by Melissa Cardenas-Dow
APALA member Monnee Tong has just finished her ALA Emerging Leaders experience with the rest of the 2014 ALA-EL class. She is a librarian at the San Diego Public Library system, working in the newly built Central Library @ Joan Λ Irwin Jacobs Common, the central branch of the system. Monnee has been at her position in San Diego since June 2012, when she was hired right after graduation from the iSchool at the University of Washington. She holds a B.A. in the History of Art from the University of California, Berkeley.
Of her career path to librarianship, Monnee writes:
Before I became a librarian, I worked in educational publishing, a very different professional environment from public libraries (even though they both involve books!)… It’s been a whirlwind two years, jam-packed with a whole lot of learning, but it’s all been worth it.
What I love most about being a librarian is what I missed in publishing—people! I love connecting with different people, whether they are my supportive and collaborative co-workers at SDPL, the teen interns I supervise in our new multimedia lab, the partner organizations we work with to bring free services and programs to the community, or the patron who just discovered the oversize section in Art & Music. People make my job rewarding, challenging, and never boring.
Monnee is a new APALA member and is part of the 2013-2015 Picture Book Literature Committee, which is responsible for selecting the awardees of the annual Asian American Literature prize for picture books. For Monnee, the work of the APALA Picture Book Literature Committee has a strong personal connection:
Although I’m from diverse California, I grew up in a rural town in the Sierra Foothills with almost no Asian Pacific American peers, especially none with parents who were immigrants like mine. I was always searching (and still searching!) for characters in books who resembled my experience in some way, shape or form. I’m really happy to be part of this committee so I can learn about and promote API authors and stories.
Monnee’s ALA Emerging Leader team project is an interesting study in virtual collaboration. Of it, she writes:
Our Emerging Leader group (which included fellow ELs Ray Pun, Sam Suber, and Leila Rod-Welch,) worked on the project “Telling Chinese American Librarians’ Stories” for the Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA). We created two short videos about notable Chinese American librarians Dr. Lois Mai Chan and Dr. Tze-chung Li. Both videos can be found on the CALA YouTube channel for your viewing pleasure.
I worked on the video about Dr. Lois Mai Chan with Ray Pun. (You may recognize her name if you read “Cataloging and Classification” in library school.) The big challenge was how to work on a video about Dr. Chan, who lives in Kentucky, and collaborate with Ray, who lives in Shanghai. I got pretty good at figuring out what time it was in Shanghai!
We also received a lot of help from the School of Library and Information Science at the University of Kentucky (UK) where Dr. Chan is Professor Emeritus. UK found these amazing vintage photos of Dr. Chan and filmed several interviews for us. We took the footage and edited it in iMovie and pared all the material down to a 13-minute video.
This project gave me the opportunity to build my video editing skills, to learn about a venerable and accomplished figure in the Chinese American and library communities, and to connect with CALA. Right before we started the project, I was assigned to coordinate San Diego Central Library’s multimedia lab (the IDEA Lab,) and had just taken an iMovie workshop. The EL project gave me the opportunity to really work on my editing skills in iMovie and now I feel I can ‘graduate’ to either Adobe Premiere or Final Cut Pro.
Check out our final product on CALA’s YouTube channel.
For the convenience of our readers, we have embedded Team G’s video on Dr. Lois Mai Chan in this post. Please view the video above.
Monnee offers these pieces of advice to anyone interested in participating in the 2015 ALA Emerging Leaders cohort:
I would advise anyone thinking about applying to ensure that you have the time to devote to the program, because it does take a significant amount of time (at least in my opinion it did!). At times, it was reminiscent of library school (which I did online), so I’m glad that the two didn’t coincide. I would suggest that anyone currently in an online program apply later. That way, you won’t have another online project in addition to your current coursework.
When I was thinking of applying, I found this post from Abby the Librarian helpful (although I should have paid more attention to the fifth bullet point, addressing public, children’s, and teen librarians—Abby, you were right!). If you know someone that went through the program you can talk to, reach out to her/him. I didn’t know anyone but relied on what I read online, and I wish I had reached out to people to get a better sense of what the program entailed.
