Clare Membiela, MLS, J.D., Library Law Consultant, Library of Michigan, will present the United for Libraries webinar Just the "T": Duty, Authority, Responsibility & Liability—Library Trustees as Public Officials, on Tues., Oct. 31, 2 p.m. Eastern.
Library Trustees have a large and difficult job at the best of times, and unfortunately, now is not the best of times for many libraries. The issues being faced by library trustees currently include materials challenges, community conflicts, funding struggles and difficult municipal relationships. Managing one of these situations is difficult and stressful, but current library boards may find themselves juggling more than one of these complex situations. It doesn't help that in these situations, Library Trustees and Library Staff often become targets of vitriol and personal attacks by their own neighbors and community members. This presentation will provide clear information on how understanding their official and legal duties, authority and responsibility (as well as potential liabilities) can help library trustees and directors create policies, plans and strategies for facing complex situations in a unified, organized, legal and community inclusive manner... and provide a framework for decision making when faced with the unexpected.
Clare Membiela is Library Law Consultant with the Library of Michigan. At the Library of Michigan, Clare helps libraries navigate legal issues that impact library services. After years of information wrangling for lawyers, law students and law faculty as a law librarian, she now wrangles legal information for library directors and others working “on the other side" of the library service desks. Clare joined the Library of Michigan in 2016, has an M.L.S., a J.D., and over 30 years of library experience. She is a member of the United for Libraries Intellectual Freedom and Public Policy & Advocacy Task Force. You can find Clare in the palm of your hand (that is, right outside Lansing, Mich.) with her family, a dog, a cat, books, comics, and too many nerdy pursuits.