2018 Building Block Award Winner Announced

“The children of Missouri have spoken, selecting Pug Meets Pig, written by Sue Lowell Gallion and illustrated by Joyce Wan, as the winner of the 2018 Missouri Building Block Picture Book Award. Over 22,000 preschoolers and kindergartners participated this year — which is up by about 3,000 from last year!”, announced 2018-2019 Building Block Awards Chair Brandi Hamlin in a recent email.

“The Missouri Building Block committee wants to thank all of the teachers, librarians, parents, and caregivers who read to their kids and helped them vote. Your support is what made this such a successful event! For more information about the Missouri Building Block Picture Book Award program, go to our website molib.org/awards/building-block-award,” continued Hamlin.

The committee plans to announce 2019 nominees in early February.

MLA Youth Services UnConference April 10, 2019

As of March 13, 2019, the Youth Services Unconference is full, registration is now closed.  ~MLA Webmaster 20190319

MLA Youth Services UnConference
10 Apr 2019: 10:00 AM – 4:00 PM
Daniel Boone Regional Library – Columbia Branch
100 W. Broadway
Columbia, MO 65203
Registration cost is FREE for MLA members, with a $10 lunch fee for non-MLA members.
Sponsored by the Youth Services Community of Interest (YSCI), Missouri Library Association.
An unconference is a series of workshops led by YOU, the attendees. Those participating in the unconference suggest topics of interest, and attendees then vote on their favorite topics. The following workshops are discussions among the attendees on those topics. The Youth Services UnConference is a flexible, personable way to focus on topics that matter to you and your libraries. You will also get to meet awesome librarians, exchange knowledge and have fun!
To register, follow this link: https://molib.wildapricot.org/event-3218101

MLA Featured Library Employee — Jim Coombs

Meet our most recent Featured Library Employee for the Missouri Library Association, Jim Coombs!

What is your name, your library, and your role at the library?

Jim Coombs, Missouri State University Meyer Library, Maps and GIS Librarian

What originally got you interested in working at a library?

I majored in geography as an undergraduate at Ball State University and used the map library’s resources. I decided that working in a map library would be the perfect job for me.

What keeps you coming back every day?

The reference service is my favorite part of library work. Also, I get to draw maps for professors’ books!

What’s challenging about your work?

Keeping up with the changes in computer mapping.

Has your work made you either curious, or passionate, or awestruck about something?

Yes, in my computer mapping work, I’m curious about the accuracy of the source data I use.

Who is one of your mentors?

David Cobb, who was Map Librarian at the University of Illinois when I had a 2-year internship there in 1978-80. It was my first professional library job after getting my Master’s in Map Librarianship and he taught and showed me how to manage a map library.

What book, author, artist, show, or music are you engaging with this week, either personally or professionally? Persuade us in one or two sentences that we should pick this up, too.

Brook Blevins’ three volume A History of the Ozarks offers a comprehensive history of the region. The first volume came out in summer 2018. Blevins tries to write history books that connect with common folks. He wants people in the Ozarks to know they have a valuable regional history of their own and take pride in it.

Is there anything else you’d like to share with us?

I went to China in 1985 as the only Maps & GIS specialist in an ALA delegation of 50 librarians. We toured libraries in Beijing, Xian, Chengdu and Shanghai. We also toured the Great Wall, the Forbidden City, and the buried army of terra cotta soldiers. It’s very hard to describe what we experienced compared to life in China today.  Back then, there was a heavy military presence and we experienced travel delays while they scrutinized our documents. We were stared at as the first Caucasian people the Chinese had seen. The only people who had cars were military and Government officials. Everyone else rode bicycles or walked. I described the experience as “I might as well have gone to Mars, because everything in the Chinese cultural experience was so completely different from what I grew up with in the U.S.” I still cherish the experience.


Would you like to nominate someone to be our next Featured Library Employee?  Examples could be:

…a new employee you’d like to introduce

…someone with a unique job or on a unique career path

…an employee you find inspirational

…a coworker whose gifts you wish were more widely known

…someone who’s “an institution” full of interesting stories

…a role that has a new focus or is reaching a new audience

…someone you’d like to make more visible to potential employers

Submit name(s) and contact information, along with place of employment, to Shannon Mawhiney at smawhiney@missouristate.edu.  We’ll do all the work of contacting; we just need you to connect us!

January MO INFO

Planning for the New Year? 

Check out the calendar of events and conference dates in the new issue of MO INFO.  This issue contains updates from area libraries and message from the MLA president, Erin Gray.

Also, meet Jim Coombs – this month’s Featured Librarian!

MO INFO 2019-01