The directory below includes networking and educational groups in which people at RAILS libraries are organizers or participants.

People who are listed as group contacts are able to edit their group information. Login required to view contacts.

Networking groups that meet regularly may be eligible for a Zoom license provided by RAILS. Groups may also request their own email list for member communications.

Three RAILS service centers are available for in-person meetings; Burr Ridge location, East Peoria location, and Coal Valley location.  People who are listed as group contacts are able to make room reservations for a networking group meeting. Room registrations are made in L2 by going to Account/ My Groups/ Add A Group Event.

Groups can also be set up as event sponsors on the Library Directory & Learning Calendar (L2) site, in order to add meetings and other events to the L2 calendar. Contact RAILS for details.

Filter Networking Groups

Networking Groups Directory

20s and 30s Programmers

We are a group of library professionals that create programming dedicated to the 20s and 30s age group. We meet quarterly, and have a Google group for idea sharing and networking.

We will meet quarterly in the Chicagoland area, on the fourth Wednesday afternoons of January, April, July, and October. Locations will rotate; check the L2 calendar for details.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Programming, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Adult Services Managers of Larger-Sized Public Libraries (SNAAZ)

Open to managers, department heads and supervisors of adult services units or similar service areas in public libraries with populations between 50,000 and 80,000 (and up). We meet to network and discuss a wide range of issues, including: multi-level management, material formats, innovative services, reorganization and re-spacing, joint conference proposals, flexible technology, patron education, strategic thinking, etc.

Please join us if you fit this description! We welcome your input and company.

Quarterly meetings on the 3rd Friday of the following months: February, May, August, November from 10am-noon both virtually and in-person. We meet at various libraries.  Future meetings: August 18, 2023, November 17, 2023, February 16, 2024, May 17, 2024, and August 16, 2024. 

Contact Bryan Blank at bryan.blank@elmlib.org for meeting dates, times and locations.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Adult Services Managers Roundtable

ASMR (Adult Services Managers Roundtable) meets quarterly (February, May, August and November) on the second Wednesday of the month at 9:30am. This group is open to managers, department heads and supervisors of adult services in libraries of all sizes. Please register on the L2 calendar for our next meeting and join us!

You can also email the List (subscribers only): adultmanagers@list.railslibraries.org

For directions on how to subscribe, visit https://railslibraries.org/networking/listserv-faqs

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Management
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
AMs-The Assistant Managers and Supervisors Networking Group ( AMs )

We are a networking group for all assistant managers, assistant department heads, and supervisors who work in public libraries in Illinois. This includes any supervisor or assistant manager who reports to a department head and has their own full- or part-time staff reports, or department heads with a small staff. Adult Services, Youth Services, Circulation, Teen or Technical Services - all are welcome!

Our meetings are currently conducted over Zoom.

We hold meetings typically on Tuesday mornings in February, May, August, and November.

To join our group or get information about meetings, check the L2 calendar or request to join our listserv.  

You can also contact one of our co-managers below.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Association of Rural Community Directors (ARC)

A Central IL group of rural directors of smallish libraries. We meet on the 3rd on the Wednesdays* from 10 a.m. to 11 a.m. nine months of the year, with summers focused on our reading programming. All library directors in the area are welcome to join us, share, and learn from one another. We have a Facebook group (Association of Rural Community Directors ARC) that we post meeting dates and locations at, as well as agenda items.

*Our meeting dates do change on occasion due to our programing needs.

Ayer PLD (Delavan), Mackinaw DPL, Tremont DPL, Deer Creek DPL, Danvers TPL, H.A. Peine Memorial PL (Minier), Heyworth PLD, Farmer City TPL, Atlanta TPL, and Waynesville TPL make up this group.

August 21, 2019, 9:00-11:00 Ayer PLD (Delavan)

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
ATLAS

ATLAS is an organization of public libraries in the south & southwest suburbs of Chicago dedicated to provide networking and continuing education opportunities for librarians, staff and trustees.

We are a formal organization dedicated to providing continuing education and networking opportunities for our members. Membership is open to any RAILS public library, for an annual membership fee of $50 with the understanding that most meetings and workshops will take place in the south/southwest suburbs.

Non-member libraries can still participate in continuing education programs for a higher fee.

In addition to ATLAS Presents, the CE component of ATLAS, we will also have a monthly Directors' Discussion Group, open to all public library directors who are members of ATLAS. We generally meet the second Thursday of every month. Topics include areas of commonality in system, state, and local levels.

Library Directors' Group - 2nd Thursday of each month Continuing Education Programs - varies. See website

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Management, Library Programming, Member Networking Group, Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
AudioVisual Information & Discussion Group (AVID)

AVID is a forum for staff at libraries in Illinois to converse and learn about audiovisual topics. The group covers subjects related to audiovisual formats, marketing, programming, new technologies, and to network and troubleshoot with other AV staff members.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
BIPOC Library Workers (BIPOC LW)

This group aims to foster connection, share resources and discuss specific experiences in a safe, welcome, and open space for all library workers members who identify as Black, Indigenous, and/or People of Color.

