WebJunction at PLA in Nashville

WebJunction /

Photo: Nashville Postcard by sid on Flickr (CC BY-NC-ND 2.0)

The Public Library Association (PLA) is hosting its 2020 Conference in Nashville, February 25-29, and we're excited to share that members of the WebJunction team will be attending! Here are some of the sessions and events we hope you'll add to your schedule if you'll be there. And if you'd like connect at the conference, send an email to social@webjunction.org and we'll arrange a meetup.

Building stronger communities, together, at PLA 2020

Get ideas and share your experience at Community Central in OCLC booth #1022 with community engagement spotlight talks from public library leaders. These 10-minute talks explore how libraries encourage important local conversations, partner for impact, and create valuable community programming. Join us and you’ll receive an OCLC t-shirt.

Join us to hear these speakers in booth #1022:

K.C. Williams, Director, Blount County Public Library in Tennessee
Recovery and the Library: An Opioid Epidemic Response
Wednesday, February 26, 4:00 pm
The opioid epidemic is ravaging many US communities and libraries are on the front lines. Join K.C. at the OCLC booth to hear about how Blount County Public Library is working to address the opioid crisis by partnering with a local Recovery Court to provide a critical life skills curriculum.

Kimberly Knight, Assistant Director, Chesapeake Public Library and Maiko Medina, IT Manager, Chesapeake Public Library in Virginia
School Partnerships with Impact: Changing Lives at Scale
Wednesday, February 26, 5:00 pm
A library card can change the trajectory of a child's life, and when schools and libraries partner, the impact is enormous. Join Kimberly and Maiko at the OCLC booth to hear how their team approached, initiated, and followed through on a large-scale school partnership that provided electronic library cards to more than 40,000 students.

Faith Brautigam, Director, Kokomo-Howard County Public Library in Indiana
The Banksy Effect: A Community Engagement Story
Thursday, February 27, 9:30 am
Sometimes the simplest ideas produce the most interesting results. Find out what Faith and her team at Kokomo-Howard County Public Library learned when an unexpected art exhibit (yes, it was really a Banksy!) helped the library bring their community together, build partnerships, and elevate its status with key stakeholders.

Pam Sandlian Smith, Director, Anythink Libraries in Colorado
The Library as Town Square
Thursday, February 27, 3:30 pm
Pam has adopted the concept of the library as town square in all aspects of library operations—an approach that inspires thoughtful programming and community partnerships. Join Pam at the OCLC booth to hear how her team encourages community conversations through gatherings designed to support personal connections.

Randy Heath, Manager, Richland Library Edgewood in South Carolina
Courageous Community Conversations for Race and Social Justice
Friday, February 28, 9:30 am
Libraries play a powerful role in facilitating critical local conversations. Join Randy to learn more about how the Richland Library responded to a local crisis around race and social justice, including the launch of a social awareness taskforce geared toward encouraging and supporting courageous community conversations.

How do you engage with your community?

We also invite you to join OCLC WebJunction staff for an interactive community visioning activity in booth #1022 that uses design thinking strategies to better understand your community needs and how you can fulfill those needs in meaningful ways. Drop by the booth any time during exhibit hours on Wednesday and Thursday to share with us what you value and envision for your community.

Then return to the booth on Friday at 1pm for a lively group session of idea-storming to find creative ways that your library might respond to its community more deeply. This high-impact session will demonstrate how to turn community visions into actionable ideas. You’ll come away with an experience of design thinking in action—and a free t-shirt!

Take advantage of these open OCLC sessions while at PLA

We also encourage you to add the following open OCLC sessions to your PLA schedule:

Partners in the Opioid Crisis: Libraries Strengthening the Community
Thursday, February 27, 10:15 – 11:15 am, Music City Center, Room 205

How OCLC and WorldCat Support Community Challenges: Substance Abuse and Other Social Issues
Thursday, February 27, 2:00 – 3:00 pm, Omni Nashville Hotel, Cumberland Room 5–6

Closing the Justice Gap: The Crucial Role of Libraries (Spark Talk)
Thursday, February 27, 5:15 – 6:15 pm, Music City Center Hall A2

The Marketing Value Proposition: Why Buy-in Makes All the Difference
Friday, February 28, 10:15 – 11:15 am, Omni Nashville Hotel, Broadway Ballroom J–K

Addressing Bias in Your Catalog
Friday, February 28, 11:30 am – 12:30 pm, Music City Center, Room 207

We look forward to seeing you in Nashville!