John Gottfried, Editor

Message from the BRASS Chair

The BRASS Board will be having an online meeting on Tues. Feb. 23 from 1-3PM CST.

I also want to thank everyone for all the time and devotion they have committed to making BRASS the best section in RUSA! I’m looking forward to the Annual Conference in Orlando and I hope you all are as well. We have a great selection of programs, forums, meetings and social gatherings to look forward to as that time approaches.
Warm regards,
Paul Brothers, BRASS Chair 2015-2016

Business Reference Services Discussion Group
The BRASS Discussion Group facilitated a virtual discussion on November 13th. In attendance were 43 BRASS members. Topics included changes in SLA, the formation of RUSA interest groups, and much more. There was also an in-person discussion held at Midwinter in Boston on January 10th. Roughly 15 members were able to attend this discussion, which was focused around collections. Thank you to everyone who attended and participated in these discussions. The next virtual discussion will be on March 23th at 2pm EST. It will be an open agenda.

Emily Treptow 2014-2016 Chair

Business Reference in Academic Libraries Committee
Our committee has been holding virtual meetings the last few months in order to plan for our Academic Forum at Annual in Orlando: “Innovation and Risk Taking in Business Academic Librarianship:  Lightning Talks”. The Forum will feature up to seven academic business librarians discussing innovative practices, products or services. The Committee will select seven librarians to make 5-7 minute presentations with time after for discussion. We are willing to consider proposals with an element of risk, and even those describing a project that did not succeed. A call for proposals has been sent out, but we encourage all business librarian to submit their proposals using the form linked here:

Van Houlson, 2015-2016 Chair

Business Reference in Public Libraries Committee
The committee continues to work on updating the Public Libraries Briefcase and adding informative articles. The latest entry, “Understanding Financial Ratios for Small Business,” is a fascinating article written by Ray Cruitt. We will be meeting shortly to discuss new ideas to make it easier to exchange information about business reference resources with business librarians who support small businesses and budding entrepreneurs. Looking forward to Orlando…our committee will meet on June 25th at 3pm.

Salvatore DiVincenzo, 2015-2016 Chair

Business Reference Sources Committee
The Business Reference Sources Committee is in the process of nominating sources that will be selected for an upcoming issue of Reference and User Services Quarterly.

The Committee has also selected the program to be presented at the annual Publisher’s Forum, which will take place at the ALA Annual Conference in Orlando. The title of the forum will be “One Part Social, One Part Commercial: A Recipe for Supporting Social Entrepreneurship.”

Ed Hahn, 2014-2016 Chair

Education Committee
The BRASS Education Committee continues to pursue a variety of exciting goals.  In addition to ongoing work to continually update BRASS Business Guides, four committee teams have been working on completing their individual projects:

  • Pre Conference Planning Team
    • Work continues on developing the 2016 BRASS Preconference “Business Data for Librarians” at the ALA Annual Conference in Orlando. Our speakers have provided us with brief descriptions of their intended content, and we have used this information to send out advertising text to relevant listservs, social media outlets, ALA Connect and others. We will continue to advertise over the coming months, as well as working out the details of our interactive presentations. This looks to be an amazing Preconference! If you haven’t already, consider joining us on June 24th, 2016.
    • This team benefits from the efforts of Tom Ottaviano, Peter McKay, Charles Allan and Emmy Solis.
  • Best of the Best Business Websites Award Team
    • After running another successful nomination and voting process, the Team is now completing the process of contacting Award winners. In addition, the Team developed and submitted a proposal to consider changing the award from a print certificate to a web badge; this proposal has been submitted to the Executive Committee.
    • This team benefits from the efforts of Monica Hagan, Cara Cadena and Bridget Farrell.
  • Free Webinar Team
    • Having facilitated a very successful 2015 RUSA Free Section Webinar “Supporting Entrepreneurship: The Kauffman Foundation’s Research and Resources”, the team is currently responsible for soliciting ideas and speakers for a possible 2016 free webinar.
    • This team benefits from the efforts of Phebe Dickson, Robbie De Peri and Christina Sheley.
  • Paid Webinar Team
    • The Team continues to investigate whether there is any need for further business reference webinars and whether this would be an appropriate or feasible undertaking for the Education Committee. Plans are to discuss this issue in greater depth at our Committee Meeting at ALA Annual 2016.
    • This team benefits from the efforts of Kelly LaVoice, Hiromi Kubo and LuMarie Guth.

The BRASS Education Committee has had a wonderful year learning and exploring ourselves, and we hope the business reference community feels we have provided similar opportunities to all of you!

Ashley Faulkner, 2012-2015 Chair

Nominating Committee
The BRASS Nominating Committee is excited to announce a slate of strong candidates for BRASS office:

  • BRASS Vice-Chair/Chair-Elect:
    Chad Boeninger
    Greg Fleming
  • Secretary
    Jared Hoppenfeld
    Ilana Stonebraker
  • Member at Large
    Annette Buckley
    Ed Rossman

Many thanks to the candidates, and to those who submitted nominations. BRASS will be in good hands.

