Library Innovation Subcommittee Minutes

February 18, 2020, 9:00 a.m.

SCLS Headquarters

Chester Room


Present: Angela Noel (BRD)

Present via BlueJeans: Chris Baker (POR), Nathan Rybarczyk (BAR), Lori Belongia (MFD), Nicole Ozanich (STP), Rene (ROM), Brian Kopetsky (MCM), Carol Kaufman (SUN)

Excused: Alex LeClair (LDI)

Recorder: Tamara Ramski

SCLS staff present: Jean Anderson, Mark Ibach, Rose Ziech, Shawn Brommer, Jody Hoesly, Mark Jochem


1.      Call to order time   9:00 a.m.

a.      Introduction of guests/visitors

                                                              i.      Nichole Fromm, Madison Public Library

b.      Changes/Additions to the Agenda

                                                              i.      Changes-Discussion Item (b.) Serving patrons in languages other than English was moved to Discussion Item (a.)

                                                             ii.      Additions-None

c.       Requests to address the Committee-None


2.      Approval of previous meeting minutes: October 15, 2019

a.      Changes or corrections: None.

b.      Approved by motion: Motion: Shawn Brommer – Second - Mark Jochem, motion passed by unanimous vote.


3.      Action items

a.      Draft questions for SCLS staff to ask at annual visits that could help the Library Innovation Subcommittee identify a theme/future project. Prior discussion at Oct 15, 2019 meeting.

                                                              i.       2019 questions:

1.      What is your favorite library story from the past year?

2.      What has your library done since our last visit that you’re really excited about?

3.      What are you looking forward to in the coming year?

4.      What is the greatest stressor at your library right now? How can SCLS support you?

5.      Anything else you’d like to share?

                                                             ii.      Suggestions for 2020 questions:

1.      What’s the first thing on the library’s to-do list? 

2.      What are the priorities that library is working on? What is the main priority for the year?

3.      Who do you call when you have a new idea and you want to sound out the details? Who do you discuss something with before taking it to a larger group?

4.      What has your library done since our last visit? Or, what are you looking forward to?  (Just ask one of these-too similar).

5.      What is your favorite story from the past year?

a.      Continues a theme from Library Legislative Day.

b.      Can the stories be collected for later use?

6.      What programs are you excited about? What was your best received program from the past year?

7.      What are you most excited about? What has your community responded to?

8.      What is a challenge you see coming in the next year/future years?

9.      Ask questions about development components (not necessarily patron related). For example: about technology updates, or staff training.

10.  Reword last year’s question 4.

a.      Ask about what directors/staff individually find to be stressors.

b.      Ask about larger community based challenges/obstacles.

11.  Ask questions that draw out answers that can help guide services provided by SCLS and improve relationships. 

a.      Ask leading questions about what SCLS could do for future services.

b.      Responses to questions should help strengthen the SCLS community. They could be compiled and used as a resource or idea/information sharing tool.

                                                           iii.      Actions:

1.      Angela suggested highlighting what has been heard during the visits at All Director’s meetings.

a.       Encourage conversations about what is happening at other libraries.

b.      Could take place during the coffee hour/registration or as a pre-show.

2.      Continue the discussion and finalize the 2020 questions through email (or a tool like Google Docs).

a.      Questions have to be finalized in March. (Visits start in April.)


4.      Reports: 2019 Library Visit reports shared with SCLS Board of Trustees – Refer to Documents.


5.      Items from clusters: None


6.      Discussion items:

a.      Serving patrons in languages other than English. (Nichole Fromm)

                                                              i.      Language equity involves the library catalog, materials, and providing services in multiple languages.   

                                                             ii.      Discovery Interface Subcommittee-Continue research in how to improve language equity in the library catalog (Examples: keyword searching and controlled vocabs).

                                                           iii.      Can services be contracted for translating websites and the discovery layer?

1.      Madison Department of Civil Rights may be piloting a project to translate City websites and may be a useful contact (but the translation service they may use could be cost prohibitive).

2.      At Madison Public:

a.      Jake Ineichen, Webmaster

b.      May consider hiring a content manager.

                                                           iv.      Is grant funding available?

