LAUC 50th Anniversary Stories

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Miki Goral, UCLA

A LAUC Story

My first official LAUC-LA involvement came about a year after I started working at UCLA. I was elected Member-at-Large, an office reserved for “junior librarians.” And so began my journey. In the beginning, I would attend the board meetings and be completely flummoxed by the initialisms bandied about. I soon learned that libraries (and LAUC) live on alphabet soup: UCOP, DLA, CDL, LAUC, CAPA, LRC, CACLS, CPG, SLASIAC, SOPAG, DOC, MARC, NUC, OCLC, RLIN, LCSH, MeSH, BRS, SDC, etc. Gradually, I learned to decipher these cryptic acronyms, as new librarians still must do.

I started attending LAUC Assemblies, hosted by alternating campuses north and south. Some were more memorable than others. In 1977, UC Santa Cruz hosted the Spring Assembly and we dined al fresco on the grassy slope below the Chancellor’s residence. The beautiful view from there is long gone. After that, each campus tried to outdo the previous one in providing the noontime rep ast. In 1985, the Spring Assembly was held at UC Riverside. There was a spirited debate on temporary appointments, with campus delegations caucusing at lunchtime before voting on the issues. The UCR program chair had to leave the Assembly during lunch when she went into labor, but her dedication to LAUC was evident as she welcomed us in the morning. Since 1976, I have been to fifty-five (55) Assemblies and enjoyed meeting my UC colleagues at them all.

I served as a member of dozens of LAUC and LAUC-LA committees and held many offices, including Chair of LAUC-LA, CAPA Chair, and LAUC President, as well as being a delegate to the statewide assemblies. When the 25th anniversary of LAUC approached and Judy Horn asked for volunteers to work on LAUC: The First 25 Years: A History of the Librarians Association of the University of California, 1967-1992, I did not hesitate to volunteer to write the chapter on LAUC-LA. That gave me an opportunity to examine the archives of the organization and learn more about how it began. I found that originally it was a much more activist organization, tackling social issues as well as internal governance issues. I hope that the next generation will look back at this history and once again take the lead in championing the role of librarians in the University of California.

Esther Grassian, UCLA

What have I learned from my participation in LAUC, especially my three years as LAUC statewide VP/President-Elect, President, and Past President?

First, I learned and will never forget how valuable you (LAUC members) are. Your dedication, hard work, and expertise make the UC libraries work so well, contributing greatly to the success of each campus and the University as a whole.

Second, I learned that we need to be very squeaky wheels regarding our knowledge, expertise, and contributions. We cannot just sit back, fade into the background, and expect others to recognize our expertise and our efforts. We must continually talk about and publicize all that we do and have done, and continually press for inclusion in campus and UC-wide decision-making groups. This means stepping out of our comfort zones and our normal pursuits, to reach out to others at all levels, to offer our help and advice, and to point out how libraries and librarians are contributing to the success of UC students, staff, and faculty. LAUC is an excellent engine for this purpose, but it only works if each of you takes an active and proactive role.

I’m pasting in below a copy of my LAUC President’s Report from May 30, 2003, also available in the LAUC online archive, so you can see what an activist LAUC pursued at that time:

Here is a list of the headings from that report, just to give you an idea of the topics covered:

Information Literacy and University Committee on Educational Policy (UCEP)
LAUC and University Committee on Library (UCOL)
Faculty Status Poll
Regional Library Facilities (RLF) TF Appointment
LAUC Position Paper Review Task Force
LAUC Statewide Committee Openings
LAUC Assemblies
Ideas for Attracting and Recognizing LAUC Participation
LAUC Web Site Redesign
LAUC History Online
Privacy Links - LAUC Web Site
LAUC President’s Visits to Campuses
LAUC’s Advisory Role
LAUC Elected Offices & Nominations

Yes, times change, and so do issues of importance. As I said in that Report, I urge each of you to take an activist role in LAUC, to jump on and create opportunities to explore and promote action on issues that concern you. Each of you has so much to contribute, and I hope you do!

