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Texas Book Festival Library Grant Applications Due February 5th

From the Texas Book Festival website:

Since the Texas Book Festival’s (TBF) founding in 1995, it has been a part of the TBF’s mission to promote Texas libraries and literacy. Each year, funds raised at the annual Texas Book Festival support grants that are distributed the following year. Since 1996, the organization has funded 1,044 grants totaling more than $2.7 million to 600+ libraries across Texas. Click here to see past winners.


The Texas Book Festival awards grants to support collection enhancement for Texas public libraries. This funding enables libraries to share the diversity and breadth of literature with their entire communities.

2015-2016 Library Collection Enhancement grants are now available through February 5th, 2016. All applications must be postmarked by by February 5th, 2016.

Download the application and learn more about the grant process from the Texas Book Festival website.


Additional CTLS SRP 2016 Workshop Added in Edinburg


BREAKING! We have scheduled an additional face-to-face workshop at the Dustin Michael Sekula Memorial Library in Edinburg, TX to help you get ready, get set for SRP 2016!

Again, all of the workshops currently scheduled are as follows:

Thursday, January 21st at the Mansfield Public Library

Friday, January 22nd at the Cedar Park Public Library

Wednesday, January 27th at the Jourdanton Community Library

Monday, February 22 at the Dustin Michael Sekula Memorial Library in Edinburg

Please sign up quickly as these tend to fill up fast. We hope to see you there!

Rio Grande City Library Staff Recognized at City Banquet

Congratulations to Yolanda Riojas for receiving the Employee Recognition Peer Award by the Rio Grande City Public Library staff and to Rio Grande City Public Library Director Norma Fultz for receiving a Special Recognition Award for bringing distinction to the city at the 2015 City of Rio Grande City Longevity Awards and Employee Banquet.

Yolanda Riojas accepting her award

Director Norma Fultz accepting her award

Images from the Rio Grande City Public Library Facebook page


Director of Edinburg Library Receives Prestigious Mexican Award

The Director of the Dustin M. Sekula Memorial Library in Edinburg, TX, Leticia S. Leija received the prestigious Ohtli Award during a reception held at the Consulate of Mexico in McAllen.  The Ohtli Award is the highest honor bestowed on a member of the Mexican or Mexican-American community. This award acknowledges and celebrates the recipient’s commitment to uplifting the Mexican culture and traditions as well as for their vision and impact.

Edinburg Director Award

The Mexican government has designated that Ms. Leija’s promotion of the culture and traditions of Mexico in the Rio Grande Valley have established her as the point of contact in the organization of cultural events and artisan fairs in the region.  Ms. Leija, as Director of Library and Cultural Arts for the City of Edinburg has established under her guidance various annual events, such as;  The three day Cinco de Mayo Weekend Celebration, Fridafest, a festival in celebration of Mexican Artist, Frida Kahlo and Danzonfest, a celebration of the traditional danzon and the Christmas play and festival, La Pastorela. This year, the South Texas International Film Festival and Los Muertos Bailan: a Dia de los Muertos Celebration, two additional events done in collaboration with the Consulate of Mexico in McAllen will be incorporated as annual festivals in the City of Edinburg.
The award which consists of a medallion, silver rosette, and a diploma signed by the President of the Institute of Mexicans Abroad (IME), symbolizes the opening of roads for the well-being of the Mexican community abroad. Ohtli is a náhuatl word that means “good path” or “straight path” and symbolizes the sincere appreciation of the Government of Mexico to the outstanding career of those receiving it.

CTLS Office Closed for New Years

The CTLS Office will be closed on Friday, January 1st in observance of the New Year holiday. We hope you all have a fun and safe holiday! See you again in 2016!

On Your Mark, Get Set for SRP 2016!


We are happy to announce the dates and locations for SRP 2016 CTLS workshops!


Thursday, January 21st at the Mansfield Public Library

Friday, January 22nd at the Cedar Park Public Library

Wednesday, January 27th at the Jourdanton Community Library

CTLS favorite Suzan Nyfeler will help guide you through the CSLP manual and beyond with great ideas for activities, crafts, songs, games, events, displays, and more! Please register quickly as these always fill up fast.

We can help make your summer a success! Join us for a workshop! Contact Katelyn Patterson (, Youth Services Specialist with any questions.

CTLS Office Closed for Holiday

Just a reminder that the CTLS office will be closed December 24th and 25th to observe the holidays! Everyone at CTLS wishes you and yours a safe and happy holiday season!

Governor Abbott Appoints Three To Texas State Library And Archives Commission

From the TSLAC website

Stephen Siwinski

Communications Officer


Governor Abbott Appoints Three To Texas State Library And Archives Commission

Tuesday, November 3, 2015 • Austin, Texas • News Release

Governor Greg Abbott today appointed Martha Wong of Houston, Romanita Matta-Barrera of San Antonio and re-appointed Larry Holt of College Station to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission for terms to expire on September 28, 2021. The Commission safeguards significant resources, provides information services that inspire and support research, education and reading and enhances the capacity for achievement of current and future generations.


