The AASL election season is quickly approaching, and we have an outstanding slate of candidates standing for office! AASL is continuing the practice of using the KQ website as a venue for you to learn more about each candidate. Those standing for office were given the opportunity to introduce themselves with a short video on the AASL channel on YouTube and to use this space by responding to the following prompt: “What would you say to someone if they were to ask you ‘Why AASL?’ ”
Each candidate is immensely qualified and is a leader and advocate for our profession. As you view their videos and read their responses, consider how each will lead our profession during these unprecedented times. Consider who can effectively carry out AASL’s mission statement to empower leaders to transform teaching and learning. Our association needs your input as to who will lead us in the future. Vote to show support for our national association and for the candidates standing for office, and encourage other AASL members to vote as well. Voting makes a difference and your vote matters!
Statements and/or videos were a voluntary option offered to all candidates.
Mark your calendar to cast your vote while polls are open, March 14–April 6.
The candidates for the Director-At-Large are:
- Amanda Kordeliski
- Liz Philippi
AASL is an essential membership and resource for all school librarians. How I use and depend on AASL has changed throughout my career. At first, I was a hesitant member, reading every issue of Knowledge Quest, following AASL and other librarians on social media, lurking on message boards and slowly taking it all in. As I grew in my practice, I became more confident in my abilities as a librarian and became braver. I started to present at conferences, take leadership roles within my state organization and volunteer for small AASL committees. As my participation in AASL grew, so did my network of support, my confidence as a librarian, and my desire to play a larger role. No matter where you are in your career, AASL has a place for you. When librarians ask why I am a member of AASL, I tell them because it grows with me. Every school librarian has something to contribute to make our organization more valuable. The resources, support and mentorship I receive from AASL empower me to be a better librarian and have taught me how to be a library leader in my state.
As the world changed dramatically over the last two years, AASL changed as well. Members worked together to create and share pandemic resources, town halls, twitter chats, and a greater sense of community within school librarianship. Why AASL now? Because now more than ever we need connections to other librarians. To support one another, to help amplify school librarian voices, to advocate for libraries where everyone is welcome, and to fight for intellectual freedom. I am running for AASL Director at Large because I want to make sure every school librarian sees AASL as an accessible and welcoming organization with many different pathways to involvement and engagement.
What would you say if someone asked you “Why AASL?”
Currently school librarians are experiencing many challenges, some involving book challenges, some are about cuts in staffing, and for many it is having to step into a variety of situations due to staffing issues. The most important support we have as school librarians is our network of colleagues who help, support, and sometimes just listen as we navigate these difficulties. Our greatest strength is our ability to come together either in-person or virtually to help and support each other. During the pandemic I saw so many colleagues share their insights, plans, suggestions, and resources. This is our power and that power is amplified through AASL.
AASL is not only an incredible networking organization but it is also one of the best places to advance our leadership opportunities and hone those skills. There are so many ways to get involved in AASL one only needs to “raise your hand” whether it is in person of filling out a volunteer form. In my own personal journey I have found the courage to “step out of my comfort zone” with AASL and speak up when I wanted to share my thoughts and ideas and those surrounding me listened, this led to my volunteering for a variety of things and keeps me interested and active in all of the changes and new trends in our profession.
The power of our profession is really in our ability to work together for common goals and AASL encourages that and champions it. One of the best things I did for my professional journey was joining AASL and becoming an active part of the organization. I want to encourage more of our members to do that same thing. Make AASL work for you by speaking up and getting involved! I promise you won’t ever regret it.
Author: Kathy Carroll, AASL Leadership Development Committee Chair
As AASL Immediate Past President Kathy Carroll is chair of the AASL Leadership Development Committee.