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Libraries: For the Common Good

October 23-26, 2012
La Crosse Center and Radisson Hotel

The last 18 months or so have been quite tumultuous. For many of us, it has been difficult at times to maintain our commitment to and enthusiasm for our work, and to remember the value that we DO bring to our respective communities, be they students, specialized users or the general public.

The 2012 WLA conference planning committee had these thoughts in mind when we began planning for this year’s WLA annual conference, a discussion which resulted in our 2012 theme of “Libraries: For The Common Good,” which will take place in La Crosse, October 23-26. It is that notion of common good and public value that we are emphasizing in a variety of ways at this year’s conference, both in terms of program content and other related events. Our goal is to provide an experience that will help all of us re-focus on the importance of what we do in terms of creating and sustaining a healthy community and society. We also hope, of course, to enjoy collegiality, glean good information and have some fun!

The conference planning committee has “tracked” Wednesday to explore and be inspired by the concept of “common good” and the related ideas of “social capital” and “servant leadership.” Beginning with the keynote speaker, and followed by noted experts from Viterbo University (a pioneering Masters program in servant leadership), a number of Wednesday sessions will provide excellent opportunities to engage in our core missions of service and connection. Thursday’s programming will emphasize the digital aspect of our work, and Friday’s programs? Well, let’s just put it this way: where else but a library conference would you find sessions ranging from social media to taverns to tattooing?? 

It’s time for all of us to remember who we are, what we do and why it is vital to the people we serve. Please join us in La Crosse at this year’s WLA Conference “Libraries: For the Common Good.”