We will meet virtually every other month for two hours via Zoom. Meetings are posted to the L2 calendar and communications about them will be posted to the group's mailing list.

If interested in becoming a part of our group, please subscribe by sending a message to

listserv@list.railslibraries.org

With only this line in the message body:

subscribe bipoc FIRSTNAME LASTNAME

then you may subsequently post to BIPOC@list.railslibraries.info.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School
Categories:
Advocacy, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Bookmobile and Library Outreach Networking Group (B'LONG)

We are a group of outreach specialists, librarians, managers, and support staff dedicated to bringing outreach services to meet the unique needs of each of our libraries populations. We meet to share programming ideas, marketing tips, and ways to partner with community organizations. We promote and advocate for outreach as an essential library service. Whether you use a bookmobile, library van, or your personal car to reach your patrons, this group has something of interest to anyone working in outreach.

Basic information can also be found here: https://blongoutreach.wordpress.com/

We encourage you to work with Outreach Services staff and organizations.
Association of Bookmobile and Outreach Services (ABOS), a national association and affiliate of ALA:
http://abos-outreach.com

Serving Patrons with Dementia, a RAILS/IHLS networking group:
https://www.railslibraries.info/community/groups/serving-patrons-dementia-group

Dates for 2023 Meetings 

Next Meeting: August 17, 2023 from 1 - 2 pm on Zoom

2023 B'LONG RoundUp will be on Friday, September 8, 2023 from 9 am - 3 pm
at the Gail Borden Public Library District, Main Library, 270 N Grove Ave, Elgin, IL 60120

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group, Outreach
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Business Interest Group of Librarians (BIG)

Open to all library staff. Topics of discussion include information relating to business services offered by the library and librarians, including for job searchers, local businesses, and financial literacy.

Meets quarterly, (Feb, May, Aug, Nov)

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Career Online High School (COHS)

A networking group for library staff who are involved in Career Online High School. COHS provides library patrons the opportunity to earn an accredited high school diploma at their public library. Best practices, marketing, and student stories are all discussed at meetings.

Meetings are held quarterly.

Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Central Illinois Regional Children's Librarians (CIRCL)

Established in 2010, CIRCL is a continuing education support group for youth and teen librarians located in Central Illinois (about a 60 mi. radius from Peoria, IL). We share resources, and provide professional educational opportunities for librarians serving youth ages 0-18 and their families. A group for Young Adult Librarians was also started at this time to provide networking and support for those working within this specialty.

The CIRCL group meets 8 months of the year (September - November and January -May) usually on the first Monday of the month from 1 - 3 p.m. Some exceptions include the Performers' Showcase in November, the planning meeting in September (2nd Monday) and other events which may involve a special presenter or location. The YA Group meets bi-monthly.

Categories:
Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Chicago Area Library Volunteer Administrators Network (CALVAN)

The Chicago Area Library Volunteer Administrators Network is a professional group for library volunteer administrators in the Chicago area. We meet quarterly on a Wednesday morning via Zoom.

Go to the L2 calendar to find the next meeting and Zoom link. We always welcome new members.

For minutes from our past meetings, click here.

Meetings are held quarterly on a Wednesday at 9:30am via Zoom. See the L2 calendar for the next meeting's date.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Chicago Area School Library Network (CASLN)

CASLN exists as a networking group for school librarians. We are inclusive of all information specialists: library students, college professors, retired professionals, and technology coaches. Join us as we support each other, advocate for school librarianship in the Chicago Area, and share resources.

Website
https://casln-aisle.weebly.com/

We meet in person 4 times a year. We are a flexible group that understands job and family commitments may limit your availability. Though our meetings run from 4:30-7: 00 p.m. attendees may show up later or leave earlier, as needed.

2019-2020 Meetings

Tuesday, October 1st, 2019 4:30-7pm @ Thomas Edison Elementary School
Topics: "A Recipe for Success" - Bring One of Your Favorite Lesson Plans to Share, Leave with a Ton of Great Ideas!
PD Hours offered

Second meeting: Monday, December 2nd, 2019 4:30-7pm @ TBD
Topics: Digital Literacy
PD Hours offered

Third Meeting: Monday, February 3rd, 2020 4:30-7pm @ TBD
Topics: Social Justice
PD Hours offered

Fourth Meeting: Thursday, April 2nd, 2020 4:30-7pm @ TBD
Topics: Book Tasking and Librarian Advocacy

Library Types:
School
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Chicago Chapter of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (CCBCALA)

The Chicago Chapter of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (CCBCALA) is an affiliate of BCALA and was formed in 1973 to improve library services and librarianship in the Chicago Metropolitan area. This purpose aligns with the national organization's mission to serve as an "advocate for the development, promotion, and improvement of library services and resources to the nation's African American community; and provides leadership for the recruitment and professional development of African American librarians."

