Category Archives: WLA

Mark Your Calendar for the Legislative Reception

Pencil it in now, and make plans to attend: the 2018 Wyoming Library Association Legislative Reception will be held at 5:30 p.m. on February 22, 2018 at the Wyoming State Library, 2800 Central Ave. in Cheyenne. Library directors, employees, trustees, and volunteers are encouraged to be there. It’s a great opportunity to thank your Wyoming senators, representatives, and elected officials for their support of libraries and to offer them an evening of home-cooked food. The event will be preceded by a legislative update at 5 p.m. from WLA lobbyists Mary Lynne Shickich and Susan Stubson.

Our Library Development Office is currently planning training sessions in conjunction with the reception earlier that day and on Friday morning, February 23. Details coming soon.

A-Tisket, a-Tasket, a WLLI Basket!

From Anna Smedts, WLLI Advisor

Congratulations to all our basket winners and a HUGE THANKS to all those who so graciously (and creatively!) contributed to the Wyoming Library Leadership Institute (WLLI) basket fundraiser.

At the drawing (L to R): Johanna Tuttle, Abby Beaver, Darcy Acord, Chris Van Burgh, and Anna Smedts.

This year, the baskets were especially eye-catching and generously stuffed, drawing in many last-minute ticket purchasers with hopes of taking home the bounty. The “Basque-kit,” “Spirit of Sheridan,” “Devil’s Tower,” and “Wyoming Redneck” baskets were popular and fun reflections of our Wyoming culture. Raffle contestants were hard-pressed to choose between titles like “Zen and the Art of Gardening,” “Don’t Mess With a Princess,” “Margarita Madness,” and “Tuscany, WY.” From literary themes (“Charlie and the Chocolate Factory” — WOW!), date nights (“Movie” or “Staycation”?) to “Canning” and “Creativity” baskets, there was something for everyone. Thank you all again, so very much, for your generous support of the WLLI; whether you bought tickets or built a basket, we appreciate you!

Nearly $1,400 was raised, which will go toward covering the costs of the 2018 Institute in beautiful Lander, Wyoming, next July. We hope to continue the tradition of providing opportunities for Wyoming librarians to gain skills in leading, communicating, collaborating, and engaging within their library systems and communities. Please consider applying to attend the 2018 Institute, or recommending it to a colleague — we have some exciting plans in place!

About 25 baskets were contributed to the WLLI raffle this year. Volunteers who helped out included Cynthia Twing, Megan Herold, Abby Beaver, Johanna Tuttle, Rachael Yates, Nancy Venable, Michelle Humber, Marci Mock, Karen Funk, Darcy Acord, Bonnie Stahla, and Anna Smedts. A few of the winners are pictured below with their baskets.


WLA Elects Two to Board

Kate Mutch

At its 2017 conference, the Wyoming Library Association announced that Kate Mutch was elected as its new Vice President/President-Elect. Mutch is Assistant Director at Natrona County Public Library.  “One of the greatest things about librarians is the willingness to share with others — information, materials and even themselves,” Mutch said in her candidate statement. “Wyoming libraries excel at this in a way I haven’t seen elsewhere. I believe working together to provide the best possible library service makes all of our libraries stronger.”


Cindy Moore

Cindy Moore, Converse County Library Assistant Director, was elected MPLA Representative, succeeding Steve Boss. “I believe very strongly in access without restrictions, the importance of libraries in our communities, exemplary customer service; and financial responsibility to our taxpayers,” she said. “MPLA has given me so much: grants for school, the Leadership Institute, and the support and friendship of librarians throughout the mountain western states.”

Thanks go to the other candidates on the ballot who were willing to step forward and offer their time and talents to WLA: Jennisen Lucas, who ran for Vice President, and Steve Boss and Nancy Venable, who ran for MPLA Representative. It was truly an excellent slate of candidates this year, and all of them should be commended.

Take a Tour of “What the Tech?”

2017 “What the Tech is That?”

If you missed it, check out the presentation slides and list of links from this year’s “What the Tech is That?” presentation at the Wyoming Library Association conference.

