Day 1 Schedule

Day 1

Tuesday, May 03, 2022


8 AM


9 AM Ballroom: Opening Remarks

9:15 AM Ballroom: Keynote Speaker: Tracie Hall

Information Redlining: The Role of Libraries in Disrupting the Growing Socioeconomic Divide

Appointed to lead the world’s oldest and largest library association two weeks before the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, Tracie D. Hall, the American Library Association’s tenth executive director, looks at how the current public health crisis has exposed and exacerbated the deep employment, education, and basic information access divides in this country. Arguing that these rapid and volatile socioeconomic changes require that libraries, as both a sector and a construct, become even more intentional about shifting their orientation from outputs to outcomes and asserting their centrality in community recovery and resilience, Hall pulls from experience she’s gained working in social services, non-profits, and libraries (including the New Haven Free and Hartford Public Libraries) across the country. In this frank reflection on the changing role of libraries in this era and the association that exists to support them, Hall forecasts the major social shifts of the coming years, what they might mean for the LIS sector, and explains why libraries can’t adhere to the same playbooks.

Sponsored by: FLAG

10:30 AM: Morning Break in Exhibitor Ballroom (Refreshments)

11 AM Session 1

Room 21/22

BCALA- Presents: The Black Librarian in America: Reflections, Resistance, and Reawakening

Presenter: Shauntee Burns-Simpson

Welcome Shauntee Burns-Simpson (MLIS), the Associate Director of School Support & Outreach for the New York Public Library. She works closely with at-risk teens and fosters a love of reading & learning with her innovative programs. She currently serves as the 2020-2022 president of BCALA, chairs ALA's Committee on Diversity of the American Library Association; and is one of four editors of the newly published volume The Black Librarian in America: Reflections, Resistance, and Reawakening documenting the vital role that Black Librarians play in U.S. society and the achievements of African American/Black librarians. Hear about the rich heritage honoring black library history, celebrating individual identity of trailblazers and pioneers to moving forward in advocacy for diversity in the library profession.

Sponsored by: CLA EDI Section

Room 24

Free Services from the State for Your Patrons

Presenters: Claire Conroy, Consultant, State Education Resource Center; Smita Worah, Ph.D., Consultant, State Education Resource Center; Megan Devine, Librarian, State Education Resource Center; Peter Williams, Librarian, State Education Resource Center; Matt Geeza, Director, Library for the Blind & Physically Handicapped

Both the State Education Resource Center Library ( and the Library for the Blind and Physically Handicapped ( connect students and lifelong readers with materials for learning and fun. They can help your patrons too, plus help YOU help your patrons! Come meet the new SERC and LBPH library staff, learn about their services, see demonstrations and explanations of Assistive Technology and Accessible Educational Materials, and learn how your own library patrons can benefit for free. This is a great session for anyone who works on the front lines of a library and anyone who likes to delight readers.

Sponsored by: CLA ADA Committee

Room 25

eGO CT and the new Palace Project App

Presenter: Brad Bullis, James English, Michele Kimpton

Learn about the Connecticut State Library’s ebook platform, eGO CT and the new Palace Project app. You’ll meet the developers of the project, learn how public libraries can gain free access to 20,000 titles provided by the State library and how to roll out the Palace app to your patrons. The app allows patrons to simultaneously search the statewide eBook collections along with local library eBook collections libraries may have with any of their vendors. With LYRASIS hosting the software that powers the app, libraries can now have control over their e-book delivery, with software created by libraries for libraries.

Sponsored by: Brad Bullis, CLA Member

Room 26

Dementia Friendly Libraries

Presenter: Elizabeth Chubet, Erica DeFrancesco, Bob Savage (living with dementia)

Learn how to make your library “dementia friendly” with the Southington Public Library and LiveWell Dementia Specialists. We will provide you with general information about this cognitive condition and how you can best serve your patrons who have it. We will discuss curated collections, programs, resources and other services you can offer your patrons with dementia.

