Conference Updates

Conference Makes Us Hungry!

May 12 2014 - 2:28pm

Since our NJLA conference is held at the Revel Casino in Atlantic City, you have so many choices for meals all in the same place!

Start off with a simple cafeteria-style breakfast to gear up for a day of programming with breakfast sandwiches at Luke’s Kitchen & Marketplace, and enjoy a quick lunch or dinner at the Districto Cantina Taco Truck right inside the casino where they have $3 tacos Monday through Thursday. Relish is a 24-hour diner with a pedigree, where you can snag an inexpensive breakfast, lunch, dinner, or late night snack!

On the second level of Revel, find Select Dining like SkyCafe for a breakfast buffet, Alcove for your choice of a quick or leisurely breakfast or lunch, or a dinner of Italian Comfort Classics at Lugo Italian. Sit down, relax, and enjoy catching up with old (or new) friends and colleagues.

Or go all out with a Signature Dining experience with restaurants like Azure (did somebody say New Sushi Mondays?!) and Amada with $5 tapas Sunday through Friday. What a great opportunity to take advantage of the Atlantic City location and take your significant other on a fancy mini-vacation!

Check out our Dining Guide for more information about these food opportunities, plus a variety of other choices that take you down the boardwalk or near Atlantic City outlet shopping. Conference is hard work and we all work up an appetite, so take a few moments to treat yourself!

Two Revel eateries will also be hosting NJLA events sponsored by the Member Services Committee, so be sure to swing by to check them out!

  • At a happy hour Librarian Mixer at the Mussel Bar at Revel on Monday, June 2, 5:00-6:00 p.m., enjoy a celebrated mollusk in its most delicious forms before heading over to the President’s Program! Choose among 150 different beers from Belgium and beyond, and soak up the rich tavern atmosphere while networking and enjoying your New Jersey library colleagues.
  • On Tuesday, June 3, 5:00-6:00 p.m., all are welcome to join colleagues at the New Librarian & Library School Student Meetup at Village Whiskey before heading over to the annual NJLA Awards Reception. This event is for everyone -- but especially for welcoming our new librarians and library school students. Village Whiskey boasts a choice of more than six dozen whiskeys, dozens of beers and wines, and food from burgers to crabcakes. This is the place to be to meet new friends and make new connections.

See you at the Conference!

-- Member Services Committee

Conversation with State Librarian Mary Chute

May 9 2014 - 2:29pm

NJLA President Eileen Palmer and Conference Committee representatives Andrea Levandowski and Allen McGinley sat down with Mary Chute and Tiffany McClary to talk about what’s new at the Conference this year.

Topics include hot trends for program sessions, a description of changes at Revel Resorts, a run-down of the Conference social events that you don’t want to miss, and much more!

If you haven’t registered yet, what are you waiting for?! Early bird registration ends May 13. Take a few moments to listen to the State Librarian’s podcast and find out why this is not the year to miss the NJLA Conference in Atlantic City!

Full podcast available here:

See the Future in a Flash at the Poster Sessions

May 5 2014 - 7:12pm

Poster sessions at the NJLA Conference are a great place to learn something new in a flash as you walk through the halls of the Revel Resort from one breakout session to another. 

This is the ninth year that NJLA has hosted the poster sessions, and since the beginning in 2005 we have had colorful and creative displays, as when Heidi Cramer brought Corky the Koala, the Newark Public Library mascot, to help her with her demonstration of how to make Children’s Services come alive. And Craig Anderson from Kean University Library also showed off how to “Leap Beyond Google in a Single Bound” with his great display.


This year we have three scheduled one-hour sessions when you can meet the poster authors and ask questions about their projects: Tuesday at 11:15 a.m., featuring library student research; public and special library projects at 2:30 p.m. on Tuesday; and the final session on Wednesday before lunch at 11:15 a.m. that features college and university library projects as well as this year’s nominees for the NJLA Technology Innovation Awards. The posters are up with handouts during the day from Tuesday, June 3 through Wednesday, June 4, 2014.

To see a preview of the array of different topics and presenters at this year’s NJLA Conference Poster Sessions, check out the online schedule for Wednesday’s sessions at:  

But you can’t see the posters if you don’t register for the NJLA 2014 Conference! The early bird deadline closes on May 13, 2014. Register online at, and we'll see you in Atlantic City in June!

-- Mary Mallery, Montclair State University and Gus Stamatopoulos, Richard Stockton State College, Co-Chairs, NJLA Conference Poster Session Committee

Ultimate Preconference Run-down

Apr 30 2014 - 3:24pm

The 2014 NJLA Conference is rapidly approaching, but you still have time to register for one of our exciting preconferences! Whether you’re just coming down for one day, or you want to extend your Conference experience, the Monday sessions are a great option.