Virtual until further notice, the 4th Thursday of the month, bi-monthly (January, March, May (summer break), October, December

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Children's Librarians' Association of the South Suburbs (CLASS)

CLASS is a professional organization of public youth librarians who are within the service area of RAILS and south of Interstate I-55(Stevenson Expressway).

The principal purpose of CLASS is to provide continuing education through an open avenue of exchange of materials, ideas and programs pertinent to Youth Services and to promote cooperation among public library members.

Meetings are held bi-monthly, September-May at member libraries. During the Covid-19 restrictions, meetings will be held via ZOOM.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Circulation Managers

Circulation Managers from North Suburban Public Libraries meet quarterly to discuss topics of mutual interest, circulation policies and procedures, resource sharing, technology, and to bring members up-to-date on happenings at their libraries. All RAILS Circulation Managers are welcome to attend and everyone is encouraged to add topics to the agenda.

We meet quarterly wherever someone will host us. Meetings last about 2 hours and a library tour usually follows.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Circulation Roundtable (Circ Roundtable)

Anyone interested in Circulation topics is invited to join us at our quarterly meeting. This group strives to network and get feedback on items impacting libraries. This meeting is open to Circulation Managers/Supervisors or a representative.

Meetings will be held every three months at a variety of libraries.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Circulation, Customer Service, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Collection Development Librarians Networking Group

This networking group is made up of librarians who are responsible for any aspect of the selecting and/or purchasing of collections. We meet quarterly discuss various topics, ideas, and trends concerning all areas of collection development in public libraries. All are welcome!

To join our listserv: 
Send an email to listserv@list.railslibraries.org with message text:
subscribe collectiondev [your first name] [your last name]
(It is recommended that you delete your email signature from this message.)
You will be sent an automatic reply with a link to confirm your email address. RAILS staff will need to approve your subscription request.

We meet quarterly at different area libraries on Friday mornings from 10:00-11:30 am.

Our 2024 meeting schedule is:

Friday, February 2 - virtual.

Friday, May 3 - TBD

Friday, August 2 - Rockford Public Library

Friday, November 1 - LaGrange Public Library

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Community Engagement Group

The Community Engagement group invites participation from professional and support staff working in libraries with the intention of connecting libraries, residents and community partners to bring about positive change. Whether you've been trained in the Harwood Institute's Turning Outward approach or are just starting to explore the idea of community partnerships, join us to share your goals, successes, and ideas for connecting with your community.

Our next meeting will be on Wednesday, May 29th, from 9- 11:30 a.m. at the Vernon Area Public Library, 300 Olde Half Day Rd, Lincolnshire, IL 60069. Register HERE

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special, Other
Categories:
Library Programming, Member Networking Group, Outreach, Services to Special Populations
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Computer Class Instructor's Group

Group of Chicago-area library staff that meets quarterly to discuss classes, programs, and issues related to technology training in libraries.

Meeting are typically held the second Wednesday of the month in January, April, July, and October. Location varies, depending on which library hosts the meeting. Coffee, juice, and a light breakfast begins at 9am. Meeting begins at 9:30 and runs until 11:30 or 12:00.

Library Types:
Public, Other
Categories:
Member Networking Group, Technology
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Data in Libraries Networking Group (DLNG)

Data is crucial to the understanding services our users want and how to develop new services to meet new needs. The Data in Libraries Networking Group is place to share ideas on how to interpret and use data in libraries. This group is open to any library worker employed in any RAILS member library.

This group will meet quarterly via Zoom. Below is a list of our upcoming meetings. Please watch the E-News for more information on how to register.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Data Networking in School Libraries (DNSL)

Data is critical to understanding and representing the value of services, tools and resources in school libraries. The Data Networking in School Libraries Group is a place to share ideas on the access and application of data in school library settings. This group is open to any school library staff member employed by a school library.

This group will meet via Zoom four times throughout the year; no meetings will be held during the summer. Please watch the E-News for more information on how to register.

Next Meeting: Wednesday, September 27, 2023, from 3:30 – 4:30 pm.

This session will center around ideas for using library data throughout the year and how to set yourself up for success. RAILS Consortial Services Supervisor and former school librarian Barb Miller will be joining the group to discuss this topic.

Registration: Zoom

Library Types:
School
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion (DEI) in Metadata networking group (DEI in Metadata)

This group aims to foster the importance of a shared understanding of the inclusive library metadata practices in Illinois libraries. This group will also provide advice and support for Illinois libraries to create and maintain more equitable, diverse, and inclusive metadata content.

We meet quarterly virtually by ZOOM, and the link for registration is sent out via email to the listserv. Meeting last about 1.5 hrs and the meetings are always posted on the L2 calendar.