Sponsored by: Southington Public Library, CLA Institutional Member

Room 27

Summer Reading is an Outdoor Adventure

Presenters: Kristen Bellantuono and Lori Paradis Brant of DEEP - CT State Parks

Interested in connecting children’s books to nature, wildlife, and outdoor recreation? The 2022 summer reading theme: "Read Beyond the Beaten Path" creates a great opportunity for libraries and CT State Parks to collaborate on linking children’s literature and the outdoors. Come learn how the No Child Left Inside initiative introduces children and families to the wonders of nature and myriad recreational opportunities within Connecticut’s state parks and forests. Not only do CT State Parks provide inspirational places for reading and exploring, but they have begun offering StoryWalks at select locations. Bring your collaborative ideas for how state parks may support your summer reading programming. We look forward to working with you! The StoryWalk® Project was created by Anne Ferguson of Montpelier, VT and developed in collaboration with the Kellogg-Hubbard Library.

Sponsored by: CLA Children’s Section Co-Chairs: Cathy Potter and Alex Klaus

12:00 PM Session 2

Room 21/22

Barriers to Service? Not My Library! 3 Hidden Barriers to Giving Great Service

Presenter: Maxine Bleiweis; Maxine Bleiweis & Associates, (former library director in Suffield, Newington, and Westport)

Be forewarned that many of your basic assumptions about how libraries look and operate will be challenged in this provocative program on examining barriers to service of all kinds. From policies to wording to organizational charts, everything is up for discussion. You'll come away with a do-to list and opportunities to ponder.

Sponsored by: Maxine Bleiweis, CLA Member

Room 24

Journaling: Our Greatest Tool for Professional Development and Personal Growth

Presenters: Amanda Stern, Events and Special Projects Manager, CLC

It is well documented that journaling is effective for reducing stress, strengthening our memory, and improving our writing, but many people do not understand how to use a journal as a tool for goal setting and accountability. Journaling can be our greatest tool for professional development and personal growth. In this workshop, we will explore different techniques that will help you design a journaling routine to help you become the person you want to be, both at work and beyond. Bring your career and personal goals, an open mind, and your creativity!

Sponsored by: Amanda Stern, CLA Member

Room 25

Delivering Programs and Services to Veterans, Military Members, and Their Families

Presenters: Dawn La Valle, Christy Billings, Brad Bullis

We all have veterans and military members in our community, but libraries aren’t always sure how to deliver services to this group of users or even what their needs and interests might be. Join us as we share information about the Libraries and Veterans Forum Toolkit that has a wealth of programming ideas for all types of libraries with Dawn La Valle and Brad Bullis from the Connecticut State Library. You’ll also learn about a writing program for veterans that has been meeting since 2012 at Middletown’s Russell Library, from Program Coordinator Christy Billings.

Sponsored by: Christy Billings, CLA’s NELA Representative

Room 26

Creative Learning @ the Library with MIT Media Lab

Presenter: Carine Greene

MIT Media Lab researchers have been teaming up with librarians across the country to create a variety of fun, 21st-century thinking educational programs under PLIX (Public Library Innovation Exchange). A Connecticut-based PLIX Ambassador will explain the initiative and show how you can access zines, online workshops, and tinkering open hours that will give you the support and inspiration you need to get started with offering PLIX STEAM Learning Activities in your library! We'll demonstrate simple (and fun!) activities to show just how easy it is to implement creative learning in your programming.

Sponsored by: Carine Green, CLA Member

Room 27

Your Legislator is Coming, Now What?

Presenters: Glenn Grube—Director, Avon Free Public Library; Sarah McCusker—Director, Canton Public Library; Ellen Paul—Executive Director, Connecticut Library Consortium; Middletown; Kate Byroade—Director, Cragin Memorial Library, Colchester; Sarah Morgan—Director, East Hartford Public Library; Alice Knapp-CEO, The Ferguson Library, Stamford; Facilitator: Ramona Burkey—Director, Russell Library, Middletown

After two years of COVID closures, it’s time to make sure your state legislators see the great work Connecticut’s libraries are doing and have been doing in these difficult times. Inviting state legislators to visit the local library is one of the best tools for libraries to make the case for supporting library funding. Learn how to invite your legislators to visit your library or work with your neighbors to bring in several legislators to learn how they can support Connecticut’s libraries.