Despite the time involved, I’m still glad I did the EL program. I got to attend my first ALA Midwinter and Annual Conferences, meet library folk from around the country and world, and be part of a project that gives back to the Chinese American and library communities. I’m also so grateful to my colleagues and mentors at my library, who were all so supportive and excited for me, and proud that I was representing them to the greater library community.
Monnee, we are very happy and proud that you are among us in APALA!
Editing assistance by Jaena Rae Cabrera.
by Jaena Rae Cabrera
Annie Pho is an Academic Resident Librarian at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), where she works in reference and instruction. At UIC, she actively builds campus partnerships with the Asian American Resource and Cultural Center, the Asian American Studies Department, and the Gender and Women Studies Department, where she works with faculty and staff to investigate ways the library may best support their students. She has a Bachelor’s degree in Art History from San Francisco State University and graduated from Indiana University, Indianapolis with her MLS. Her research interests include diversity and stereotypes in librarianship, playful design, and critical pedagogy in information literacy instruction.
Annie was selected as an ALA Emerging Leader for 2014 and her team’s project is to assist ALCTS (Association for Library Collections & Technical Services) in determining best practices for the division’s social media presence. The ALA Emerging Leaders program is intended to be a leadership development program for new library workers who have less than 5 years of experience working at a professional or paraprofessional level in a library.
On her time with APALA, Annie writes:
I’ve been an APALA member since 2013, so not very long! I joined because I wanted to be connected to other Asian and Pacific Islander American librarians. I attended the JCLC conference in 2012 and met many APALA members. Once I found my first full-time librarian position, I joined APALA! It’s been a great experience so far.
At the last ALA in Chicago, I attended the What’s Your Normal discussion and found it very valuable. I’m looking forward to attending more APALA events in the future.
APALA helped me feel connected to some of my fellow ELs, although we did not have much time as a larger group to talk to each other. Also, Melissa Cardenas-Dow, a former Emerging Leader and active APALA member, wrote my letter of recommendation for the EL program. Without her input and assistance, I wouldn’t have been able to participate. She’s a fantastic librarian and someone I look up to. Many of the APALA members I have been fortunate enough to work with or meet also serve as inspiration to me.
On being an ALA Emerging Leader, she writes:
I was inspired to apply because so many cool librarians that I look up to were former ELs. I didn’t think I’d be accepted but I thought it wouldn’t hurt to apply. I’m a new librarian and haven’t gotten involved with leadership on the ALA level. I hoped the EL program would shed some light on the process and also help me understand how ALA is organized. It’s a large, bureaucratic organization, and can be hard to understand the hierarchies that exist. The EL program did help me understand that. I was also hoping to meet with and work with other new professionals, and that definitely has happened.
The ALA-EL application process was pretty straight-forward but I still asked a lot of former ELs for help on my application. In particular, these two blog posts really helped me, Sarah Bryce Kozla’s post So You Want to be an ALA Emerging Leader and Anita Dryden’s post Emerging Leaders and Professional Involvement. I also emailed them both to ask for advice on my application. The hardest part of the application is telling a compelling story about yourself and understanding what you would have to gain from the program. I struggle to write about myself but the people reading the applications need to know what leadership potential you have, so the application is not the time to be humble. I was not sponsored by any groups but when you turn your application in, you check off the divisions you are a member of. It’s a good way to get support to be an Emerging Leader.
I am working on a project for ALCTS on helping them revamp their social media presence. What is funny is that none of my EL Team members are ALCTS members but we were all drawn to this project because it’s very applicable in our everyday work. We sent out a survey to all technical services library staff to get a sense of what they like or don’t like about ALCTS, and how they use social media for professional development.
So far I’ve really enjoyed the program. I love my Team! I couldn’t ask for a better group of people to work with. They are funny, smart, and dedicated professionals. Additionally, the ELs get to participate in webinars through the months between ALA MW and ALA Annual. The last one was on microaggressions in LIS, which I thought was a great topic. The best part about EL is meeting other new professionals, and that it gives you a leg up in becoming more involved with ALA. If there is a committee you want to join, or a division you aspire to be a leader in, being an EL really helps you get your name out.
