Category Archives: Uncategorized

TLA Conference Update – It’s OK

The official word is that the TLA Conference is continuing as scheduled and to please check the TLA Facebook page (,, and for updates. I would also like to remind everyone that Houston drains almost as quickly as it fills so lingering floods are pretty uncommon. Watch the reports and it is OK to arrive on a later day if the weather requires it. Call your hotel if you change your schedule.

See you in Houston.

STEM Education Week is April 24-30

STEM Education Week is a week long recognition to raise awareness of the importance of STEM programs and career choices by proclamation of the Governor of Texas. You can participate by hosting a STEM event, registering your event, and using the resources available through the STEMTX website.

If you plan on using STEM Education Week as an opportunity to highlight any programming at your library, make sure to register your event. Let our local and statewide elected officials know that public libraries are important informal STEM educational centers.

Texas State Law Library Proposal for Knight News Challenge on Libraries

The Knight Foundation recently announced the Knight News Challenge on Libraries. The topic this year is How might libraries serve 21st century information needs? This is an open call for ideas focused on advancing libraries to better serve individuals and communities in the 21st century.  There are currently 17 more days to submit a proposal for the first round of reviews.

The Texas State Law Library has requested funding to support their efforts in the Access to Justice movement. The library’s mission is to make legal information available for all Texans. Technology allows digital legal resources to be available statewide via the State Law Library’s web portal.

The State Law Library’s proposal can be read here.

Kate DiCamillo Author Event To Highlight Importance of Summer Reading

Share this live webcast author event with Kate DiCamillo, this year’s National Summer Reading Champion, with your local schools to help promote your SRP! Visit the website for more information and to register to view the live event.

From Candlewick Press press release:

REGISTER for the Kate DiCamillo May 13th Virtual Author Event and LIVE Webcast
Candlewick Press Presents
An exclusive live webcast with beloved children’s book author Kate DiCamillo
2016 National Summer Reading Champion and
National Ambassador for Young People’s Literature Emeritus
Broadcasting LIVE from Edgewood School in Woodridge, IL
Moderated by John Schumacher –
Friday, May 13, 2016, 10:00-11:00 AM CDTJoin two-time Newbery award-winning author Kate DiCamillo as she discusses her newest release, Raymie Nightingale, a masterful, moving novel about an unforgettable summer friendship.

DiCamillo, in her role as National Summer Reading Champion, will also talk directly to students about the importance of summer reading and encourage signs ups at local public libraries for the 2016 program “On Your Mark, Get Set, Read!” You can learn more about summer reading and Kate’s advocacy for the Collaborative Summer Library Program (CSLP) at:

Sign up now! We encourage you to set up an class assembly for this live event, so all of your kids, parents, and teachers will be able to watch and participate. To view the LIVE webcast, sites need just an internet connection and web browser.

Broadcasting LIVE from Edgewood School in Woodridge, IL

Sponsored by: Candlewick Press, proud publisher of other DiCamillo favorites including Flora & Ulysses, The Tale of Despereaux, The Miraculous Journey of Edward Tulane, Because of Winn Dixie, and the Mercy Watson series.

* Required
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Meet Carla D. Hayden, Nominee for Librarian of Congress

On Wednesday, February 24th, President Obama nomated Dr. Carla Hayden to fill the position of Librarian of Congress. If she is confirmed by the Senate, she will be the first woman and the first African-American to hold the position. Here is some bio information about Dr. Hayden.

