February 2019 Newsletter
Department News
For State Employees
VTLIB is proud to present another speaker for the state employee speaker series "Tuesday Talks." This month the event will be on February 19 from 12-1pm at the Pavilion Auditorium in Montpelier.
In February, the topic will be "Vermont Women: The Pay Gap, Representation, and Advancement" and the speaker will be Cary Brown from the Vermont Commission on Women ( https://women.vermont.gov/ ). We’ve come a long way since women were paid 59 cents to men’s dollar, but women in Vermont are still playing catch up. In Vermont, 43% of women working full time aren’t making enough to cover their basic needs, and they’re seriously underrepresented in many fields and at the highest levels of leadership. But Vermont is also ahead of the pack in many ways when it comes to women’s advancement, and we’ll talk about the good news as well as the challenges on the horizon.
Cary Brown is the Executive Director of the Vermont Commission on Women, a state agency working to advance rights and opportunities for women and girls since 1964. She’s worked in the gender equity field in Vermont in nonprofits, educational institutions, and government. She lives in Montpelier with her family, where she is a Justice of the Peace.
For more information, please see the event poster here . Please feel free to share the poster and event information in your departments. For more information please contact April Shaw ( April.shaw@vermont.gov ).
Tuesday Talks is a speaker series presented by VTLIB during the lunch hour one Tuesday each month. The topic and speaker will change each month, but will always be relevant to events or trends in Vermont that affect state employees.
Youth Services
Start a FREE Girls Who Code Club Today!

Join students and educators across the country by partnering with Girls Who Code ( www.girlswhocode.com ) to bring computer science opportunities to elementary, middle, and high school girls in your community! Girls Who Code Clubs ( www.girlswhocode.com/clubs ) are FREE after-school programs for 3rd-5th or 6th-12th grade girls to join a sisterhood of supportive peers and role models and use computer science to change the world. Learn more by signing up for an upcoming Girls Who Code webinar ( https://bit.ly/2RduMUC).

Ready to join the movement? Complete a Clubs application here ( https://bit.ly/2MsJt5u) ! As a Girls Who Code Community Partner, any Clubs in our network are eligible to receive additional partnership benefits by indicating the Vermont Department of Libraries on the Clubs Application in the “About Your Club” Section on Page 4!

Have questions? Contact Girls Who Code at clubs@girlswhocode.com !
02/13 - Rockingham Free Public Library - 9:30am-3:30pm (snow date: 03/01)

02/15 - Milton Public Library- 9:30am-3:30pm (snow date: 03/06)

Registration links: https://bit.ly/2CNeUot
Summer Reading Program (SRP) Workshops
Get inspired for a stellar summer reading program that celebrates A Universe of Stories! Participants will review highlights of the SRP manual, get hands-on space-themed craft ideas from NASA, and experience the VINS planetarium in person. Best of all, each library goes back with a craft kit to recreate a Moon Rover activity with their young library patrons!
Information & Access
VTLIB Partners with Architects to Build a Better Vermont

The Vermont Chapter of the American Institute of Architects ( https://www.aiavt.org/ ) is partnering with VTLIB to provide current building, fire, electric, plumbing, and safety code books to architects.
This partnership means that freelance architects who may not be able to keep their personal code books up to date can access these titles through interlibrary loan through their local public library. AIA Vermont has agreed to update these titles as the latest codes become available in print. That means better buildings, safer systems, and less potential loss of property or life.
Safety first! is more than a slogan. It is good practice and proactively addressing safety. Thanks to AIA Vermont, VTLIB is doing our part to build a better Vermont!
If you are an architect and you would like to use these books, inquire about interlibrary loan at your local library.
MHEC: Ready to Help with Emergencies, Remodeling, and Construction

Vermont is part of a multi-state purchasing program for libraries of all types through the Massachusetts Higher Education Consortium (MHEC). MHEC contracts with over 700 vendors that not only supply library staples like books, labels, and office supplies, but they also offer many other kinds of items. Everything from welding gas to moving supplies and services to lab equipment—all at a discount.
But, MHEC offers more than discounts. Our Vermont libraries’ representative, Jackie Cashin, also provides consulting services. If you are planning a remodel, need to buy carpet, shelving, window treatments, or other construction related items, contact Jackie ( jcashin@mhec.net ) and she will help you find what you need.
Jackie will also help with emergency services. Should you have a disaster, MHEC contracts with an emergency response company. If important items are damaged, it is critical to get wet items frozen as soon as possible. MHEC can help you get those services quickly and at a discount.
If you are an MHEC member, you are probably already aware of the great discounts and services you can get through our agreement with them. If not, please go to our MHEC info page ( https://libraries.vermont.gov/services/MHEC ) and take a look for yourself!
Governance & Management
Advocacy Tips & Resources for Budget Season
As you continue to work on budget presentations, Town Meeting presentations, and more, Lara offers some tips and resources that may help:

Tip: Try using words that will resonate with your SelectBoard to help them hear better what you are saying and relate more to what you present.
  • For example, rather than using the word “patron” or “user,” try the word “taxpayer” or “resident.”

