Tips for Nominating Committee

Nominating Committee Process and General Timeline


  • Nominating Committee appointed by section vice-chair/chair-elect
  • Nominating Committee chair is added to the Advisory listserv


  • Committee chair updates Nomination form on section website
    • Change contact information for the Nominating Committee chair
    • Change deadline for receiving nominations; choose a date before the ALA Annual Conference
  • Call for nominations sent to IS Advisory listserv; request that committee chairs forward the message to committee members
  • Incoming chair should contact the previous Nominating Committee chair to ask for suggestions of potential candidates


  • Instructional materials on nominating process and slate preparation, including key deadlines for that election cycle, sent by ACRL staff to committee chair


  • General call for nominations for all ACRL offices published in C&RL News
  • Second call for nominations sent out to IS Advisory listserv
  • Committee works on preparation of the slate:
    1. Discuss the characteristics/qualities the committee is looking for in candidates for the various positions:
      •  Vice-chair/Chair-elect (need 2 candidates): ideally should have prior Executive Committee experience (i.e. individuals who have served as Secretary or Member-at-Large).  Individuals possessing a combination of both vision and strong communication, time management, and organizational skill tend to be most successful in this position.  This can be the most difficult position to get people to run for, so it’s suggested that the committee confirm individuals for this position first before working on the other positions. Advise vice-chair candidates that they will be expected to represent the section at ACRL leadership meetings, including Leadership Council (usually 2:00 – 4:00 p.m. on the Friday) at the ALA Annual Conference in the year elected. They will continue to represent the section at leadership sessions at Annual conferences during their term as vice-chair and chair.
      • Member-at-Large (need 3 candidates): ideally should have served on at least two different IS committees in the recent past, and, if possible served as a committee chair at least once (i.e., someone with a proven track record within the section). Strong communication skills and an ability to successfully articulate goals, initiatives, procedures, and actions of the section leadership to committee chairs and the broader section membership are all highly desirable.
      • Secretary/Archivist (need 2 candidates): ideally should have strong organizational skills, good eye for detail, and ability to adhere to established policies and procedures.
    2. Assign each member of the committee one of the three position slates to oversee.
    3. After the results of the prior election are known (early May), begin creating a working list of potential candidates, drawing upon nominees, the list of past candidates, and other sources of information (speaking to current or past members of Exec, for example).
    4. Follow-up on qualifications/qualities of specific individuals by discretely asking other people on Advisory and Exec how they were to work with, how well they met deadlines, etc.
    5. As a committee, rank the candidates for each office in the order that they will be approached about running. If possible, consider diversity in gender, race, geographic distribution, etc., but putting together a strong slate is the most important consideration.


  • Before the ALA Annual Conference, report on the progress to IS Exec liaison, including only the number of nominees suggested for each office. Members of Exec may submit names of possible nominees, but the list of nominee names already suggested is not shared with Exec. Exec does not vet/approve/comment on the work of the committee, as nominating committees are autonomous per ACRL policy.
  • Committee invites individuals to run for office and requests formal letters of consent from those who agree to do so (ACRL will send sample documents)


  • Final slate sent to Exec as a courtesy (again, per ACRL policy, Exec does not approve the slate)
  • Final slate of candidates and all letters of consent forwarded by email to ACRL staff
  • ACRL staff provide candidates with instructions for submitting biographical information and statement of concern for the ballot
  • Nominating Committee chair writes an article for the IS Newsletter announcing slate


  • Biographical statements must be submitted to online form
  • The Nominating Committee does NOT complete an Annual Planning form. Only an Annual Report is submitted in June.


  • Names of candidates for office published in C&RL News
  • ACRL will send official ballot to Nominating Committee chair for proofing
  • Ballot corrections and revisions due to ACRL staff
  • Outgoing Nominating Committee chair should forward names of potential candidates to incoming chair


  • ALA emails ballots and voting begins


  • Polls close


  • Candidates notified and election results distributed by email. Section chairs are notified after the candidates are notified.


  • Outgoing Nominating Committee chair submits Annual Report form
  • Nominating Committee chair submits materials to the IS Archive on ALA Connect in accordance with the IS Archiving Instructions. Only non-confidential materials (call for nominations, publicity pieces, and final election results) are sent.
  • Outgoing chair updates the Tips for Nominating Committee web page as needed.