College & Research Libraries News

The View from HQ

Julie Carroll Virgo ACRL Executive Director

Editor’s Note: Written in response to membership requests, this new column will feature news from ACRL headquarters and discuss features of the office’s operations.

The ACRL staff program includes the support of committees, sections, section committees, editorial boards, chapters, and the ACRL Board of Directors; the provision of advisory services to librarians and administrators in higher education; career placement information; the publication of C&RL News and College and Research Libraries; the ACRL national conferences; membership recruitment and retention; a continuing education program; Choice magazine; a publications program; and a project to promote the concept of bibliographic instruction.

Julie Virgo

There are ten staff members working at the ACRL headquarters in Chicago and twenty at the Choice offices in Middletown, Connecticut. The combined budgets from all programs total approximately $1.5 million.

The staff works under the general direction of the ACRL Board of Directors. Some specific programs managed by staff have their own advisory boards or committees to provide formal channels of feedback from the membership. For example, there are advisory editorial boards for Choice and C&RL News; the Membership Committee functions in an advisory capacity to Carol Marty Smith, who is responsible for membership services, promotion, and retention; and the Continuing Education Committee serves a similar function for Brigid Welch, who has a half-time responsibility for the ACRL continuing education program.

Certain staff functions are handled for ACRL by ALA staff under an operating agreement between ALA and the divisions of ALA. Under this agreement ALA provides such resources as space, some office equipment, basic telephone service, photocopying equipment, and mail room facilities. ALA’s Membership, Subscription and Order Services Department processes all membership forms for ALA and the divisions, and all subscriptions to ALA and divisional journals except for Choice, which is handled out of the Middletown office.

The following thumbnail sketch offers a glimpse of the scope of staff activities that have taken place in the month since the ALA annual conference:

• 66 pages of copy were compiled listing committee and section charges and memberships for the ALA Handbook of Organization;

• 186 pages of roster sheets were prepared for committees, sections, chapters, and representatives;

• the membership promotional campaign resulted in ACRL membership topping 9,000 for the first time since the change in ALA dues structure in 1976;

• promotional mailings were sent to state library associations for upcoming fall meetings;

• the preregistration and housing materials for the Minneapolis Conference and for nine continuing education courses were printed and mailed out;

• the proceedings of the conference on Libraries and Accreditation in Higher Education were finally received from the printer and the backlog of orders filled;

• copy was prepared for this September issue of C&RL News;

• classified advertising space continued to be sold in record-breaking quantities for C&RL News and the telephone JOBLINE;

• the results of the Academic Status Survey were printed;

• more than 2,400 ballots on the proposed dues increase were opened and counted;

• a new staff member was hired to be trained as a word processing machine operator;

• a high school student was hired on a temporary basis to assist backlogged office staff;

• a library school student staff member went from headquarters to work at Choice for the summer;

• the Executive Director began to serve on a new ALA Data Processing Users Advisory Committee, attended a two-day ASIS board meeting, and spent one day at Choice.

In the meantime, the regular work of the office continued.

Much of the headquarters workload centers around the telephone and mail. In the past year just under 30,000 items of correspondence, exclusive of mass mailings, were sent out. Hundreds of orders for ACRL publications and standards were filled.

Future columns in this series will feature specific ACRL headquarters program activities. Next month, the column will describe activities and plans for the ACRL continuing education and bibliographic instruction liaison programs.

If you have any questions about the headquarters operation, feel free to write and inquire. If the question is of general interest, the response will be addressed in future issues of this column.


Applications for the third group of twenty librarians to be admitted to the Academic Library Consultant Training Program are still being accepted by the Office of Management Studies (OMS) at the Association of Research Libraries. Participants will be chosen in June 1982 and will begin their consultant training in September 1982. Interested candidates should contact the Office of Management Studies, ARL, 1527 New Hampshire Ave., Washington, DC 20036; (202) 232-8656.

The Consultant Training Program, begun in 1979, prepares selected academic librarians to serve as consultants to libraries conducting selfstudies. It provides opportunities to develop skills in identifying and diagnosing library problems, to study the theory and concepts of library training and consultation, and to increase skills in facilitating groups engaged in problem-solving.

Selection will be based on a written application available from OMS, individual interviews held regionally, and participation in an Assessment Workshop.

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