The SALALM Scholarship has been established to encourage professional and leadership development in Latin American and Caribbean Studies librarianship. To be awarded annually commencing in December 2011, the $1000 is for a master’s candidate in an archival studies or ALA-accredited library or information studies program.

Since its founding in 1956, the Seminar on the Acquisition of Latin American Library Materials, or SALALM, has provided the only national and international forum focused on Latin American studies librarianship, library collections and services. The SALALM Scholarship award will include a one-year membership in the organization.

Who Should Apply:

Applicants able to demonstrate a strong interest in Latin America, the Caribbean or their diaspora, and who have career aspirations involving service to users seeking information about, or researching topics involving the Latin American or Caribbean region, are urged to apply. More information

book review: Best. Ramadan. Ever

title: Bestest. Ramadan. Ever

author: Medeia Sharif

date: Flux; 2011

main character: Almira Abdul

It’s hard to see how Almira is having the bestest Ramadan ever. Boys at her school continue to make passes at her mom, her grandfather annoys everyone in the family with his old-fashioned views on life and it looks like she’s going to lose the boy she really likes to her best friend. That probably shouldn’t matter because her parents don’t want her to date anyway.

These issues are common to most teenagers but Almira is fasting for Ramadan and everything bothers her that much more. Her complaining becomes a bit annoying and unfounded at times but through it all, we see a young girl beginning to view this month of fasting as a religious, reflective time and an opportunity to grow up. This becomes her best Ramadan because of the meaning Almira is able to take from it, not because of the fun she’s having.

Bestest. Ramadan.Ever. introduces readers to Muslim culture as part of a contemporary teen’s life. While Ramadan is a very important part of the book, it is a very subtle part of the book. Readers see how much all teens have in common.

Latino Heritage Month @Purdue

Saturday, Oct. 13. Presented by Purdue’s Black Cultural Center, “Platanos and Collard Greens” is a comedy about two college students, a Latina and an African-American, who fall in love. Their families are forced to confront and overcome biases while the couple defends their bond to family and friends.
Place:Stewart Center, Fowler Hall
Time: 8:00pm

I’m seriously considering the drive to Purdue to see this!


Does your work day have a rhythm, a flow that helps you feel like you’re accomplishing something? This changing work market where we’re all expected to do more with less creates a tension that makes it difficult to relax into a flow. I think one advantage I have by being in a low performing school is that there are clear cut expectations for what I do: have a positive impact on student performance. If I can tie what I’m doing to improved test scores, I’m doing good in the big picture. Yet, the daily grind can be … grinding.

I feel more focused this year than I have in a long time. Getting out there to teachers and being able to work with them on technology lessons, improving their tech skills and working reading into their classes is where I’m heading. I’m working on a Battle of the Books for Black History Month, bringing adult reading partners in for low ability readers and getting students blogging. While most will end up doing general blogs about reading, I would love to get them blogging about economics, environmental science and even Algebra. It would be so help to get students taking the concepts they’re learning about and writing about them with their classmates as their audience. But, teachers don’t blog and don’t necessarily see how this would work.

I’ve added QR for book reviews and the library wiki to the libraries front door and I also plan to make bookmarks with this information. I’ve read about an organization somewhere that gives students ARCs for them to read and review. I think that’s a great idea for getting students to read, it’s just getting all those ARCS!

It’s often said that if you don’t know where you’re going, you’ll never get there. Focus. Focus Focus! The days will work themselves out.

Librarians of Color

If you’re anywhere near Denver, CO you won’t want to miss the largest gathering of Reformistas to celebrate REFORMA’s 40th Anniversary and participate in our fourth annual conference. This four day event (September 15 – 18, 2011) is expected to draw over 500 participants and promises to be the best REFORMA National Conference ever.

The theme for this  conference is “Elevating Latino Services to a Higher Level: Juntos in the Mile High City!” RNCIV will offer a multitude of opportunities, including timely and informative pre-conference seminars, author readings, continuing education workshops, enlightening panel discussions, vendor exhibits and fun pachangas!

The Joint Conference for Librarians of Color has extended their call for proposals.

Call for Proposals – Deadline extended to October 1, 2011

The deadline has been extended by an additional 2½ weeks!

The 2012 Joint Conference of Librarians of Color, JCLC 2012: Gathering at the Waters: Celebrating Stories and Embracing Communities will take place from September 19-23, 2012 in Kansas City, Missouri.   The mission of JCLC is to advance the issues affecting librarians of color within the profession and to also explore how best to serve the incredibly diverse and changing communities that use our libraries.

The Joint Conference of Librarians of Color is a conference for everyone and brings together a diverse group of librarians, library staff, supporters, trustees and community participants to explore issues of diversity inclusion in libraries and how they affect the ethnic communities who use our services.  JCLC deepens connections across constituencies, creates spaces for dialogue, promotes the telling and celebrating of one’s stories, and encourages the transformation of libraries into more democratic and diverse organizations.  This groundbreaking event is sponsored by the five ethnic caucuses: the American Indian Library Association (AILA), Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association (APALA), Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA), Chinese American Librarians Association (CALA), and the National Association to Promote Library and Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking (REFORMA).  JCLC 2012 follows the first gathering in 2006 in Dallas, Texas.

The 2012 JCLC Steering Committee invites you to submit a proposal for a presentation at the conference.  Proposal submission deadlines are listed below.

JCLC Tracks and Topics
JCLC 2012 seeks conference session presentations in all areas of diversity, including, but not limited to, the topics below.  Ideal sessions will either provide insights, skills, tools and strategies that stress solutions, implementation and practical applications; highlight exemplary programs, approaches and models; facilitate constructive dialogue, interaction, and understanding around significant issues affecting conference constituencies; or discuss efforts to create more inclusive environments, programs and curriculum.

