A chapter of the Association of College and Research Libraries
To request day registration (no housing), email admin at acrlwa dot org with your dietary restrictions and necessary accommodations before October 14. You will be invoiced via email and can pay online or on-site at Pack Forest.
If you’ve already registered for the ACRL WA Conference, you may have noticed that conference fees are slightly higher this year. We’ve raised registration costs by $10 for all registration types as part of our conference land acknowledgment. As a settler-led organization that continually uses colonized land to hold our conferences, we are committed to making our land acknowledgement tangible by donating conference funds to the original and present-day stewards of the land.
The Washington conference is typically held at the Pack Forest conference center near Eatonville, on traditional lands of the Puyallup and Nisqually Tribes. In particular, the area where we are holding our conference is “deeply significant in tribal history and culture” for the Nisqually. The Nisqually Parks Department has been working with the University of Washington and Washington State Parks to make the Nisqually presence and history more known to non-Indigenous users of this area (for example, through the ongoing partnership to create and develop Nisqually State Park). We will be using a portion of your conference registration fees to make a donation to the Nisqually Parks Department. We want to thank David Iyall, Nisqually Tribal Council Treasurer, for taking the time to share the significance of this area with us and suggesting the Nisqually Parks Department as an appropriate place for a donation.
Land acknowledgements and donations only mean so much without relationships. Historically ACRL WA has not had a relationship with tribal leaders or with the history of the land in which we hold the conference. Changing our payment structure to include a donation to the Nisqually Parks Department is a start to an ongoing effort we will be making to learn about the land and acknowledge the ways that our presence as an organization and as individuals continues to impact Indigenous people.
Carol Mary Fisher wrote the winning student scholarship essay, responding to the prompt: "Where do you see opportunities for academic libraries to dismantle structures of oppression? Please use examples of work that you have done or discuss work that you feel inspired to do." You can read her essay and the other entries on our website.
Thank you to everyone who submitted proposals. Yesterday presenters were notified via email of the programming decisions. We'll be able to post our program after our presenters confirm. You can expect to see our full program with session descriptions available on our website by September 20. Keep checking back!
We're excited to share that our keynote speaker is Dr. Ralina L. Joseph. You can learn more about Dr. Joseph and her workshop in our conference program. Our full schedule with sessions will be posted soon. Stay tuned for more!
Each October, ACRL Washington and Oregon convene at Pack Forest or Menucha to learn with and from each other. In order to encourage attendance by library graduate students and new librarians, ACRL-WA offers a scholarship to each. In addition to this, the ACRL-WA Excellence Award “recognizes a project that demonstrates excellence in the field by significantly improving Washington State academic or research libraries/librarianship.”
The two ACRL-WA members-at-large are tasked with coordinating all aspects of the scholarships and Excellence Award. Chelsea and Jen worked together on updating the scholarship information to fit our 2019 conference theme: Whiteness and Racism in Academic Libraries: Dismantling Structures of Oppression.
This year, the prompt for our scholarship essay is: Where do you see opportunities for academic libraries to dismantle structures of oppression? Please use examples of work that you have done or discuss work that you feel inspired to do. We’re interested in hearing more about the important work that others in the state are doing, but also wanted to make sure our prompt was inclusive for students that might not have hands-on experience with this topic yet.
One change we are making is asking scholarship applicants in the application form if they wish to have their essay published at acrlwa.org. This decision came after realizing that the scholarship essays are generally only seen and read by the members-at-large when making decisions about winners. The board wishes for more of these (sure to be excellent) essays to be accessible by all members and realizes that, especially for library graduate students, sharing their essays could serve as a valuable networking tool. Sharing our ideas for dismantling structures of oppression in academic libraries is essential to continued progress with this work.
After the September 6, 2019 deadline, Chelsea and Jen will rate the entries for both of the scholarships and the Excellence Award using rubrics that measure qualities such as originality and the presence of thoughtful examples.
Find more information on applying:
Conference Attendance Scholarships
We look forward to reading your applications!
Chelsea NesvigJen Saulnier
We held a logo contest this spring to update our look, and the winner by membership vote was Green River College librarian Heather Jeffries! Her logo design incorporates blue horizontal lines and green tree icons to imitate water and forests with the words "ACRL Washington" in white font over the background. Thank you, Heather, for our new logo and the opportunity to use your logo's colors in our site redesign! You can expect to see Heather's logo on upcoming chapter-related materials, including our conference materials, scholarship certificates, award certificates, etc.
Welcome to the ACRL Washington conference planning blog! The board decided to initiate this blog as a space to report out on our decisions for planning the 2019 ACRL PNW Joint Fall Conference. While this is a relatively small conference with many returning members, we are hoping to make some changes to this year's conference that are in-line with our values in creating anti-oppressive spaces and programming. In order to do this, we would like to be as transparent as possible in letting our members know how and why decisions are made.
Our conference theme this year is Whiteness and Racism in Academic Libraries: Dismantling Structures of Oppression. I proposed this theme as the conference chair, and after multiple brainstorming documents and conversations, got approval from the entire board to move forward with this theme. We read through feedback from the 2018 Joint Fall Conference at Menucha that asked for more programming around racial justice. My intent in proposing this particular theme is to highlight and explicitly name the cultures of whiteness that happen in academic libraries, and to share, brainstorm and create practices that dismantle racialized power and oppression in our libraries.
While the board has agreed on general theme, we were not unanimous on the naming of the conference. There were concerns that naming whiteness and racism, instead of a more general focus of equity and diversity, is confrontational and may turn some members away from attendance, or may limit the ability for members to contribute meaningfully when the call for proposals goes out. Some suggestions for alternate themes included critical librarianship, unpacking privilege and disrupting power and privilege.
I ultimately made the final decision to be explicit in naming racism and whiteness very clearly in our conference title. My experience in libraries is that when we talk broadly of equity, diversity and inclusion, we move away from having challenging conversations on racism and our whiteness as a professional norm. This naming is an effort to keep these conversations centered. We will strive for intersectional approaches to this theme in our programming, and hope for wide participation from all of you.
Please reach out to me or any board member if you have comments, questions or concerns. Save the date for the conference and look out for a call for proposals coming soon!
Reed Garber-Pearson, ACRL WA President and Conference Chair
ACRL WA Joint Fall Conference
October 24-25, 2019
Pack Forest Conference Center, Eatonville WA