Sponsored by: CLA’s Legislative Committee

Lunch: 1:00 PM– 2:00 PM

2:00 PM Session 3

Room 21/22

Strategies, Tips, & Tricks for Effective Advocacy

Presenters: Beth Crowley—Director, Cheshire Public Library; Kate Byroade—Director, Cragin Memorial Library, Colchester; Colleen Bailie—Director, West Haven Public Library; Olivia Scully—Help Desk Coordinator, Bibliomation; Facilitator: Ramona Burkey—Director, Russell Library, Middletown

We’ll share some of the most practical and executable tips, tricks, and strategies from the annual Connecticut Lobbying Conference—starting with the most important tip: YOU are your library’s most effective advocate. Learn about writing effective fact sheets and press releases, lobbying for the state budget, working with legislative staff, and testifying at public hearings.

Sponsored by: CLA’s Legislative Committee

Room 24

YA Lounge

Presenters: Jackie Bush and Stephanie Smith, YA Section Co-chairs

Stop by the YA Lounge to grab a snack, talk to other YA librarians, exchange program ideas, vent about pandemic fatigue, and grab some free books!

Sponsored by: CLA’s Young Adult Section Co-chairs: Stephanie Smith and Jackie Bush

Room 25

Your Guide to Purchasing and Procurement (and Saving Lots of Money through CLC Contracts!)

Presenters: Ellen Paul, Executive Director, CLC; Jacqueline Cashin, Vendor Relations Manager, CLC

We all buy things for our libraries. But did you know that there are local, state and even federal regulations on how libraries can spend their money? Learn about the procurement process for Jackie Cashin, CLC’s Vendor Relations Manager. You’ll come away with a better understanding of how to ensure that your library is following all the purchasing regulations you should be. You’ll even be among the first to hear what’s included in CLC’s upcoming digital products contracts.

Sponsored by: CLC

Room 26

Library Marketing: A Fresh Perspective

Presenters: Elizabeth Lane and Allison Wilkos

In the last 18 months, Bloomfield Public Library changed its name, designed a new logo in-house, introduced a weekly newsletter, strengthened its social media presence, and passed a referendum on a new library building project. The key to success is our rock star staff! BPL utilizes a team driven approach to marketing using collaborative design, open communication, and clear strategic goals. We strive for our library’s communications to reflect that we are more than just books, have a playful vibe, and appeal to all user groups. In this session, we will share our best practices for library marketing and communications.

Sponsored by: Bloomfield Public Library, CLA Institutional Member

Room 27

Library of Things: Tips and Ideas for Circulating Non-Traditional Items

Presenters: Emily Jenkins, North Haven Memorial Library; Tricia Carlin, Westbrook Public Library; Angelina Carnevale and Melissa Tullo, Guilford Free Library, Allison Murphy and Sunnie Scarpa, E.C. Scranton Memorial Library (Madison)

Curious about how to create a collection of non-traditional items for your library to circulate? The options can be overwhelming, so come join our panelists to hear them talk about how they got started, when and how they solicited feedback from their community, and the nuts and bolts of how it all works. You’ll leave feeling inspired and empowered to choose the right ideas for your specific community – it’s easier than you may think!

Sponsored by: Emily Jenkins and Melissa Tullo, CLA Members

3:00 PM Break in Exhibitor Hall

3:30 PM Session 4

Room 21/22

Guerilla Storytime-COVID Edition

Presenters: Cathy Potter, East Hartford Public Library, Co-Chair CLA Children’s Section; Alex Klaus, Durham Public Library, Co-Chair CLA Children’s Section

Embrace the conference theme of “Back to the Future” with a look towards storytime. Join us to share your fave openers/closers, wiggle busters, participatory stories/activities, music, props, and tips. We want to celebrate and support each other! Come prepared to lead a song or fingerplay, share music or props, and ask questions or provide suggestions. Build your skills and your network to be prepared for the future of storytime at your library!

