Category Archives: 2016 Conference

Try These Great Tools from “What the Tech?”

A perennial favorite at the Wyoming Library Association program is the whirlwind tour through the newest tools, the “What the Tech is That?” session. For the 2016 conference, “What the Tech” returned on the list of program videos. Check out this year’s presentation and see the list of featured technologies with links below. A lot of great segments — we particularly enjoyed the young University of Wyoming Learning Resource Center students sharing the STEM resources at the LRC.



Watch Opening Remarks and Keynote Speakers from WLA 2016 Conference

Three events were live streamed during the 2016 Wyoming Library Association conference: the opening remarks from WLA president Sid Stanfill, and the keynote speeches from Bob Beck, News Director of Wyoming Public Radio, and Eugene Gagliano, author and Wyoming State Poet Laureate. If you didn’t catch them last Thursday, watch them now on YouTube:

Experiencing Virtual Reality at Natrona County Public Library

Come see how the Natrona County Library is using virtual reality with patrons and staff. From shooting cardboard zombies to deep sea exploration, painting on a 3D canvas to training as a robot, the virtual reality setup at the Natrona County Library redefines what it means to be a “Virtual Library.”

This video is one of the many recorded programs from the Wyoming Library Association 2016 conference. Check out the rest on the WLA website.

WLA Conference Brings Wyoming Library Community Together

The crowd gathered for the morning at Natrona County Public Library in Casper, one of the Wyoming Library Association conference's host sites.
The crowd gathered for the morning at Natrona County Public Library in Casper.

More than 175 Wyoming library staff gathered at nine sites around the state — and more signed in from their desktops — to take part in the Wyoming Library Association 2016 conference on Oct. 27. This free conference employed a hybrid mix of live streaming, recorded videos, and on-site sessions to give the library community the opportunity to gather, learn, and network.

WLA President Sid Stanfill gave opening remarks in the morning, and gave out the first of two awards to Jennifer Rife, from Laramie County Library System, who was named “Outstanding Heroine.” In the afternoon, Judy Armstrong, of Sheridan County Library System, was honored as “Outstanding Librarian.” Read more here on the awards.

Volunteers at host sites made it possible for participants to gather in person at a location near them. These were located at Campbell County Public Library in Gillette, Park County Library in Cody, Casper College Library, Crook County Public Library in Sundance, Eastern Wyoming College Library in Torrington, Teton County Library in Jackson, University of Wyoming Coe Library in Laramie, Western Wyoming Community College Hay Library in Rock Springs, and the Wyoming State Library in Cheyenne.

I appreciated being close to home, being able to meet with other library staff members from both public and school libraries, and the informative sessions that were available.
-Joan Brinkley, Goshen County Library Director

Hands-on fun with thumb pianos in Casper.
Hands-on fun with thumb pianos in Casper.

Each site saw a live stream of the morning keynote speech by Bob Beck, News Director of Wyoming Public Radio, and the afternoon keynote by Eugene Gagliano, author and Wyoming State Poet Laureate. In addition, all host sites had the opportunity to pick from a list of pre-recorded programs. In Gillette, participants could attend one of three concurrent sessions, and the Cody site offered four. Some held live programs onsite. The Wyoming State Library sent Chris Van Burgh to Sundance to give a tour of the GoWYLD databases and Paige Bredenkamp to Casper for a hands-on makerspace session. Torrington participants received information on how to get involved with the upcoming solar eclipse in 2017.  Individuals who couldn’t make it to a host site were able to access all webinar and video offerings.

I would like to add a note of appreciation to the State Library and WLA for recognizing that we needed to have some type of a conference this year, and for thinking outside the box in coming up with a way it could be done without a great expense to anyone involved…It takes true leadership to know this was a great opportunity to have librarians experience those things we are promoting: a blend of technology, virtual classrooms, distance learning, and face to face experiences.
– Lisa Scroggins, Natrona County Public Library Executive Director

Suzi Worthen at the Lyman Branch Library taking in Gene Gagliano's afternoon keynote address at her desk.
Suzi Worthen at the Lyman Branch Library taking in Gene Gagliano’s afternoon keynote address at her desk.

The State Library will have the keynote videos available for viewing on its YouTube channel soon if you missed out. All the pre-recorded programs are still available whether you were unable to attend or just unable to get to all the ones you wanted to see. Also available are book trailers/reviews and vendor information.

See more photos from the conference on the #WYLA16 hashtag on Twitter (click on the “latest” tab to see all of them) or in this Google Drive folder. Find all the conference resources on the WLA website.


Got “Tech Neck?” Try Circ Desk Yoga

No yoga mat required! Samantha Rise, Youth Services Specialist at Sublette County Libraries, walks you through a few gentle, low-key yoga postures to help you stay energized, focused and relaxed for anything your workplace will throw your way. It was a popular session at Thursday’s Wyoming Library Association conference. Find more recorded conference programs to enjoy and learn from on the WLA website.

Wyoming Library Association Honors Rife, Armstrong at Conference

The Wyoming Library Association honored two of its members for their outstanding contributions to librarianship. The awards were presented by WLA President Sid Stanfill at the Oct. 27 conference.