New subscribers may ask to join the list by sending an email to:

listserv@list.railslibraries.org

With only this line in the message body:

subscribe deimetadata FIRSTNAME LASTNAME

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special, Other
Categories:
Cataloging, Collection Development, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, Member Networking Group, Technical Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
ECC/Digital Library of Illinois

The Digital Library of Illinois is an OverDrive consortium that provides eBooks and eAudiobooks to the member libraries. It is managed by the Electronic Content Consortium (ECC).


The Electronic Content Consortium is an entirely member-driven consortium which aims to achieve economies of scale by jointly negotiating and purchasing electronic content as may be deemed appropriate and authorized by the Member Libraries.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Electronic Subscription Managers Network Group (ELSUM)

Open to librarians, meets bimonthly, communication via a Google Groups list. Discusses issues and information regarding services and databases delivered electronically. Vendor demos and troubleshooting issues are commonly on the agenda.

Contact: Bill Pardue, Arlington Heights Memorial Library, bpardue@ahml.info

Meets bimonthly

Library Types:
Academic, Public
Categories:
Electronic Resources
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
eMediaLibrary consortium

eMediaLibrary is an consortium of 24 libraries throughout Illinois that provides eBooks, eAudiobooks, and magazines via Overdrive. This group provides a way for staff from member libraries to discuss issues and tips.

Current members:

  • Addison Public Library
  • Batavia Public Library
  • Bensenville Community Public Library
  • Carol Stream Public Library
  • Chicago Ridge Public Library
  • Downers Grove Public Library
  • Franklin Park Public Library District
  • Geneva Public Library District
  • Glen Ellyn Public Library
  • Helen Plum Library
  • Hinsdale Public Library
  • Indian Prairie Public Library
  • Lisle Library District
  • Messenger Public Library
  • Oak Brook Public Library
  • O'Fallon Public Library
  • Poplar Creek Public Library District
  • Roselle Public Library District
  • St. Charles Public Library
  • Sugar Grove Public Library
  • Town and Country Public Library District
  • Warrenville Public Library District
  • Wheaton Public Library
  • Winfield Public Library

We meet biannually in April and October. Join the mailing list to learn about future meetings.

New subscribers may ask to join the list by sending an email to listserv@list.railslibraries.org

With only this line in the message body: subscribe emedialibrary FIRSTNAME LASTNAME

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Electronic Resources, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Team in Youth Services (EDIT-YS)

Are you interested in meeting with like-minded Youth Services library staff to discuss diversity of all kinds? Whether it be hiring diverse presenters, planning inclusive programming, selecting diverse materials for collection development and more...we want to discuss it! Join us to help diversify Youth Services.

Library Types:
Public, School
Categories:
Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, Member Networking Group, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
For-Profit/Small Academic Libraries Group

We're a group of librarians from either for-profit or small academic libraries who come together to share experiences, ideas, and best practices. We support one another through successes and challenges. We communicate through email, in-person, and online meetings. Our group is open to any Illinois library staff that defines themselves as working in a for-profit or small academic library.

Library Types:
Academic, Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Genealogy and Local History Librarians Networking Group (GLHL)

This networking group meets four times a year to discuss their genealogy and local history activities and collections at their libraries. Occasional speakers and programs are also part of the meetings. Other information about the group can be viewed at https://sites.google.com/site/glhlibrarians/.

Meetings are held at various libraries at 9:30 on the third Wednesday of the following months: January, April, July and October.

Categories:
Genealogy & Local History
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Health Science Librarians of Illinois (HSLI)

HSLI sponsors and supports activities which promote and develop health science library services in Illinois. Our members promote health literacy by providing reputable health related resources to Illinois health care providers and consumers through resource sharing of library collections through interlibrary loan, training in selection of and access to health related resources, and collaborative reference initiatives to respond to provider and consumer health questions.

HSLI encourages the continuing education of its membership by sponsoring appropriate education programs. We encourage dialogue among our members and promote cooperation among libraries in Illinois by strengthening cooperative relationships with academic, public, and special libraries, and with organizations which establish and promote multi-type library cooperation activities. HSLI provides a mechanism for interaction with, and communication to and from, the National Network of Libraries of Medicine, Greater Midwest Region, the Midwest Chapter/MLA, and the Illinois State Library.

HSLI is a 501 (c) (3) nonprofit organization.

The annual meeting serves as the primary statewide organization meeting the needs of all Information Professionals who focus on the area of Health and Medical Science. Information professionals working in all types of libraries are invited to attend.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Acquisitions, Advocacy, Cataloging, Circulation, Collection Development, Customer Service, Digitization, Electronic Resources, Facilities, Funding & Fundraising, Grant Writing, Interlibrary Loan & Resource Sharing, Law & Legal Issues, Library Management, Library Programming, Literacy, Marketing & Public Relations, Member Networking Group, Outreach, Reference, Serials, Services to Special Populations, Technical Services, Technology
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Heart of Illinois Library Marketing Group (HOI Library Marketing Group)

The Heart of Illinois Library Marketing Group serves as a way to connect regional library staff who facilitate communications and marketing for their public libraries. Anyone who handles related responsibilities for their library is welcome to join. The purpose of the group is to provide opportunities for networking, problem solving, and resource sharing related to library marketing. The group meets quarterly at different member library locations to discuss relevant issues and trends, best practices, and communication tools. The group also has a Facebook group for collaboration and sharing.

