be spent on this part. At the end, we will reconvene, share the main points and outcomes from the discussions, and prioritize ideas to be pursued.

At least three topics will be discussed at this session. The pre-determined topics are: 1) racial, ethnic, and national identities 2) gender identity and sexual orientation, and 3) health and disability status. Depending on interest and the number of attendees, one or two additional topics may be added; attendees will vote on which topics to add. Ideas for additional topics include: generational identity (age), religious affiliation and identity, immigrant and refugee status and identity, and socio-economic status; attendees are free to add their own topic ideas. While there will be facilitators for the pre-determined topics, we will need volunteers to facilitate the additional topics.


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