Ryan Brown interviews Ryan Brown

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Ryan Brown has been Communications Director at the Indiana State Library since November 10, 2014. February 24, 2016, will be his last day at the library. In this State Library exclusive, Ryan Brown interviews Ryan Brown. Let the fun and confusion begin.

RB: You have been at the Indiana State Library for over a year. What are a few of the highlights of your tenure?

RB: I’m glad that you asked. There have been many interesting projects I have worked on over the past year such as the new brochures, door coverings, banners, annual report, etc. One of my favorite partnerships that I developed was with the Indiana Department of Education. We shared a booth together at the Indiana State Fair last summer and distributed information about the services available at the library to thousands of Hoosiers from all over Indiana. It was great to get out into the community and tell people face-to-face about the awesome collections at the library, as well as our statewide services.

CaptureRB: What are some of those collections and services?

RB: The Indiana State Library has one of the largest genealogy collections in the Midwest. It also has a huge inventory of rare books and manuscripts, government documents, newspapers, large print books, as well as talking books and Braille. There are also many online services available to Indiana residents like INSPIRE.in.gov, Indiana Memory and Hoosier State Chronicles. All of these items and services are free to Indiana residents. If you have any questions about the collection or services, you can Ask-a-Librarian.

RB: Wow! That is a lot of stuff!

RB: We are starting to sound like a commercial.

RB: Nah, it’s just good PR.

[Ryan Brown looks at Ryan Brown in disbelief]

RB: Anyway…it seems like a year is not a long time to be at a job, why leave so soon?

RB: The main reason I took a new job was so I could eventually move to South Bend where my wife is originally from.

RB: South Bend?

RB: Yes. You are probably thinking, “It’s cold up there and you are not a Notre Dame fan, so why would you want to move to South Bend?”

RB: Exactly!

RB: Do you remember a few years back when you promised your wife that when you were ready to have children the two of you would make an effort to move to that area?12019970_1134785493213457_3248265130995280150_n

RB: Oh yeah, what was I thinking? [Chuckling]

RB: Well…the time has come.

RB: Wait a second; am I going to be a father soon?

RB: Not at the moment, but you were going to start trying.

RB: Ah yes…now I remember…what else?

RB: I would say overall that I have enjoyed my time here at the State Library. There are a lot of great people on staff and working here allowed me to practice many of the skills I learned at school. Plus, we had many accomplishments in that short time period. We saw significant increases in event attendance as well as use of our services like INSPIRE.in.gov.

RB: What are some of the challenges you faced at the library?

RB: One of the biggest challenges was getting the media interested in what goes on at the State Library. Though, we did have a ton of press about our partnership with the Indiana Department of Natural Resources.

RB: Explain…

RB: The State Library acquired State Park passes from the Indiana Department of Natural Resources that are available at local libraries so patrons may check them out. The program started in January and has been very popular amongst patrons and the media. Anyone interested in the park passes should contact their local library for more information.

RB: What is your favorite item or part of the Indiana State Library?

RB: That is a difficult question that you always ask people in interviews. I guess if I had to narrow it down to one item, it would be the original State Flag. I believe that the Indiana Historical Bureau will be taking the flag around the state to various locations this year for the bicentennial.Bicentennial_Logo_Color

RB: Bicentennial? What is that?

RB: Don’t you know? 2016 marks the 200th year Indiana has been a state.

RB: Oh yeah? What is the library doing to celebrate?

RB: The library has a bunch of projects it is involved with including the new Indiana Young Readers Center, Hoosier State Chronicles, Bicentennial Toolkits for Libraries, Bicentennial Manuscript Collection, and many more!

RB: Thank you for taking a few moments of your day and participating in this interview. It has been a pleasure speaking with you. Since Wednesday is your last day, how would someone contact the library if they need info about the Wednesday Word or any communications questions?

RB: It has been great interviewing with you Ryan. If you are a librarian or library needing to reach the communications department, please email the State Library at communications@library.in.gov.

This blog post was written by Indiana State Library Director of Communications Ryan Brown. Click here for more information on the Indiana State Library.

Nominations needed for the Indiana Early Literacy Firefly Award

The Indiana Early Literacy Firefly Award is an initiative of the Indiana Center for the Book. This state award, administered by the Indiana Early Literacy Firefly Committee, highlights picture books for young children. Picture books serve an important role in theFirefly_Award first years of the life of a child. The purpose of this award is to encourage parents, caregivers, and very young children to interact together with exceptional picture books.