Preconference sessions give attendees the opportunity to explore issues in a more participatory and in-depth format than regular sessions. If you’ve never attended a preconference at the NJLA Conference, then this is the year you don’t want to miss! Take a look at all we have in store.



Detecting & Protecting Your Digital Footprint at Work, Home and on the Road: ID Theft & You

Social networking sites, search engines, and home, work, and public computers provide considerable information on you—your digital footprint. Even though ID 

theft is on the rise, many people are not vigilant in protecting their privacy, identity, and good name. This session helps you analyze ID safety issues and apply safeguards at work, home, and on the road. Explore online identity and privacy sites, tools, and resources so you can detect and protect your digital footprint.

Presenter: Robert J. Lackie, Rider University Professor-Librarian; Franklin F. Moore Library Department Chairperson; Liaison to the School of Education and the Discovery Program

Moderator: Marguerite Dugas, Ocean County Library



Disruptive Thinking About Disruptive Innovation

How does an academic library prepare for a future filled with new technologies, unexpected trends and new information ecologies? Will we be successful providing our same services or will our role be replaced by an unexpected disruptive innovation? Understanding the theory behind "disruptive innovation" can help us identify tools and services that are ripe for disruption. Using "disruptive thinking" can help reshape those tools and services to meet user needs.

Presenters: Dr. Susan Breakenridge Fink, Rowan University; Marc Davis, Drake University

Moderator: Gracemary Smulewitz, Rutgers University



Takin’ It to the Streets: New Ideas for Transformational Outreach

Libraries are unique in their mission to inform, enable, and engage members of their communities. The homeless are another marginalized population we can empower, if we rethink the library's role. Learn how to bring the library into the community, and how to effectively and respectfully serve New Jersey's homeless - a growing population that includes families, teens, and veterans. Hear innovative outreach approaches, including a reference library conceptualized, curated, and run by the homeless.

Presenters: Vikki C. Terrile, Queens Public Library; Sam Miller, Jean Rice Homeless Liberation Reference Library; Jack Fanous, GI Go Fund; Jaime Angelini, Mental Health Association in Atlantic County

Moderator: Andrew Luck, Paterson Free Public Library



WHAT IS THIS?! Middle Grade? YA? New Adult? Top Authors Address Category Crossover Confusion

Until 2000, there was no such thing as the New York Times Children’s Bestsellers List. Since then, this increasingly dynamic market has called for the creation of the Children’s Series Bestsellers List in 2004, followed by both the Middle Grade and Young Adult Bestsellers Lists in 2012. Is it only a matter time before there’s a separate “New Adult” list? Or a distinction is made between “Upper Middle Grade” and “Lower Middle Grade”? The classification of books for young readers has changed drastically in the past decade and continues to evolve so quickly that it’s hard for readers to keep up! Four popular authors who write bestselling novels for children and teens will lead this discussion.

Presenters: E. Lockhart, author; Robin Wasserman, author; Sarah Mlynowski, author

Moderator: Megan McCafferty, author



You want more? Good! We got it.

After the preconferences are over, drop down to the Librarian Mixer at the Mussel Bar. This social event, sponsored by the Member Services Committee, will give you the perfect opportunity to relax over cocktails and appetizers while discussing highlights from Monday’s preconferences.

Then end your evening with the President’s Program featuring writer and creative director Helen Klein Ross who will be exploring the power of libraries in the social media space. This event begins at 7:00 pm and features a dessert reception that is not to be missed.

So beat the Tuesday morning rush hour, get a good parking spot at Revel Resort & Casinos, and join us for a fun afternoon and evening on Monday, June 2!

Ignite is Coming to NJLA!

Apr 28 2014 - 1:28pm

Get ready for NJLA Ignite! We are looking for presenters to share whatever it is they are passionate about in librarianship (or life)!

Ignite Sessions are 5-minute presentations with 20 slides auto-advancing every 15 seconds. They are meant to ignite new ideas in the audience. So, if you have a burning desire to share your thoughts with your colleagues and set our minds ablaze, submit your proposal today! Submissions will be accepted (through this link) until May 12!

Need some inspiration? Here's a fun example of an Ignite talk:


NJLA's Ignite session will be held on Wednesday, June 4 at 3:40 p.m. as a closing session to the 2014 Conference at Revel Resort & Casino in Atlantic City.

And the Winner Is . . .

Apr 22 2014 - 3:29pm

Awards Ceremonies are truly some of the highlights of the NJLA Conference! Take advantage of the opportunity to discover some of the best-of-the-best in technology, librarianship, library supporters, and much more throughout this year's Conference.