LAUC President's Report
Spring Assembly
30 May 2003

Dear LAUC members,

Once again, I am happy to submit an update to you on LAUC activities and projects since the Fall 2002 President's Report. Please let me know if you have any questions about this report, either in person at the Spring Assembly (UCSD, May 30th), or by email Last Fall I said that I was glad to report that the relationship between LAUC and the ULs was on the upswing, and I hoped it would result in improved two-way communication. We're making strides toward this goal, as three of the ULs will be with us at the Spring Assembly to talk with us about a number of important issues. I have also been forwarding important LAUC announcements to Gerry Munoff to be shared with all of the ULs, and we have been in touch on other issues as they come up, such as appointments. I'm hoping that LAUC/UL communication will continue to improve for the benefit of us all.

Following is an update on specific LAUC activities and projects since the 2002 Fall Assembly.

As I reported in an earlier message to all LAUC members, Carol Hughes, Chair of the ULs' All-Campus Group on IL and I attended a meeting of the statewide UC Academic Senate's University Committee on Educational Policy. I did a presentation and Carol and I answered questions about the topic of information literacy and the need for an information literate UC community. The Chair and members generally recommended that we work with faculty at the local campus level to bubble up the issue of information literacy to the statewide Academic Senate. Beth Dupuis, our hardworking and very able Web Manager, has posted a copy of the text of my presentation to UCEP on the LAUC web site.

Subsequently, the LAUC IL Task Force requested a change in its charge and an extension of its end date to Fall 2003, both of which were approved. Their second charge now reads: "Identifying key issues to consider in developing information literacy initiatives on the UC campuses." The change to the Task Force's charge, however, does not change the thrust of the resolution passed by the LAUC Assembly in Spring 2002, which reads as follows:

"That the LAUC President appoint a systemwide task force to work with faculty, students and administrators to develop a partnership for defining, assessing and implementing an Information Literacy policy for the University of California."

In the interim, however, Amy Wallace (SD), one of the excellent IL Task Force co-chairs, has gotten another job and will be leaving UC as of May 29th. We are fortunate to have Stephanie Davis-Kahl (I) replace Amy in this position. Stephanie will join our other excellent Co-Chair, Sarah McDaniel (B) in leading this important Task Force in the remainder of their work.

Since early Fall 2002, I have tried to contact the Chair of the statewide Academic Senate's UCOL, repeatedly, and in late April found out that a Chair had just been appointed. I had wanted to discuss the topic of information literacy with UCOL as well as with UCEP. When I looked at the UCOL roster, newly posted on the UC statewide Academic Senate's web site, I was delighted to discover that the LAUC President is listed as a Consultant for this committee.

So, I immediately emailed the Chair, Professor Afifi (LA), provided copies of previous emails with background information on IL, and asked if I could meet with UCOL to talk about IL and about how LAUC can best provide advice to UCOL. Professor Afifi responded very quickly with a positive message, and I am now on the agenda for the June 9th UCOL meeting to discuss the two topics of LAUC and information literacy. I have asked if Linda Kennedy could join me at this meeting, as she will soon become LAUC President, and am waiting for UCOL's response.

Last Fall the LAUC Executive Board discussed and prioritized LAUC Committee charges, including five specific charges for the Committee on Professional Governance (CPG). The first charge was put on hold pending local Division discussions on the proposed revisions to LAUC Position Paper #1, and a vote on these proposed revisions at the Spring 2003 Assembly. The second charge was put on hold after Executive Board and local Division discussions. We decided to do a straw poll of the LAUC membership on whether or not they wanted CPG to address its third charge: "3. Develop and administer a survey (to be approved by the LAUC Executive Board) to gauge LAUC member interest in investigating the issue of faculty status for librarians at the UCs, and investigating the issue further if there is sufficient interest."

Results indicated that the majority of those voting were not in favor of having CPG pursue this charge, so it too has been dropped.

The Executive Board will discuss the last two CPG charges for 2002/2003, and will clarify for CPG on which charge to focus for the remainder of its term. This decision will depend partly on the results of the Position Paper #1 discussion and vote at the Spring Assembly.