Tip: Try breaking down budget requests by explaining how much the library costs per capita (i.e. per resident of your town; Link to census numbers: https://factfinder.census.gov/faces/nav/jsf/pages/index.xhtml ). Then compare that amount to something small you could pay for with that money vs. the wide variety of resources available at the library – to show the contrast.
  • For example: If your budget request is for $30,000, and you have a town of 1,500 people: 30,000/1,500 = $20 per resident.
  • That’s less than the cost of 1 hardcover book, or a dinner for two at a local restaurant, or 1 tank of gas.
  • And $20/person gets you access to hundreds of books, magazines, audiobooks, and DVDs – plus online resources, WiFi, public computers, educational programs/events, storytimes, research assistance, and more.

Tip: Try asking your patrons (of all ages) to take 5 minutes the next time they are in the library to share with you how the library has changed their lives and/or what they love about the library.
  • After getting their permission, record what they say using the camera on your cell phone.
  • Ask a tech savvy patron, volunteer, or staff person to edit together the videos you record to create a 1-3 minute short recording to share with your community and the SelectBoard at Town Meeting or a SelectBoard meeting.
  • There’s nothing like hearing from the taxpayers themselves why they value their public library.
  • See a 1-minute example from the Pierson Library here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xFwS4_cllJo&t=1s

Tip: More advocacy and budget presentation resources from United for Libraries: http://www.ala.org/united/powerguide

Want to discuss these tips or have other questions? Please reach out to Lara via email or phone:
802-636-0026 (office)
802-798-2480 (cell)
Special Populations & ABLE Library
ABLE Reading - Sarah Potok, MFA

How do you read? Some friends or acquaintances, maybe even a family member or two, might reason that listening to a book is not “real” reading. These well-meaning but opinionated folks may think that usable vision and pages within a book cover are necessary for the true reading experience. These true romantics, of whom I was one a long time ago, need the feel and smell of paper and ink.
      If you can’t read visually, the only way to read independently, without acquiring fluency in Braille, is to read in audio format. Braille is a difficult language to acquire in later years, beyond labels and elevator floor indicators. Usually, the most fluent Braille users are those who began learning in childhood. This leaves those of us who have become visually impaired later in life to listen for our work or pleasure in independent reading.
      Do not let people lump you into a category of “light-fare” readers who listen to commercial productions of popular releases. I have heard this reading experience designated to those who read while on the treadmill or bicycle or in a car. This, they say, is not “real” reading. This reading experience, they say, lacks depth.
      Two facts fly in the face of the above attitude. One is that different areas of the brain light up when listening versus using vision. The brain uses different, not inferior, pathways to interpret comprehension. Secondly, we audio readers have to do brain push-ups using our memory and alert attention with much of our reading. For instance, a novel might have a complicated cast of characters or perhaps a throughline that seems more like a spider’s web than a line. Nonfiction such as scientific or historical can pose similar challenges for fact retention. We use constant memorization without the assistance of visual cues in the form of notes or the ability to leaf back through the book to reacquaint ourselves with characters, family trees, or the building blocks of a storyline or theoretical argument. We need to follow the plot and retain information, while constantly adding nuances of character and continuity.
      That is a lot of work. Just as much, if not more, brain power is needed for audio versus sighted reading. It is also an equally pleasant and fulfilling path to individual independence. While commercial and otherwise unavailable books can be found in both recorded and screen-reading options, they are often expensive and/or cluttered with overly dramatic license. We have the privilege to choose digital cartridges and BARD downloads, professionally recorded just for us. All this is free, accessible from the ABLE Library.
      Hallelujah to the audio book!
       Sarah Potok is interning at the ABLE Library through a program we set up with The Division for the Blind and Visually Impaired ( https://dbvi.vermont.gov/ ) . She comes to us with her German Shepherd guide dog, Zelda, who is a graduate from The Seeing Eye in Morristown, New Jersey. Together, we hope to set up a work environment accessible and welcoming to those we serve.
      Sarah moved to Montpelier two years ago from Central California where she raised her two daughters, both of whom now live in the Northeast. Sarah says she is happy to be back on the East Coast, having grown up in Plainfield. She attended high school at U-32 in its first years.
      Sarah earned her MFA in Writing at Pacific University in Oregon, and is working on a book of nonfiction as well as essays on disability and blindness.
Quick Links
  • 2019 Disability Awareness Day in Vermont:
  • The Employment Diversity in Highway Construction (EDHC) Program at Vermont Agency of Transportation:
  • About the Disability Law Project from Vermont Legal Aid:
Continuing Education & Small/Rural Libraries
GRANT: Accelerating Promising Practices for Small Libraries
A reminder of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) grant opportunity: "Accelerating Promising Practices for Small Libraries." Grants from $10,000-$50,000 will be awarded in three categories: Community Memory, Digital Inclusion, and Transforming School Library Practice. The deadline for the application is February 25, 2019. Details and links to an introductory webinar and FAQ page are here: https://bit.ly/2KKo2fe . VTLIB and VT State Archives and Records Administration are also happy to assist applicants, whether it's coming up with a project, or the application process itself.