Everyone is welcome to attend the annual Awards Reception on Tuesday evening, June 3 starting at 6:00 p.m.! Join your colleagues for soda, wine and snacks at this free event. No ticket required. Public relations, power of the press, and library service awards will all be honored, plus the announcement of the super-secret President's Award and the unveiling of the Librarian of the Year! This reception and ceremony is presented by the NJLA Honors and Awards Subcommittee.

The State Librarian's Breakfast has a surprise or two in store for participants, so feel free to pop in for a complementary breakfast on Wednesday, June 4 at 8:00 a.m.

During one of the regular sessions on Wednesday, June 4 at 11:30 a.m., the College & University Section presents its annual Technology Innovation Awards Forum. This year, the NJLA-CUS Technology Committee is pleased to announce the creation of the ‘MacGyver Award’ for librarians who have shown agility and tenacity to get work done using new and innovative technologies or existing technologies in a creative and innovative way. One four-year institution and one two-year institution will receive awards and presentations will feature the winners from each category. Immediately follow-up this presentation with the College & University Section Luncheon with Jeffrey Beall, as well! 

Wednesday will also feature the College & University Section Research Award Forum at 2:30 p.m. NJLA CUS/ACRL-NJ's Research Committee presents this annual forum, featuring NJ librarians and their current library research projects. The forum presentations include the winner of the 2014 Research Award for the best published research by a New Jersey librarian in 2013, along with other librarians whose presentations have been selected on a competitive basis by the Research Committee. Come learn what compelling issues your fellow librarians are researching!

Don't miss out on lots of great information about the College & University Section Awards during the afternoon Poster Sessions, as well!

Of course, everyone is always welcome to find out the latest winners of the Garden State Children's and Teen Book Awards at the annual GSBA Award Luncheon sponsored by the Children's Services and Young Adult Section. This awards luncheon will be held on Wednesday, June 4 at 12:30 p.m. and will feature a keynote from author Daniel Kirk.

Wherever your interests lie, there is a lot of inspiration to be found at the Conference this year -- don't miss out on a little bit of everything!

Spread the Word: Reference Section at Conference!

Apr 22 2014 - 2:59pm

Librarians start months in advance planning a vast array of programming to feature at the NJLA Conference each year. They work long and hard brainstorming content and securing presenters to ensure that attendees of the Conference get the very best out of the professional learning and networking experience.

Let everyone know about the programs that your sections and committees are hosting this year -- Let us know how you're spreading the word!

Take a look at some fabulous programs sponsored by the Reference Section (videos created by Karen Vaias and Karen Olivari), and find out more about these (and more) programs here.


Find a complete schedule here and information about registration is here.

Make the Most of Your First NJLA Conference

Apr 14 2014 - 9:33pm

If you have never attended the New Jersey Library Association Conference, then our 2014 Annual Conference in Atlantic City is not to be missed!

With program content related to academic, school, special, and public libraries, the NJLA Conference is one-stop shopping for all of your professional development needs. The Conference Committee makes an effort to develop a well-rounded schedule of programs on a variety of topics that provide practical and actionable ideas that attendees can take back to their libraries. Progress in libraries is happening at an accelerated pace, and this will be your best opportunity all year to hear exciting new ideas from libraries around the state, and perhaps around the nation.

But the Conference isn’t just about lectures. Our Conference in Atlantic City provides a unique opportunity to connect with colleagues and discuss the topics that are important to us right now. The social experiences offered at the NJLA Conference will give you the chance to build and develop the relationships that support the work you do in your own community.

Here are some additional opportunities you don’t want to miss if you will be a new or first-time attendee of the NJLA Conference in 2014:

  • Go to the Awards Reception. Free wine and appetizers, and opportunities to chat with movers and shakers from the NJ library community.
  • Visit the Exhibits. Library vendors are on hand to answer questions, and demo new products. You never know who you will meet and what products might help the community you serve.
  • Volunteer at the Registration Desk for low-impact networking. You will be greeting attendees as they check-in at the Conference, which is a great way to chat with speakers, author, directors and librarians from around the state. To get involved now, send an email to njlaconference [at] njlamembers [dot] org.
  • Attend a luncheon. With four engaging luncheons to choose from, chances are we have something for everyone: Garden State Book Awards, College and University Section, NJLA President's Inaugural Luncheon, and Brown Bag Lightning Tech Talks.

Our 2014 Conference in AC is shaping up to be one of our best yet! Register now to get involved and support your state library association.

Join Us for Lunch!

Apr 13 2014 - 4:38pm

From honoring NJLA Presidents to award-winning titles for youth, from learning about the latest topics in academics to discovering the newest and most innovative uses for technology, there is certainly a ton to celebrate at the annual NJLA Conference . . . and you can do it all over lunch with friends and colleagues!

