It is with great joy that I write to announce the official opening of the new NLA website and database.  It has been a long couple months, with many hours of testing and migration, but we are happy to bring you the beginnings of a new combined interface with many new and exciting features.

The websites new address will temporarily be   Older content still on will remain as it is migrated to the new source.    The new platform will have a much more robust interface for the sections and roundtables and for member opportunities.

One of the many questions that I have received in the last several months has been how to renew and/or join NLA.   While there are still some settings that may need adjusted, we are confident that the new system is ready to accommodate these requests.  The older print-based form will still be active for 2015, and can be found on the join/renew section of the main page.

Please read the following directions for renewals carefully.

After navigating to the new page, choose “Sign In” from the top bar on the page.   All passwords have been reset, so please request a new password at the email address of record.   If your email address has changed, please contact me for assistance.

Once you login, you will be directed to update your information in the database.  Due to the migration of member data from one format to another, some of the information you see on your record may not be your own.   Please update the information provided as part of the renewal process.

At this time, the e-renewal is only for those individuals who belong to one (1) section.   If you wish to join more than one (1) section, please use the paper form.

All electronic renewals may choose to pay by check or credit card.    Credit card payments do NOT require PayPal and can use any major credit card.

We have extensively tested this interface, but I expect to find things that seem unexpected.  If you encounter any errors please do not hesitate to contact me.

We apologize for the tardiness in this roll-out.   Please stay tuned for lots more information and events as we bring the new system up to speed.   We are confident that you will enjoy the new experience our migration brings us.

Michael Straatmann, NLA Executive Director

Practices, policies, virtual spaces, and physical places keep changing for both library personnel and for our patrons. Sometimes the shift is a gradual evolution to a new way of operating or engaging with the people and systems around us. At other times, revolution takes hold, launching us into unknown and unforeseen territory.

On Friday, March 6, 2015, join the Intellectual Freedom and Technical Services Round Tables as together we explore “EVOLUTION/REVOLUTION in Privacy, Technical Services, & Libraries.”

This IFRT/TSRT Spring Meeting will be held at the University of Nebraska—Lincoln’s Love Library, beginning with a welcome and first session at 10 a.m. Watch for further details, registration information, and a call for proposals after the new year.

For now, let your presentation ideas evolve and revolve.

  • What privacy issues are lurking online, in your ILS, or within your library policies?
  • When revolutions in cataloging practices, formats, collaborations, or organizational needs occur, how does technical services evolve to meet the new challenges?
  • When have you found yourself suddenly gazing on a privacy or technical services horizon in the midst of evolving or revolutionizing, and how did you navigate the new terrain?

EVOLUTION/REVOLUTION in Privacy, Technical Services, & Libraries—save the date for Friday, March 6, 2015.

Beginning January 1, the Nebraska Library Association is happy to announce that a new Content Management System that integrates the website and member database will be going live.   NLA staff and volunteers have been working diligently to make this transition and we believe that we will all enjoy the many benefits of the new system.

To that end, we are not currently accepting membership renewals for 2015.  This will allow us time to ready the database for its migration.  If you have not already submitted your payment, please do not do so at this time.   All payments currently under submission will be processed before the change.

We will keep you all informed of the changes that this move will bring as we discover them.

Thank you all for your patience during this exciting time of transition.

-Michael Straatmann, NLA Executive Director

The Intellectual Freedom executive board recently decided to start acting as a clearinghouse of information regarding intellectual freedom issues in Nebraska.  If you know of an issue, or are experiencing a challenge in some form, please let us know.  Not only might we be able to help, such reports will help us and the members of the Nebraska Library Association be aware of current issues and trends within the state.

On that note, read about how the issue of privacy and patron records was handled in Omaha.

Choose Privacy Week is May 1-7 every year.  Naturally, it can be celebrated at a different time as well.  This year Billie Cotterman is introducing Choose Privacy Week at the Hastings College Library.  You can see the slides from her presentation at the NLA 2014 fall conference, entitled Somebody’s Watching Me, and glean ideas both from it and

NMRT Meeting Minutes

Annual Business Meeting

October 10, 2014

Marina Inn Conference Center, South Sioux City, NE

Call to Order: Matt Kovar, 2:30 p.m.

Awards Presentation:

  • Michael Straatmann (Love Library at UNL) was presented with the Houchen Bindery Mentor of the Year award.
  • Cherese McKnight (Omaha Public Library) was presented with the Houchen Bindery Beginning Professional of the Year award.
  • Matt Kovar thanked this year’s awards coordinator, Dana Schipporeit, for her efforts and Houchen Bindery for their continued supposed of our awards.

Outgoing Chair Report (Matt):

  • Matt thanked outgoing officers Holli Duggan and Aimee Owen. He also thanked webmaster Jennifer Lockwood for her work on the website migration.

Secretary Report (Aimee):

  • Past minutes on the NMRT website.

New Business:

  • New Officers: Anneka Ramirez–Vice Chair, and Terri Rickel– Secretary.
  • Matt passed the gavel on to Holli, our new Chair.
  • Incoming Chair (Holli) asked for suggestions for future meetings.
  • Jennifer Lockwood announced the First-Time Attendees raffle winners.
    • Jennifer will run the FTA table next year and wants NMRT to take over this function.
    • If you want to help, contact Jennifer.
  • Michael Straatmann called on everyone to work to make NLA more welcoming and improve outreach. NMRT has a special role in this, because our members have fresh perspectives.

Meeting Adjourned, 2:45 p.m.


The November issue of Nebraska Libraries is now available on the Digital Commons for download. You can access it here:

Our next issue will be in February 2015, with submissions (for any potential authors) being January 1st, 2015. We will be focusing on a theme of programming so if you have some interesting programming knowledge you'd like to share with our readership please don't hesitate to contact me with your ideas!

Lindsey Tomsu
Editor, Nebraska Libraries

2014 Excalibur Award
Brenda Ealey (left), manager of the Gere Branch of the Lincoln City Libraries is the winner of the 2014 Excalibur Award.

This year’s Excalibur Award winner, Brenda Ealey, is someone many in the Public Library and Trustee Section know and have worked with. She’s been very active in NLA and ALA for some time, and in her previous role as Administrator of the Southeast Library Association she was an advocate, counselor, mentor and friend to many public library directors across her service area and throughout the state.

Recently she returned to world of public librarianship by returning to Lincoln City Libraries as the manager of Gere branch. Brenda is noted for her dedication, passion, and commitment to intellectual freedom for all.

2014 Advocacy Award
Advocacy Award winner Delma Brester (left) with PLTS past chair Evonne Edgington.

This year’s recipient of the NLA PLTS Advocacy Award is Delma Brester of Howells. Delma has been involved with the Howells Public Library for many years in many different roles. As a board member and foundation member, as a volunteer for summer reading, and even getting into the mud and muck when the library flooded in 1991.

She’s always willing to go to bat for the library with the village board and the county commissioners. Delma was called in one of her glowing recommendation letters, “the heart
of our organization”.