The Special Libraries Association

Archive | Communications Archive

Asking your employer to help you attend the SLA NY Conference and Expo 2014

Sometimes it is difficult obtaining permission to attend conferences and even more difficult to get your employer to give you the funding. SLA NY member Hildy Dworkin shares her top tips for making this happen:

One big advantage to SLA NY’s conference on September 18th is the location. If you normally attend the annual conference, but did not attend this year, use this opportunity to point out the cost savings – as well as a low fee for registration, there’s no need for transportation or hotel expenses. In addition, you will only be spending one day away from work.

I need to write justifications for just about everything I want whether it is requesting new items for my library or to attend conferences, I have to include the benefits to my organization. I have used a variety of SLA resources to help get me started.

Excerpts from SLA’s sample employer letter

“… in today’s information- and innovation-intensive world, we have to be able to continually redefine ourselves to meet the challenges we face.”

“My job as an information professional is to ensure that everyone here at [organization] has the information, insights and knowledge to make good decisions and help us gain a competitive advantage.”

“[The conference] will help me do my job better by providing me with opportunities to share ideas and best practices, meet industry experts, and expand my professional horizons.”

“…return…with plenty of practical ideas I can put to work right away.”

Address the needs of your organization

I recommend taking a look at “The Evolving Value of Information Management”, the product of a joint study SLA conducted with the Financial Times. The report includes many insights into the needs of our patrons—particularly those at the top of our organizations. The findings include the top five essential attributes of today’s information professional executives’ top five cited challenges. I believe both are useful when composing a good memo:

Essential Attributes of an Information Professional Executives’ Challenges
Communicate your value  Information overload
Understand the drivers  Filtering / sifting through information found
Manage the process  Relevancy of information
Keep up on technical skills  Up-to-date /most recent information
Provide decision-ready information  Speed / timeliness of information


We should always remember to include and reflect these attributes in day-to-day operations, justifying attending conferences, or requesting new items or technology for the information center. Of course we know how conferences benefit us—but it is imperative that you emphasize the benefits to your organization. Answer the question “how will what you learn at the conference meet the information challenges in your organization?” You can access the report here:

In my conference memos, I always name specific program sessions and connect to the outcomes to your work. Briefly describe a program and name a specific project for which you will be even better equipped to handle after attending that session. Some phrases I have used are:

  • In this program I will learn practical techniques in order to broaden our library’s services to underserved divisions within the Agency.
  • The session will offer practical strategies and techniques on how to integrate them into the knowledge ecology of organizations to better serve the research needs of the Agency while preserving its history.
  • The panel will share practical tools on subjects such as marketing and obtaining information resources with little or no budget, and offer solutions to questions posed by attendees.
  • Referring to Expos: I will have the opportunity to make hands-on assessments of the latest tools. This is of utmost importance in order to enable me to gain access to materials and enhance information management techniques that will benefit the research activities of the Agency quickly and in a cost-effective manner.

Other resources I have found helpful in finding language to incorporate into a variety of proposals:

Over to you…

To help you prepare your pitch, you can download the full agenda for the Conference and Expo on September 18th from

All the registration information is at

The conference webpage also has details of the companies who will be showcasing their products as part of the Expo, so don’t forget to check that out too:

And good luck – we hope to see you there!



Posted in Communications ArchiveComments Off on Asking your employer to help you attend the SLA NY Conference and Expo 2014

Call for Nominations: SLA-NY Chapter Awards

From Janet Peros, SLA NY Awards Chair

It is time once again to recognize and honor the leaders in our chapter.   Please consider the contributions of your colleagues to the  chapter this past year and submit a nomination on their behalf.

Please see descriptions of each award below, to recognize members for special  contributions  to the Chapter in particular and/or the Association and profession  in general.  These awards will be presented at the New York Chapter’s  Annual Meeting and Awards Presentation in October.