Martha Wong is a community volunteer, former state representative and Houston city council member. Before her state and community service, she was Director of Community Resource and Development at Southwest College. Wong also served as an associate professor at Baylor University. She began her career with the Houston Independent School District serving in a variety of roles as associate superintendent, elementary school principal, special education teacher and first-grade teacher. Wong became the first Asian American woman elected to the Houston city council when she served from 1994 – 2000. She also became the first Asian-American woman to be elected to the Texas House of Representatives which she served from 2003 – 2007. Wong is a member of the Houston Association of Retired Teachers, Asian Pacific American Heritage Association, Greater Houston Pachyderm Club, Chinese American Citizens Alliance and Phi Kappa Phi Honor Society. She has previously served as a board member for the American Red Cross, Neuhaus Education Center, Houston Olympic 2012 Foundation, Alley Theater, Lions Eye Bank Foundation and University of Houston Alumni Organization. Wong was inducted into the Texas Women’s Hall of Fame in 1994. She has been recognized as a Distinguished University of Houston Alumni by the UH Alumni Association and the College of Education. Wong graduated with a bachelor’s degree in elementary education from the University of Texas at Austin. She earned her master’s and doctorate degree in Educational Administration from the University of Houston. Ms. Wong replaces Sandra S. Pickett of Liberty whose term has expired.


Romanita Matta-Barrera is CEO of Fluent Strategy Group, LLC. Prior to that, she served in a variety of roles as Director of Hispanic Outreach and Communications for the U.S. Department of Education, Deputy Director for the White House Initiative on Educational Excellence for Hispanic Americans and Texas Media Director for U.S. Senator John Cornyn. Early in her career, she worked with employers and led community relations as part of workforce development for SER Jobs for Progress in San Antonio. Matta-Barrera is an active member of Leadership San Antonio, San Antonio Hispanic Chamber of Commerce, San Antonio Chamber of Commerce, University of Texas at San Antonio Center for Educational Leadership, Policy and Professional Development advisory council, Family Service Association of San Antonio and most recently, Leadership SAISD. She has previously served as a gubernatorial appointee to the OneStar National Service Commission. Matta-Barrera earned her bachelor’s degree in both government and Latin American studies from The University of Texas at Austin. She completed an international studies program at El Colegio de Mexico in Mexico City, Mexico. Ms. Matta- Barrera replaces Martha Doty Freeman of West Lake Hills whose term has expired.


Larry Holt is an attorney. He is a member of the Texas Bar Foundation and Brazos County Bar Association. Holt previously served in leadership positions as chairman of the Brazos Valley Estate Planning Council, founding director of Community Foundation Brazos Valley and chairman of trustees for the Mary Rodes Gibson Hemostasis-Thrombosis Foundation. He and his wife have also been involved and supportive of Habitat for Humanity, Twin City Mission, Brazos County Youth Livestock and Voices for Children CASA. Holt earned his law degree from Baylor University and his master of law degree from Southern Methodist University. Mr. Holt is being reappointed.

TSLAC Scholarship for Public Librarians to Attend Research Institute for Public Libraries

From the TSLAC website:


The Texas State Library and Archives Commission (TSLAC) is offering a time-sensitive scholarship for two public librarians interested in attending the nationally-recognized Research Institute for Public Libraries (RIPL). The Institute will be held September 30-October 3, 2016 in Inverness, Colorado.

RIPL will provide participating librarians training on the following:

  • Designing outcome-based evaluation of programs and services
  • Assessing the needs of the local community
  • Developing techniques for tracking public library data and using the data for planning, management, and demonstrating the library’s worth
  • Using data and stories to document the impact of the local library
  • Aligning evaluation efforts with existing initiatives, such as Edge Benchmarks, Impact Survey, and Project Outcome

RIPL’s target audience is public librarians, administrators, and any other Library staff seeking to develop their skills in evaluation and data use for planning, management, and demonstrating their library’s impact. TSLAC staff will also attend the Institute, along with approximately 100 public library leaders. This national Institute is offered by the Colorado State Library and the Colorado Library Consortium. Launched in 2015, RIPL meets a distinct need of public libraries in rural, suburban, and urban areas for practical skills in assessment, evaluation, and benchmarking.

Institute Schedule:

  • September 30: travel to venue, evening event
  • October 1: full day of workshops
  • October 2: full day of workshops
  • October 3: morning and afternoon workshops, end by late afternoon

Each TSLAC scholarship will pay the full registration fee of $1,465, and reimburse up to $500 in associated travel costs. Only librarians available for the entire time of the Institute will be considered for a scholarship. The Scholarship Application form is due to TSLAC by Friday, January 8, 2016.

Visit the RIPL website (link: to learn more about the Institute.

To download the Scholarship Application Forms and instructions, visit the TSLAC website (link:

Questions? Contact Stacey Malek at or Deborah Littrell at

This program is funded (in part) by a grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services to the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. The travel reimbursement is considered a subaward to the sponsoring library. CFDA 45.31/FAIN LS-00-15-0044-15.

Jeanette and Jim Larson Grant Application Available

The application is open for the Jeanette and Jim Larson Grant, awarding $500.00 for a public library to buy mysteries. Applications are due by January 18, 2016. See the TLA website for more information and to apply!