We asked candidates for Core Board Director-at-Large to answer some questions before the spring election opens on March 13. Voting will close on April 5, with results announced on April 12.
Two directors-at-large will be elected to serve 3-year terms (2023-26).
Kellie Barbato is the Director of Library Services at Roberts Wesleyan University in Rochester (NY).
- What has Core brought to your career, and what would you bring to Core were you elected to this position?
Core has brought inspiration to my career via the many amazing colleagues I’ve met and worked with as a result of joining. I had a wonderful mentor in the LLAMA mentoring program (pre-the formation of Core), I had a great time working on the Core New Members Interest Group for 2 years with 3 fabulous colleagues, and I am currently developing a webinar with a colleague I moderated an eForum with last summer. I would love to bring my enthusiasm and love of connecting people to Core!
- What does equity, diversity, inclusion, and accessibility (EDIA) mean to you personally and what should it mean for the Core division professionally?
EDIA is a crucial part of my career as a librarian. I grew up with a father who was a triple amputee and a wheelchair athlete, and in his entire life, he never stopped fighting for those with disabilities to have both seats at the tables in the most important rooms AND voices to make their needs known. I want to be sure I am aware of those in the room who are from marginalized populations and amplify those voices when considering any decisions that need to be made. Their voices must be hear or we are not doing our jobs.
- Member engagement is critical for the life and health of the Core division. How do you plan to sustain and grow Core’s membership?
I would love to find a way to fund a scholarship for those who find it difficult to pay ALA and Core annual dues. Fewer and fewer institutions are funding memberships for their librarians these days and if we want to be sure we have representation in Core that aligns with a focus on EDIA, we must make Core more accessible financially.
- What is one thing you will do to make Core more welcoming to new members?
I think it would be great to pair incoming members with “veteran” member mentors to help them get the lay of the land. Mentoring is an easy way to serve the profession and hopefully there are current Core members who would want to volunteer in this capacity!
- Core is the product of a recent merger of multiple divisions. Is there one aspect of the division you believe could benefit from better cohesion, and how might you go about fostering improvement in that area?
I am unsure about this at this time, but I would love to learn more, specifically about LITA and ALCTS since LLAMA was my gateway to Core, in order to identify where more cohesion is needed. Finding common ground and improving communication are two ways to move in that direction once needs are identified.
- What’s one thing you think Core is doing particularly well and that you would intend to support or enhance?
Core is advertising itself well. I would love to continue that energy and build on it. It’s always good advertising to feature different members on social media and the division blog!
- What’s one thing that you think the Core division should change?
I am unsure about this at this time as I have a lot to learn about the inner workings of Core! I look forward to the opportunity to do so, should I be elected. I am someone who is not afraid to ask the hard questions and challenged established processes when needed.
- What do you believe would benefit most from active state/national/international advocacy from the Core division specifically?
Currently, censorship and attacks on intellectual freedom are at the forefront of my mind as an information professional. Core should take up that cause and work to advocate for legislative measures in states where libraries and librarians are being attacked for simply doing what libraries have always done: providing information to the public.
- What is one thing you want to make happen while on the Core Board?
I would love to bring back to life some form of the LLAMA mentoring program as I benefited greatly from it!
- How will you pursue collaboration between sections of Core, and perhaps even with other ALA divisions?
I love meeting and getting to know new colleagues in the librarianship profession. I would love to attend meetings of the boards of other divisions to meet those fine folks and learn what they are up to in their areas.
Kellie’s Personal Statement
I self-identify as a “Core fangirl!” I would love to be part of the continued development of this newly-formed division through serving as a Director-at-large on the Core Board of Directors; there is much work to be done in establishing Core both as a division within ALA and within librarianship in the United States. I greatly benefitted from LLAMA before the merge with LITA and ALCTS and I would greatly value the opportunity to learn more about the technology and technical services aspects of library work. I am inspired by our colleagues who have laid the groundwork for the creation of Core and would be honored to carry the torch forward by bringing my gifts of leadership, empathy, developing others, and advocating to the table. I want to work with like-minded colleagues to make Core known and loved within ALA!
Thank you, Kellie!
The other candidates running for Director-at-Large are: