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ArLA has supported Arkansas’ academic, public, school, and special libraries for more than 100 years. In that time, we established a state library commission, began an association publication, established salary guidelines, supported the continuing education of librarians, and protected intellectual freedom.

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  • 19 Mar 2018 6:44 AM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)
    The Association for Rural & Small Libraries (ARSL) received money from The National Library of Medicine (NLM) to encourage librarians from small and rural libraries to attend a pre-conference at the ARSL 2018 annual fall conference to be held in Springfield, IL.  The funds will provide fifty (50) $500 scholarships to help cover travel and registration costs for one librarian from every state. 

    Information about the pre-conference can be found here: Stand Up for Health.docx.

    ARSL has asked the State Library to choose and contact the winner from Arkansas. 

    A couple things to note:

    (1) The recipient must agree to attend both the pre-conference on September 12 and the full conference on Sept. 13, 14 and 15.  The cost for the pre-conference is $75 and the full conference rates will begin at $275 for members. I have attached a document outlining the specifics of the Stand Up for Health pre-conference, and ask that you review it thoroughly in order to know what is expected of the selected recipient. 

    (2) ARSL will send the $500 check directly to each individual after they have attended the conference.  They should register as a regular conference attendee and can use the money to offset any of their travel or registration costs.

    (3) Interested individuals who wish to be considered for the $500 ARSL/NLM scholarship should send me an email and provide the following:  your name, the name of library where you are employed, your email address, and an explanation on why you want to attend the pre-conference and how you would utilize the information provided by NLM to benefit yourself and your library programs/services [no more than 200 words].

    (4) Deadline for submitting the email to me is noon on Friday, March 30.

    (5) The winner will be notified by noon on Friday, April 6th.

    ARSL conference information (including hotel and registration links when available) can be found here:

    For more information, contact Carolyn Ashcraft, State Librarian, at

  • 14 Mar 2018 9:38 AM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)

    Are you ready to Go ALL-In?

    What is ALL- In?

    The Arkansas Library Leadership Institute (ALL-In) is a 3-day leadership event for library staff, created and implemented by the Arkansas State Library to develop emerging leaders within the library profession, the local community, and in life.  The first Institute was held in 2015.  Several of our participants will continue their commitment by acting as mentors to the participants of our second Institute to be held November 14-16, 2018.

    Who should apply for the Institute?

    Library staff across the state of Arkansas whose personal and professional goals include leadership. The Arkansas Library Leadership Institute selection committee is seeking a diverse set of applicants, degreed and non-degreed alike, based on type of library, organizational responsibility, and geography.

    Who is leading the Institute and what topics will be covered?

    Dr. Sharon Morris and Kieran Hixon of the Colorado State Library will be facilitating the 2018 Institute.  Topics covered will include: Self Awareness, Leadership Basics, Leading from Every Level, and Determining Success.  Chosen participants will be sent a copy of the book Strengths Finder.  We will be using the results in the training.

    Where is the event taking place?

    DeGray Lake Resort State Park is Arkansas's only resort state park.  Set in the foothills of the Ouachita Mountains and nestled along the north shore of DeGray Lake, one of the region's five Diamond Lakes known for their crystal clear waters. Each participant will have their own room.  There are walking trails and a fitness center at the lodge.  Sessions will take place in on site meetings rooms.  All meals will be provided by or served in the Shoreline Restaurant.  Dietary needs will be accommodated if possible. 

    What is the cost of the Institute?

    Selected applicants will be responsible for a portion of the cost which will cover meals, lodging, and materials for the entire 3-day workshop.   The participants of the 2018 Institute will be responsible for $300 towards the costs of the Institute.  Financial forms will be sent out to the applicants chosen for the Institute.  Your library may pay for your participation. Payment is expected on or before November 4, 2018.

    For more information and to download the application form, click this link to our ALL-In LibGuide:

    Questions?  Contact Ruth Hyatt, Manager of Library Development

    Arkansas State Library


  • 14 Mar 2018 9:35 AM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)


    If you've been following the messages from the ALA Washington Office, you already know time is short – we have until March 19, 2018 to get as many Representatives to sign this year's "Dear Appropriator" letters as possible.

    As of this morning, we have gotten 84 signatures on the letter supporting funding for the Library Services and Technology Act and 49 on the Innovative Approaches to Literacy letter – that’s far lower than we want to see with the deadline so close. Last year we had over 140 signatures on both letters. We can do it again, but we need everyone's help!

    If this is the first time you're hearing about the campaign, here's what you need to know: the White House budget proposal for FY 2019 eliminated funding for the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the majority of federal library funding. This places over $210 million in federal library funding at risk, just through the elimination of programs like the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA) and Innovative Approaches to Literacy (IAL) program.

    Since February, library advocates have sent thousands of emails to the House and Senate, effectively doubling the activity we saw during this time last year. That said, there is still more work to be done!

    We'll need ALA members and library supporters across the country calling, emailing, and tweeting at their Representatives, asking them to sign on to both letters. The more signatures we have, the more likely it becomes that the appropriators will protect funding for LSTA and IAL.

