Library Trustee Center

As trustees of libraries, we have been entrusted with the noblest task of all – to preserve, strengthen, and promote the growth and use of our community’s libraries… The library for which we work today will long outlive us and will provide inspiration and encouragement for generations to come.Jane Bellon, Illinois Trustee Facts File, 1997 edition, page 1

If you are a new library trustee, here you will find a lot of information to get you started on the right track. If you are a seasoned library board member, here you will find resources to help you become even more effective in your role as trustee.

Learning Resources

 The Utah Public Library Trustee Manual (pdf) – Your best source of information for an overall coverage of trusteeship.

 Short Takes for Trustees – Brief online videos produced by United for Libraries: The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and Foundations. These short videos (8-10 minutes each) can be shown during Trustee meetings to stimulate discussion about the important role that Trustees play in the governance of their libraries. Topics in the series explain the basics, such as what it means to be a Trustee (discussing the broad fiduciary responsibilities of governing boards as well as the limits of an advisory board), as well as how to set policy, how to evaluate the library director (and why you should!), along with board self evaluation, and the ethical and parliamentary standards for boards — both governing and advisory. Access for Utah Trustees is paid by the State Library. YOU MUST LOGIN BEFORE YOU CAN WATCH THE WEBINARS. For the login & password contact your library director or your State Library Public Library Consultants.

 Trustee Academy Courses – Online webinars produced by United for Libraries: The Association of Library Trustees, Advocates, Friends and FoundationsAccess for Utah Trustees is paid by the State Library. YOU MUST LOGIN BEFORE YOU CAN WATCH THE WEBINARS. For the login & password contact your library director or your State Library consultant.

  • Trustee Competencies (33 minutes)
  • Working Effectively with Your Library Director
  • The Library’s Budget for Trustees
  • Standing Up for Intellectual Freedom
  • Everyday Advocacy: Why the Library Matters!

Finding New board Members (pdf) – Recruiting document from Harford County Library (Maryland) that includes an outline of qualifications, sample questions asked of candidates, and a sample application for appointment.

 Advocacy is not the work of a season; it is the work of a generation – Archived webinar by Jamie LaRue, Douglas County Library. Learn how to tell a succinct, powerful story about the value of libraries. Based on OCLC’s “From Awareness to Funding” and the latest findings of brain research, this session focuses on turning the evidence of our daily patron encounters into short, compelling, and memorable messages that build support. Webinar brought to you by WebJunction

 Trustees On Track – This collection of eight videos, produced by the Utah State Library in 2009, features library trustees sharing their experiences and thoughts on topics that every library board faces.

 Trustee Trouble: The misadventures of a new library board member – Watch this series of short videos, laugh and learn along with Dan, a new library trustee, as he muddles through his first year on the library board. Brought to you by the Wyoming State Library.

 Utah Library Association’s Trustees and Friends Round Table  – Maintains a list of monthly Training & Professional Development opportunities from around the country.

 Getting Grants in Your Community (pdf) by Sally Gardner Reed & Beth Nawalinski, United for Libraries.

Library Campaign Training Institute, American Library Association’s Office for Library Advocacy. This workshop brings the previous four together with the ultimate goal of reaching out to Yes voters and getting them to the polls.

Tools for Trustees

 Board Roles & Responsibilities | Board Orientation (National Council of Nonprofits)

 North Dakota Public Library Trustee Manual (pdf)

Advocacy Resources from United for Libraries

 Ethical Responsibilities for Fiduciary Boards (pdf)

Library Laws of Utah (Utah Code), Utah State Library

Library Trustee Self-Evaluation (pdf), Utah State Library, 2009

 Keeping Public Libraries Public: A Checklist for Communities Considering Privatization of Public Libraries (pdf), American Library Association, 2011

Sample Agenda Procedure for Library Board Meetings

 State Library Consultants – Our librarians can provide basic trustee orientation on various topics including roles and responsibilities, library policy and procedures, library law, personnel issues, running a meeting, library advocacy, and strategic planning.

 LTA Policy Database – Searchable database of library policies compiled and maintained by the Library Trustees Association of New York State. You can use this information to search sample policies that you may customize and use in your library.

Statistics – Key Library Performance Measures & Community Indicators

Organizations

Questions?

Juan Tomás Lee
 801-715-6769 or 800-662-9150 (Utah Toll-Free)
jtlee@utah.gov