Dr. Carla D. Hayden is CEO of the Enoch Pratt Free Library in Baltimore, Maryland, a position she has held since 1993. Dr. Hayden was nominated by President Obama to be a member of the National Museum and Library Services Board in January 2010 and was confirmed by the Senate in June 2010. Prior to joining the Pratt Library, Dr. Hayden was Deputy Commissioner and Chief Librarian of the Chicago Public Library from 1991 to 1993. She was an Assistant Professor for Library and Information Science at the University of Pittsburgh from 1987 to 1991. Dr. Hayden was Library Services Coordinator for the Museum of Science and Industry in Chicago from 1982 to 1987. She began her career with the Chicago Public Library as the Young Adult Services Coordinator from 1979 to 1982 and as a Library Associate and Children’s Librarian from 1973 to 1979. Dr. Hayden was President of the American Library Association from 2003 to 2004. In 1995, she was the first African American to receive Library Journal’s Librarian of the Year Award in recognition of her outreach services at the Pratt Library, which included an afterschool center for Baltimore teens offering homework assistance and college and career counseling. Dr. Hayden received a B.A. from Roosevelt University and an M.A. and Ph.D. from the Graduate Library School of the University of Chicago.

Midland County Public Library Unveils New Work By 2015 Library Artists

MIDLAND, TX – During this year’s winter break the Midland County Public Library has hosted the second annual Library Artist program featuring brothers Scott and Elliott Lunson at the Centennial Library. Library Artists Scott and Elliott have distributed over 120 free canvases, and art supplies to local residents.

Midland County ArtistsMidland County Artists3

Midland County Artists2

During the Library Artist program between December 18 and 30, over 3,085 patrons have visited the Centennial Library, and had an opportunity to visit with the artists, and see them at work. The brothers have stayed busy creating two unique large scale pieces of art, which will be dedicated at the programs conclusion December 30 at 3:45pm.

Members of the public are encourage to visit the Centennial Library December 30th between 10:00am and 4:00pm to see the new pieces of art as the artists complete their finishing touches. The few remaining canvases and art supplies will also be available free of charge.

Scott Lunson, is perhaps best known as the founder of Kamiposi – Midland’s contemporary art gallery at 510 S Big Spring. Scott was central in establishing the gallery which has given voice to regional contemporary artists through First Friday gallery openings that bring new collections art into the gallery each month. Elliott Lunson is an art teacher at Lee High School. In addition to exhibitions and shows, the works of both artists are seen in private collections regionally.

The Library Artist program has been made available free to the public through generous financial support from the Midland County Public Library Foundation, and the Arts Council of Midland.

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.

Save the Date: 31st Annual Texas Storytelling Festival in March 2016


31st Annual
Texas Storytelling Festival

March 10 – 13, 2016
Denton Civic Center
Denton, TX

Featuring Rev. Robert Jones, Minton Sparks, Eldrena Douma, and Antonio Sacre.

Rev. Robert Jones is a nationally known and featured storyteller, whose stories combine elements of music, humor, along with emotion, fact and fiction to convey the truths found in our shared culture.

Minton Sparks fuses music, poetry, and her intoxicating gift for storytelling. She paints word pictures of the rural South that put you square in the middle of the people and the places she knows like the back of her hand.

Eldrena Douma is a Native American storyteller. A Pueblo Indian, her experience as a storyteller began at a very young age on both the Laguna and Hopi tribal lands. Today, she travels throughout the United States, inspiring students and adults to listen, think, and read through stories of her personal experiences filled with wisdom and humor.

Antonio Sacre is an internationally touring storyteller, writer, and solo performance artist. He draw from an extensive repertoire that includes folk tales, myths and legends from around the world, focusing on Spanish-speaking countries.

Storytelling day concerts for adults and families. Evening story concerts for adults and children, ten and up.

Workshops for storytellers, teachers, librarians, councilors, parents, and members of religious institutions.

Free storytelling concerts for the public: Ghost Stories, Sacred Stories and Saturday family and youth activities.


For more information or to register,
(940) 380 – 9320

February 15 – Deadline for early bird registration. Save $35!
Single Concert Tickets are $10 at the door. Some events are free to the public.

Tejas Storytelling Association
P.O. Box 2806
Denton, TX 76202

(**Events with sign language interpreters for the deaf.)

