Since 1940!

V53-N4-June 2016

The Courier – June 2016 Issue


President’s Letter
Report from the Membership Director
Report from the Programming Director
SLA Conference Debut

President’s Letter

Dear Friends,

Welcome to another edition of The Courier newsletter!

Since my last update, SLA Toronto has hosted six fun and informative events and the SLA conference has taken place in Philadelphia. Look out for more Toronto programming later this summer!

I am really excited to announce, in yet another edition of The Courier, that one of Toronto’s own was awarded the SLA LMD 2016 Karen J. Switt Leadership Award at this year’s annual conference! CONGRATULATIONS Zena Applebaum!!!! Zena is the Director of Competitive Intelligence at Bennett Jones LLP. An SLA member since 2010, Zena is also a member of LMD, Legal and CI Divisions. She was the 2015 Chair of the CI Division and is probably best known throughout SLA for her CI expertise and insight. Zena generously donates her time and knowledge to helping other SLA members learn about competitive intelligence.

Also at the conference, attendees were introduced to Amy Lestition Burk, SLA’s new Executive Director. She spoke during the opening session and introduced her new staff and the new corporate structure of SLA headquarters. Her comments were positive and she expressed her optimism for SLA’s future. Tom Rink, the president of SLA, announced that the 2018 Annual Conference will no longer take place in Charlotte, North Carolina. SLA staff have been tasked with finding a new location. More details will be forthcoming shortly.

I would also like to take this opportunity to remind you that all SLA listservs will be shut down shortly. All SLA Toronto Members have been transferred to the new SLA online community called SLA Connect ( Please remember if you are not a SLA Toronto member, you can follow us on Facebook at and on Twitter at @slatoronto for announcements and to engage with our members. You can also check our website for upcoming events and newsletters.

And as always, please remember that you can 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 May – June 2016:

C. Jennifer Lee (Toronto, ON)
Jeri Ross (Toronto, ON)
Katharine Matte (Toronto, ON)
Nancy Birch (Toronto, ON)
Rebecca Jones (Thornhill, ON)
Ryan Johnston (Ottawa, 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 May 12, SLA Toronto held our annual What I Wish I Knew Five Years Ago panel discussion, at Hot House restaurant. New Information Professionals Program Coordinator Jessica Hanley led esteemed panelists Eileen Lewis, Emily Cox, Heather Bennett, Katie Cuyler, and Meg Carruth in a thoughtful discussion of early career successes and slip-ups, as well as strategies for smooth career transitions. Thank you to the First Five Years Committee for organizing, to the panelists for sharing their experiences, and to everyone who showed up for participating in the discussion.

On May 17, we were treated to a talk by James King, Information Architect and Branch Chief, on Technology Strategy at the National Institutes of Health. Unfazed by some initial technical difficulties, James delivered an inspiring talk on the Custom Information Solutions and Technology Hub initiatives currently underway at the NIH research library. He was also instrumental in ensuring that the simultaneous webcast of the presentation went off without a hitch, thank goodness.

On May 24, job seekers enjoyed SLA Toronto’s first ever hands-on database workshop, facilitated by Jane Freeman, Katie Thomas, Katie Cuyler, Christine DeLuca, and Zena Applebaum. Attendees received guided tours of commonly used business and legal research databases, and had the opportunity to try answering examples of reference questions one might encounter in a corporate library setting. This Speed Database-ing event was a great success, and we hope to offer an encore session in the future.

On June 7, a group of current and former volunteers gathered at Pogue Mahone for the biennial Volunteer Appreciation event, in celebration of the innumerable contributions of volunteers to SLA Toronto’s boards and committees. Our community would not achieve anywhere near the success it does without volunteer engagement, and our sincere thanks goes out to everyone who has lent their support in one way or another.

On June 21, the First Five Years Committee hosted the annual Post-Conference Dinner at Earls on King. SLA Toronto President Christine DeLuca and SLA Chapter Cabinet Chair Kim Silk shared their experiences of the 2016 Conference in Philadelphia. Kim updated us on what’s happening at SLA HQ, especially how the sale of SLA HQ’s building has improved the organization’s financial standing, and the group had a lively discussion about where the 2018 conference should be held (i.e. closer to Toronto!). Overall, an enjoyable and informative conversation for those of us who weren’t able to attend this year’s conference.

As usual, 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

SLA Conference Debut

The following is the thoughts and impressions of a first-time attendee of the Annual SLA Conference

This trip has been profound in the ability to slow down, be present, learn to listen deeply and experience the magic of connectivity in Philadelphia. Requiring openness to be a little non-traditional and integrating this visit with conference and non-conference participation. The journey begins with a great night’s sleep at a lovely Airbnb historic row house with reminiscence and hospitality of that of a close friend.

Travelling by subway into the city centre, photographing and mentally archiving the nuances and style. Remaining comfortable from preparation of pre–conference webinars, SLA Connect posts, local advice, coffee and the trusty conference mobile app. The anticipation met with a Love sign, multitude of public art, friendly city guides, hotel concierge assistance, SLA conference staff guidance and soon to be regularly attended Reading Terminal Market.

After registration and starting ribbon acquisitions, conference mode of being present at sessions, meetings, vendor demos and socials begins. Asking questions, note taking, listening with follow up emails, LinkedIn and Twitter connections. Take a moment, to sip the cool sponsored water, smile good morning to new face and ponder on the artful hallways. And at least once slip away, in the later afternoon with a friend or yourself to a historic Liberty site, cultural museum, Pride festival, Parisian style café, or a quiet local bar with local ease and price.

Acknowledging this conference functions in the midst of all the association changes, adjustments and anxiety. Many, including conference veterans, remain positive and objective. From conference planners meeting to session to socials, leadership appears responsive to members concerns and improving. In the absence of the Canadian social, the international members gathering, LMD evening in hip jazz bar and IT dance party allows members to continue to meet more on an international scale in an inclusive relaxed and festive spaces.

Although, not possible to attend all planned events and be functional at the same time. Being available at required meetings and flexible with other sessions and open for impromptu networking proves mutually beneficial. Realizing this conference is the first of many and after all the investment in preparation, engagement and cost, it is rest, recovery and reflection that adds irreplaceable return and value.

Hoping to see you in Phoenix!
—Kejo Buchanan
SLA Toronto member; Chair, EPRAC; Chair, Information Systems, IT Division; SLA 2017 Data Caucus Planner

Follow us!

facebook logo twitter logo

Follow @slatoronto on Twitter

Information Outlook – SLA’s Bimonthly Online Magazine

Information Outlook