Birmingham Public Library Board Minutes
November 21, 2013
Central Library Boardroom
Meeting Called By
Gwendolyn R. Amamoo, President
Type of Meeting
Regular Board Meeting
Trustees: Gwendolyn R. Amamoo, President; Georgia Morgan Blair, Vice-President; Patty A. Pilkerton, Kimberly Richardson, Samuel Rumore, Dora Sims, Judge Scott Vowell, Katrina Watson, Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch
Call To Order
- Meeting called to order by President Gwendolyn R. Amamoo.
- Kimberly Richardson gave the invocation.
- Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch moved the approval of the agenda. Judge Vowell seconded the motion, which passed.
- Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch moved the approval of the consent agenda adding, "All BPL Library branches will be closed on Inventory Day, Thursday, December 19, 2013." Dora Sims seconded the motion, which passed.
Star of the Month
- Dr. Regina Ammon was recognized as the "Star of the Month" for her hard work as the Friends Board President and also as a Birmingham Public Library Board liaison to the Friends Board. Dr. Ammon was presented with a certificate of recognition.
- Melinda Shelton was recognized as the "Star of the Month" for her hard work and commitment to the Library. Ms. Shelton was presented with a certificate of recognition.
David Russell, Joseph Black, John Meehan, Magnolia Cook, George McCall, Doris Smith, and Reverend Artis W. Murphy spoke in opposition to the closing of the East Ensley Library. (see attached)
Terry Oglesby, City Architect
- The Pratt City Library is close to completion and should be ready to open mid-December.
- The Inglenook Library renovation is going smoothly.
Advocacy, Fundraising, and Development Committee
An Advocacy, Fundraising, and Development Committee meeting was held on Tuesday, November 12, 2013 at 3:30 p.m. in the Board room. (minutes attached)
- Dora Sims moved the approval of the following recommendations: 1. renew the Freedom to Read membership ($100.00). This will be paid from the Board Fund; 2. Library directory to be revised in January/February 2014; 3. Past Board members/ exiting Board members be recognized at the Pratt City Library grand opening; 4. $500.00, which will come from the Board Fund, will be used to fund the Mayor/City Council Appreciation luncheon; 5. Jennifer Neely will send an invoice to all Library Board members that have not donated to the Board Fund for 2013; 6. Renee Blalock to be named the Library Board liaison to the Friends Board. Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch seconded the motion, which passed.
Finance and Budget Update
- Finance reports are in your packet. Please let me know if you have any questions.
Item for Board Approval
- We inadvertently put an incorrect date in the calendar for Inventory Day. The correct date should be December 19. This is our annual work day that is scheduled on the day that falls three weeks after Thanksgiving so that no material is due on any item belonging to any library in the county. I am requesting that the Board approve this change in the date.
Update of Library and Director Activities
- I notified the City Council and the Mayor's office immediately after the board meeting that library service in Ensley would be consolidated into the Ensley Branch and that East Ensley would be closed when the Pratt City Library reopens. I also sent letters with the board's resolution attached to the neighborhood leaders to whom we have spoken about this issue. I have had visits from two people to discuss the consolidation of library service in Ensley and several further phone calls. Most of the people I have talked to understand after I explain our reasons. We have had inquiries from one local group who may want to use the East Ensley Branch building. I have also notified the County that East Ensley will no longer be available for polling during elections so that they will have time to seek another location for this purpose.
The IMLS meeting here at Central will take place on Friday, November 15 and is open to the public. Members of that board will also attend the annual Shuttlesworth Human Rights Award Dinner presented by the Birmingham Civil Rights Institute. I hope that some of our board members will have been able to attend this public meeting. Angela Hall prepared a PowerPoint presentation featuring BPL and the BCRI, the host institutions and the other museums and attractions in Birmingham. Several staff members of the Alabama Public Library Service have indicated they will attend the meeting and we have forwarded invitations to all the other museums and institutions that fall under IMLS in our area.
- I have spoken to Alex Lamis, the architect who will be conducting the planning process for renovation of the Central Library. He plans to make his first visit to Birmingham in early December to begin the process. I am very excited to finally begin this process.
- Selected libraries will be housing public notice materials relating to the Land Use Plan Maps of the Birmingham Comprehensive Plan for the period of Monday, November 18 through January 27. The Central Library Government Documents Department will have all of the maps and the following locations will have maps for the communities they are in or near: Avondale, East Lake, Eastwood, Ensley, Five Points West, North Birmingham, Powderly, Southside, Springville Road, Titusville, and West End.
