May 2020

Welcome New Members!

Detroit Mercy Law Library
Stephanie McCoy

Western Michigan University
Daria Orlowska

Member Spotlight

Laura Walton

Laura smiling at camera

Laura Walton
Library Director
Cornerstone University

What are you currently reading?
I am currently reading The Great Divorce by C.S. Lewis, The Gift of Wonder by Christine Aroney-Sine, Bandersnatch by Diana Pavlac Glyer, and The Interbrain by Digby Tantam.  

What are your research interests?
I am very interested in brain-based learning and how people learn differently over the course of their lives. Additionally, the role of libraries in promoting diversity, equity, and inclusion has been increasingly on my mind as we continue to navigate a cultural landscape that seems to be more and more divisive.

Do you have hobbies or interests outside of the library?
I love spending time with my husband and three boys; ages 9, 6, and 1. We live right by a county park, and I like to be out on the trails whenever I get a chance. Last summer I attempted a square foot garden which was a lot of fun even though it wasn't the most successful. When we aren't running our kids around, my husband and I love to cook together and host friends and family at our home.

What drew you to the library profession?
I have wanted to be a librarian for as long as I can remember. The library has always been a second home for me and I've always been drawn to the community that libraries create. I love working with students and helping them in their research endeavors. I also enjoy working with colleagues to creatively solve problems, learn new things, and serve our institution.

What do you value about MiALA?
I love MiALA and the great work being done in the organization. I've had the privilege of serving on the Marketing and Communications committee from the beginning, and it's been so fun to see the organization learn and grow over time. I am always learning and getting great ideas from the all of the members who present and share in different capacities.

President's Message

Beth Martin

Hello MiALA members,
Our Annual Membership Meeting will be happening in a few weeks and I encourage everyone to attend to learn about all of the exciting things that have been happening in MiALA this year. The meeting will be held via Zoom on May 14 beginning at 1:00pm with a keynote from Annie Downey followed by updates from the Board of Trustees, Treasurer, Committee Chairs, and a Q&A section at the end of the meeting. The meeting is free to all members, but we ask that you register to reserve your seat. You can register for the meeting online,
I would also like you to think about participating in the governance of our organization. The Nomination Committee will be taking nominations now until May 20, 2020. There are opportunities to serve on the Board of Trustees, Treasurer, and the Interest Group Coordination Council. For more information about nominations and open positions go here,  You can also contact me, Paul Gallagher, or any of your board representatives. Please think about sharing your knowledge and expertise by serving our organization.
If you want to you can contact me at I am available for you during this time.
Stay safe.
Beth Martin, MiALA President

MiALA Annual Membership Meeting - May 14, 2020

The MiALA board will be hosting the annual membership meeting online using zoom on Thursday, May 14 from 1:00 pm – 4:00 pm EDT.

The meeting will begin with the keynote address presented by Annie Downey from the University of Redlands and will continue with reports from our various board members and committee chairs. The agenda is listed below:
1:00 – 2:00 – Keynote presentation (Annie Downey, University of Redlands (California)
2:00 – 2:10 – Membership meeting Call to Order/President report (Beth Martin, MiALA President)
2:10 – 2:20 – Treasurer Report (Clayton Hayes, MiALA Treasurer)
2:20 – 2:30 – IGCC Report (Brenna Wade, MiALA IGCC Chair)
2:30 – 2:40 – Membership Committee (Alex Hauser, Membership Chair)
2:40 – 2:50 – Advocacy Committee (Rachel Minkin & Jessica Sender, Advocacy Chairs)
2:50 – 3:00 – Communications & Marketing Committee (Jon Jeffryes, Communications & Marketing Chair)
3:00 – 3:10 – Nominations Committee (Paul Gallagher, Nominations Chair)
3:10 – 3:20 – Conference Planning Committee (David Scott, Conference Planning Chair)
3:20 – 3:30 – IDEA Task Force (Annie Bélanger, IDEA chair)
3:30 – 3:40 – Bylaws Amendment announcement (Helen Look, IDEA task force Board Liaison)
3:40 – 4:00 – Q & A

It is free for members to attend but pre-registration is required. Please use the following link to register to receive the zoom login information.

Providing the keynote speaker free of charge was made possible in part by the Institute of Museum and Library Services.

2020 Annual Conference Scholarship Winners

The Conference Scholarship subcommittee is pleased to announce the 2020 Annual Conference scholarship recipients:

Annual Conference Scholarship Recipients (each will receive full registration to the Annual Conference in 2021, up to two nights lodging at the conference hotel, and a $50 travel stipend):
  • Cara Cadena - Grand Valley State University
  • Courtney Cooney - Kettering University
  • Juliana Espinosa - Western Michigan University
  • Rocio Lopez - Grand Valley State University
  • Rebecca Renirie - Central Michigan University
  • Mary Ruge - Grand Valley State University
  • Jessica Shuck - Cornerstone University

A huge thank you to everyone who applied, and a hearty CONGRATULATIONS to each of the recipients!

Also, a special thank you to this year's scholarship sponsors: North Central Michigan College and Aquinas College for their support!

Though it is disappointing that our recipients will not be able to utilize their awards this year, we hope that they will be able to attend the 2021 conference in Big Rapids. Plans are still underway to determine if additional scholarships will be available for next year's conference. Watch the annual conference webpage for updates!

With sincere best wishes from the Conference Scholarship Subcommittee:
Elizabeth Walker, Spring Arbor University (Chair)
Beth Lieberman, North Central Michigan College
Ashley Rosener, Grand Valley State University
Cynthia Simpson, Madonna University
Arlene Weismantel, Michigan State University


Call for Nominations for MiALA Board and IGCC positions now open

MiALA is now accepting nominations for open Board positions. We recognize the challenges we have faced and continue to face during the COVID-19 pandemic. MiALA remains committed to serving its members—and we need your help to do that! 

Leadership takes many forms in MiALA and there are many service opportunities available. Why is serving in MiALA leadership a win/win for all of us? Because service with MiALA:
  • Takes only a few hours of time each month;
  • Can count toward tenure or continuing appointment requirements at your institution;
  • Establishes an active professional network with colleagues from other institutions;
  • Promotes academic librarianship through collaboration and communication.

Do you or someone you know have the dedication and enthusiasm to serve in MiALA leadership? Or someone who is newer to academic librarianship in Michigan? Or someone who is eager to enhance their leadership skills? If so, nominate them (or yourself) to run for one of the open Board positions. Newly-elected positions will begin service on July 1, 2020.

Open Board positions: 
  • Vice President/President-Elect
  • Treasurer  
  • Publicly Funded University Rep
  • Private College Rep
  • Community College Rep
  • Interest Group Coordination Council Representatives (Two 2-year terms and Two 1-year terms) 

Nominations open on April 15, 2020 and will be accepted through May 20, 2020.  If you are interested in running, or in nominating a colleague, please submit the nomination form on the Election Central 2020 website:  

Be sure to check out the Election Central 2020 website for election timelines, position descriptions and length of terms. If you have any questions about the nomination or election process, please contact the Nominations & Elections Committee at
MiALA Newsletter - May 2020