Sponsored by: CLA’s Children’s Section

Room 24

Technology Connections for Your Library and Patrons

Presenters: Doug Casey, Executive Director, Connecticut Commission for Educational Technology; Ryan Kocsondy, Director, Connecticut Education Network (CEN)

The pandemic has released unprecedented levels of funding to support technology in and through libraries. Join this informal discussion among state leaders to see how you can fund high-speed Internet to, within, and from your library. Topics include the Affordable Connectivity Fund, the Governor’s Community Wireless initiative, and the Connecticut Library Fiber Consortium.

Sponsored by: Colleen Bailie, CLA President

Room 25

Changing the Subject: The Controversial Heading “Illegal Aliens”

Presenter: John DeSantis

Join John DeSantis to hear about the Dartmouth library and campus community's experience with, and advocacy for, changing the Library of Congress subject heading Illegal Aliens. He will also speak about the political situation that ensued, and how libraries have worked to provide alternatives to this heading in their discovery systems.

Sponsored by: CLA’s Technical Services Section

Room 26

How We Did It: Three Recent Successful Building Referenda Campaigns

Presenters: Elizabeth Lane—Director, Bloomfield Public Library; Dr. Maxine Ursery--Board Member, Bloomfield Public Library; Kristi Sadowski—Director, Southington Public Library; Joanne Kelleher—Board Member, Southington Public Library; Margaret Khan—Director, Booth & Dimock Memorial Library, Coventry; Facilitator: Kate Byroade, Co-Chair CLA Legislative Committee

Despite previous failed library building referenda, three Connecticut communities voted to expand, renovate, or replace their inadequate and outdated library buildings in 2020 and 2021. The panel of library directors and board members will share what hadn’t worked in the past and what changes and components worked this time to get their projects approved.

Sponsored by: CLA’s Legislative Committee

Room 27

Digital Inclusion: Navigators Can Make It Happen!

Presenters: Sarah Morgan, Project Director, East Hartford Digital Navigator Pilot Project; Julie Styles, Project Director, Hartford Digital Inclusion for Older Adults Pilot Project; Maisam Nouh, Project Director, Stamford Digital Navigators; Christine Gauvreau, Advisory Council for Library Planning and Development (ACLPD) Digital Inclusion Task Force; Alyssa Bussard, Assistant Director Hamden Public Library

The COVID pandemic revealed the social cost of digital redlining. Thirty-six percent of CT households with incomes below the state median do not have connectivity. Connecticut librarians are collaborating with community partners to push back. Employing a new practice called Digital Navigation, they are mapping the problem and community assets. They are employing trusted mentors to see that underserved residents get connected with adequate home broadband connections, computers, and training for telehealth, job searches, benefit applications, educational activities, and a way out of isolation. Hear about the lessons learned. Learn about Navigation efforts that may be replicable in your community.

Sponsored by: Christine Gauvreau, Sarah Morgan, Julie Styles, Maisam Nouh, Alyssa Bussard, CLA Members

4:30 PM After Hours Event in Exhibitor Ballroom

Join us in the exhibitor ballroom for some fun!

Your registration for the conference gives you 1 free drink ticket to redeem at this event.

For those that would like to take part in our after-hours event, consider joining us for Mobile–MiniGolf. By paying $20.00 you will get access to the 9-hole mini golf course that is set up throughout the ballroom, as well as 1 extra free drink ticket and hors d’oeuvres. All proceeds go back to the Connecticut Library Association’s Fundraising Committee to help with future endeavors. You may pay with cash or card with our Exhibit Co-Chairs, Alessandra Petrino and Kymberlee Powe who will be stationed in the exhibitor ballroom at table #79.

Play with friends, network, or scope out our event sponsor Mobile-Minigolf for when you are planning your library’s own minigolf event!