    As always, template emails and talking points are available on the ALA Action Center. We'll also continue to update District Dispatch with new information throughout the campaign. If you're not sure if your Representative has signed yet, you can check the Fund Libraries page, where the Washington Office is maintaining a table to track signatures on both letters.

    I hope we can count on you to help us get the message out, and to make a call to your Representative as well.

    If you have any questions, please do not hesitate to reach out to the staff at the Washington Office. They are available to answer your questions throughout the campaign.

    Thank you,

    James Neal
    Jim Neal
    ALA President

  • 13 Mar 2018 1:32 PM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)

    Karen Russ has been named the 2018 recipient of the James Bennett Childs Award (posthumously). This award is given by the American Library Association Government Documents Round Table to an individual who has made a lifetime and significant contribution to the field of documents librarianship. The Award is based on stature, service, and publication which may be in any or all areas of documents librarianship. Karen was Government Documents Librarian at UA-Little Rock from 1996-2017. The Award will be given at the 2018 ALA Annual Conference in New Orleans, LA.

  • 13 Mar 2018 11:14 AM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)

    The Independence County Library in Batesville is renovating a 104-year-old building to house the library. The architects are Polk Stanley Wilcox, who designed the Hillary Clinton Library in Little Rock and won an award from ALA for the site. We are currently in a 5,000-square-foot facility and will be moving into a 23,000-square-foot facility. We will close our current location during the month of May and will open in the new space the first week of June. A grand opening is planned for mid-July.

  • 13 Mar 2018 11:04 AM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)

    The Southeastern Library Association is now accepting applications for the Ginny Frankenthaler Memorial Scholarship.

    The purpose of the scholarship is to recruit beginning professional librarians who possess potential for leadership and commitment to service in libraries in the Southeastern United States. The scholarship provides financial assistance towards completion of the graduate degree in library science from an institution accredited by the American Library Association.

    The $1,000 scholarship is awarded every two years. The recipient of the scholarship will be notified in July, with funding to begin with the fall school term.

    For information on how to apply, please visit:

  • 13 Mar 2018 11:01 AM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)

    SHERWOOD, AR – The Central Arkansas Library System’s (CALS) Amy Sanders Library, 10200 Johnson Drive, will mark its grand opening with a ribbon cutting on Saturday, March 10, at 10 a.m. The grand opening will include CALS and Sherwood city leadership, including Nate Coulter, CALS executive director; Sherwood Mayor Virginia Hillman Young; and philanthropist Amy Sanders. The library will offer a variety of activities during the grand opening including refreshments and a performance by the Kinders.

    The new 14,244-square-foot facility is located on 14 acres with amenities including three study rooms, a teen area, gallery space, and a 985-square-foot public meeting room.

    Sherwood voters approved a 1.3 mill personal and property tax increase to issue bonds to fund a new library in November 2014. CALS broke ground on the new location in January 2017.

    For more information, visit or contact Tameka Lee at 918-3048 or

    About CALS

    The Central Arkansas Library System includes 14 branch libraries located in Little Rock, Perryville, and throughout Pulaski County. CALS has the largest research collection in central Arkansas. Most of its more than one million items may be reserved online and picked up at any branch. The library system’s downtown Little Rock campus includes the Main Library, the Ron Robinson Theater, the Bobby L. Roberts Library of Arkansas History & Art, and River Market Books & Gifts.

  • 13 Mar 2018 11:01 AM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)

    LITTLE ROCK, AR – The Central Arkansas Library System’s (CALS) Maumelle Library, 10 Lake Pointe Dr., Maumelle, will reopen on Monday, March 12, after an extensive remodeling and expansion. A grand reopening ribbon cutting event with city officials is scheduled for Friday, March 30, at 11:00 a.m.

    Maumelle Library’s 1,377-square-foot addition includes five new study rooms and one additional meeting room. Space was reallocated in the existing building for a children’s program room. Other features included in the renovation are an upgraded HVAC system, LED lighting, new interior finishes, and additional parking spaces.

    Funds for the $1.954 million addition and renovation were provided through bonds issued by the Maumelle Facilities Board in December 2016. For more information, visit or contact Tameka Lee at 918-3048 or

    About CALS

    The Central Arkansas Library System includes 14 branch libraries located in Little Rock, Perryville, and throughout Pulaski County. CALS has the largest research collection in central Arkansas. Most of its more than one million items may be reserved online and picked up at any branch. CALS’s downtown Little Rock campus includes the Ron Robinson Theater, the Bobby L. Roberts Library of Arkansas History & Art and the Cox Creative Center.

  • 13 Mar 2018 10:01 AM | Ronald Russ (Administrator)

    The inaugural South Arkansas Literary Festival, hosted by the SouthArk Library and South Arkansas Community College, will be happening April 13-14 at the El Dorado Conference Center, El Dorado, AR. A wide variety of activities and content are falling into place to make for a GREAT weekend. The festival will feature over two dozen confirmed vendors, two musical groups, two keynote authors, multiple guest speakers, a live cooking demonstration and a food truck! For more information, contact Philip Shackelford, Library Director, South Arkansas Community College at or go to

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