The conference was a big success! A very special thank you to the many, many people who contributed their time and energy to making it happen! To our twenty-nine conference committee volunteers – including co-chairs Ashley Blinstrub and Scott Mellendorf – our generous sponsors
, institutional members
, and the good folks at Saginaw Valley State University, thank you for your hard work and support! I would also like to thank everyone who presented, shared a poster, or attended; this event wouldn’t be possible without you!
At the conference on Tuesday, MiALA conducted its annual membership meeting. For those who were unable to attend, I would like to relay some of my comments here and share a very brief update on the status of the organization.
By the numbers, MiALA is in very good shape. Individual memberships rose to 380 two days before the conference, which is an all-time high. We continue to see members register for both retiree and student memberships and are glad that MiALA can support its members in every stage of their careers. We have also seen increases with institutional memberships, with 27 organizations supporting MiALA and its efforts over the last year.
Treasurer Clayton Hayes provided a budgetary update, and the key take-a-way is that MiALA remains fiscally healthy! We have grown a small fund balance from both operating and the conference budgets, and the board for this year and next will be looking at ways to direct this towards the membership.
Related to the budget, the MiALA Board is interested in further supporting interest groups and providing more opportunities to sponsor programs. The Board has budgeted additional funds for events to the tune of nine-thousand dollars, which will allow interest groups to put on more, and larger events. We are also excited to see the Interest Group Coordinating Committee get off the ground this year to support the efforts of our 16 interest groups.
Last year MiALA enjoyed numerous new partnerships, including with the Mid-Michigan Digital Practitioners, the Michigan Instruction Exchange, the Michigan Archival Association, and most recently the Michigan Health Sciences Library Association. We continue to partner with the Academic Library Association of Ohio, along with our good friends at the Michigan Coordinating Partners. Thank you to all the great people in these organizations for working with MiALA, we share many common ideas and values, and are doing some great work together.
Lastly, MiALA is pleased to announce the formation of a Diversity, Inclusion, and Accessibility Task Force, focused on making MiALA a welcoming place where everyone is included. A special thank you to board member Helen Look from the University of Michigan for her efforts to get things started. Stay tuned for ways to get involved!