Dear Illinois Chapter Members –
I'd like to start this year's President's Letter with a note of thanks. Thank you for your membership in our association, your attendance at events throughout the year, your contributions to the chapter, and finally, for allowing me to serve as Illinois Chapter President this year. You are the heart of our organization, and the strength of SLA Illinois lies with our members and volunteers.
A second note of thanks, to this year's dedicated, creative, and energetic board. Under President-Elect David Bender, we offered opportunities for learning and networking including library tours, our chapter's annual symposium, and our annual day of service. We collaborated with local organizations including RAILS (Reaching Across Illinois Library System), CALL (Chicago Association of Law Libraries) and CAA (Chicago Area Archivists); these collaborations were strengthened by connections and outreach from board members including Eugene Giudice, Kristin Stutzman, and Dan Bostrom. Past President Galen Kelly's willingness to assume Chapter President duties while I was on parental leave early in the year helped to ensure that chapter operations ran smoothly in my absence, gave me the time I needed to care for a newborn, and was a great example of SLA supporting working parents.
Under External Communications Director Sabine Schuller, the chapter completed the migration to a new website platform. This included archiving content from our previous system, the creation of content for our new website, and the introduction of a new events management module. We hope you find the new website and event registration process useful and easier to navigate.
Our chapter will be operating with a balanced budget and a positive bank account balance in 2020 thanks to Dan Bostrom's leadership as Chapter Treasurer. Vendor Relations Director Mary Oliver has made efforts towards resuming a vendor relations program, which we have not had as a chapter in several years. Secretary Eugene Giudice diligently documented all of this work in minutes from our monthly chapter meetings.
This year, the chapter convened a Membership Committee under the leadership of Membership Director Kristin Stutzman and introduced regional liaisons, who will be working to connect members across the state. Under Kristin, the chapter also completed a Member Survey which will enable us to plan future events and educational offerings based on the input of our members. Thanks to all of the committee members for their work on these initiatives.
We advanced our goal of offering additional programming beyond the Chicago area with an un-conference held at John Deere Headquarters in Moline and a tour of the Lincoln Presidential Library & Museum in Springfield. Our chapter had a presence at the UIUC iSchool Career Fairs in Chicago and Urbana-Champaign as well, working towards our goal of reaching new professionals and student members. Thank you to the members who volunteered to make these efforts possible.
It was a pleasure to see many of you at the chapter's holiday party, held in November at Francesca's on Chestnut, and to celebrate the accomplishments and contributions of our colleagues through our chapter awards.
Under the leadership of incoming President David Bender and incoming President-Elect Kristin Stutzman, the chapter has a very bright future and I'm excited to see what we can accomplish in the coming year.
The Illinois Chapter Board for 2020 is:
President David Bender
President-Elect Kristin Stutzman
Secretary Eugene Giudice
Treasurer Dan Bostrom
Vendor Relations Director Mary Oliver
Membership Director Beth Sheehan
External Communications Director Sabine Schuller
Past President Rachel Cole
As always, we welcome ideas for programming from members. If you have ideas for events or learning opportunities in 2020 or beyond, please contact me (firstname.lastname@example.org), David, (email@example.com), or Kristin (firstname.lastname@example.org).
I'm looking forward to celebrating the chapter's 95th anniversary in 2020 – please be on the lookout for calls for member contributions for this celebration. We invite you to stay in touch via Connect, our chapter newsletter, and social media: Facebook, LinkedIn, and Twitter. I hope to see many of you in person at chapter events in 2020.