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Report from the LLNE Education Committee (October 2020)

Report from the LLNE Education Committee
Co-Chairs Jessica Panella & Maureen Quinlan

The Law Library at the University of Connecticut School of Law graciously agreed to host a virtual fall 2020 LLNE Conference. The topic was Dismantling Bias. It was the third virtual LLNE conference. LLNE had hosted a spring 2020 virtual meeting in April and the fall 2018 conference was a webinar. Plans are underway for conferences during 2021.

LLNE Communications Committee Report (October 2020)

Your committee co-chairs, Sara and Ellen have been busy planning a full slate of content for this upcoming year. We’ve had so much fun seeing everyone’s pets in our Zoom meetings we decided to launch a new blog post series introducing members of the Executive Board through interviews with their pets. You can also look forward to regularly scheduled blog updates from committees, a new Facebook page, and a few fun virtual social events. We also want to hear from YOU, our members! We welcome suggestions for new or improved communication channels, feedback on your communication likes and dislikes, and committee volunteers to work on special projects!

LLNE Service Committee Report (October 2020)

With the SNELLA Service Committee, we undertook two projects in conjunction with the Fall Meeting.  First, is a transcription project hosted on the Library of Congress website.  Members are encouraged to go to any of the following sites and transcribe historical documents to make them more accessible to the public.

The committees are also asking members to donate to the RE∙Center, an organization that works to promote racial equality in education.  For more information on the RE∙Center, visit https://re-center.org/.  To make a donation, go to https://bit.ly/LLNE_RECenter, select “I would like to dedicate this donation”, and type in LLNE Service Project.  As part of our donation drive, LLNE will be hosting a Trivia Night on October 28th at 7:30 pm EST via Zoom.  The event will be hosted by TTodd and prizes will be sponsored by Lexis.  Registration information will be sent out soon.

LLNE Technology Committee Report (October 2020)

The technology committee continues to maintain the website and listserv. Recent activities include, reverting website to previous version when updating a plug-in caused a crash, working with membership committee & treasurer to get memberships renewed, llne.org accounts updated, & mail-list updated.

Meet LLNE’s President: An exclusive interview with Boaty McBoatface about life with Nicole Dyszlewski

Hi, LLNE members! My name is Boaty McBoatface Dyszlewski and I am the LLNE’s “first” dog. My mom is Nicole the current President of LLNE and the Head of Reference, Instruction, & Engagement at Roger Williams University School of Law Library. I was interviewed this October by the pup-arazzi, the co-chairs of the LLNE Communications Committee. They will be presenting interviews with the pets of the LLNE Executive Board in an attempt to allow LLNE members to get to know the board better. Here is their first interview and I am pleased to present a transcript of our conversation:

Ellen: Hi, Boaty McBoatface. Thanks for sitting down with us today.

Sara: Thank you for granting us this exclusive interview.

Ellen: We want to get to know the real Nicole better and we thought we could start by asking you a few questions.

Sara: What does Nicole do for fun?

Boaty: Nicole really likes to talk. She really likes to talk. She also likes to play board games, watch horror movies, read books about serial killers, and she is an iced tea snob. She also collects Presidential Pez dispensers and loves to travel. Her most recent, pre-COVID trip was to Poland.

Ellen: What is your favorite thing about Nicole?

Boaty: She is a really big thinker. And she saved me from a shelter in New Orleans. So really I have 2 favorites.

Sara: What is your least favorite thing about Nicole?

Boaty: This is easy. I have two. One is her weird obsession with Justin Bieber. She says it’s ironic but I don’t know. The other is that every Halloween she dresses me up in a costume. This is my low point every year. I have tried to explain to her that this is undignified for a dog of my age and stature but she doesn’t relent. Look at the pictures. I’m clearly miserable.

Ellen: What is Nicole’s favorite guilty pleasure?

Boaty: Nicole is an unabashed fan of reality tv so I don’t think I could call that her guilty pleasure. I think I would say her guilty pleasure is Jason Derulo. Did you know that he has a greatest hits album? I do.

Sara: We are down to our final question, if Nicole won the lottery, what would she do with the money?

Boaty: We have discussed this at length so I am confident in my answer. Nicole is really passionate about deconstructing the prison industrial complex, so she would use funds to work towards that. She would also buy me a puppy, she promised!

Sara: Thank you for your time today! Next month we will be speaking with Allegra, Andante, and Parker Frentzen

LLNE Fall Service Project

The LLNE and SNELLA Service Committees are happy to announce two ways for you to give back in conjunction with the Virtual Fall 2020 Meeting on Dismantling Bias. 

First, you can donate to the RE∙Center, an organization that works to promote racial equality in education.  The RE∙Center offers anti-racism programming to students, educators, and the community.  For more information on the RE∙Center, visit https://re-center.org/.  To make a donation, go to https://interland3.donorperfect.net/weblink/weblink.aspx?name=E331556&id=1 select “I would like to dedicate this donation”, and type in LLNE Service Project.   

Hold onto your receipt!  Soon, we will be announcing a great virtual event to raise funds for Re-Center and we want you to be part of it.  More information to come… 

The committees are also promoting a number of transcription projects through the Library of Congress.  The transcription process is easy and just a few pages can make a huge difference in discovery and education.  Check out the following transcription projects: 

Click on a link, choose a page, and start typing away.  Before you know you will be submitting pages that will be more accessible to everyone.  What are you waiting for!  Get transcribing.   