What the Tech? List of Tech from WLA 2017

  • Epic!: Digital library for kids 12 & under. Accessible on any device.
  • iMovie Trailers: Create fun, Hollywood-style movie trailers from your videos.
  • Hugo Hubble: Alexa-enabled, robotic, smart camera, reads facial expressions and senses emotions. Not yet available, but check at
  • 3D printing designers
    • Melissa NG com fun fashion with 3D printing
    • Anouk Wipprecht ( Technology couture with sensors embedded in design
    • Danit Peleg (com) more fashion that can be printed at home.
    • Iris Van Herpen ( fusing technology and traditional Couture craftsmanship.
  • website with CIA maps, headquarters tour, intelligence literature, world factbook, & world leaders, as well as a special section for K-9 Corps.
  • Sugarcane: Educational game creator.
  • Camtasia: Fee based video recorder/editor.
  • Plickers: clickers that can be used in the classroom or library.
  • NetGalley: website with ARC’s and egalleys available for review.
  • Edelweiss: another site with ARC’s and egalleys available for review.
  • Google Trips: app that gathers your travel information from Gmail and Inbox, then organizes it automatically.
  • Google Earth Voyager: Showcase of interactive, curated guided tours of places around the earth., then click “Voyager” in left-hand column.
  • Planbook: fee-based lesson book/scheduling tool for educators.
  • Ozoblockly: Learn simple coding to control your own ozobot.
  • StoryCorps: archive of more than 65,000 interviews; one of the largest born-digital collections of human voices.
  • Animoto: fee-based video creation service.
  • Eat Your Books: website that organizes your recipes.
  • ELBOW Cassette Player: Concept tech. Allows user to connect cassette tapes to digital player.
  • EyeNote: assistive technology app that helps you read money denominations.
  • Biblionasium: “Goodreads for Elementary Students” and now integrated with Follett Destiny.
  • Clips: Shareable, editable video app for iOS. Find in iTunes store.
  • Photomath: Assistive technology app for doing math.
  • BARD Mobile: Assistive Technology app. Offers downloadable Braille and audio reading material. Must be registered to use the app.
  • Map of Life: discover, identify, and record biodiversity worldwide. Also view species range map and inventory.
  • Tripit: helps you build your itinerary with dates, times, directions, maps, and weather.
  • Classcraft: classroom management app that uses gaming to direct students’ motivation.

Our Favorite Tweets from the WLA Conference

From August 9-11, more than 140 librarians, school library media specialists, and library workers gathered in Sheridan to learn and connect at Information Power and at the Wyoming Library Association 2017 Conference. Here are a few highlights we spotted on the #wyla17 hashtag on Twitter.


Take a Chance on a Basket to Benefit WLLI

“Tea Party” from Johnson County Library

The Wyoming Library Leadership Institute (WLLI) is holding its popular basket raffle again at the Wyoming Library Association conference in Sheridan August 10-11. WLLI provides opportunities for learning, mentoring and developing leadership skills to promote the personal and professional growth of the Wyoming library community.

Libraries from across the state are donating baskets — and you could win one. Tickets are $1 each, 6 for $5, or 25 for $20. All proceeds benefit WLLI and make it possible for your library colleagues across the state to attend this wonderful learning experience.

You need not be present to win, although you will need someone in attendance to haul it home if you do, as baskets cannot be shipped.

Photos are still coming in, but here are some of the ones that we know will be in the raffle. Follow the #wyla17 hashtag on Twitter to see more.

Devil's Tower Basket

Devil’s Tower Basket from Hulett Branch Library in Johnson County

Dr. McGillicuddy's basket

Dr. McGillicuddy’s basket from the Moorcroft Library in Johnson County

“Sunshine in the Kitchen” from Johnson County Library

“Basque-It” from Johnson County Library

“Wonder Woman” from Lander Library

The Wyoming State Library’s “Sci-Fi” and “Creativity” baskets are still under construction, so there will be more goodies coming.

Check Out the WLA Conference Program

One session, “Explore, Learn, Create: Teen Engagement, Empathy and Activism,” has been canceled, and some changes have been made to presenters.

heading to the Wyoming Library Association conference in Sheridan August 9-11? Then check out the great lineup of sessions in the conference program. You’re sure to find something of interest.

The annual conference offers numerous opportunities to learn and to network with library colleagues from across the state.

Deadline to register is August 1. There will be no late or on-site registrations, so sign up now for the 2017 WLA Conference.