To learn more about Annie’s 2014 ALA Emerging Leader project, please see ALA-EL 2014 Team C’s project website.
Editing assistance by Melissa Cardenas-Dow and Alyssa Jocson.
The latest issue of the APALA newsletter is now available. See what APALA has planned for ALA Annual 2014. A schedule of events is included. This issue also has articles that recap APALA events at ALA Midwinter 2014 in Philadelphia. It also includes very important amendments to APALA’s constitution and bylaws, which will be discussed at the Membership Meeting at ALA Annual 2014 (Sunday, June 29, 2014, 8:30 am to 10 am in LVCC-N119). Download your copy!
Registration for the APALA Tour and the APALA Literature Banquet are still open!
Please join us for an APALA fundraising event with a tour of the fabulous Zappos corporate headquarters and the community-focused Downtown Project, both owned by Asian-American leader Tony Hsieh. Your donation supports APALA’s scholarships and awards including the ALA Emerging Leaders Sponsorship and the Sheila Suen Lai Research Grant, plus events like our upcoming 35th Anniversary Celebration in 2015!
We will meet at Flamingo Las Vegas Hotel on Friday, June 27, 2014 at 10:30 a.m. and return at 2:30 p.m. Transportation will be provided, and we hope you can come and network with other librarians over lunch downtown! (lunch included with registration)
Flamingo Las Vegas Hotel
3555 South Las Vegas Blvd.
Las Vegas, NV 89109
Regular Registration for Members (June 8 – June 25) $ 30.00
Registration for Non-Members (June 8 – June 25) $ 35.00
Onsite/Late Registration (after June 25) $ 40.00
To register: http://www.apalaweb.org/resources/registration/
The annual awards program will be held from 5:30-8:30 p.m. on Saturday June 28, 2014 at KJ Dim Sum & Seafood Restaurant in conjunction with the 2014 ALA Annual Conference. Several winning authors have confirmed in attending the banquet.
Children’s Literature Winner: Cynthia Kadohata. The Thing About Luck.
Picture Book Winner: Ji-li Jiang. Red Kite, Blue Kite.
Picture Book Honor: Marissa Moss. Barbed Wire Baseball, illustrated by Yuko Shimizu.
Young Adult Literature Winner: Leza Lowitz and Shogo Oketani. Jet Black and the Ninja Wind.
Adult Non-Fiction Winner: Cindy I-Fen Cheng. Citizens of Asian America: Democracy and Race during the Cold War
Following the formal presentation and dinner buffet, authors will be available for book signing.
KJ Dim Sum & Seafood Restaurant
3700 W. Flamingo Rd.
Las Vegas, 89103
Regular Registration for Members (June 8 – June 26) $ 40.00
Registration for Non-Members (June 8 – June 26) $ 45.00
Onsite/Late Registration (after June 26) $ 50.00
To register: http://www.apalaweb.org/resources/registration/
If you need to renew your APALA membership, go to http://www.apalaweb.org/membership/join-or-renew/
by Jaena Rae Cabrera
Ariana Sani Hussain is a Children’s Librarian at the District of Columbia Public Library in Washington, D.C. She has been an APALA member since 2011. She currently serves on the Family Literacy Focus Committee, which promotes the Talk Story Program, a joint literacy project between APALA and AILA (American Indian Library Association), and is a member of the Task Force on Library Services to APAs. She has also been part of the 2013-2014 Literature Award Committee for Picture Books.
Ariana was selected as an ALA Emerging Leader for 2014, sponsored by APALA. The ALA Emerging Leaders program is intended to be a leadership development program for new library workers (not necessarily librarians!) who have less than 5 years of experience working at a professional or paraprofessional level in a library.