For more information, contact Beth Weimer at beth@fondulaclibrary.org or 309-699-3917.

HOI Library Marketing group meets quarterly at members' libraries.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Marketing & Public Relations, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Illinois Association of College and Research Libraries (IACRL)

The Illinois Association of College and Research Libraries (IACRL) is a forum of the Illinois Library Association (ILA) and a chapter of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), a division of the American Library Association (ALA). Academic libraries in this document are defined as college, community, technical and junior colleges and university libraries as well as research libraries not affiliated with academic institutions.

The mission of IACRL is to promote the interests of academic libraries and the personnel of those libraries; to enhance the abilities of academic library personnel to identify and meet the information needs of current and potential library users; and to develop and promote leadership to the academic library community.

IACRL does not currently have a stand-alone conference. It holds a Luncheon and Business Meeting at the Illinois Library Association Annual Conference each year, and it encourages academic librarian participation in other Conference activities, including the "IACRL @ ILA" program track and the Academic Libraries Unconference.

Library Types:
Academic
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Illinois Libraries Present

 

Mission

The Illinois Joint Library Programming Group provides high-quality online events at equitable prices for participating member libraries of all sizes and budgets.

Goals

  • To provide high-quality, high-profile events that highlight national names and social justice/DEI issues, that would otherwise be cost-prohibitive for single libraries to hold on their own

  • To reduce costs and maximize reach by taking advantage of both virtual event platforms and the collective buying power of RAILS members.

  • To allow access to all libraries as equitably as possible, by aligning each library's cost to participate with the size of their operating budget

  • To define clear and distinct roles among the Joint Programming Group and the participating libraries, including patron contact points, marketing, invoicing, etc.

Currently meetings are irregular as we get things up and running.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, Library Programming, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Illinois Solo Librarians Network (ISLN)

The Illinois Solo Librarians Network (ISLN) was formerly known as the Chicago Area Solo Librarians (CASL). This group was formed in 2001 by some solo librarians in Chicago who wanted to meet and network, to commiserate and celebrate, the challenges of life as a solo librarian. Solo librarians are those who run their library as the sole professional librarian, though sometimes they may have a library assistant or interns. This group meets virtually via Zoom.

Meetings

2023

  • Friday, March 24, 12-1pm Central - Register via L2
  • Friday, June 16, 12-1 pm Central
  • Friday, September 15, 12-1pm Central
  • Friday, December 15, 12-1 pm Central

Contact

If interested in learning more about this group, please contact Laura Brettholle, laura.brettholle@oldtownschool.org or Dan Bostrom, dan.bostrom@railslibraries.info.

Library Types:
Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Judaica Library Network of Metropolitan Chicago (JLNMC)

JLNMC is the Chicago-area chapter of the Association of Jewish Libraries. Membership is open to any interested individual or library within the Chicago area and its suburbs. We hold 1 planning meeting every year, and present programs in the Fall, Winter, and Spring.

The Judaica Library Network of Metropolitan Chicago is proud to host the 55th Annual Conference of the Association of Jewish Libraries, June 29-July 1, 2020 in Evanston! Please join us for our first planning meeting Sunday, August 18, 2019 at 2:00pm at the Hilton Orrington Hotel (1710 Orrington Ave. Evanston). For questions or to RSVP, contact Marcie Eskin.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Kankakee Area Library Association (KALA)

The Kankakee Area Library Association (KALA) includes academic, public, school, and special libraries based within Kankakee County, Illinois and the surrounding areas. KALA members recognize that through the cooperative efforts of libraries, it is possible to provide more resources and maintain a greater political presence. KALA's primary objectives are:

  1. Promote professional development of librarians and para-professionals.
  2. Promote the freedom to read and the right to affordable access to information.
  3. Promote the cooperation between all types of libraries to increase efficiency in service.
  4. Support education, literacy, and personal development.
  5. Work as a group to promote the welfare of libraries.
  6. Work as a group to promote affordable library service to unserved areas.

Blog: https://kalamembers.wordpress.com/

The Kankakee Area Library Association (KALA) holds monthly meetings on the first Thursday of the month from 3:30-5pm at member libraries. Librarians from public, school, academic, and special libraries are welcome to attend. Member libraries are listed here: Kankakee Area Libraries.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
LACONI (LACONI)

Since 1954, LACONI has been introducing library staff to new technologies and ideas, best practices, and popular programs for children and adults. LACONI is comprised of six different sections which offer programs designed to enhance skills and knowledge of library staff in their area of expertise.

Those sections each work together to plan 3-5 programs annually. If your employing library is a member organization, staff may attend those programs at no extra charge. For library workers who want to attend relevant programs but their employer is not a member, a program fee is charged.

