Program - Thursday

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7:00 a.m. - 4:00 p.m.
Convention Center Concourse 

7:00 - 8:30 a.m.
Fitness Continental Breakfast
Bagels with cream cheese, hard boiled eggs, assorted yogurts, fresh fruit, granola bars, orange and cranberry juices, coffee and tea.

9:00 - 10:00 a.m.
KEYNOTE ADDRESS:  Designing the Future Using Human-Centered Design
Location: Leander Choate 

Michelle Frisque
Chief of Technology, Content and Innovation
Chicago Public Library 

The challenges facing librarians are real, complex and varied. As such, they require new perspectives, new tools and new approaches. With support from the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and in partnership with Chicago Public Library and Aarhus Public Library, IDEO created a toolkit for using design thinking to better understand library patrons. Discover how you can use design thinking to uncover solutions to everyday challenges.

Sponsor:  Wisconsin Association of Public Libraries (WAPL) 

10:00 - 10:30 a.m.
Atrium Lobby 

10:30 - 11:30 a.m.

Get Minecraft in Your Library
Josh Klingbeil, Wisconsin Valley Library Service, Wausau
Location: B.F. Carter/Anna M.

Do you have too many K-12 youth coming to your libraries? Are your programs so chock-full of kids you don't know what to do with them all? If so, DON'T get Minecraft in your library. For anyone else, let's chat, and find out how you might succeed in capturing a tricky target audience with Minecraft-related programming.

Sponsor: Technical Services Section (TSS); Wisconsin Small Libraries Section (WISL)

Picture Me Terrified!
Cassie Payne and Liz Tubman, Elisha D. Smith Public Library, Menasha
Location: Henrietta

Clipart is dead. Microsoft and Adobe are subscriptions. Stock images are expensive. What’s a small library to do without these tools or a special marketing budget? Come to Picture Me Terrified! Liz Tubman and Cassie Payne will share basic design principles, free tools and resources, as well as share some of their techniques to create high quality marketing materials on a small budget.

Sponsor: Wisconsin Small Libraries Section (WISL)

Public Library System Redesign Project Update & Discussion
Three members of the PLSR Steering Committee and Workgroup Leadership and two PLSR Project Managers
Location: K.M. Hutchinson

The Public Library System Redesign (PLSR) is underway! As you probably know, the PLSR project is a 2-3 year process to consider coordinated services provided by public library systems, along with other investments made in coordinated services at the state level. The goal of the process is to identify models to maximize the investments made into coordinated services, and to improve services to libraries and the citizens of Wisconsin. To learn more about the project, please visit: This session will review the progress of the project to date, its next steps and allow for discussion time with PLSR Steering Committee members and project managers from WiLS.

Sponsor: Council on Library and Network Development (COLAND)

Sensory Programs That Make Sense
Abby Bussen, Muskego Public Library
Location: Evelyn 

Want to start offering scheduled sensory opportunities at your library, but aren't sure where to start? Let Abby Bussen, Children's Librarian, help build your confidence and know-how in this informative, hands-on presentation. She'll focus on planning sensory programs for babies, toddlers and preschoolers as well as for special needs children, giving you actionable information you can put to use in planning your own one-off or continuing program, and encouraging you to get your hands a little dirty with some sensory experiences to enjoy as a group. A veteran sensory program planner, Bussen has been running monthly sensory playdates for over a year.

Sponsor: Youth Services Section (YSS)

Social Justice Programming and Your Library
Marie Cunningham, Milwaukee Public Library
Location: Thistle

The unbiased information and space provided by libraries often puts them at the forefront of social change. How can you provide your patrons with opportunities to connect, discuss and enact change in their community? MPL librarians will present examples, resources, and best practices for developing social justice programming at your library. They will also share publicity strategies and community connections for libraries of all sizes.

Sponsor: Ethnic & Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT)

Wisconsin’s Area Research Centers (ARC) Tour
Joshua Ranger, UW-Oshkosh Polk Library
Meet in Atrium Lobby for trip to UW-Oshkosh Polk Library

Wisconsin's unique network of regional archival research facilities have been preserving and providing access to local history and genealogical information for over 50 years. There is an ARC in every corner of the state within a few hours of any public library and all are open to members of the public. Each ARC holds historical records from a specific geographical region, but can also borrow and lend historical records within the largest inter-archival lending network in the country. Visit the UW-Oshkosh Area Research Center for a tour and an overview of the network, its collections and the discovery tools available to anyone to find them.

(Transportation provided; please sign up on the conference registration form. Registration will be capped once transportation capacity is reached. Meet in the Atrium Lobby at 10:30 a.m. sharp.)