We are happy that Sheryl Davis (R), our LAUC SRLF Representative, has been appointed to this new UL Task Force, and look forward to providing feedback as needed, as the Task Force works on its charge.

The Task Force has been appointed and has begun its work. At the Spring Assembly we will find out whether or not the Assembly delegates will vote to approve or disapprove the proposed changes to Position Paper #1 or will vote to refer this Position Paper to the TF for review along with the other Position Papers. We are fortunate to have an outstanding group of Task Force members who reflect a range of experience in the profession and in UC. We can all have confidence in their skills and abilities to review the LAUC Position Papers in depth and to solicit input widely.

Colby Riggs (I) is the current LAUC Rep to the Library Technology Advisory Group (LTAG), one of the ULs' all-Campus advisory groups. Their charge begins as follows:
"Shares information and develops consensus regarding the application of information technology to library activities." (details)

Colby's term expires this year, and LAUC will then need to send a slate of three nominees to the ULs, one of whom will be selected for this position for a 3-year term, commencing October 1, 2003. Please consider applying for this position when the call for applicants is announced. In addition, many positions on important LAUC statewide committees will be open for 2-year terms, beginning October 1, 2003. Check to see which LAUC Committees will have openings for representatives from your campus. Then contact the incoming LAUC Chair at your campus as soon as possible to apply for these positions.

Traditionally, LAUC Assemblies have been held twice a year, in the North in the Fall and in the South in the Spring, and have rotated among all of the nine campuses. Santa Barbara has alternated between being considered a Northern and Southern campus. We will have ten campuses when Merced opens in 2004. Given the number of UC campuses, the great variation in size and number of staff to handle large events, and a flat LAUC budget, we may want to reconsider Assembly location and scheduling. We may still want to alternate between North and South for each Assembly, but hold Assemblies at fewer, larger campuses in cities which are cheaper to fly into, and may ask campuses to help each other by co-sponsoring Assemblies. We will discuss this at the May 29th Executive Board meeting and at the Assembly on May 30th.

Many UC librarians will be retiring over the next five to ten years. This exodus will deplete the ranks of experienced UC librarians. The ULs and other UC library administrators are well aware of this and some campuses have already been trying to recruit and hire at entry levels for any open librarian series positions. It is very exciting to see this influx of new librarians who bring with them a variety of new and different experiences and training. Generally, however, these new librarians are not familiar with the function and purpose of LAUC. So, I proposed that we offer a travel award to new LAUC members (those who have been employed as UC librarians for 2 years or less), on a trial basis. This travel award will pay full travel expenses for travel, room and board to attend the May 29th LAUC Executive Board meeting and the May 30,2003 LAUC Spring Assembly. Applicants were required to write a brief application essay indicating why they want to attend these meetings, and the awardee will need to write an additional essay indicating what s/he gained from attending these meetings. Four new LAUC members from three campuses applied for this first LAUC Travel Award, and Marie Bronoel (R) has been selected for the Award. Her application essay has already been posted on the LAUC web site, thanks to the diligent efforts of our excellent Web Manager, Beth Dupuis. After the Assembly, we will mount Marie's follow up essay on the LAUC web site, as well. I hope this and other approaches to wider and more open communication about LAUC will encourage wider participation in LAUC among new and experienced librarians alike.

I also proposed that LAUC consider establishing a LAUC Member-of-the-Year Award or a LAUC Lifetime Achievement Award. A Member-of-the-Year Award could be similar to the CARL Member-of-the-Year Award, which recognizes individuals for their substantive contributions to the organization. Again, this is somewhat related to the issue of pending retirements of highly dedicated and experienced LAUC members, a number of whom, I believe, deserve recognition for their extensive LAUC support and participation over the years. The LAUC Executive Board will discuss this proposal at the May 29th Executive Board meeting, and it will be on the agenda for the Spring Assembly as well.

Beth Dupuis and I are discussing how best to go about reviewing the LAUC Web site in order to make suggestions for changes. We would welcome any suggestions for changes from LAUC members as this large task begins.