In 2023, the LACONI Organization will be launching the H.E.L.P. Directory. The Highly Effective Library Programmers Directory is a reimagination of the previous Harvest of Presenters (Youth) and Best of the Best (Adult) lists. It will list programmer recommendations vetted by Library Staff.

The Governing Board meetings six times per year, including an annual summit.

Planning Boards meet as needed to accomplish the administrative needs of their section and program planning.

Each section offers 3-5 programs annually. Visit www.laconi.net to see our upcoming programs.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Acquisitions, Advocacy, Cataloging, Circulation, Collection Development, Customer Service, Electronic Resources, Equity, Diversity & Inclusion, Genealogy & Local History, Human Resources, Library Management, Library Programming, Marketing & Public Relations, Member Networking Group, Outreach, Readers Advisory, Reference, Technical Services, Technology, Trustee Development, Young Adult Services, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
LAMPS

LAMPS provides a forum for free exchange of ideas and experiences across libraries and departments.

The meetings are held 4 times a year, the first Wednesday of the even numbered months except for February and August. The time is from 9:30 to 11:30 a.m.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Lapsit Leaders

Purple square with a shelf of books and the words Illinois Lapsit Leaders below it.

We're a group of librarians, and library staff, aiming to joyfully celebrate the unique growth and development of children through resource sharing and continuing education to further library programming. We meet quarterly to discuss all things storytime, collection development, play areas and more for babies, toddlers, and preschoolers.

If you're interested in joining us for our Lapsit Leaders meetings, please send an email to illapsitleaders@gmail.com and we'll add you to our email list! We'd love to have you!

Save the date for our next meeting, which is scheduled for Wednesday, January 17, 2024 at 1pm. It will be a virtual meeting via Zoom (the link will be sent to everyone on our email list, or if you can log into L2 and browse for the meeting in events).

Future meetings will be held quarterly on Wednesdays mid-month via Zoom and dates will be shared as they are set. 

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Programming, Literacy, Member Networking Group, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
LEARN (Libraries' English and Reading Network) (LEARN)

Libraries English And Reading Network (LEARN) comprises mainly library and non-profit organization staff members interested in providing materials and services to adults learning to read, speak, and understand English. The group shares ideas about providing and marketing services, maintains a database of organizations that offer those services, and investigates and publicizes funding opportunities. Any library staffer in the Chicago area who is involved with assisting adults learning to read and/or speak English is welcome to join. For more information, visit the website at www.adultslearnenglish.org.

Meetings are held twice a year, in the spring and fall. The meeting often involves a presentation by a guest speaker, but also includes time for questions and discussion/sharing of ideas.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Literacy, Member Networking Group, Services to Special Populations
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Librarians Working Together (LWT)

Primarily library directors in Dekalb County and those just over neighboring county lines.

Meet at rotating library sites the second Friday of each month from 9am until noon.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Library Administrative Assistant Networking Group (LAANG)

LAANG logo

A virtual networking group open to public library administrative and executive administrative assistants in Illinois public libraries of all sizes. The informal group covers topics related to board meetings, procedures, training opportunities, resources, technology, and networking with other admin professionals. Each meeting includes an open forum for group discussion and feedback.

Members interested, send an email to Stacy Palmisano, Administrative Assistant, RAILS. stacy.palmisano@railslibraries.org

The group will meet virtually quarterly for an hour and be posted on the L2 calendar.

2023 Meeting Schedule: All meetings will be from 10-11:00 am

  • Wednesday, November 8, 2023
Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Library Early Literacy Advocates (LELA)

Library Early Literacy Advocates (LELA) is a public library networking group comprised of early literacy professionals who support each other's efforts as they explore, evaluate, and create opportunities to raise awareness throughout their communities, utilizing proven practices and evidence-based research in the areas of early literacy, early learning, social and emotional learning, and brain development.

If you work with families, early childhood educators, and caregivers of children ages 5 and younger in any capacity - this group is for you!

This group will be on a break from in-person and Zoom meetings in 2023. You can still participate via our email list. To subscribe, please see below.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Advocacy, Literacy, Member Networking Group, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Long Distance Libraries (LDL)

This is a multi-type library networking group for librarians in the southwestern portion of RAILS. Member libraries host the quarterly meetings to share information and experiences and discuss issues and concerns.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Makerspace Networking Group (MNG)

Whether you're already up and running or just thinking about getting your Makerspace started, come and share your ideas with this new networking group! We're the right spot to ignite new ideas for the natural-born maker or the novice. Join library leaders from both sides of this spectrum to share experiences researching, building and rethinking the library and Maker communities.

We want to spark conversation and expand your support network no matter where you are on your Makerspace journey.

We work collaboratively via the email list and also use the spreadsheet below to share maker info and resources: 

https://docs.google.com/spreadsheets/d/1eiT0hThR17EkS9-22h-ScgVsVMYY4Z5nHwNBmvhhIEM/edit#gid=779115536

 

2 larger format meetings per year (Summer/Winter) alternating geographic locations. Smaller networking-focused meetups will be held during the months in between. Watch the Mailing List, the L2 Calendar and our Facebook Group for details!