                                                             v.      What data is (or could be) made available?

1.      Use data to show there is a need and to also show what needs are not being met.

2.      Madison Public has some data on hand. It shows the most need among Spanish speaking patrons.

                                                           vi.      Services already being provided:

1.      Many libraries offer English language instruction.

2.      UW-iSchool is offering a “Spanish for Librarians” course.

3.      Examples: Angela

a.      Partnered with an ESL teacher from the school district.

                                                                                                                                      i.      Used Transparent Language Database (in Spanish to teach English).

b.      Making bilingual books available.

c.       Hired bilingual staff.

4.      Examples: Lori

a.      Literacy Council is housed in the library and provides services to patrons at the library.

                                                        vii.      Actions:

1.      Include language equity topics in future Inclusive Services discussions.

2.      Have library directors share what they are doing at All Director’s meetings.

3.      Have the DIS subcommittee look into what can be done and what it will cost. (Rose is on that committee)

4.      Nichole suggested that a task force, work group, or information sharing group be created.

a.      Suggestions from the group would be passed on to formal committee(s).

b.      SCLS Foundation projects for 2020:

                                                              i.      Audience response system idea.

1.      Was presented at the November 2019 All Director’s Meeting-did not get a lot of support.

2.      Blackhawk Tech got rid of all of their kits because they were not being used and had technical problems.

3.      Nathan has not been to a meeting where they were used that there was not a technical problem.

                                                             ii.      Training idea:  The Dane County libraries are doing a yearlong Ripple project. As part of that, SCLS will be hosting their speaker, August Ball, to do one of their trainings to the wider SCLS audience at the November All Director Meeting. The topic is Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Hiring and Recruitment. The cost of one workshop is $1600 for 40 people so we may need to do two workshops

                                                          iii.      Actions:

1.      Foundation funds have to be used this year and for something that is available to all member libraries.

2.      Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion in Hiring and Recruitment Workshops could be paid for out of this year’s funds, but could possibly be held in two different years (2020 and 2021) to make attending them available to a larger number of directors, assistant directors, and library staff.

c.       Suggestions from Library Innovation Subcommittee form – Refer to Documents.

                                                              i.      Tawnee Calhoun (POR), 11-25-2019: SCLS Subscription for LibraryAware (made available to all libraries) for marketing and promotional purposes.

a.      They already use Canva-but it is not specific to libraries.

b.      Mark I.-Not sure it is possible to subscribe at system-level.

c.       Angela-Southwest Library System uses LibraryAware, but it is not well liked by everyone there.

d.      Shawn-How inclusive are the materials (images)?

e.      Brian-A database of marketing templates could be created from community expertise.

                                                             ii.      Carol Kaufman (SUN), 01-08-2020: “Brain Challenge” stations for adults (like AWE stations for kids).

a.      Adult Learning Databases are available.

b.      A list of web resources (games/online programs) could be curated.

d.      Follow up on 2020 Census Library Outreach – Refer to Links. (Mark J.)

                                                              i.      White list for catalog PCs should be OK.

                                                             ii.      Desktop shortcut – TC won’t meet soon enough. Workaround: put a link on the library’s website.

1.      Make sure library staff know how to find the link.

                                                           iii.      Resource list is available.

1.      Links:

a.      2020 Census Online Survey Sneak Peak

b.      Census Response Outreach Area Mapper (ROAM)

e.      Survey ideas applied to Library Innovation Subcommittee form draft – Refer to Links. (Not discussed-will be added to the April 14, 2020 agenda.)


7.      Plan for next meeting: April 14, 2020, SCLS Headquarters

a.      Review finalized questions for 2020 visits.

b.      Review 2020 SCLS Foundation projects.

c.       Review language equity service developments.

d.      Survey ideas applied to Library Innovation Subcommittee form draft – Refer to Links.


8.      Adjournment: 10:15  (Motion: Jean/Second: Mark I.)

For more information about the Library Innovation Subcommittee, contact Rose Ziech.

SCLS staff are available to attend cluster meetings to share information and answer questions pertaining to this committee meeting and other departmental projects.

Library Innovation Subcommittee/Agenda/2020-02