Thursday, March 10
Ghost Stories “Witches’ Cauldron” (progressively scarier)**

Friday, March 11
Storytelling Concerts
Opening Concert of Featured Tellers**
The Original Recipe: Folk Tale Telling
Breaking Bread with Old Friends: John Henry Faulk Recipients
Regional Recipe: North Meets South/ South Meets North with Rev. Robert Jones
Rising Stars featuring 5 tellers from Affiliate Guilds
Evening Concert with Featured Tellers**

Other Events
Workshops all day
Story Swap
Sweet Retreat Ice Cream Social
Mini-World Music Dance Party!
Friday Nite Lite Dinner or Supper on Your Own

Saturday, March 12   
Storytelling Concerts
Family Concert**
Liars’ Contest: Bittersweet Taste of the Truth (Overcooked)**
Haute Cuisine: New Voices in the Kitchen
Fringe Storytelling Concert
Evening Concert with Featured Tellers**

Other Events
Kids Day Activities
Story Swap
“Just Chewing the Fat”: Talking Tales with Tom McDermott and friends
Talespinner Dinner and Silent Auction

Sunday, March 13
Labyrinth Walk
Master Class— Selecting and Mixing the Perfect Storytelling Ingredients    with Chef Antonio Sacre
Sacred Tales Concert**
Closing Concert with Featured Tellers**

Free Storytelling Concerts and Events for the Public
Thursday, March 10
7:00 pm – Ghost Stories “Witches’ Cauldron” (progressively scarier)**

Saturday, March 12
9:00 am – Family Storytelling Concert**
10:30 am Kid’s Day Activities: Meet the Tellers, Art, Stories, Workshops, Story Swap, and Lunch
3:15 pm – Fringe Storytelling Concert (Women’s Building)

Sunday, March 13
9:30 am – Sacred Tales Storytelling Concert**

Research Stew: The Spice that makes the Difference – Jaye McLaughlin and Fred Peters
Is the Ghost Story Dead? – Loren Niemi
Songs of Praise and Protest – Rev. Robert Jones Sr.
History, Mystery, Monsters & Myth: Stories and Science of the Earth’s Movements – Linda King Pruitt
Cooking Up Some Family Stories – Antonio Sacre
Burn Through Your Story – Minton Sparks
A Conversation with Eldrena Douma
Just Enough to Sign a Story – Nancy Simpson

Genealogy Roadshow coming to Houston this Fall

From a press release:


Boston MA, Providence RI, Ft. Lauderdale/Miami FL,

Houston TX, Los Angeles CA and Albuquerque, NM

Josh Taylor, Kenyatta Berry, Mary Tedesco, the PBS Network and the show’s producers invite Local & National Genealogy Associations, Vendors and Genealogist to participate in our Genealogy Roadshow.

The Genealogy Roadshow is looking for Local & National Genealogical Associations, Societies, Genealogy Vendors and Local Genealogist to be part of our show by exhibiting your products and services at our events. Come and get your message out to the public! We are offering a free tables and space along with immeasurable exposure!

The Genealogy Roadshow tapings provides you a unique opportunity to expand your database and increase your clientele. Bring with you any products for sale or display books, software, online services, or promotional information.

Season 3 of PBS’ GENEALOGY ROADSHOW is underway and will premiere nationally in summer of 2016. GENEALOGY ROADSHOW is part detective story, and part emotional journey. After participants are chosen, genealogy, history and DNA experts will use family heirlooms, letters, pictures, historical documents and other clues to hunt down more information. These answers will be revealed on camera before a local audience, in a historic building relevant to each city.

The dates are as follows:

Boston MA – Faneuil Hall – Saturday October 3rd
Providence, RI – Providence Public Library- Sunday October 4th
Ft. Lauderdale / Miami, FL – Location TBD – Sunday November 1st
Houston, TX – Location TDB – Saturday November 21st
Los Angeles, CA – Location TBD – Saturday December 5th
Albuquerque, NM – Location TBD – Saturday December 12th

Please note a commitment is required for each day from 8:00 AM to 6:30 PM. The people staffing the tables may work in shifts. Set up is at 8:00 AM and close at 6:30 PM or until taping is finished. Space is limited so reserve your spot now.

For more information please contact Lisa Hope at or call 323-839-6387.