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V53-N3-April 2016

The Courier – April 2016 Issue


President’s Letter
Report from the Membership Director
Report from the Programming Director

President’s Letter

Dear Friends,

Welcome to another edition of The Courier newsletter!

Since my last update, SLA Toronto has hosted three really fantastic events. They include a very informative session on collection development, a thought provoking article club considering user experience, and a less serious but unique session, an improv workshop to help attendees learn how to build relationships with their clients. Read more about these events in this edition of the newsletter!

I am truly honoured to announce that one of Toronto’s own will be recognized at this year’s SLA Annual Conference as an SLA Rising Star! CONGRATULATIONS Katie Cuyler!!! Katie is an intelligence strategist at Bennett Jones LLP. She is currently secretary of our Chapter and communications chair of the SLA Competitive Intelligence Division. Previously, she served as treasurer and conference planning committee chair of the SLA Competitive Intelligence Division, which honoured her with its Outstanding Advisory Board Leadership Award in 2015.

On a more serious note, some of you may have seen the press release from the SLA board rebuking North Carolina’s new anti-LGBT law. SLA had planned to hold the 2018 Annual Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina. In another press release dated April 15th, it was announced that the SLA Board is giving North Carolina’s legislature until May 25th to rescind the law, otherwise SLA will decide whether or not to move the conference. More details will be forthcoming in the months that follow.

Turning our attention back to this year’s conference in Philly, there is still time to register. Also, back by popular demand, we will be organizing another conference buddy program in the coming weeks for all of the conference first timers from Toronto! Please keep a look out for the sign-up form coming soon.

And as always, please remember that you can always send me your comments and suggestions of how we can make your Toronto Chapter better!

All the best,

—Christine DeLuca

Report from the Membership Director

Please join me in welcoming the following new and returning members who joined our Chapter from March – April 2016:

Brian Morrison (Toronto, ON)
Diane Baksa (Mississauga, ON)
Jessica Shiers (Toronto, ON)
Kelsi-Ann Weist (Scarborough, ON)
Leah Strudwick (Toronto, ON)
Ljiljana Radman (Mississauga, ON)
Nicole Blain (Toronto, ON)
Tammy McCabe (Whitby, ON)
Yasmin Khan (Mississauga, ON)

I look forward to meeting each of you at an upcoming SLA Toronto event!


—Kate Johnson
Membership Director

Report from the Programming Director

On March 31, SLA Toronto members enjoyed a panel discussion on Collection Development in Special Libraries. Max Dionisio, Christina Kim, and Leah Swift talked about proactive vs. reactive acquisition, vendor negotiation, and vital collection management strategies (weeding!), among many other things. The span of viewpoints represented (of museum library, non-profit charitable organization, and architecture firm, respectively) resulted in an excellent dialogue around the collection challenges and opportunities facing librarians, as content grows progressively more digital and service in many cases supersedes space. Thanks to the panelists, moderator Holly Inglis, and everyone who attended for the thought-provoking conversation.

On April 14, a group of us met at the Bedford Academy for an opportunity to examine ideas around digital and physical User Experience from the perspective of information professionals. Host Aurelia Engstrom led participants in a discussion around the concepts of “user experience”, “usability”, and “usable”, as well as human-centered design and potential methods of assessment. We had an instructive, engaging talk, and were almost not distracted by the Blue Jays pre-game happening around us at all.

On April 28, the Toronto Chapter was delighted to present Improv for Info Pros! We played word association games, finished each other’s sentences, improvised stories and scenes, and got to know a new side of each other. After an evening of laughter and letting our guards down, we all left a little happier, and a little readier to say “Yes, and…” in our personal and professional lives. 10/10 would do again. Below are some pics from the evening – click on each photo to see a larger version.

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Coming up in May, SLA Toronto looks forward to:

  • our annual panel discussion What I Wish I Knew Five Years Ago, at Hot House on May 12
  • a talk by James King, Information Architect and Branch Chief, on Tech Strategy at the NIH, at Lillian H. Smith library on May 17, and
  • Reference Practice for Job-seekers, a database workshop facilitated by law librarian Jane Freeman, at Bennett Jones on May 24.

And finally, we are always looking for input on what you, the members of the SLA Toronto community, want to see from the Programming Committee. Do you have professional development content that you’d like to deliver via a webinar or a live presentation? Do you have a fun idea for a networking event or an Article Club? Please send any and all ideas along to me at leah.strudwick @

We  look forward to hearing from you!

—Leah Strudwick
Programming Director

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