Sponsors: Wisconsin Genealogy & Local History Round Table (WIGLHR); Oshkosh Public Library

11:45 a.m. - 1:15 p.m.

AUTHOR LUNCHEON: What We Talk About When We Talk About
Location:  Leander Choate

Mendota PhotoMatthew J. Hefti is the author of A Hard and Heavy Thing (Tyrus / F+W). He deployed to Iraq and Afghanistan a total of four times as an explosive ordnance disposal (EOD) technician. While enlisted, he earned a BA in English and an MFA in Fiction. He is now pursuing his JD at the University of Wisconsin Law School, where he works for the Wisconsin Innocence Project. Among others, his work has been published in See Me for Who I Am (Hudson Whitman); MFA vs. NYC (n+1); Vol. 1 Brooklyn; Literary Hub; Pennsylvania English; Blue Moon Literary and Art Review; War, Literature and the Arts. He writes and edits at You can follow him here. This, his first published book, has received wide acclaim, including starred reviews in Booklist and Shelf Awareness.

Book signing will take place immediately following the luncheon.

PLEASE NOTE: You must register for the luncheons in advance, no on-site registration for this event is available. 

1:30 - 2:30 p.m.

Building a Buzz for Your Next Event
Valerie Biel, Author
Location: Paul L.

Learn how to create a multi-tiered publicity plan for your next big event, utilizing traditional publicity tools, media outreach and social media platforms. Your event deserves it!

Valerie Biel’s debut novel, Circle of Nine – Beltany, has been honored as a 2015 Kindle Book Award Finalist, a finalist in the Gotham Writers' YA Novel Discovery Contest and the Readers' Favorite Book Award Contest as well as being a B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree. She has continued the Circle of Nine series with a set of novellas and is looking forward to the release of the sequel Circle of Nine – Sacred Treasures. She has also authored two middle-grade novels. She holds a degree in Journalism (Public Relations/Broadcast News) and Political Science from the University of Wisconsin and has spent more than 20 years working in the public relations field. She edits manuscripts, develops marketing materials and implements publicity plans for other authors.

Sponsor: Wisconsin Association of Public Libraries (WAPL)

Collecting What's Due: Implementing the Return of Library Materials Act
Moderator: Bill Wilson, Trustee, Milton Public Library. Panelists: Shannon Schultz, DLT/DPI, Madison, and formerly of Portage Public Library; Kathy Klager, Pauline Haass Public Library, Sussex; Brian Simons, Brown County Library, Green Bay; Cindy Fesemyer, Columbus Pubic Library
Location: Henrietta 

How does the new Return of Library Materials law impact your library? This session will address these and other important questions: What are the legal options under this law? How do I determine whether my library should hire a third party agency to collect materials/replacement costs? How do I select a collection agency and what kind of services should I be looking for? What type of workflow processes will I need to put into place to pursue return of materials? What are the lessons learned from libraries that have successfully used collection agencies? When do I use law enforcement and how can I get their cooperation?

Sponsors: Library Development & Legislative Committee (LD&L); Wisconsin Library Trustees & Friends (WLTF); Wisconsin Small Libraries Section (WISL)

Creative Collaborations: Fostering Future Career Success for Teens
Katrina Dombrowsky, Columbus Public Library; Melissa Cooley, Job Quest, LLC,
Location: B.F. Carter/Anna M.

Libraries are great at working with partners like schools and community groups to enhance programs and services. But have you ever thought about collaborating with your local career coach? Katrina Dombrowsky, Youth Services Director at Columbus Public Library and Melissa Cooley, certified resume writer for The Job Quest, LLC, will share about their unique partnership and how it helped two Teen Advisory Board members become Pages at their beloved library.

Sponsor: Youth Services Section (YSS)

Embrace the Dark Side: Learn to Love Weeding
Renee Ponzio, L.E. Phillips Memorial Public Library, Eau Claire
Location: K.M. Hutchinson

No one likes to weed, but it is necessary for a healthy and vibrant collection. Too much stuff and it is hard for the public to find material to check out, if all they see is crowded shelves with the same ol' same ol'. Highlight the older gems, get rid of the chaff and brighten up your collection by weeding on a regular basis. There are different ways to weed; several will be discussed along with the philosophy of weeding. At the end you will be pro weeding!