- The Heart Gallery program on Wednesday, November 6 was a very nice event. The library first floor was filled with families who have adopted, social workers who aid in the process, officials of the Alabama Department of Human Resources, and volunteers for the Heart Gallery and other agencies involved in this process. It was inspiring as are the photographs of children eligible for adoption that hang in the First Floor Gallery in the East Building. I hope that this group places their exhibit in the BPL again in the future. If you have not looked at these wonderful pictures please do. You will be amazed by these children's stories.
Wowbrary, BPL's latest online news service sends you free, weekly emails featuring the most recent acquisitions available in all the public libraries in Jefferson County. You can be among the first to know about all of the wonderful new books, DVDs, and CDs that the libraries acquire each week. Subscribe at http://www.bplonline.org/resources/Wowbrary.aspx
Gifts, Grants, Awards, and Donations
- The BPL Foundation launched its first annual appeal campaign last week. You should have received the notice at your home. We will have extra copies of the mailing at the board meeting and are asking that you take some and give or mail them to your friends, family, business contacts, etc. If mailing yourself, please note that even though they have a postal code in the top left corner, because you will be sending yours one-at-a-time and not bulk, you will need to put a stamp on them. We have begun to receive some donations and hope that soon they will come in a flood. We appreciate any help and support you can give to this campaign.
- The Eastwood/Irondale Rotary contributed $1,000 to the Eastwood Branch Library to purchase materials for the collection.
- The Strain Foundation gave $10,000 to the campaign with no restrictions on its use.
- No Bards and Brews in December—it’s the only month without one.
- Youth author Jan Brett will be at the Central Library on November 19. With over thirty seven million books in print, she is one of the nation's foremost author illustrators of children's books. This will be part of her national bus tour. See picture of the bus below. We are expecting huge crowds.
Smart Investing, the finance education series which will be called Making Cents locally, will continue through May of 2014. A full calendar of events may be found at http://making-cents.org/. This grant funded project is designed to educate the public on personal finance topics and is a collaboration between libraries in Jefferson County and libraries in Shelby County. The full schedule is also available on http://www.birmingham365.org.
Exhibits in Central’s Gallery
- Heart Gallery Alabama (HGA) which is a state wide non-profit agency whose mission is to help find forever families for Alabama's foster children. They recruit professional photographers to volunteer to take the children's portraits, and then take these professional grade photographs around the state to museums, malls, galleries, libraries, and other locations in order to increase awareness of the need for foster and adoptive families in the state of Alabama. This is the first time BPL has hosted this group. This exhibit will be on the First Floor at Central October 31-November 27.
- “Birmingham 2013: Remembering the Movement That Changed the World, “An exhibition curated by Dr. William Colvin, November 4 - December 27 Beginning in the mid-1950s and through the early 1970s, the visibility of African Americans, women and other disadvantaged citizens in the news media sensitized viewers and readers to the difficulties of survival in southern and northern, urban and rural, and distant and local communities. This exhibition portrays this American experience.
If you would like to support the restoration of Miss Iwate, our Japanese Friendship Doll by making a donation, go to http://www.bplonline.org/programs/Iwate.aspx.
- Dial a Story—Call (205) 226-3650 to listen to a great story over the phone!
Be sure to check the BPL Blog at http://bplolinenews.blogspot.com/ to keep up with all the activities going on at this library. You can subscribe and have any updates sent to your email if you have not already done so.
Sign up for the BPLinks newsletter at http://www.bplonline.org/programs/
- Renee Blalock made it possible for Sam Rumore to take a tour of the newest Presidential Library, which is the George Washington Library in Mt. Vernon.
- Dora Sims attended a group meeting, with others from around the United States, at the National Museum which was very interesting. Mrs. Sims has attended several other Library events in the month of November and stated that it is a great opportunity to be able to attend these events.
- Ms. Richardson attended the opening reception of the Civil Rights exhibit.
- Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch canceled the November 13, 2013 Policies, Procedures, and By-Laws Committee meeting in lieu of Councilor Maxine Parker Herring's death. Mrs. Welch also noted that "The Watson's Go to Birmingham" book was read in several other countries, including India. Mrs. Welch also voiced that partnerships with the Birmingham Public Library are very important.
- Gwendolyn Amamoo acknowledged the passing of Councilor Maxine Herring Parker and also shared a resolution that was written in memory of her. Mrs. Amamoo also offered condolences to Sam Rumore and his family over the passing of his sister-in-law and also congratulated Gwendolyn B. Guster Welch. Mrs. Welch's son, Eric Welch Guster, has recently become a CNN coorespondent.
Irene S. Blalock, Secretary