On her time with APALA, Ariana writes:
Joining APALA really correlated with my becoming more involved as a library professional and trying to step up into the role. I also think that it helped being more visible and to see how encouraging and supportive everyone is of each other. I did participate in the mentor program. Angela Boyd was my mentor and she was pretty awesome. I think APALA did a great job following up on our progress and areas of interest, but it also helped to have someone just listen to my concerns and validate my worries, fears and progress.
Previous EL participants, Lessa Pelayo-Lozada and Susan Hoang, offered me help and advice for participation. Springer gave APALA the funds for this year and last year’s ELs, I believe, so I met with our EB and Springer at ALA Midwinter to take photos. Of course, everyone has been very supportive and congratulatory, but because we don’t have a specific APALA project this year, I have not had much interaction with APALA in terms of related projects. Other APALA members involved in this year’s class are Annie Pho, Ray Pun and maybe a few others, but I’m not certain. Unfortunately, there is not too much directed interaction, other than the initial day, between ELs outside of our groups, except through Facebook and other informal connections.
On being an ALA Emerging Leader, she writes:
It actually took me a really long time to decide to apply. A former Emerging Leader and fellow librarian at DC Public Library, Ana Elisa de Campos Salles, spoke highly of the program and recommended that I apply. I am by nature, more of a support player than leader, so the idea of applying for an emerging leaders program was just a little intimidating. Also, the application has questions that delved into previous leadership experiences and assessing one’s strengths and weaknesses. I am notoriously bad at doing these kinds of things! Seeing evidence and recognition of my work makes me happy, but is also a little cringe-worthy.
I was, however, very intrigued about the program and thought that it would help me, not only with long-term goals in the profession, but also in my day-to-day interactions within my system, with administrators, stakeholders and patrons in my library system and local community. I mentioned in my WYN piece for APALA that I felt that I had held back during library school and lost the opportunity to gain really solid professional development opportunities when it came to ALA and leadership in general. I thought that the Emerging Leaders program would offer me the chance to catch up and to develop a stronger skillset, and give me clarity to develop into the kind of leader that I want to be.
The Emerging Leaders program enables selected participants, 50 at most, to participate in problem-solving working groups, working on selected topics that pertain to ALA divisions, chapters and round tables. We learn more about ALA as an organization and serving on committees and task forces. We have participants this year from a variety of organizations from public, academic, school libraries, corporate and even one awesome LIS student who is being sponsored by AILA, and works at a community college/community and tribal facility.
We first meet at Midwinter then work on our projects in a virtual collaborative environment, culminating in a poster session presentation at Annual.
This year’s EL projects are pretty varied and very cool. It was hard to decide on one particular proposal. I am currently in a group working on a project for the Map & Geospatial Information Round Table (MAGIRT). The scope of our project is part marketing and outreach, and part identifying gaps in services, service outreach and possible partnerships. I wanted to do something a little different and a little challenging, and I thought that the project was interesting and would be a good fit. Any mapping or map/GIS related programs that APALA would be interested in?
I enjoy working and networking with my group members, our coordinator and all the Emerging Leaders. They are all pretty cool people, who have interesting ideas and have done some pretty impressive things so far, and I’m interested to see what greatness they will achieve in the future. EL projects keep us pretty busy, but we also have opportunities to participate in webinars and a few other leadership development exercises.
For anyone considering applying to the EL program, Ariana writes:
I think that there are benefits for students to participate in EL in that it’s a very good opportunity to meet with liaisons to groups and get involved in ALA, but it has been a substantial amount of work (maybe that’s just my committee). I don’t think that students wouldn’t be able to handle the pace, we have students that are participating, but I do feel that it’s a good opportunity for new professionals.
If you’re attending ALA Annual in Las Vegas, meet Ariana and the rest of the 2014 group of ELs at a poster session and reception from 3:00 – 4:00 p.m. on Friday, June 27 at the Las Vegas Hotel in Pavilion 01. The ELs will showcase their final projects at the poster session.
Editing assistance provided by Raymond Wang.
APALA and Eugenia Beh, APALA President 2013-2014, will be hosting the APALA President’s Program on Sunday, June 29, 2014 at the Las Vegas Convention Center, N258. 1:00 p.m. to 2:30 p.m.