Sponsor: Resource Sharing Round Table (RSRT)

Hiring Issues and Problem Employees

Geoffrey Trotier, Attorney, von Briesen & Roper, S.C.
Location: Evelyn

Learn how to navigate through the do’s and don’ts of hiring—a maze more confusing than the Library of Congress stacks! We will discuss how to retain the good hires and gracefully help those employees in need of transition. Geoff Trotier proactively assists organizations of all sizes and complexities as well as municipalities and school districts in many diverse labor and employment issues. He works closely with clients to devise and implement litigation avoidance strategies. Geoff frequently defends employers in matters involving discrimination, non-compete agreement enforcement, trade secrets, FMLA disputes, wrongful termination, OSHA, whistleblower claims, and wage and hour suits. In 2010, Geoff was recognized as an “Up and Coming Lawyer” by the Wisconsin Law Journal. He is a member of the American Bar Association (Labor & Employment Section), the State Bar of Wisconsin (Labor & Employment Section) and the Milwaukee Bar Association.

(This session repeats at 3:00 PM)

Sponsor: Wisconsin Association of Public Libraries (WAPL)

Where the Wild Things Are: Circulation Data Revealed
Jamie McCanless and Ryan Claringbole, DLT/DPI, Madison
Location: Thistle

For more than 25 years, the public library annual report definition of "total circulation" has included both initial checkouts and renewals. When the Federal-State Cooperative System for Public Library Data published its Action Plan in 1988, renewals were made by library staff when a user called or visited the library. That's certainly changed! DPI will present and discuss trends found in checkouts and renewals from ILS data.

Sponsor: Department of Public Instruction (DPI)

2:30 - 3:00 p.m.
Atrium Lobby

wla-125-yearsCome Join Us For Cake As We Celebrate 125 Years of Library Leadership and Support By WLA.

Bring photos and other memorabilia that highlight key historical developments that took place at your library.

Share your own experiences about how the Wisconsin Library Association has made a difference in your professional life and in the services your library offers.

Sponsor: Wisconsin Library Association (WLA)

3:00 - 4:00 p.m.

Best of Friends: What Makes an Effective Friends Organization?
Carol Chapman, President of the Friends of the Madison Public Library
Location: Thistle

Friends groups: more trouble than they're worth or BFF? The opinion varies from library to library and in this audience participation session you'll explore the characteristics participants see as vital to ensuring a shared sense of purpose between Friends and library staff, and what philosophical differences might exist that can potentially lead to disagreement and conflict. Another in a WLTF-sponsored series of discussions about what constitutes best practices for Friends groups!

Sponsor: Wisconsin Library Trustees & Friends (WLTF)

Dream Big. Learn Code
Holly Storck-Post, Monroe Public Library; Melody Clark, WiLS, Madison; Josh Cowles, Fond du Lac Public Library; Kim Boldt, Milwaukee Public Library Villard Square
Location: B.F. Carter/Anna M.

WisCode Literati wants to help change the world through code literacy by enabling librarians to bring coding into their libraries. Come learn about why code literacy is important and the resources offered to make it easy for you! This session will be a presentation followed by hands-on time to try out their coding kits!

Sponsor: Department of Public Instruction (DPI)

Hiring Issues and Problem Employees

Geoffrey Trotier, Attorney, von Briesen & Roper, S.C.
Location: Evelyn

Learn how to navigate through the do’s and don’ts of hiring—a maze more confusing than the Library of Congress stacks! We will discuss how to retain the good hires and gracefully help those employees in need of transition. (This is a repeat of the session held at 1:30 PM)

Sponsor: Wisconsin Association of Public Libraries (WAPL)

Lean for Government (part 1)
Cindy Wetzel, Lean Performance Center Department Chair, Fox Valley Tech College, Appleton
Location: K.M. Hutchinson

Have you heard about LEAN and want to know more? This overview will teach you what it is, what it is not, and help you understand when and why you might want to use it. This is a two-part session with part 2 following at 4:15 p.m.

Sponsor: Wisconsin Association of Public Libraries (WAPL)

No Time & No Money - Adult Programming Can be Successful!
Beth Gabriel, Milwaukee Public Library East Branch
Location: Henrietta

Building a successful and sustainable slate of Adult Programming is no easy feat, especially when time and funding is limited. Beth will share her successes, failures, tips and ideas for engaging Adult programming.

Sponsor: Reference and Adult Services Section (RASS)

Theatre Games for All Ages
Leah Langby, Indianhead Federated Library System, Eau Claire
Location: Paul L.

Learn some creative, cooperative and hilarious games to play with preschoolers, school age kids and teens. You can build a whole program around these games, or use one or two as part of a larger program (or to keep a group of squirrelly kids entertained while someone else tries to fix the DVD player!).

Sponsor: Youth Services Section (YSS)

4:15 - 5:15 p.m.

Lean for Government (part 2)
Cindy Wetzel, Lean Performance Center Department Chair , Fox Valley Tech College, Appleton
Location: K.M. Hutchinson

Have you heard about LEAN amd want to know more? This overview will teach you what it is, what it is not, and help you understand when and why you might want to use it. (This is a continuation of the session that began at 3:00 p.m.)