 •   Advocacy, Outreach and Collaboration
Marketing; outreach to diverse populations; community collaborations; user spaces; public policy; health education; using census data and other government information; cultural programming; services to and rebuilding of communities hit with disaster; research; undocumented, urban, rural and low-income communities; etc.

•   Collections, Programs and Services
Ethnic and multicultural collections; film and music; information literacy; children’s, youth and adult programming; programs for diverse populations; reference; instruction; grant funded programs; technical services; archives; preservation; documenting traditional knowledge; research; cataloging/subject headings/controlled vocabulary; etc.

•   Deep Diversity and Cultural Exchange (understanding and valuing differences)
Increasing awareness and tolerance of “minorities”; disabilities; gender; celebrating elders; religion; sexual orientation/LGBT populations; nationality; sharing traditional knowledge; serving the incarcerated; immigrant and refugees; cross cultural issues; transnational communities; multiculturalism; best practices and model programs; etc. 

•   Leadership, Management and Organizational Development
Administration; staff development/training; recruitment and retention; leadership; organizational culture; management; cultural competencies; mentoring; assessment; mid-career strategies; staff and paraprofessional issues; conflict resolution and mediation; re-organization and re-structuring; leading during tight economic times; institutional change; research; fundraising; etc.  

•   Technology and Innovation
Teaching and learning; emerging technologies; e-repositories; social networking applications; digitization; equal access for users; library tools; e-books; mobile devices; widgets; mashups; online learning and collaboration; open access movements; social aspects of technology and implications for use; videos; etc.

Session Formats
All sessions are 75 minutes long and may take one of the following formats:

•   Panel
•   Individual Paper/Presentation
•   Roundtable
•   Workshop
•   Poster Session

**JCLC will also accept proposals in different formats (other than those listed above) that will excite, engage and create a new learning environment for conference attendees**

Submission Guidelines
All proposals must be submitted to the Joint Conference of Librarians of Color website at:

All proposals must be received by midnight PST on October 1, 2011.  No late submissions will be accepted.  Notifications of proposal selection will be made on a rolling basis beginning on November 1, 2011 and ending on December 15, 2011.

Selection Criteria
All proposals will be blind reviewed (without author identification) by the JCLC Program Committee.  Proposals are evaluated on quality and clarity of content, uniqueness of topic, relevance to conference attendees, ability to engage the audience, and the relationship of the proposal to the mission of the conference.

Many questions can be answered on the JCLC website at: Questions may also be sent to Alanna Aiko Moore, JCLC Program Committee Chair, at


Male Monday: Bil Wright

Male Monday began with Ari @ Reading in Color     

Last week, my much awaited copy of Putting Make Up on the Fat Boy arrived.  For months, I’ve had a copy of Wright’s previous novel, When the Black Girl Sang but haven’t read it yet. It’s gotten many good reviews and I know I have to read it, sooner rather than later. It’s awkward to be such a fan of someone whose books I haven’t read yet but I have to admire the situations, themes and characters that Wright addresses in his work.

In Putting MakeUp on the Fat Boy, Carlos (yes, he’s a fat boy) wants to be a professional make-up artist

"Whether owning a drawer full of makeup or none at all, readers will root for this teen as he deals with the trials and tribulations that come with growing up." Lambda Literary

and in working toward that career goal, takes a job at a cosmetic counter at Macy’s. He’s a sixteen year, old queer boy in American who is boldly living his life and I can’t help but want to dive into this book! I’m amazed by this unique concept and cannot help but think that such originality has to lead to an incredible story. I imagine the skillful handling of this character who is living his dream, probably without fear or trepidation though I’m sure there will be several confrontations.

Wright talks a little about his new book in this interview and tells about authors who have inspired him. I don’t know if the video is going to load. Here’s  a link

 I decided to feature Mr. Wright here today and went directly to his website to get a little background information. There I found a new work being by him being featured in the New York Musical Theatre Festival this month.  Wright is the book writer, Dionne McClain-Freeney is the composer and lyricist and Devanand Janki is the director. The play is the 2010 GLADD nominated musical which although inspired by actual events is meant to celebrate the life of Sakia Gunn. In 2003, the 15 year old lesbian and her girlfriend were returning home from a night out in New York City when Sakia was brutally murdered in a vicious hate crime. The play is receiving warm reviews. 1  2

I was able to find this snippet of the play’s opening on YouTube.

Dear Sakia, may perpetual light shine on you!

review: Heart of a Samurai

title: Heart of a Samurai

author: Margi Preus

date: 2010, Amulet Books

"Heart of a Samurai vividly summons for readers ages 10-16 not only the story of a remarkable man but also the turbulent era in which he lived." WSJ review

main character: Manjiro “John Mung”

While on a routine fishing expedition, 14 year old Manjiro and his shipmates are overtaken by a storm and left shipwrecked on an island. They are eventually rescued, but not by their fellow Japanese countrymen. This creates a problem because joining these foreigners could prohibit them from ever returning to their homeland. Manjiro, with his great sense of adventure, not only decides to stay with these American sailors, but ends up being adopted by the captain.

In this story based up the real life of Manjiro, Preus introduces us to the 18th century closed Japanese society in a way that draws readers inside. The young Manjiro is not a perfect character but he is a character for whom readers want the best. Whether or not he ever returns home to Japan, he will be able to make the best of what is given him and will be happy in his surroundings.

Preus skillfully recreates 18th century life in a way that readers can appreciate. There were a few sea scenes that I found too technical, but other readers might appreciate the attention to details. I particularly enjoyed the epilogue and historical notes at the end of the book which let readers know how real the story is.

Heart of a Samurai is a 2011 Newbery Honor book; 2010 Asian/Pacific American Award for Literature in the MG category