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OLA 2018: Dare to Start the Conversation
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Dare to Start the Conversation: Discussing the Responsibilities Non-School Libraries Have When School Libraries Are in Trouble

Tuesday, April 24, 2018
3:30 PM – 4:30 PM
Directors Row 5

A panel of three different types of librarians, school, public, and academic, discuss whether public/academic libraries have a responsibility to their community to step in when schools lose funding and cut library costs, and if so what is the best way to work together. We'll also discuss whether we as an organization are doing enough to assist school libraries/school librarians and to encourage cooperation among different types of libraries when it could benefit our communities.

Presented by: Alex Gates, Ann Raia, and Leah Weyand
Sponsored by: Ethics Committee
Designed for: School, Public, Academic libraries
Areas of interest: Ethics, Outreach, Children's services, Teen services

Alex Gates


Alex Gates, MLIS (University of Oklahoma), is the head librarian at Hoover Elementary School in Tulsa, Oklahoma.  In his library, he serves children from Pre K to 6th grade and their teachers.  His interest in comics and graphic novels began at an early age helping his father run his comic book store, Sooner Books and Comics, on Saturdays. His love of libraries also began early. His first real job at 16 was being a shelver at the downtown branch of the Tulsa City-County Library.  He is the current Chair-Elect for the Children's Sequoyah Reading Team.


Ann Raia


Ann Raia is the Director of Library Services at Oklahoma City Community College. She has been in the position since January 2018. She was the Circulation Librarian at OCCC for five years before becoming the Director. She also worked as the Interlibrary Loan Office Manager at the University of Oklahoma’s Bizzell Library from 2007 to 2012.  She earned her Bachelor of Arts in Letters in 2007 and her MLIS in 2009, both from the University of Oklahoma.



Leah Weyand

Leah Weyand is the Teen Services Coordinator for Tulsa City-County Library, where she oversees teen services across 24 locations. She currently chairs the OLA Sequoyah High School Reading Team, and has previously chaired the OLA Children’s and Teen Services Roundtable. Her favorite project outside of TCCL and OLA is the Oklahoma Teen Book Con, which brought best-selling YA authors to Oklahoma teens in October 2017.

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