As our nation becomes more diverse, libraries are working to mirror the needs of multicultural communities. Join us in Kansas City, Mo. for the Joint Conference of Librarians of Color (JCLC) September 19 – 23, as hundreds of library staffers, supporters and exhibitors meet to discuss ways to better serve diverse populations.

The JCLC is a conference for everyone and fuels educational opportunities for library professionals who are committed to providing service to multicultural communities, as well as developing non-English language materials and cultural programming.

The theme of the conference is “Gathering at the Waters: Celebrating Stories and Embracing Communities.”  The JCLC provides a national stage for professionals and practitioners to share diversity best practices. Also the conference provides a unique setting for learning with three preconferences, tours and more than 70 concurrent sessions in five tracks –
Advocacy, Outreach and Collaboration; Collections, Programs and Services; Deep Diversity and Cultural Exchange; Leadership, Management and Organizational Development; and Technology and Innovation.

Conference highlights include an Opening General Session on September 20 with Emmy award-winning writer Sonia Manzano. She was named one of the most influential Hispanics by People en Español for her work playing Maria on Sesame Street, a role she has held since the early 1970’s. She has earned 15 Emmys as a writer for that show and reached generations of children. She is also the author of two children’s books, No Dogs Allowed! and A Box Full Of Kittens (both with Simon & Schuster). Her powerful new novel, The Revolution of Evelyn Serrano addresses universal themes of family and community set against a cultural backdrop and is being published by Scholastic in October 2012.

Author luncheons will allow attendees to get up close and personal with award-winning authors, including Lauren Myracle, Sharon Flake, Da Chen and David Treuer.

Author, director and activist Jamal Joseph will bring the JCLC to a close on September 23. In the 1960s, Joseph exhorted students at Columbia University to burn their college to the ground.  Today he is an associate professor and past chair of their School of the Arts film division. His personal odyssey – from the streets of Harlem to Rikers Island and Leavenworth, to the halls of Columbia – is detailed in his book, Panther Baby: A Life of Rebellion and Reinvention.

The JCLC is sponsored by the five ethnic caucuses: the American Indian Library Association (AILA), Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA), Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA), Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA) and the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking (REFORMA). The first Joint Conference was held in Dallas, Texas in 2006.

Early Bird registration rates are available until July 11. For more information on JCLC, or to register, please visit

From ALA Cognotes Saturday, June 23, 2012

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