The Mergent Distinguished Service Award serves to recognize members of the New York Chapter who have a track record of long service to the Chapter in particular and perhaps also to the Association in general. The Distinguished Service Award can be given to more than one individual in the same year. An individual can receive the Distinguished Service Award only one time over the course of a career.

The Mergent Outstanding Achievement Award is presented to members of the New York Chapter to recognize recent outstanding  work on specific projects and activities (within approximately the last  two years). The Outstanding Achievement Award can be given to one person or to a group of people who worked together on a project. An individual can receive The Outstanding Achievement Award more  than once over the course of a career.

The President’s Award provides an opportunity to recognize members of the New York Chapter for outstanding contributions to SLA and/or for professional excellence. The President’s Award is intentionally somewhat less well-defined than the other two in order to give the Board more flexibility in selecting individuals to receive it. The President’s Award can be given to more than one individual in the same year.

The Dana Gordon Innovation Award  is available to SLA NY Chapter  members who have been in the profession 10 years or more and have  demonstrated throughout his/her career, an enterprising spirit through the development or creation of initiatives that have consistently broken new ground as an information professional or as a volunteer of SLA NY.

Click here for information about our 2013 New York Chapter Award winners

Please submit your nominations by Friday, August 1, 2014 together with some explanatory information including the nominee’s activities, accomplishments and contributions which demonstrate 
why you feel this person is deserving of this specific award. More 
than one nomination is welcome, so please nominate your colleagues 
or yourself!

Please send nominations for SLA New York Chapter Awards to Janet Peros, Chair SLA NY Awards Committee

SLA NY Awards Committee

Matt Brown
Meredith Brown
Janet Peros
Stacey Pilson



Posted in Communications ArchiveComments Off on Call for Nominations: SLA-NY Chapter Awards

Bridge to Excellence (B2E)

Bridge to Excellence (B2E)

SLA-NY Wants YOU for issue #2 of Bridge 2 Excellence!


Add your voice to the new online magazine from SLA-NY!

SLA-New York’s Bridge to Excellence newsletter is seeking contributors for June 2014. We’re looking for articles, interviews, reviews, graphics, and event write-ups from library and information professionals of all fields and career-levels.

Issue #2 out June 2014.

Contact us at with your ideas.



The Editors

Rachel Finn
Chris Lillis Meatto
Helen Sobolik


Posted in Communications ArchiveComments Off on Bridge to Excellence (B2E)


Call for Volunteers

The New York Chapter of the Special Libraries Association


From Donna Severino, SLA-NY Director at Large  

SLA NY would like to provide you with the opportunity to be a part of a dynamic and diverse group of information professionals committed to making a difference in the profession.  We are currently seeking volunteers for several SLA NY committees.

No experience is necessary.

You can be a student of the profession.
You can be new to the profession.
You can be a seasoned professional.

The only requirement is that you be a current member of the Chapter.

Volunteer Opportunities Available NOW:

Awards Committee Member
Finance and Fundraising Committee Member
Hospitality Committee Member
Membership Committee Member
Student Scholarship Committee Member
Student Scholarship Committee Chair

If you are interested in volunteering for any of these opportunities, please contact Donna Severino, SLA NY Director at Large.



Posted in Communications ArchiveComments Off on Call for Volunteers

Public Relations Committee – Join Us

SLA New York is recruiting members

For the Public Relations Committee

 If you volunteered in 2012

We want you back

And if you would like to join

This Committee for 2014

We Certainly want to Welcome

You to the Committee

Join this valuable committee

Dedicated to advocating on behalf of

Our chapter and profession

Meet and liaise with other

Information professionals in

The New York Metropolitan area.

If you are interested

Please contact

Pam Rollo

Or call 212-438-2577

Posted in Communications ArchiveComments Off on Public Relations Committee – Join Us


Welcome to Our New Members!


Anne Dontzin

Kreya Jackson

Joshua Ranger

Alexandra Small

Ralph Tamlyn

Posted in Communications ArchiveComments Off on Welcome to Our New Members!