On Tuesday, all are welcome to honor NJLA President-Elect Terrie McColl at the NJLA President's Inaugural Luncheon. We welcome our colleagues, new and experienced from all types of libraries and supporters around the state, to extend our support and encouragement to incoming President Terrie McColl, and to help us send President Eileen Palmer off with a warm and grateful "Thank You!" (Pre-register for this event with your Conference registration.)

This year's College & University Section Luncheon on Wednesday will feature noted academic publishing expert Jeffrey Beall, who is the Scholarly Initiatives Librarian at Auraria Library at the University of Colorado, Denver. Mr.Beall will discuss predatory publishing, scholarly communication, open-access publishing, author and publisher misconduct as well as scholarly publishing ethics during the luncheon. (Pre-register for this event with your Conference registration.)

The annual Garden State Book Award Luncheon celebrates the year’s winners of the Garden State Children's & Teen Book Awards on Wednesday with keynote speaker Daniel Kirk. Kirk is the award-winning author and illustrator of more than 21 popular books for children, including picture books Cat Power; Dogs Rule!; Hush, Little Alien; Library Mouse; Lunchroom Lizard; and Snow Dude. His more recent work includes Elf Realm, a series of young-adult fantasy. Daniel Kirk recently released the fifth book in his immensely popular Library Mouse series. An author signing will follow. (Pre-register for this event with your Conference registration.)

Looking for a more informal hour to spend your lunch? Join us with friends for a Brown Back Lunch and Lightning Tech Talks! Grab your lunch to-go and listen to a series of 5-minute lightning talks on current technology trends and innovations in libraries. (No registration necessary.)

Also, early Wednesday morning, don't miss the complimentary food and the news and trends from around NJ at the State Librarian's Breakfast with NJ State Librarian Mary Chute. (No registration necessary.)

And speaking of food . . .

The spirit of librarianship is giving to others. To this end, the NJLA Urban Libraries Section is pleased to run a drive for the second time at the NJLA Conference. This year’s drive will be on behalf of the Community Food Bank of New Jersey. We will be collecting non-perishable food items (no glass, cellophane, bottled water, soda or baby food, please). For some additional information, please see this guide from the Community Food Bank of New Jersey. And bring us your tote bags! All of those bags from past conferences that are in your office or closet are needed by the Community Food Bank, so please bring your food donation in a reusable bag.

- Kate Vasilik, 2014 NJLA Conference Committee

Attention NJ Library Trustees!

Apr 8 2014 - 10:17am

Attention New Jersey Library trustees! Are you looking for continuing education opportunities? The New Jersey Library Association has the perfect conference planned for you from June 2 through June 4 in Atlantic City.

One of the four preconference programs scheduled on Monday, June 2, entitled “Takin’ It to the Streets” provides you with the opportunity to hear about New Jersey libraries that are transforming outreach to their communities.

On Tuesday, June 3, the first full day of the conference, you’ll find many programs and speakers of interest on topics like personnel matters, policies and advocacy. You can attend your choice of sessions about employee performance reviews, advocating effectively with local officials, and using social media to promote your library and engage your community. Two of Tuesday’s sessions in particular that are guaranteed to be popular with trustees include: “New Job titles for 21st century Librarians” and “Fostering the Board/Director relationship.” The first full day culminates in the NJLA Awards Ceremony, which is an outstanding reception honoring librarians, libraries, trustees, and those who advocate on behalf of libraries. The award ceremony will not only provide you with ideas that you can share with your director and fellow board members, but it will make you very proud that you are associated with libraries.

The second full day of the conference on Wednesday, June 4 begins with the NJ State Librarian’s Breakfast, an opportunity for you to hear about the latest developments in initiatives that help the NJ library community. Then it’s on to sessions about makerspaces, union contracts, policies, developing a brand for the library, and so much more.

In between all these sessions there is also time for you to visit the exhibits and learn about all the new products and services that can bring more customers into your library! The exhibitors are very willing to answer questions and with technology changing so quickly, you are guaranteed to learn something new just by waking though the large exhibit space.

And don’t forget: this conference is in Atlantic City! You are a tireless volunteer and you deserve a mini vacation. Hotel rooms at the Revel Resorts are discounted for conference attendees, every room has a beautiful view of the ocean and the choice of restaurants both inside and around Revel make Atlantic City a superb personal and professional destination.

Talk to your library director soon and register for this fantastic conference. Registration can be done via phone by calling 609-348-0500 or 855-348-0500 by May 16 and indicate that you are with the NJ Library Association, or online at

Hope to see you in AC!

- Jayne Beline, 2014 NJLA Conference Co-Chair


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