Still Time to Join “What the Tech?”

Episode 2 What the Heck is What the Tech?

Like to play with tech toys? Want to bask in the adulation of your fellow librarians at the upcoming Wyoming Library Association conference?

There’s still time to join the “What the Tech is That?” team. This session is a crowd favorite: a rapid-fire, whirlwind tour of websites and tech tools. Choose and prepare a handful of topics, and share each one in 90 (or so) seconds flat before you’re stopped by the bell.

Interested? Contact Thomas Ivie at, (307) 777-6330, or Paige Bredenkamp at, (307) 777-6331, for more details.

WLA Announces Election Nominees

The Wyoming Library Association has announced nominees for its 2017 election of a Vice President/President-Elect and a Representative to the Mountain Plains Library Association. The ballot will be released July 17 and is restricted to Active and Life members of WLA members. Voting will close August 3, 2017, and the successful candidates will be announced at the Association’s 2017 conference in Sheridan August 10-11.

If you are a WLA member who is eligible to vote, you will receive a ballot by email via SurveyMonkey. If you do not receive your ballot, please check your spam filter first, and if it is not there, contact Susan Mark at or (307) 777-5915.

So without further ado, we’d like to introduce you to the five fantastic volunteers who have stepped forward:

Vice-President/President-Elect Nominees:
Kate Mutch and Jennisen Lucas

Kate Mutch

Thank you for this opportunity to run for a position in the Wyoming Library Association.

I began as a volunteer in a small library (service population 2,500!) in Colorado in 1998 and went on to pursue my MLS through Emporia State University. In 1999, I became the director of that library. I moved on to a director’s job in Andover, Kansas. I was delighted to return to the west over 14 years ago to serve at the Natrona County Public Library where I am the Public Services Administrator.

Since coming to Wyoming I have enjoyed meeting and working with library staff from all over this unique and wonderful state. I have served on the Wyoming Library Association Awards Committee and currently am serving on the WYLD Governing Board, the WLA Legislative Committee, and the WYLD shared purchasing committee, and I am chair of the WYLD Training Committee. In an unofficial capacity I have been the “wrangler” of all things Overdrive in our eight-member consortia. On a local level I served as Secretary of the local Kiwanis Club for nine years.

One of the greatest things about librarians is the willingness to share with others — information, materials and even themselves. Wyoming libraries excel at this in a way I haven’t seen elsewhere. I believe working together to provide the best possible library service makes all of our libraries stronger. Over the years I have benefited personally and professional from those who have served to keep the organization moving forward, and I would be honored to serve the Wyoming Library Association as it promotes, improves, and supports libraries, librarians, and their many services.

There is a continued need to promote Wyoming libraries as a relevant and needed part of 21st century life.  It is even more important than ever to promote the participation of Wyoming librarians and libraries in regional, national, and global library arenas; through WLA, Wyoming has a better chance of being successful with this.

Jennisen Lucas

What is your passion? I have a T-shirt from Gale that asks that question. I was challenged to answer it to fill in the blank on the shirt. I chose to write “Learning.” This is why I chose librarianship as my profession — because I have a passion for learning, both my own learning and that of those around me. For the past 15 years, I have been a school librarian, and I have been very active in my professional organizations, but prior to this career choice, I have worked in public libraries, academic libraries, and a law library. I have been co-chair of the Information Power committee and Wyoming’s School Library Interest Group’s recorder and co-chair, as well as serving as one of Wyoming’s delegates to the American Association of School Librarians, for which I have also served on a variety of committees, currently chairing the Beyond Words Grant Jury.

We often separate our various library types (school, academic, special, public) because we all have very different “needs” and “concerns,” but at the core, all librarians believe in the right of each individual to access the information they need to educate themselves. Libraries are not about books; they are about information, and more importantly, they are about education. As a school librarian, I am in a unique position to be identified as a teacher, as well as a librarian. This, however, does not make me unique among librarians. We all do this. Our youngest patrons start learning story basics, text features, and reading skills at the knees of our youth services librarians in the public libraries. Then they are sent to school libraries where good school librarians begin systematically fostering the skills of resource selection and evaluation, discrimination of information validity, and digital literacy skills. Our academic librarians then provide students with further, more in-depth training pursuant to specific subject materials, and our public librarian colleagues then pick up the trail again (although also continuing for those who encompassed the greatness of both public and school libraries throughout their school careers) to lead adults who continually educate themselves on new things that catch their interests or new information about old passions. So, all librarians are educators. Now to the question at hand: why vote for me as Vice President/ President-Elect of the Wyoming Library Association? I am running because I believe that communication between our various interest groups must happen to strengthen our organization and clarify our purpose for all libraries. United, we are strong, but we must also increase communication and collaboration with outside agencies, such as the Wyoming Department of Education, to share our purpose and our abilities to educate every citizen of Wyoming.