In related news, a recent article in Library Journal discussed grants in general: where to look for opportunities, advice about applying, and more. It's a quick read but packed with information relevant to the IMLS grant and smaller grants as well. You can read it here: LINK

Small but Mighty: Examples of Greatness from Small Libraries
The Library of Iowa has a blog specific to small libraries, called "Small but Mighty: Examples of Greatness from Small Libraries." Access to it is on the ALA Programming Librarian website, which also has other blogs about a wide variety of programming and community engagement ideas. Read the blog here: https://bit.ly/2S0NKSR
As always, check the Continuing Ed page
( https://libraries.vermont.gov/services/continuing_ed ) on our website for upcoming workshops. We update and augment frequently!
From Our Neighbors at the Vermont Historical Society
VHS News & Events
History Adventure Raffle
Donate for a chance to win cash or a dream vacation for TWO to Ireland, Rome, or South Carolina!
Raffle tickets are 1 for $25 or get 5 tickets for $100. All proceeds benefit the Vermont Historical Society’s Annual Fund.
1st Prize: Your choice of one of three magical destinations for TWO (trips valued at $3,000+)
• 6-Night Game of Thrones Journey through Ireland
• 3-Night Historical Tour of Charleston, SC
• 5-Night Museum Experience in Rome
2nd Prize: $500 Cash. 3rd Prize: $150 Cash
Tickets can be purchased online: https://vermonthistory.org/give/adventure-raffle or at the Historical Society. The winners will be announced on April 26, 2019. For more information, please contact Tori at 802-479-8516 or Tori.Hart@vermonthistory.org
Seeds of Renewal Exhibit
Open Through April 2019
Vermont History Museum, Montpelier, VT
Our newest exhibit, Seeds of Renewal , is now open! The exhibit explores Abenaki agricultural history, cuisine, and ceremony through text, photographs, and examples of a few of the different crops. Contact Eileen at eileen.corcoran@vermonthistory.org for a special seed kit associated with the exhibit (courtesy of High Mowing Seeds). 

Third Thursday: Red Scare in the Green Mountains
February 21, 12:00 pm
Vermont History Museum, Montpelier
What happened in Vermont when the anti-Communist fear known as the “Red Scare” swept the country? Quite a bit, as it turns out. Rick Winston explores some forgotten history as we see how a small, rural “rock-ribbed Republican” state with a historically libertarian streak handled the hysteria of the time.
Book Launch: “The Law of the Hills”
February 26, 4:30-6:00 pm
Vermont Supreme Court, 111 State St, Montpelier
Join the Vermont Historical Society to celebrate the publication of our newest book, The Law of the Hills: A Judicial History of Vermont by Paul Gillies. The Law of the Hills is the first general history of the judicial branch in Vermont, chronicling its birth and development from the earliest settlement to the present. In addition, biographical sketches of the 134 men and women who have served on the Vermont Supreme Court bring to life the personalities and judicial character that have shaped Vermont’s laws.
The book launch will include refreshments, books signings, and a talk by the author in the Supreme Court Chamber. Free & open to everyone. The book will be available shortly in our museum stores in Montpelier & Barre, as well as online.