Jennifer Rife
Jennifer Rife

Outstanding Heroine  
Jennifer Rife,  Design and Humanities Coordinator within Community and Media Relations
Laramie County Library System, Cheyenne, WY

“(Jennifer’s) position within the library inspires community engagement in many ways: she researches and applies for local and national exhibits; she designs publicity flyers, posters, and other materials to market special events and exhibits; she applies for grants and completes the final reports, compiling facts, receipts, statistics, marketing materials, and staff participants; and she coordinates complementary programs/exhibits and teaches other libraries how to successfully streamline these projects through the Wyoming Humanities Council and the Wyoming Arts Council (two entities that have a large impact on arts and education throughout the state).”

Nominated by Reese Ruiz

Judy Armstrong
Judy Armstrong

Outstanding Librarian

Judy Armstrong, Homebound Services Librarian
Sheridan County Public Library System

“Over the past few years, Judy has been able to work directly with families who are physically unable to come to the library. Judy gets to know her clients and is able to select the reading materials or audio books that will be uniquely enjoyed by each person. She then schedules the best time to personally deliver the materials to the person’s home. In between person deliveries, she visits the Senior Center and several nursing homes to provide reading materials for the residents…. Judy is able to share the services that the library offers and be a strong advocate for library services within the community. Although Judy will never acknowledge it, her dedication to providing services outside of the library has a direct correlation to the donations we have received… to augment the current Large Print collection and even … to purchase an additional library vehicle.”

Nominated by Cameron Duff

Join in the Wyoming Library Association 2016 Conference Today

Events start at 9 a.m. today for the 2016 Wyoming Library Association Conference with opening remarks from WLA President Sid Stanfill, followed by morning keynote speaker Bob Beck at 9:30. If you’re not at one of the host sites, you can log in remotely. We hope you’ll follow the conversation on Twitter with hashtag #WYLA16 and share your insights and photos. We’ll also be watching that hashtag for any questions. More details available on the WLA website. Hope to see you there!



Meet Your WLA Conference Keynote Speakers

The Wyoming Library Association 2016 Conference tomorrow, Oct. 27, will feature live streamed morning and afternoon keynote speakers. Bob Beck, News Director at Wyoming Public Radio, will speak at 9:30 a.m., and Eugene M. Gagliano, author and Wyoming State Poet Laureate, will take the mic at 2:15 p.m. You can watch either at one of the host sites or log in remotely. Here’s a little more about both of them.

bob-beckBob Beck
News Director, Wyoming Public Radio

Bob Beck has been News Director of Wyoming Public Radio since 1988. Under his leadership, WPR has won 94 national, regional and state news awards. Bob has received the Wyoming Education AssociationSchool Bell Award for education reporting and was honored by the Governor’s Council on Impaired Driving for his reporting. He was also the voice of an Emmy award winning documentary on memory. He has covered the Wyoming Legislature longer than any broadcaster in the state and is a frequent political guest and host on Wyoming PBS.

Bob also taught broadcast news at the University of Wyoming for 20 years and his 1998 television reporting class won a regional Emmy for reporting excellence.  He also was twice given a Top Prof award by the UW Mortar Board.  Prior to coming to WPR, Bob worked as a News and Sportscaster at stations in Wyoming and Illinois.  He received a Bachelor of Science degree in Radio-Television from Southern Illinois University at Carbondale and is a native of Wheaton, Illinois in suburban Chicago.

gagliano-headshotEugene M. Gagliano
Author, Wyoming State Poet Laureate

Gene Gagliano is a retired elementary school teacher from Buffalo and is the eighth Poet Laureate in state history. He has written award-winning children’s books and adult poetry that celebrates life in Wyoming and the West. Gagliano is a recipient of the 2001 Arch Coal Teacher Achievement Award and the International Reading Association’s 2004 Wyoming State Literacy Award. His published works include Dee and the Mammoth; C is for Cowboy, a Wyoming Alphabet; Four Wheels West, a Wyoming Number Book; My Teacher Dances on the Desk and Prairie Parcels.

Can’t Attend WLA at a Host Site? Catch Sessions from your Desktop


The Wyoming Library Association 2016 conference is just around the corner! We hope that you are able to attend at one of the host sites tomorrow, Oct. 27. If not, you will still be able to enjoy some great programs at any computer with internet access.

Sid Stanfill will kick off the conference at 9:00 a.m. with opening remarks, followed by morning keynote speaker Bob Beck, News Director for Wyoming Public Radio at 9:30.  Author and Wyoming State Poet Laureate Eugene Gagliano will be live at 2:15 p.m. Stanfill, Beck, and Gagliano will be live streaming, so you will need to log onto GoToWebinar to access:

The login will also go out on Thursday morning, and be posted to the program on Live streams will be recorded and made available post conference.

Recorded programs will be linked from on Thursday morning. From the links listed on, you will be able to choose the presentations your attendees would like to watch. Running times will be posted.

Please let us know if you any questions!!

Katrina Brown
Karen Kitchens
Chris Van Burgh

Win a Basket and Support Wyoming Library Leadership Institute

Joining us at the Wyoming State Library for the Wyoming Library Association conference Thursday? Take a chance on our Ghouls Night In basket and support the Wyoming Library Leadership Institute.  Other libraries are contributing baskets as well at the conference locations found around the state — see more on the Wyoming Library Association Facebook page. The annual basket raffle is a major fundraiser for WLLI.