If you have any questions, please contact the LLNE Service Committee chair at jessica.almeida@umassd.edu. 

LLNE & SNELLA Present “Dismantling Bias” Fall 2020 Virtual Meeting

The University of Connecticut School of Law Library is proud to host the LLNE & SNELLA Fall 2020 Virtual Conference on October 16, 2020. The conference is free to attend and registration is now open.

As law libraries continue to develop programs and initiatives relating to equity, diversity, and inclusion, the conference will focus on manifestations of bias within law libraries and the role of libraries in dismantling that bias. Sessions will increase participants’ knowledge of bias, deepen their understanding of different forms of bias, and identify biases within law libraries and collections. Being an election year as well as the 100th anniversary of the ratification of the 19th Amendment, the conference will also examine biases and barriers to voting, as well as libraries’ role in overcoming those barriers.

Participants of the virtual conference will come away with an increased ability to:

  • Address their own personal biases
  • Recognize biases within their communities, law libraries, and collections
  • Identify potential ways in which libraries can eliminate voter suppression
  • Discuss potential solutions on how law libraries can continue these conversations at their own institutions

To learn more about the virtual conference, visit our LibGuide.

Josh LaPorte to chair Access to Justice Committee

I’m Josh, the new chair of the Access to Justice committee. I want to take a moment to reintroduce myself. Formerly, I served as a co-chair of the LLNE Service Committee. I am excited to work with this committee to continue LLNE’s outreach and to develop support for access to justice initiatives.

Prior to law libraries, I worked as a community organizer in Hartford, CT. I worked primarily on tenant & housing issues, education, and jobs. So much need exists for legal information, advice, and guidance. Later, I volunteered extensively with the Connecticut Fair Housing Center’s foreclosure clinic. There I assested with intake interviews, forms, and resources. The access to justice need is overwhelming, and I hope that LLNE can make some real impacts in filling that need.

If anyone has ideas or wants to join the committee, please reach out to me or to the membership committee.

Catherine Biondo appointed to AALL’s Government Relations Committee

We are pleased to announce that Catherine Biondo, a past LLNE President, has been appointed to a three-year term on AALL’s Government Relations Committee  (AALL-GRC) . The AALL GRC’s purpose  is to advance AALL’s legislative and advocacy efforts, both state and federal. Catherine informs us that some of the issues on which the AALL GRC is currently focusing include: additional COVID-19 related economic relief for law libraries; greater access to court records through PACER; and a modernized Federal Depository Library Program.  The AALL GRC liaisons keep SISs and Chapters informed about the Committee’s work and are available to answer policy-and-advocacy-related questions throughout the year.  

We asked Catherine what motivated her join the AALL GRC and about her past government-related experience.  Here is her response: 

I’d say my interest in government issues began in college.  I earned my A.B. in Government, with a Concentration in International Relations, from Cornell University. While at Cornell, I was the Editor of a non-partisan political journal called the Cornell Political Forum and a member of Model Congress (we hosted a conference for high school students to act as members of Congress and introduce and debate bills).  I also volunteered on a local political campaign. Rather than work in government, though, I went into law.  I earned my J.D. from St. John’s University School of Law and became a member of the New York and Connecticut bars.  I then worked as a research clerk for the Connecticut Superior Court, and practiced law for a few years, before deciding to become a law librarian.  I earned my M.S.L.S. from Simmons.   

My interest in government reignited when I had the opportunity to work with members of LLNE’s Government Relations Committee on UELMA when it came before the Massachusetts legislature during my presidential term.  [The LLNE GRC and its UELMA in MA Subcommittee]had done such a wonderful job tracking UELMA and preparing materials, and I found it really exciting to be a part of the process of effecting change in government (or at least trying to! ) That’s why I decided to apply to join the AALL GRC; to become more aware of the issues affecting libraries, learn to advocate better for those issues, and connect with librarian colleagues across the country who are active in this area.  

We are both former members of the AALL GRC, having each recently served three-year terms (not at the same time), and so we know from experience how much Catherine will enjoy serving on the AALL GRC. We look forward to a very productive time working with Catherine and the AALL GRC. The AALL GRC is fortunate to have someone with Catherine’s skills, talents and enthusiasm! 

Anne McDonald,  Co-chair, LLNE Government Relations Committee

Emilie Benoit, Co-chair, LLNE Government Relations Committee

Volunteer! Please!

Hi, LLNE members,

This is a great time to volunteer for an LLNE committee or project! 

I know it may not seem like a great time because we are all busy and picking up new and unexpected COVID-related duties, but it is! 

So much about 2020 has been disconnecting. We may be working outside of our comfort zones, outside of our offices, outside of our routines, or even outside of our job descriptions. One thing that can make us feel more normal is connecting with other library workers and giving back to our profession. We have some exciting projects planned this year to keep us connected and we would really appreciate some volunteers.

In order to volunteer for an LLNE committee or project, go to https://llne.org and click the link at the top of the page to fill out a short form with your preferences. We will be in touch!

Finally, now is the time to renew your memberships. On behalf of myself and the LLNE Executive Board we are so grateful that you choose to be a member and be engaged with the work of our organization.

Thank you,

Nicole