We are in the process of scanning and mounting on the LAUC web site a copy of LAUC, the First 25 Years : a History of the Librarians Association of the University of California, 1967-1992, edited by Judy K. Horn and Jefferson P. Selth. I'll notify you when this project has been completed.

We have added to the LAUC web site several important links related to privacy issues, on the recommendation of our UL Privacy Liaison Group Representative, Susana Hinojosa.
On a related note, LAUC-R has proposed a resolution related to the USA Patriot Act. We will be discussing and voting on this resolution at the Assembly.

In recent years, the LAUC President has traveled to each UC campus to visit with local LAUC members and to meet with the UL. This year we experimented with a different approach. I asked that those campuses interested in having the LAUC President visit, issue an invitation along with a list of one or more topics they would like the LAUC President to address. The following campuses asked me to visit and provided quite a range of topics and questions they wanted me to address, though common to all were the topics of Information Literacy and the purpose and function of LAUC: LA, Irvine, Berkeley, Riverside, and Santa Barbara. I think this arrangement has worked out quite well, as it provided LAUC members with an opportunity to ask questions about issues of concern to them, and it provided me with an opportunity to talk about LAUC's function and purpose with librarians and ULs who are new to UC, when asked to do so by LAUC Divisions.

The Executive Board has had continuing discussions on how LAUC can best fulfill its advisory role to the Office of the President (UCOP), to the ULs and to local campuses. I have asked LAUC representatives to various committees to take a more active role in identifying issues of potential concern to LAUC members, to share agendas, documents and meeting minutes, and to request feedback from LAUC members or the Executive Board when necessary. Our representatives have been working hard at this intensified approach, and as a result, we have been able to provide feedback on many important issues in a more timely fashion.
LAUC members very much value the many opportunities we have to provide advice on library-related issues. However, on the advice of two successive LAUC representatives to the CDL Users Council, the Executive Board decided that LAUC did not need a representative to this important group, as it deals with implementation rather than policy issues, and has ample LAUC member representation from the various campuses. The Executive Board will be discussing how best to provide advice to the CDL on a policy level, and will be investigating other options.

For the past few years LAUC has only been able to attract single candidates to run for the office of Vice-President/President-Elect. This is a three-year term, consisting of one year as Vice-President, one year as President, and one year as Past-President. This year LAUC came close to dissolving as an organization, as the Nominating Committee had an extremely difficult time finding even one candidate to run for this office. We were very fortunate that an excellent candidate agreed to run at almost the very last possible moment, or we would have had to ask for a vote of the LAUC membership to suspend the bylaws while we made more attempts to solicit at least one candidate for this office.

As I've visited various campuses to speak about LAUC, I have said repeatedly that LAUC is your organization, and that it can only function well if you participate. I'll extend that now and say that it can only continue to function at all as an organization if you are willing to participate in it. So, I'm ending this report with a call to all of you to think about what you value in LAUC--peer review; opportunities to provide input on significant library-related issues at UC; the opportunity to network, exchange professional views, and learn from your colleagues at other UC campuses; opportunities to work on issues and projects that have direct relevance to your work and that of your colleagues; opportunities to advise ULs, CDL, systemwide library planning, and UCOP--and consider what your professional lives at UC would be like without LAUC. I urge you to consider saying "Yes" instead of "No" when asked to serve LAUC as Vice-President/President-Elect. Your colleagues and the University need your expertise, your knowledge, your skills, and your abilities. Think about it...

Esther Grassian
LAUC President 2002/2003

Carla Arbagey, UC Riverside

One of my favorite activities that we have done at LAUC-R was our celebration of National Library Worker's Day in 2016. NLWD occurs during National Library Week, and is promoted by ALA's Allied Professional Association. I was LAUC-R Chair at the time, and I wanted to celebrate the day and recognize the hard work of all our staff. I have always felt that hand-written notes of appreciation and thanks have a great impact, and so decided that we would send postcards with our notes of thanks to ALL library staff, including our wonderful student assistants. I designed four different postcards, which were hand-embellished with stickers and washi tape. The postcards were then hand-addressed and a note was written on them, thanking the recipient for their hard work. This was all done by a dedicated group of librarians who got together to fill out the postcards. Although our hands were tired and sore from all the writing, we managed to send out about 200 postcards. Li brary staff were thrilled and they brought a smile to many faces; some staffers displayed them prominently on their desks or posted a picture to Facebook.