Andy Spackman, 2015-2016 Chair

Program Planning Committee
Over 865 hotels with 103,230 rooms are scheduled to open in 2016, according to hotel research firm STR ( Want to learn more? Come to the BRASS ALA Annual Program “Changes in Latitudes, Changes in Attitudes: Travel and Hospitality Landscape and Library Resources,” which will be held Monday, June 27th 8am to 10am at the ALA Annual Conference in beautiful Orlando, Florida. Breakfast sponsored by S&P Capital IQ.

Ilana Stonebraker, 2015-2016 Chair

Publications and Communications Committee
The P&C Committee will be holding a virtual meeting in February where we will discuss the following:

  • Social Media Policy
  • Appointing a new BRASS Notes Editor
  • Using RUSA Voices for BRASS
  • Discussion of BRASS-L content policy
  • Update of BRASS website projects

Chad Boeninger, 2014-2016 Chair

Vendor Relations Committee
There have been several changes in sponsorships for BRASS awards:

  • We are pleased to announce that Mergent is the new sponsor of the BRASS Excellence in Business Librarianship Award. The award is increased to $4000.
  • SimplyMap is now the sponsor of the BRASS Student Travel Award.
  • ReferenceUSA has confirmed they will continue to sponsor the BRASS members’ reception at ALA Annual in Orlando 2016.
  • Our long-time friends S&P Capital IQ continue to sponsor the BRASS continental breakfast prior to the BRASS program.
  • Mintel will once again sponsor the BRASS Discussion Group coffee.
  • Emerald has reached out to BRASS again about continuing the popular Emerald event as part of Annual, and early planning has started for 2017. We continue to thank Emerald for their sponsorship of the BRASS Emerald Research Award.

Be sure to let all our sponsors know how much we value their commitment to BRASS activities!

Ann Fiegen, 2015-2016 Chair


BRASS Mergent Learning Excellence in Business Librarianship Award
The BRASS Mergent Excellence in Business Librarianship committee is pleased to announce that Jared Hoppenfeld, business librarian at Texas A&M University, has been selected as this year’s recipient. A longtime BRASS member, Jared has published widely on topics relevant to academic and public business librarians, including “Information-Seeking Behaviors of Business Faculty,” the most-downloaded article of 2014 in the Journal of Business & Finance Librarianship. A 2015 article, “Engaging with Entrepreneurs in Academic and Public Libraries,” was selected to be included in a special entrepreneurship-themed issue of Reference Services Review.

Business students at Texas A&M University also benefit from Jared’s expertise and creativity. After identifying a gap in the business information literacy schedule, Jared proposed a new program targeting first year students and now nearly all business students receive instruction starting their freshman year. Additionally, his current work with the national Entrepreneurship Bootcamp for Veterans with Disabilities (EBV) has impacted not just his constituents at Texas A&M University but EBV programs across the country. He was the driving force behind the creation of the EBV Info Portal which coordinates among a growing number of database vendors, as well as staff, faculty and librarians at other EBV institutions.

For these contributions and other efforts, the committee is pleased to name Jared this year’s winner of the BRASS Mergent Excellence in Business Librarianship award. This award is generously sponsored by Mergent and consists of $4,000 and a citation. An award ceremony is planned for ALA Annual in Orlando. Congratulations, Jared!

Celia Ross, 2014-2015 Chair

Gale Cengage Learning Student Travel Award Committee
Katherine Glasoe is the recipient of the 2016 BRASS Student Travel Award. Katherine plans to graduate from Simmons College with her MLS in May 2016 and intends to pursue a career in business librarianship. She has gained practical work experience with her position as a Technical Services Assistant at Harvard Business School’s Baker Library, an internship with The Brattle Group, and with her position as a Graduate Student Library Assistant at Draper. While maintaining a busy work and academic schedule, she serves as the current President of the Simmons College student chapter of SLA. One of her goals is to become an active member of BRASS.

Diane Zabel, 2015-2016 Chair

Global Financial Data Academic Business Librarian Award
Ruth D. Terry, Business and Government Information Librarian at the University of Alaska Anchorage, is the recipient of the Global Financial Data Academic Business Librarianship Travel Award. Projects in her first year as a business librarian include using assessment results to shape library instruction, a mini-grant project to embed information literacy into specific courses, and using metrics and input from faculty to improve the collection. She has also been active as the co-chair of the new BRASS business librarians group, as secretary for the Anchorage chapter of the Alaska Library Association, and as a member of the Alaska Governor’s Council on Libraries. We wish Ms. Terry all the best in her new career and hope that this travel grant for the ALA annual meeting will help her to enhance the development of her career and to further contribute to the profession of business librarianship.

Julia Martin, 2015-2016 Chair

Morningstar Public Librarian Support Award Committee
The Morningstar Award committee met through email and publicized this award through various listservs, state association websites, and ALA Connect. We received 3 outstanding candidates and chose Susan Wolf Neilson as our recipient of the $1250 award to help with travel to this year’s Annual ALA Conference.

The committee worked well together and did a good job in selecting the award winner.

Committee members:

Patricia Hull
Kelly Jeanne Evans
Edmund A Rossman
Cynthia H Slater
Janet Tom

Patricia Hull, 2015-2016 Chair