Indiana librarians may nominate picture books for the award from June through October 1st each year. What does that mean? That means that we need your nominations now. Have you read a fun picture book in your storytime?  Did you run across a winner during your Summer Reading Program? Have a book that makes you laugh every time you read it? Continue reading

INSPIREd cataloging help

Let’s face it, professional journals are expensive. Really, really expensive. So expensive that most libraries cannot afford subscriptions to these valuable publications. But keeping abreast of the latest professional output is very important, especially for catalogers who must adhere to strict standards and practices.Inspire Large_final-01Here’s where INSPIRE.in.gov can help! Full-text journal access is available for many of the most prominent publications in the field of Library Science. Titles pertinent to cataloging and technical services topics include (but are certainly not limited to):

Cataloging & Classification Quarterly (ISSN 0163-9374)

Library Collections, Acquisitions and Technical Services (ISSN 1464-9055)

Library Resources & Technical Services (ISSN 0024-2527)

Technical Services Quarterly (ISSN 0731-7131)

Library Trends (ISSN 0024-2594)

You can locate these titles by a couple of different ways: You can use the Advanced Search feature to search by journal title by selecting SO Journal title/source from the drop-down menu or you can search by International Standard Serial Number (ISSN) by selecting IS ISSN from the menu. You also can achieve the same results by doing a Publication Title Search from the top menu option.

Additionally, keyword and subject searches can direct you towards full-text articles from other publications. If a full-text option isn’t available for a title you want, remember that you usually can obtain a copy of the article via interlibrary loan.

As always, INSPIRE.in.gov is absolutely FREE to all Indiana residents so take advantage of this resource and keep your cataloging knowledge up-to-date!

This blog post was written by Jocelyn Lewis, Catalogue Librarian, Indiana State Library. For more information, contact the Indiana State Library at (317)232-3678 or “Ask-A-Librarian” at http://www.in.gov/library/ask.htm.

Genealogy Librarians and Professional Development

Professional development is an important part of librarianship, so that librarians can keep up with innovations within the profession and thus provide the best possible service to the public. This is particularly important in specialized subject such as genealogy. With that in mind, two librarians from the Genealogy Division of the Indiana State Library attended the Indiana Genealogical Society’s (IGS) annual conference at Indiana State University earlier this year, where they attended several presentations by Judy Russell, author of the popular blog The Legal Genealogist. Russell’s lectures were both informative and entertaining. She spoke on visiting county courthouses for genealogical research in original county records, finding ancestors’ military and military pension records and the abundant genealogical information they can contain, and tracking our “black sheep” ancestors using court and prison records as well as other contemporary sources, such as newspaper articles.
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If you were unable to attend the IGS conference or if you would like to hear Judy Russell again, she will be speaking at the annual Genealogy and Local History Fair held at the Indiana State Library on October 24, 2015. Russell will be speaking on research methods for finding your “black sheep” ancestors and utilizing underused collections, such as prison records, to further that research. This free event is open to the public and registration is not required.

For those in the library or legal professions, these sessions have been approved for LEUs and CLEs.

This blog post was written by Crystal Ward, Genealogy Librarian, Indiana State Library. For more information, contact the Indiana State Library at (317)232-3678 or “Ask-A-Librarian” at http://www.in.gov/library/ask.htm

Professional Development at Your Fingertips

Looking to brush up customer service skills? Wondering about current trends in the library world? There are lots of professional development and continuing education opportunities around that are available to Indiana users online.

  1. Lyrasis – Using Lyrasis is easy and allows access to many quality trainings. Trainings are already paid for by the Indiana State Library (ISL) so library staff can be assured that they are free. Simply browse their offerings, choose a training, apply for a Promo Code if needed (classes that do not list a cost do not require a Promo Code) register, and attend the class. Pro Tip: If you don’t have time to take the class when it’s offered, register anyway. After the class is offered you will be emailed an access link and you can take the class at your leisure.
  2. Lynda.com – With tutorials for dozens of topics, Lynda.com can help library staff learn to take better pictures for their FaceBook page, discover better ways to lead, and learn tips on how to use WordPress. To gain access, just fill out the Lynda.com Course Application Form. You will receive your username and password in your email. Pro Tip: If you’ve forgotten whether or not you have already logged in, try to log in with your email address. Forgot your password? It’s easy to reset through the prompts on the page.
  3. Free Webinars – The Indiana State Library keeps an ongoing and updated spreadsheet of pre-approved webinar courses. In a simple excel format, these are arranged by date and cover a variety of topics. Pro Tip: Don’t forget, someone in your own organization can create your LEU Certificate in-house. Check out our policy on LEUs for Live and Archived Webinars.
  4. Pre Approved Providers – The ISL also keeps a list of organizations who present webinars that are pre-approved for LEUs. This is so great because staff can be assured that any webinar offered by these providers is a go for LEUs. The only stipulation is that courses must be at least 30 minutes in length to count for 1 LEU.
    Pro Tip: Courses that are 30-90 minutes of content are equivalent to 1 LEU.
  5. ISL’s Calendar of Events – The ISL also hosts our own webinars as well as other face-to-face trainings. The are listed on our calendar and are open to all library staff. Pro Tip: Registration for webinars is usually done through an internal link on the calendar. Just click on the training title and then click on the Event Registration Page in order to register.

This blog post was written by Suzanne Walker, Professional Development Office Supervisor. For more information, contact the Professional Development Office at (317) 232-3697 or email statewideservices@library.in.gov.