Mountain Plains Library Association Representative Nominees:
Nancy Venable, Cindy Moore, and Steve Boss

Nancy Venable

What a wonderful opportunity to represent the fantastic Wyoming libraries through the Mountain Plains Library Association! My prior experiences with MPLA have been through membership and attendance at joint conferences with the Montana Library Association and the Wyoming Library Association. Always, in any library networking, I have been impressed by the MPLA state representatives; they epitomize their vibrant and vital libraries and regions, wholeheartedly dedicated to their communities.

My background is in Wyoming public libraries and Montana school libraries with two years on the WLA Awards & Grants Committee and a diversity of Montana Library Association volunteer positions. These were great positions where I was able to be part of the positive movements that support libraries and their communities. Working with dedicated Wyoming librarians and building relationships that advocate our state’s libraries has definitely been a wonderful and rewarding experience.

I ask for your vote to support my belief in the power of Wyoming libraries and the stronger voice we have as an association member of MPLA. We benefit from this alliance because MPLA is an organization proven to keep a true perspective and eye on the future while supporting librarians and libraries. The issues addressed by MPLA are common to all of us in the information profession.

As the Wyoming MPLA representative, I would be committed to working toward the best in Wyoming’s libraries through the unique, knowledgeable, and diverse MPLA network.

Cindy Moore

It has been my good fortune to work in Wyoming public libraries since 2003, volunteering and working in school libraries before that. I began working in the Sweetwater County Library System at the White Mountain Library in 2003 and started an MLIS. program in 2004. I graduated in 2006 from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee and worked throughout SCLS libraries until 2012 when I moved to Powell and was Branch Manager in Park County.  In 2013 I took the Albany County Public Library directorship and retired in 2016. I found I didn’t like retirement, the position of Assistant Director at the Converse County Library opened, and what an opportunity! I have now lived and worked in every corner and the center of Wyoming.

I believe very strongly in access without restrictions, the importance of libraries in our communities, exemplary customer service, and financial responsibility to our taxpayers. Mountain Plains Library Association has given me so much: grants for school, the MPLA Leadership Institute, and the support and friendship of librarians throughout the mountain western states. It would be a pleasure to return that goodwill and represent Wyoming libraries.

Steve Boss

I am the Head of Library Information Technology at the University of Wyoming. I have had the pleasure of serving as the Wyoming State Representative for MPLA. Serving in this capacity, I was the 2015 WLA Conference Chair for the joint WLA/MPLA Conference held in Cheyenne.  I have enjoyed working with and getting to know colleagues in both in WLA and MPLA.

This year I am helping with the WLA Conference to be held in Sheridan and am looking forward attending the upcoming joint NLA/MPLA Conference to be held in Lake Tahoe.


Join the Fun at ‘What the Tech?’

What the Tech 2017

It’s back! The ever popular “What the Tech is That?” session is on the schedule for the Aug. 10-11 Wyoming Library Association conference in Sheridan. You can help make it a great time for all, especially yourself, by taking the stage as one of the session contributors.

“What the Tech?” is a rapid-fire, whirlwind tour of websites and tech tools. Contributors can have fun exploring new gadgets and gizmos, choosing and preparing a handful of topics, and trying to share each one in the 90 (or so) seconds before the bell signals the end of the round.

If you haven’t seen a WTT session and would like a better idea of what’s involved, find examples of previous year’s handouts and slides on the WLA New Tech Interest Group wiki. Also enjoy the video of last year’s hybrid conference presentation below.

Interested? Contact Thomas Ivie at, (307) 777-6330, or Paige Bredenkamp at, (307) 777-6331, for more details.