To subscribe to the RAILS Makerspace email list, visit https://railslibraries.org/networking/email-lists

Email the List (subscribers only): makerspace@list.railslibraries.org

Find us on Facebook:  Sign in to your Facebook account and then search for Makerspace Networking Group.  It is a closed group, so an Admin will have to approve you.  This will be done in a timely fashion. 

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Construction and Space Planning
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Managers of Children's and Teen Services (MCATS)

Youth Services Managers - who serve children, teens, or both - meet every other month to discuss management topics in the company of a supportive peer network. When meetings are held in-person, they are typically held in the south and west suburbs, but all RAILS YS Managers are welcome to attend.

Meetings are currently still being held only via online video conferencing software (camera use optional) but when meetings are once again held in person, all meetings will provide an online conferencing option (hybrid) for accessibility purposes.

Known as Near West South Side (NWSS) YS Managers group prior to 2017.

MCATS meets in August, October, December, February and April. Time and date are determined separately for each month, during the month immediately preceding a meeting. Please refer to the L2 calendar for our next meeting date and location.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Management, Young Adult Services, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Media On Demand Networking Group (MOD Networking Group)

Group of 56 public libraries throughout the Chicagoland suburbs offering access to Media On Demand, a shared e-book, e-audiobook, and e-magazine collection.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Middle Managers Round Table (AMMRT)

The ATLAS Middle Managers Round Table (AMMRT) is an informal round table discussion group open to all library middle managers and supervisors. Round Table meetings are held every other month and are located at libraries in the South Suburbs. The focus of AMMRT is issues and best practices of library middle management.

This round table was developed as an ATLAS networking opportunity, but is open to all middle managers, not just those from ATLAS member libraries.

AMMRT meets from 9:30am-12:00pm on the third Friday of alternating months. Locations are determined at the preceding meeting, and are posted on the L2 calendar.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Moline Area Gathering of Librarians

This networking group meets quarterly to discuss administrative issues and best practices. Occasionally, a guest speaker is also on the agenda. It's a great way to network with librarians in our specific geographical area in northwest Illinois. All library types are welcome.

Quarterly meetings happen in February, May, August, and November, on the 3rd Wednesday of the month at 2pm. They are normally held at the RAILS Coal Valley Service Center conference room.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special, Other
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Network of Illinois Learning Resources in Community Colleges (NILRC)

NILRC connects, advances, and advocates for community college libraries. For more information, please visit: www.nilrc.org

Library Types:
Academic
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
New Public Library Directors Group (Newbie Directors)

The Newbie Directors' Group was formed in 2015 when there was an influx of new public library directors in the north central/northwest part of the state. We have continued to meet and add new directors regularly. The group helps answer questions, shares ideas and information, and discusses library topics.

The Newbie Directors normally meet every other month in the libraries of participants.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Management, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
North Suburban Adult Programmers (NSAP)

We are adult programmers of the North Suburbs of Chicago. We meet to talk about collaboration opportunities, program ideas, share presenter contact information, newsletters, and anything else related to programming for adults.

Recurring Meeting Times: 3rd Tuesday every other month: 10-11 am virtual / 10-11:30 am in-person 

2024 Meetings:

  • February 20, Virtual, 10-11 am, Zoom
  • April 16, In-Person, 10-11:30 am, Location TBD
  • June 18, Virtual, 10-11 am, Zoom
  • August 20, In-Person, 10-11:30 am, Location TBD
  • October 15, Virtual, 10-11 am, Zoom
  • December 17, In-Person 10-11:30, Location TBD

If you want to attend our meetings and/or be part of our ListServ, please subscribe to the email list.

Send an email to:

listserv@list.railslibraries.org

With only this line in the message body:

subscribe NSAP FIRSTNAME LASTNAME

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Programming, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Northeast Youth Managers (NYM)

Youth Services Managers from RAILS public libraries meet every other month to discuss relevant topics. NYM meetings are located in north-east Illinois, but all Youth Services Managers are welcome to attend.

NYM meets at public libraries in the north and northwest Chicago suburbs on a Friday morning 9:30 am to 12 pm in August, October, December, February, and April. Please refer to the L2 calendar for our next meeting date and location.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Management, Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Northern Illinois Library Facility Managers (NILFM)

We are a facilities group designed to enhance networking and increase knowledge of the trade through quarterly meetings at various libraries throughout the state. Within this group is decades of knowledge in running facilities, and a wealth of information that can be utilized by anyone in the trade.

Meetings are quarterly at various locations throughout the state.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special, Other
Categories:
Facilities, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
OMNI Overdrive Consortia (OMNI)

OMNI Overdrive consortia https://omnilibraries.overdrive.com/ is comprised of over 80 public libraries across northern Illinois to provide e-book, e-audio and video content via Overdrive. Member libraries contribute funds for consortia purchases, discuss new features, training, purchasing and issues.

