NMRT Board Member Planning Report
1. Office Name: Chrissie Anderson Peters
2. Office Term (Date: Ex. 2002-2003): 2003-2004
3. How do you plan to help committees address the four NMRT goals? (If it does not apply, put N/A.)
Through answering any questions generated and directed to me; through reminding committee chairs about upcoming items of interest to their committee members; through requesting planning and progress reports that can be archived and used at later dates as necessary; through cooperating and acting as a liaison in any convenient capacity with any committees desiring my assistance.
I hope to “further” NMRT's four goals in my position as Secretary through encouraging the general membership through NMRT-L participation, through conference attendance and participation, through answering questions directed to me about the NMRT organization, and through development of “online resources” for those interested in speaking/requested to speak about NMRT membership/ involvement/ activities. As someone who has just participated in a panel discussion aimed at “new librarians” in Tennessee, I think that having easy access to certain statistics, facts, and other NMRT information could be beneficial to the overall NMRT organization and hope to work with past Speakers Bureau participants, as well as SASCO folks to bring this goal to fruition for NMRT during the current committee year.
4. How do you plan to create a positive committee experience? What type of support do you plan to provide to chairs and committee members, and how often do you plan to provide such support?
The best way for me to help create a positive committee experience for those committees with which I work is to recall the things that made negative committee experiences for me in the past and make sure that I don't create/contribute to/participate in such situations. I check in with my two committees on a regular basis (typically at least every couple of weeks by email to check on the progress of their committee activities, etc.). When the need arises, we talk more frequently. I am here if they need me and have reiterated that, if I don't know the answer to one of their questions – and frequently, I don't – then I'm not afraid to help find an answer.
I offer any support I can to these Committee Chairs, including (but certainly not limited to) helping them find answers to questions raised by committee members, help them find out contact information for others in NMRT with whom they need to communicate, offering advice on situations that may arise, etc. I don't feel the need to look over these ladies' shoulders to check up on them. I feel that we have a good working relationship and hope to keep it that way.
5. What future directions do you see your office or NMRT needing to take this year or the following year? What kind of strategies do you envision for addressing projects that affect committees outside of your supervision?
I think that it might make for a smoother transaction between Secretaries to have a little more involvement between outgoing and incoming before the Annual Conference. I didn't get to attend Annual due to SARS and other reasons, so that put us behind. Through no fault of our own, Bill Armstrong and I are both very busy and have had problems coordinating this effort this year. We do get things taken care of, but the information comes in chunks – usually as needed by someone else in the organization. Bill has been very gracious in dispensing all of his technological savvy – if I had known about all of the “technology” that could accompany this position, I likely would not have agreed to running for the position because I know my limitations and that is certainly one of them! Having said that, however, I understand that it will all be “better” eventually, when things with the ! ALA website/server are more settled (although no one really seems to know how long that will take). Until that happens, though, if the issue remains unresolved as the end of the current committee year draws near, I think that it may be helpful to alert the next candidates for the position of Secretary about this. I hate to keep bothering Bill – his year in this position should not have to overlap due to my own technological insecurities.
If the online resources for speakers project continues into the future, we will need to see if SASCO is still willing to house that information with their section of the NMRT portion of ALA's site or perhaps it might be even better if we could somehow work with the Web Committee to make that information available either in its own place or from the main NMRT page. Either way, future Secretaries will need to try to update this information, keeping it current for those wishing to use it to promote NMRT, and they will only be able to accomplish this through coordinating and cooperating with committees outside of their supervision.
6. Date of report: October 6, 2003
7. Submitted by: Chrissie Anderson Peters