NLWD postcards front
NWLD Postcards (front). Click here to view PDF version (PDF).
NLWD postcards back
NWLD Postcards (back). Click here to view PDF version (PDF).

Christina Woo, UC Irvine

Librarians posing in front of Jack Langson Library before marching with UCI faculty for third chancellor at 1993

In 1993, UC Irvine welcomed its third chancellor, Laurel Wilkening, who succeeded Jack W. Peltason. For her investiture in October, University Librarian Joanne Euster funded the rental of academic regalia for librarians who wanted to march in with UCI faculty at the event. After we had figured out how to wear our hoods, and which side our tassels belonged on (the left), we stood on the front steps of the Main Library (renamed Jack Langson Library in 2003) for this photo.

Key: R = retired from UCI; L = left UCI for another librarian position; P = passed away while at UCI

Bottom row, L-R:
Sally Tseng (R), Linda Murphy, Pauline Manaka, Patricia Lovett (L), Lorelei Tanji, Shirley Leung (R), Susan Lessick (R), Cathy Palmer (R)

Middle row, L-R:
William S. Wong (R), Sara Eichhorn (R), Colby Riggs, Judy Horn (R), Angela Yang (L), Christina Woo, Abraham Yu (R)

Top row, L-R:
Gary Rossi (P), Steve MacLeod (R), Tim McAdam (R), Locke Morrisey (L), Collette Ford (R), Ellen Broidy (R), Gayla McDowell (R).

Thanks to Cathy Palmer for posting this on her FaceBook page and generating a lot of reminiscing and “who is the person standing next to…?”

Sally Willson Weimer, UC Santa Barbara

I decided to become active in LAUC to learn more about the role of governance in an academic librarian's responsibilities. Several librarian mentors had encouraged me to learn more about academic librarian leadership and to participate on committees. As a teaching and collections librarian, I wanted to outreach to colleagues and other academic members in the university. And, I really appreciated the sense of collaboration and teamwork to plan, enhance, and improve our services and programs to our valuable academic community. And, I am very enthusiastic that the LAUC policies and programs will continue to provide librarian members opportunities to thrive and excel to achieve those goals and services for the benefit of our awesome and amazing university community.

Sally Willson Weimer, UCSB librarian retiree

Elizabeth Salmon, on behalf of UC Merced

construction of UC Merced library

Construction of the UC Merced Library, June 29, 2004.
Left to right: Jim Dooley, Donald Barclay, Joy Parham, Bruce Miller, Sarah Sheets, Emily Lin.

putting first book on the shelf

Bruce Miller, former University Librarian, putting putting the very first book on the shelf.
Left to right: Jim Dooley, Bruce Miller, Donald Barclay, Eric Scott, Michelle Lustig, Sara Davidson Squibb.

founding librarians at opening ceremony

UC Merced opening ceremony and first incoming class bridge crossing, 2005.
Founding UC Merced Librarians, left –right: Bruce Miller, Jim Dooley, Donald Barclay, Eric Scott, Emily Lin, Sara Davidson Squibb, Michelle Lustig.
Jim, Donald, Eric, Emily, and Sara are all still UC Merced librarians.

Nancy Koller, UC Riverside

My memories of LAUC are a mixture of personal involvement (resulting in rewards and satisfaction) at both the local and systemwide levels, and the certainty that LAUC is important for UC librarians.

From my very first year at UCR I was involved in LAUC at the local and sysemwide level. I was hired in a temporary position for a special project – UCR Library had received a contract with University Microfims in Ann Arbor, Michigan, to digitalize their entire microfilm Wing Collection. It was projected to last three years. -- Interestingly LAUC established an Ad Hoc Committee on the status of temporary librarians. The UCR LAUC Chair appointed me as a member of the systemwide committee and so began my memories of LAUC at all levels.

