Audio version


ALA Cognotes

January 2012

Conversations on Transforming Libraries to Highlight Midwinter

Conversations around the multiple themes of empowering voices and transforming libraries and communities will be a highlight of the upcoming Midwinter Meeting. Look for more interactive sessions, the ALA Unconference and Library Camp, and the centerpiece events hosted by ALA President Molly Raphael, “Empowering Voices, Transforming Communities,” led by visionary professor David Lankes; and the President’s Program with Rich Harwood, who is described as “one of the great thinkers in American Public Life.”

“We’re looking forward to kicking off ‘The conversation starts here …’, a new theme that celebrates our Midwinter programming focus,” said Raphael. “If you join in the many opportunities for engaged conversation, I promise that you’ll leave Midwinter invigorated with new tools and ideas to become a better advocate!”

“Empowering Voices, Transforming Libraries” includes two afternoons of deep conversation about the evolving roles of libraries. Facilitators from the graphic recording company, Sunni Brown, will help create visual images of the plenary conversations that conclude each afternoon of the “Empowering Voices, Transforming Communities” conversations. The Saturday, January 21 session focuses on “Understanding Your Communities.” The Sunday, January 22 session focuses on “Transforming Librarianship.” Both run from 1:00 – 3:00 p.m. at the Dallas Convention Center, Room DCC-A1. Attendees are asked to sign up in advance by adding the Saturday and Sunday sessions to their Midwinter Scheduler. Attendees will also receive a coupon for 5 percent off the price of David Lankes’ galvanizing Atlas of New Librarianship (ACRL/MIT Press, 2011) at the ALA Conference Store.

Rich Harwood picks up and continues the conversation as the featured speaker at the President’s Program, 3:30 – 5:30 p.m. on Sunday in the DCC Theater. Harwood has become a leading national authority on improving America’s communities, raising standards of political conduct and re-engaging citizens on today’s most complex and controversial public issues. He is the president and founder of The Harwood Institute for Public Innovation.

Full descriptions of these Saturday and Sunday afternoon conversations and of Rich Harwood’s session are at, and on the ALA Midwinter site, (

All Midwinter attendees are also welcome at both the Unconference and the Library Camp surrounding these other conversations on Friday and Monday. We recommend that you add them to your personal Scheduler as you make your plans.

Molly Raphael

David Lankes

Rich Harwood

Fair Park is located two miles east of downtown Dallas and is home to seven museums and six performance facilities, including the Cotton Bowl Stadium. Click here to visit a unique website about Dallas, created just for ALA visitors. (Photo by Nikki Greer)


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Conference Scheduler

The Midwinter Scheduler is available at

Use the Scheduler to search for programs, sessions, exhibitors, and author events. You can build your own schedule, and set meetings and appointments, or download the Midwinter Meeting Schedule as an Excel file.

Click here to REGISTER for Midwinter

Click here for TRAVEL & HOUSING for Midwinter

Click here for EXHIBITS information at Midwinter


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