Emerging Leader

Greetings from RUSA’s 2015 Emerging Leader

I confess. I behaved unprofessionally when I found out I would be representing RUSA in the 2015 class of ALA Emerging Leaders. Excited young librarians had begun tweeting about their acceptances the day before, so I began preparing myself for the inevitable “thanks but no thanks” notification. When I opened an acceptance email instead, there were several minutes of untoward shouting, cheering, and jumping up and down.

The shock has worn off, but I’m still delighted to introduce myself as a 2015 Emerging Leader. My name is Beth Boatright, and I’m a Business and Emerging Technologies librarian at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne. I’ve been active in RUSA for several years, serving on committees in MARS and BRASS and eventually accepting some committee-level leadership roles. RUSA has been an important part of my growth as a professional, and I am honored to be representing our organization as an Emerging Leader this year.

The Emerging Leaders program is an ALA initiative that helps fifty librarians develop their leadership potential, collaboration skills, and volunteerism. After a one-day training session at Midwinter, groups of emerging leaders tackle service projects for the Association. This year, teams will be working on projects for AASL, APALA, ALCTS, ALSC, GODORT, HRDR, LearnRT, NMRT, PLA, and RUSA. (If you don’t know what those acronyms are, it’s okay. ALA is a confusing place.) I’m proud to be serving on the RUSA project team. We are learning about libraries that provide publishing services, with the goal of discovering how RUSA might provide meaningful support for this area of librarianship.

The Emerging Leaders program has changed over the last several years, but most alumni agree that it’s up to each participant to make the most of the experience. I am working hard to develop my leadership and project management skills while I collaborate on RUSA’s project. I’m also hoping to find and foster relationships with librarians across ALA; our profession is full of amazing mentors, and I have a lot to learn. I’m grateful to RUSA for sponsoring my participation in this program.

I’m eager to share with you the ways that Midwinter exceeded my expectations and other updates from my Emerging Leaders experience. Watch RUSA News for new posts in the coming months!

Beth Boatright
2015 RUSA Emerging Leader