Asian Americans are the second fastest growing immigrant population in the US, yet little attention has been paid to their role in the debate over immigration reform. This program will focus on the impact of immigration reform to Asian American and Pacific Islander communities and how libraries and librarians can help Asian immigrants navigate the immigration system.
Please join us for a stimulating panel discussion, featuring the following presenters:
Evan Louie is a local Las Vegas, Nevada business owner and one of the original founders of the first Pacific Islander Fraternity, Tau Omega Alpha. He was a spokesperson for the late U.S. Senator Ted Kennedy, advocated the FDA to approve new cancer treatments, and helped create the first NHPI (Native Hawaiian and Pacific Islander) disaggregated national demographic report in history. Evan also helped organize local and national groups to support immigration reform for AAPIs (Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders). In October 2013, he was appointed by the Nevada state legislative committee to be the Nevada State Commissioner of Minority Affairs. Some of the awards Evan has received include the National Parent of the Year Award, Unsung Hero of Las Vegas Valley from Greenspun Media, Clark County School District and Nevada PTA award, accommodation awards from US Congress and US Senate, and several local community awards.
Jade Alburo is the Librarian for Southeast Asian Studies, Pacific Islands Studies, and Religion at the Charles E. Young Research Library at UCLA. She is currently APALA’s Immediate Past President and Co-Chair of its 35th Anniversary & Symposium Steering Committee. Born and raised in the Philippines, Jade immigrated to the US with her family when she was a teenager. She has a BA in English and Religious Studies from UC Berkeley, an MA in Folklore from Memorial University of Newfoundland, and an MLS from the University of Maryland, College Park. Prior to UCLA, she was a Reference Librarian in the Humanities & Social Sciences Division of the Library of Congress and a CIRLA Fellow with the Smithsonian Institution Libraries. Her research interests include: Filipino/Filipino-American culture & diaspora, folklore/ethnography, and social media and fandoms.
Loida Garcia-Febo is an international librarian, consultant, author, speaker, researcher and writer of topics such as human rights, advocacy and services to multicultural populations. Loida is President of Information New Wave, an international non-profit seeking to enhance the education of ethnically diverse communities in the USA and in developing countries. She collaborates with worldwide organizations to help diverse populations internationally. Loida also frequently speaks to the media including ABC, CNN, NPR, Univision, Telemundo and New York Times. She has taught in 19 countries in five continents and has spoken at United Nations events and others coordinated by the US Embassies in Spain, Mexico and Tokyo. Loida is a member of the Governing Board of IFLA and the Council of the American Library Association. She was born, raised and educated in Puerto Rico.
Rex Velasquez is from Velasquez Immigration Law Group.
Roberto C. Delgadillo is a Humanities, Social Sciences and Government Information Services Librarian at the Peter J. Shields Library at the University of California, Davis. His areas of responsibility include: Literatures in English, Education, Chicana/o Studies, Religious Studies, Disability Studies, and Military Science. Born in Managua, Nicaragua, Roberto’s family moved to the United States in 1975. Roberto has a BA in Modern German and Russian History from UC Santa Cruz, and a MLIS and a PhD in Modern Latin American History, both from UCLA. His research interests include urban folklore, civil military relations and the information-seeking behavior of undergraduate and graduate students. He is a former reference and acquisitions librarian with the Hispanic Services Division of the Inglewood Public Library and former copy cataloger with the Beverly Hills Public Library. Roberto currently serves as a Member-at-Large for ALA Council. Since 2005, Roberto has also served as the Seminar on the Acquisition of Latin American Library Materials (SALALM)’s Rapporteur General (2005-2012), Member-at-Large (2008-2011) and immediate Past President (2013-2014), recently having overseen its annual meeting in Brigham Young University. Roberto is also a 2012 recipient of The Carnegie Corporation of New York/New York Times I Love My Librarian Award.
Rozita Lee is from Rozita V. Lee Consulting.
Editing assistance provided by Melissa Cardenas-Dow.