Wednesday 26 March 2014

Meet your 2014 committee : Treasurer

This year we have a new committee, so we thought it would be nice to say hi and let you know a little about us! 

Our final committee member is also our longest serving ALIA Sydney Committee member, and as such we think she deserves a special spotlight of her own, she's been involved since ALIA Sydney was reformed in 2008. 

Hi I'm Vesna and I'm the Treasurer for ALIA Sydney.  I've been a member of ALIA Sydney since October 2008 when it reformed after the National Advisory Council.

I work in a public library as a technology librarian and I certainly get a lot of variety in my job.  I joined ALIA Sydney as I saw it as an opportunity to gain experience in working as part of a group to organise events.  I also wanted to engage with as many people as possible from all areas of the Library sector.  I see this as a great way of developing my skills professionally.

Vesna Cosic,
Treasurer, ALIA Sydney

You can reach me, and the rest of the committee, at

Sunday 23 March 2014

Meet your 2014 committee : Social Media Officers

This year we have a new committee, so we thought it would be nice to say hi and let you know a little about us! 

Hi! my name is Caitlin and I'm a new Social Media Officer for ALIA Sydney. I've just started my first year of study at CSU in Information Studies. I also volunteer at the Parramatta Heritage Centre Library and the WEA library. Some of my library related interests are Library advocacy, Children's and Youth services and in particular libraries in Western Sydney. 
I wanted to join ALIA Sydney because I really enjoyed an event they held, and wanted to spend time assisting in the development of the group's social media presence across many platforms.

My interests aside from libraries are Powerlifting, fashion and painting.

Caitlin Williams,
Social Media Officer, ALIA Sydney

Hello, I'm Maria -one of ALIA Sydney's Social Media Officers. I joined the team this year because I wanted to engage and surround myself with passionate and diverse library folk. I've worked at lots of different libraries over the last decade, but Specials and the GLAM sector have my heart.

Look forward to meeting you in person or via 140 characters or less!
Maria Savvidis, 
Social Media Officer, ALIA Sydney

You can reach us, and the rest of the committee, at

Wednesday 19 March 2014

Meet your 2014 committee : Event Officers

This year we have a new committee, so we thought it would be nice to say hi and let you know a little about us! 

I am Lauren, one of the ALIA Sydney Event Officers. I'm currently studying at TAFE Ultimo and hope to be a fully fledged Library Technician by the end of this year. I'm studying part time, I have two primary school aged children, and I work part time for a migration lawyer. I play and umpire netball, and this year am coaching two teams of 6 and 7 year olds. I had a pre children career in money market trading but I don't miss it. I volunteer at Hurstville City Library Museum Gallery, and I love their graphic novel collection.

I joined ALIA Sydney at the beginning of 2012, replying to their call for new committee members, and hoping to learn a bit about the library sector in Sydney. I expected to feel a bit like an unqualified interloper, and be relegated to the lowliest jobs, but that wasn't the case at all. I have learned so much about different libraries and issues library staff are facing, and meeting librarians from every different type of library, as well as other students has been a real benefit for me both in terms of my study, and my understanding of the local industry. I try to attend events with the Lib Techs, as well as ALIA Sydney, and have always been delighted by how welcoming everyone is.

So I say to all the students out there, especially if you're studying online, don't be shy, come along to some events even if you are on your own. We're very friendly and work hard to provide interesting and useful events.

Lauren Castan, 
Event Officer, ALIA Sydney

Hi my name is Tracey McDonald, I’m a Library Technician and CSU student. I have been an ALIA member since 2009 (joining as a student Library Technician). 

My association with ALIA and its members have provided me with encouragement and support for my professional development and career aspirations. Serving on the ALIA Sydney committee gives me the opportunity to return the favour. ALIA Sydney does a great job of providing affordable professional development activities and I’m looking forward to being on the 2014 team.

Tracey McDonald, 
Event Officer, ALIA Sydney

You can reach us, and the rest of the committee, at

Monday 17 March 2014

Wondering what happened with Rockdale Library? It's good news.

One year and one month ago, I posted on this blog about the vote at Rockdale City Council to go ahead with funding to build a new library. ALIA members in Sydney turned out to support the library at pretty short notice, and community members and ALIA Executive Director Sue McKerracher spoke passionately in favour of going ahead with the new building and the need for great public libraries. The Councillors agreed and the vote was carried 7 votes to 6.

So what's happening now?

In the time since, a Central Library Development Advisory Committee has been formed, made up of council staff and community members. Architects and interior designers have been engaged to begin planning the building. CK Design and Lefler Simes Architects have been appointed to prepare detailed drawings, and some of you may have attended the ALIA Sydney event in June last year 'Advocate, Promote, Brand' at Parramatta where Cecilia Kluger the principal of CK Design spoke. Construction work is projected to begin in January 2015, and the new library is expected to be opened in March 2016.

The artist's impression of the building looks wonderful.

This weekend a Community Open Day will be held in the Rockdale Town Hall Foyer from 10am to 1pm on Saturday to meet the architects and the design team and find out more about what they are planning. The website contains extensive documentation about the process and the planning of the new building. The local newspaper, The St George and Sutherland Shire Leader has followed the story and this has generated plenty of letters to the editor, mostly in favour of the $16m project.