My three-year temporary position evolved into twenty-eight years as a permanent appointment, and I saw participating in LAUC as a critical part of my job as a librarian and made feel a vital part of the University of California.


Being an active member of LAUC gave me entrée to interaction with other parts of academic life outside the library.

At UCR I was a member of countless committees and chaired several. This gave me an opportunity to know better my colleagues in other departments in all the campus libraries. As chair of committees, it gave me more opportunity to meet with the University Librarian and other members in the administrative offices. It gave me a voice with decision makers who influenced the lives of all of us in the library.

As Chair of the LAUC-R Revised Research Guidelines, I worked closely with Vice Chancellor Michael Reagan who was very helpful and supportive. I was also a non-voting member of some Academic Senate Committees – not possible without LAUC establishing the practice.

I frequently served on the LAUC Peer Review Committee (CACLS) a task both an honor and humbling. It was because of LAUC that we librarians had a voice in our advancement – one LAUC’s greatest accomplishments.


Participation at the systemwide level gave me the terrific opportunity to get to know many of my colleagues on the various UC campuses. I sat on many committees and chaired several.

One memorable experience was being the Chair of the LAUC Ad Hoc Committee on Peer Review – APM Revisions. I remember traveling to each of the campuses to explain the reasoning of the committee and asking librarians for their suggestions. This was an effort to make all librarians feel an involvement in a document that affected all of our professional lives.

This committee, in particular, gave me the opportunity to interact with three people important to UC librarians in the Office of the President . APM Revisions had to be approved by the UC attorney in cha rge of reviewing all UC official documents. At the time, it was Myron Okada. He was not only exceptionally knowledgeable, but personable. He helped me word everything for legal approval.

It was also necessary to work with The Vice President for Academic Affairs, at that time, Ellen Switkes. She also was wonderfully helpful and encouraging as was The Director for Library Affairs, Dennis Smith.

When I was elected as LAUC President, it was very helpful to already know these three people of influence to assist me in championing LAUC causes.

As LAUC President, I had the wonderful opportunity to get to know all the University Librarians since the LAUC President sat on all Library Council meetings where the ULs discussed important issues involving all UC libraries among one another and with members of the Office of the President.

I don’t know how active most UC Librarians are in LAUC currently, but hopefully they are not ta king LAUC for granted. Without LAUC, UC librarians would have far less influence and could lose much control over their professional lives.

I certainly recognized that LAUC gave me the opportunity to get out of my “cubby-hole,” meet more people on all the campuses – and, yes, often have fun – and definitely experienced terrific satisfaction in knowing I had a voice in shaping my professional life, and was an active professional involved with my colleagues on all campuses.

LAUC made that possible.

Bev Toy, UC Irvine


Author’s Note: This does scan.

OCLC v. BALLOTS debate was the first;
Which system was best? Which one clearly the worst?
We measured and clocked and we argued all day.
OCLC won out – and so did L. A.

Six drafts of UC’s Master Plan we did read;
The binding was Salmon-- quite fishy, agreed?
We ate out our hearts with revisions galore
Which went mostly unnoticed—who care anymore?

Next uniform catalog rues we did try,
But Berkeley said no—left us hung out to dry.
The flagship had subtleties too fine to share;
No wonder their catalog efforts were rare.

LAUC members should teach in their very own right,
But Davis librarians feared that they might!
“Next thing they’ll be making us get Ph.D.’s,
And publish or perish? No thanks, if you please!”

We should brief-list all books for the regional stores.
Santa Barbara said no—they were junk, nothing more.
San Diego said they were not playing at all.
No storage for them—to suggest it was gall.

On episodes such as these do I reflect
When I recollect LAUC—but I must not neglect
To include peer review in the things we did get.
It is central to all – I’m convinced of that yet!

Beverly Toy
November, 1992

LAUC President – 1976
U. C. Irvine