Sponsor: Wisconsin Association of Public Libraries (WAPL)

Memory Cafes and Libraries: A Perfect Fit
Moderator: Angela Meyers, Bridges Library System, Waukesha. Panelists: Cheryl Schoenhaar and Stephanie Flessert, Town Hall Library, Merton; Jen Bremer, Franklin Public Library; Natalie Beacom, New Berlin Public Library
Location: Henrietta

A memory cafe is a safe and fun social opportunity for those living with memory loss, as well as their families and caregivers. Memory cafes have been offered in the Netherlands since 1997, but only in the US since 2013. Learn how your library can start a memory cafe and partner with key players in the community for the perfect fit.

Sponsor: Outreach Services Round Table (OSRT)

"The Road is Crooked:" Bones, Names and the Search for Chief Kewaskum
Steev Baker, Sun Prairie Public Library
Location: Evelyn

A local controversy, a partnership with Kewaskum Elementary School and a strange reference request lead Steev on a search for the historical roots of his community. Steev will discuss how he used online resources, principles of information literacy, and a strong local history collection to help untangle fact from folklore and answer the question: "Who was Chief Kewaskum?"

Sponsor: Reference and Adult Services Section (RASS), Wisconsin Genealogy & Local History Round Table (WIGLHR ), Wisconsin Small Libraries Section (WISL)

The Essentials: TE & AE
John DeBacher and Shannon Schultz, DLT/DPI, Madison; Doug Lay, Trustee, Wisconsin Valley Library Service, Wausau
Location: Thistle

The DPI publications, Trustee Essentials and Administrative Essentials, provide a set of professional guidelines for library trustees and administrators. Reflective of the dynamic nature of libraries, these manuals are subject to regular revision, with Trustee Essentials updated most recently in 2015. Staff from DPI’s Public Library Development team will provide an update on recent changes, how the two manuals can complement one another and how they can be used most effectively, both individually and in tandem.

Sponsor: Wisconsin Library Trustees & Friends (WLTF)

Tech Boot Camp
Melissa Beck, Delafield Public Library; Diane Basting, Delafield Public Library
Location: Paul L.

Tablets are here to stay and as more patrons are moving away from laptops and desktops to smartphones and tablets it's time to show them what these devices can do! Tech boot camp is a series of four days, eight sessions and four working lunches. Find out how we took four days and taught around eighty patrons how to use basic feature on their devices, to take better pictures, beef up their security and be excited about apps.

Sponsor: Wisconsin Association of Public Libraries (WAPL)

You Don't Have to be Alone: Working with Teens and Other Librarians/Libraries
Ashlee Kunkel, Milton Public Library
Location: B.F. Carter/Anna M.

Do you have big ideas but don't have the resources to go it alone? Have your creative juices dried up? Ashlee will talk about the steps she took to create her Teen Advisory Board and the programs she has been able to have because of them. She will also talk about the success of a county-wide teen battle of the books put together by seven libraries.

Sponsor: Youth Services Section (YSS)

5:30 - 7:00 p.m.

Ethnic & Multicultural Information Exchange Round Table (EMIERT) Business Meeting
Kristina Gomez, Milwaukee Public Library
Location: Evelyn

White - AppsPublic Library System Redesign Project Town Hall Talk 
Bruce Smith and Stef Morrill, WiLS, Madison
Location: Lynch/Lefevre/Dixie

What are our aspirations for the coordinated services that public library systems provide to public libraries and patrons in Wisconsin? This question is the basis for this PLSR Town Hall Talk, an opportunity for the library community to help guide the PLSR process. The Town Hall will focus on helping the PLSR workgroups develop a vision for the different service areas of Consulting, Continuing Education, Delivery, Electronic Resources, ILL, ILS & Discovery, Resource Libraries, and Technology. This will be a very participatory event. We will brainstorm, we will dream, we will laugh and we will eat! We sincerely hope you will register for this important event to share your ideas and experience and to help shape the possible futures the workgroups will explore.

Registration required. Appetizers will be provided with cash bar available.

Sponsor: Council on Library and Network Development (COLAND)

Wisconsin Library Trustees & Friends (WLTF) Board Meeting
Doug Lay, Trustee, Wisconsin Valley Library Service, Wausau
Location: Henrietta

Youth Services Section (YSS) Membership Meeting/Meet and Greet
Leah Langby, Indianhead Federated Library System, Eau Claire
Location: Thistle

Learn about what the Youth Services Section is up to, meet fellow members and board members, and share your ideas of things you'd like to see us do!

7:00 - 9:00 p.m.

Reception at the Oshkosh Public Library
Join us for home brew tasting, goodies and music! Please register in advance to ensure we have an adequate amount of brew on hand!