Then from 2pm-4pm there will be celebrations within the library itself to launch the new Nepali collection, with dancing and food. The community languages section is a very important part of the library, and librarian Stephanie Lee won an award for Most Outstanding Multicultural Librarian in November 2013 at the Metropolitan Public Libraries Association conference.

In 2013 I can remember three efforts for library advocacy by ALIA in NSW, with Rockdale in February, Goonellabah in June, and the ADCA National Drugs Sector Information Service seeing some activities in Young in December. Advocating for libraries is one area of focus for ALIA, and one of those things that you sometimes don't think about until it's needed. But when it is needed it is needed sorely and can only be effective if the network is already in place, so it's comforting to know that ALIA stands ready and can marshall resources to help when called upon.

Maybe I'll see you at Rockdale on Saturday.

-Lauren Castan

Sunday 16 March 2014

Meet your 2014 committee : Coordinators

This year we have a new committee, so we thought it would be nice to say hi and let you know a little about us! 
Hi I'm Sarah and since 2009 I've worked at the University of Western Sydney in a variety of roles from Digital Discoveries & Services Librarian to Liaison Librarian. I'm currently the Psychology & Social Sciences Librarian based at the Bankstown campus, although I've taken maternity leave in 2014 to learn the new skills (challenges?) of parenting.

I've been in the ALIA Sydney committee since 2012 because I wanted to be involved in creating interesting events for people to attend and learn from. I'm passionate about increasing access to information and I'm an advocate for open access. There are currently so many exciting developments and challenges for our profession that I think forming networks, swapping ideas, and making friends with others from different workplaces is crucial. Attending ALIA events and meeting new people has definitely helped me develop my skills and broaden my outlook as an information professional.

I hope to see you at an ALIA Sydney event soon!

Sarah Fearnley
Coordinator, ALIA Sydney

Hi there, I'm Gabby, one of the coordinators of the fabulous ALIA Sydney Committee. I am the Librarian at Morling Theological College. Working in a small, special academic library has proven to be challenging and varied but also extremely rewarding.
I joined ALIA Sydney in 2013 after attending one of their events to get more involved and learn from and with others in a fun environment.

Hope to see you all at our upcoming events.

Gabrielle Fury,

Coordinator, ALIA Sydney

You can reach us, and the rest of the committee, at

Wednesday 12 March 2014

Meet your 2014 Committee: Convenors

This year we have a new committee, so we thought it would be nice to say hi and let you know a little about us!

Hi there, I'm Kirsty and this year I'm one half of the creative convenor duo! When I'm not helping come up with great professional development ideas with the ALIA Sydney team, I'm studying for my degree and working at a number of special libraries. 
I decided to get involved with ALIA Sydney after attending one of their events and meeting some of the lovely committee members at the time. I also work primarily in corporate and other special libraries, and want to make sure that the special's voice is heard when it comes to professional development. 
Hope to see you at one of our events this year. We have some great events ahead!

Kirsty Butler

Co-Convenor, ALIA Sydney

Hi - I'm Amy, the other half of the dynamic convenor duo! I'm a Senior Librarian at CQUniversity, managing the Sydney campus library. I'm *slightly* obsessed with a certain fictional character, which is pretty easy to guess from the photo.

I joined the ALIA Sydney committee in 2012 after attending some fantastic events in 2011 which prompted me to actively contribute to (as well as benefit from) the professional development opportunities ALIA Sydney offers.

This year will be an exciting one for ALIA Sydney, and I look forward to seeing you at our events.

Amy Croft

Co-Convenor, ALIA Sydney

You can reach us, and the rest of the committee, at 

Tuesday 11 March 2014

ALIA Board Elections 2014

Voting sign
Voting by KCIvey Creative Commons License
This post is essentially for current members of ALIA, but anyone in the library and information sector may be interested in learning more about the people hoping to lead the association which advocates for our industry.

This year there are four Director positions to be filled on the Board of ALIA, and an interesting crop of nine have nominated. Voting opened today - all members should have received an email from CorpVote with details. Voting closes 9 April.

So where to start, if you want to make an informed choice? The Board Elections page on the ALIA website should be your first stop, followed by a read-through of the candidate information.

Then, to really get to the heart of some big issues for ALIA and the sector, check out the ALIA New Grads blog and Hugh Rundle's information flaneur blog to see the candidate's views. Between them, the two blogs cover issues such as improving ALIA, open access for ALIA publications and LIS education. Both raise some excellent questions about professional development.

For updates, you can also follow the hashtag #aliavotes on Twitter and add your two cents' worth.

Then go and vote!

Amy Croft
Co-Convenor, ALIA Sydney

Saturday 8 March 2014

NSW New Grads meet and greet

Coat of Arms Pizza & Beef & Bock Pot Pie
Coat of Arms Pizza & Beef & Bock Pot Pie by The Australian Heritage Hotel

The first NSW New Grad event is a casual meet and greet to be held on Tuesday 25 March at The Australian Heritage Hotel, 100 Cumberland St, The Rocks. Please join us from 6pm, grab a drink and a pizza and settle in for a chat. Great opportunity to meet your fellow library lovers!

Contact for more information.