Iowa Center for the Book (ICB)
Advisory Council Meeting
May 12, 2005 Ankeny Public Library
Present: Susan Bedell, Susan Craig, Kristin Gerhard, Monica Gohlinghorst, Prasenjit Gupta, Sid Huttner, Roy Kenagy, Shaner Magalhaes (chair), Robin Martin, Marilyn Mercado, Christine Pawley, Steve Person, Lorna Truck, Katherine Von Wald, Timothy Walch, Mary Wegner, Cynthia Weiss, Annette Wetteland
1) Introductions were made.
2) Von Wald introduced Brian Soenen, Department of Natural Resources (DNR), who presented information on the River of Words project in Iowa. River of Words is a program of the Center for the Book, Library of Congress. It originated in Berkley, California and is a free international poetry and art contest for youth on the theme of watersheds. The contest is designed to help youth explore the natural and cultural history of the place they live, and to express, through poetry and art, what they discover. Entries not chosen as finalists in the international contest are returned to the IOWATER program in the DRN, where they are judged in an Iowa statewide River of Words contest.
The Iowa River of Words program began in 2004.This year’s contestants are currently being judged.
The group discussed possible partnership opportunities between the ICB and River of Words. Ideas included:
• Calendars of the winners’ work
• Involving the Iowa Arts Council
• Publicizing the program on the ICB web site
• Archiving the work – possibly designate the work as state documents and put them on Iowa Publications Online
• Developing traveling exhibits
Soenen said he would be happy to work with the Iowa Center for the Book.
3) Minutes of the October 28, 2004 meeting were approved.
4) Wegner provided drafts of the proposed Articles of Incorporation for the ICB Foundation. Craig and Walch worked with Wegner to develop the Articles. Wegner said she would present them to the Iowa Commission of Libraries on June 6 for their approval. Craig moved to accept the proposal; Walch seconded; approved.
5) Craig said the All Iowa Reads (AIR) project was having a “great year” and that she had received many positive comments about the book. She also thought there were lots of discussions going on around the state. Actively reporting activities, she noted, is still a problem, but the said the program seems to be getting more popular.
Craig said the AIR committee is in the process of choosing a book for 2006. A new project this year has AIR committee members facilitating book discussions in libraries that have never had them. Librarians are more likely to hold books discussions after they have watched someone facilitate one.
It was reported that author Louise Erdrich, The Master Butchers Singing Club, has agreed to speak at the Iowa Library Association conference this fall.
6) Von Wald talked about this year’s Letters About Literature (LAL) program. She said that like River of Words, she does not see all the original work. Only about 100 semifinalists’ work is sent back from the national committee to the state for judging. Edward Chen from Ames was an Iowa winner and is also a national winner in Level III (grades 9-12). There will not be any publicity about national winners until the National Book Festival in September. Wetteland and Von Wald will visit with Chan before he leaves for college. Wetteland will also contact a Des Moines Register reporter in September.
The letters from this year’s state winners (with a link to national winners) are on the ICB web site (www.iowacenterforthebook.org). There was some discussion about the privacy of the youth who write the letters and whether they should be archived. Parents must sign permission forms giving their permission for the winning letter to be quoted from or released to the press and published on the ICB and Library of Congress websites. It was agreed that most people in a contest situation expect some kind of publicity.
Von Wald said the three panels of judges are working well. The deadline for the 2006 contest is December 1, 2005. There were 1,166 letters submitted from Iowa students in 2005; in 2004 there were 671.
7) It was agreed that the Literary Calendar has been a challenge. Von Wald said there is a need for help from an ongoing committee. On average there are 8 entries a week added to the calendar. Some committee members said it was hard to gather literary information, especially on college campuses. Others said they hadn’t followed through like they thought they would. It was agreed that the project needs people who are willing to make contacts with potential providers.
Gohlinghorst, Huttner and Martin agreed to serve on the Literary Calendar committee. Von Wald said she would find others outside of the ICB Advisory Committee to also serve.
8) Wetteland reported on her trip to Washington, DC for the annual Center for the Book meeting. She filled in for Von Wald. Wetteland noted that state centers were all quite different, with different programs and different ways of raising money. There was a good exchange of information on fund raising. She also suggested people look at the Literary Map of Pennsylvania. http://www.pabook.libraries.psu.edu/LitMap/litmap.html
9) A list of Iowa book awards will be put on the ICB web site, along with a list of award winners. There will be links to the organizations who offer book awards. It was suggested that the ICB send certificates to those who win Iowa book awards. It was also suggested that the Center have its own book award program.
Magalhaes said he hopes First Lady Christie Vilsack will be able to attend the next meeting of the ICB to talk about the future of her Iowa Stories 2000 program. Person said it takes a quarter-time staff person to run the program.
Von Wald said she would like to consider putting weekly book reviews on the ICB web site. Bookstore and library staff could be potential contributors.
Craig said she would like to see the ICB web site “jazzed” up when the State Library gets its new web site software.
10) Von Wald said she had been notified by the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress that the affiliation of the ICB had been renewed.
11) Mercado, Gerhard, Truck and Bedell agreed to be reappointed to the ICB advisory board. Gohlinghorst moved to accept the reappointments; Craig seconded; approved. A resolution was also approved that would allow the advisory board to reappoint Timothy Barrett and Karen Keninger if they agreed to serve.
12) Magalhaes term as chair ended. He asked Walch if he would take the position and he agreed. Mercado moved to accept; Wegner seconded; approved.
13) The ICB’s next meeting will be held in eastern Iowa at the Czechoslovakian Museum in Cedar Rapids on Friday, October 14. Vilsack will be contacted to see if she can attend on that date. The group may meet in Perry next spring. Gohlinghorst asked the committee to think about moving the meeting west in the future.
14) Huttner shared information with the group about the Second International Conference on Book Binding (“The Changing Book: Transitions in Design, Production & Preservation”) which will be held July 22-25, 2005 in Iowa City.
Annette Wetteland, Recorder