Notes from Chair, 2023

ESS Newsletter

2023, Vol 3

Notes from Chair

Notes from Chair
Brian Vetruba

Once again, I’m amazed at all of the work ESS members have accomplished this past year. Looking back at the fall and winter, ESS held 6 virtual discussion group meetings and 8 virtual committee meetings through which we advanced the section on a number of fronts. For example, we revised and approved the section’s Governance Procedures Documents; many thanks to Katie Gibson, Hélène Huet, and Milan Pohontsch for assisting me with drafting the revised version. The Communications and Publications Committee has recruited editors for our research guides and the Web Team has continued to clean up the ESS website and ingest SEES content into it. Thanks to our generous donors, the Web Team has hired an accessibility consultant to examine our website and create documentation for us this summer. The Membership Committee has organized an in-person reception at the Alliance Française on Sunday, June 25, 5:30-7:30pm. Membership has also created a promotional ESS postcard which will make its debut at ALA Annual. Many thanks to Kelly Omodt for her excellent graphic design skills. And much appreciation goes to the Newsletter Committee for pulling this newsletter issue together.  

I’m particularly pleased to announce that ESS is holding a free in-person workshop “European Language and Area Studies Workshop” for 50 librarians responsible for Europe/Eurasia at the Newberry Library in Chicago on Friday, June 23, 2023. This full-day workshop will include region-focused presentations, a world café-style discussion with vendors, an “ask-an-expert” panel and, lots of food. The workshop is at capacity but we’re planning on related webinars next year. Thanks to these ESS members who along with me took this workshop idea and ran with it under Ann Snoeyenbos’ leadership–Katie Gibson, Adán Griego, Thomas Keenan, Claude Potts, Caterina Reed, Masha Stepanova, Sarah Sussman, Michelle Urberg. Much of the credit to this workshop goes to the generosity of our sister organizations CIFNAL and GNARP (both part of CRL) and our European vendor friends.  

June is proving quite busy for ESS members with 11 virtual meetings (June 5-June 20, 2023) and 8 in-person ones at ALA Annual 2023 in Chicago. See the full schedule here. Be sure to attend our “Forum on War in Ukraine and Its Impact on Libraries” being held on Saturday, June 24, 8:30-10:30am (CST) both in-person (Palmer House, Salon 07-09) and online (Zoom registration). Again, thanks to donations this year, we’ll be able to donate at least $1,500 toward the ALA Ukraine Library Relief Fund. If you’ve missed some ESS meetings or want to just chat, stop by at our “Discover What’s New In The European Studies Section” meeting (Sunday, June 25, 2:30-3:30pm (CST); Palmer House, Wabash Room). 

Many of the events outlined above would not be possible without the diligent efforts of our Vendor Relations Committee which worked with our vendors in securing donations. Kudos to the vendors which donated from June 2022-May 2023: Amalivre (booth 4036), Brepols Publishers  (booth 4134), (booth 4338), Casalini Libri (booth 3938), Classiques Garnier (not at ALA), Erasmus Boekhandel  (booth 3937), and Puvill Libros (booth 3936). Please visit them and extend our gratitude.

Please extend your congratulations to ESS members Marta Deyup from Seton Hall University Libraries and Agnes Widder from Michigan State University Libraries on their upcoming retirements. 

ESS had a change in leadership positions halfway through the year and I want to personally thank Kathleen Smith for taking on the vice-chair/chair-elect position early and Ann Snoeyenbos the member-at-large role. And heartfelt congratulations to the ALA Election 2023 winners: Kathleen Smith for vice-chair/chair-elect, Paula Carns for secretary, and Ann Snoeyenbos for Member-at-large. And thanks to those who stood for election and agreed to serve. ESS is in very good hands with Kathleen Smith at the helm next and André G. Wenzel thereafter. Before closing, I want to acknowledge the guidance past chair Hélène Huet and the Executive Committee provided to me during this year. But most of all, I want to thank the ESS community at large for moving the section forward in countless ways. ESS rocks!

Brian Vetruba, University of Minnesota
ESS Chair, 2022-2023