OMNI typically meets twice a year, once in the spring and once in the fall.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Page/Shelving Supervisor Network (Shelving Managers)

This group is by and for those who supervise or manage library pages, shelvers and/or materials handlers.

Topics routinely addressed are hiring and training staff. Maintaining library collections, working with other departments and the differences in workflow and priorities at individual libraries.

Meeting are held quarterly at member libraries and managers volunteer to host meetings at their home library.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special, Other
Categories:
Circulation, Customer Service, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Peoria Area Librarians (PALS)

This is a group of mostly public library directors in and around the Peoria region that meets to discuss topics of interest. PALS is a legacy group from the Alliance Library System.

We meet monthly for lunch at local restaurants chosen by the group. Meeting time is usually noon.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Portal

Are you a collaborative and innovative Adult Services leader located in Lake or McHenry county? Then join us! We support managers, department heads, and supervisors of Adult Services in public libraries. Topics during meetings include leadership, services, innovation, organizational structure & culture, technology, strategy, budgeting, programming, and the kitchen sink!

Feel free to join even if your library is in a different county; we accept everyone!

Meetings are held quarterly, generally on Thursday or Friday mornings at rotating libraries.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Advocacy, Collection Development, Customer Service, Digitization, Electronic Resources, Grant Writing, Library Management, Library Programming, Literacy, Member Networking Group, Readers Advisory, Reference, Technology
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Prairie State Story League (PSSL)

Members and guests from suburban Chicagoland meet once per month in September-May to share storytime ideas. Libraries take turns hosting the meeting, and members suggest the monthly topics each year.

Group typically meets the 2nd Friday morning of each month, September-May.

Categories:
Library Programming, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Preschool Outreach Programmers

This is a group for librarians and library staff who do preschool outreach programming, both including traditional preschool outreach services like story times for children 5 years old and under at preschools and child care centers, as well as other outreach services to the community involving preschool children.

Discussion topics include:

  • Developing relationships with preschools, child care centers and other community organizations
  • Program planning - story time themes, favorite materials shared with different age groups, favorite diverse books
  • Tips and tricks for the unique environment of preschool outreach (i.e. story time to infants when there is not the handy one-on-one format of an in-library lapsit story time, story time spaces, etc.)
  • Programming for groups with second language learners, kids on the autism spectrum, kids with disabilities, or other unique programming considerations
  • Equipment - Sharing successes with different types of equipment used for transport of programming supplies (bags, carts, electronics (speakers, tablets), flannel boards)
  • Effective scheduling practices
  • Other events and preschool outreach activities - Preschool Fairs, parent or teacher education sessions, summer reading program at preschools, 1000 Books Before Kindergarten at preschools, intergenerational story times, story times at shelters, outreach to incarcerated individuals with children, and anything else your library might offer or want to offer when it comes to outreach for early childhood.

We will meet in February, August, and November via Zoom. Meetings are posted to the L2 calendar and communications about them will be posted to the Preschool Outreach listserv.

New subscribers may ask to join the list by sending an email to:listserv@list.railslibraries.org  With only this line in the message body: subscribe preschooloutreach FIRSTNAME LASTNAME .

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group, Outreach, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Preschool Partnerships

Preschool Partnerships is a networking group for library staff who provide services, programs and outreach to preschools and childcare centers. We meet 4 times a year at different libraries, primarily in the Northern Suburbs. Each meeting includes discussion of a special topic, time to share questions/current successes or challenges, and a tour of the host library. Past meeting topics include:

  • Services to educators (including material requests, teacher cards and preschool fairs)
  • Storytime and outreach visit best practices
  • Programs for preschoolers beyond storytime
  • Media Mentorship
  • Feedback from patrons (how to get it and what to do with it)
  • Summer Reading Round-up

Meetings are held in January, March, September and November. We usually meet on the 4th Thursday of the month from 1 - 3 p.m.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Programming, Member Networking Group, Outreach, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Programmers United for Library Service Excellence (PULSE)

We are a group of programmers that meet quarterly in the north suburban Chicago area. We have an active email listserv that also includes programmers from other areas.

We meet quarterly, usually in January, April, July and October. Our gatherings usually begin at 9:00 am with coffee and networking. The official meeting start is 9:30 am until around 12:00 pm. Oftentimes, the hosting library provides a short tour afterwards for anyone able to stay.

Categories:
Library Programming
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Programming for Seniors in Public Libraries

This group is for librarians and library staff who plan/run programming for seniors/older adults in public libraries. Programming for older adults can be challenging as they are a varied and often overlooked group. During these meetings, we will share ideas for all facets of programming, including outside presenters, governmental organizations, resources for seniors, and how to create opportunities for socialization, and the physical, emotional and mental well-being for our senior populations.  

This group meets quarterly on Zoom for one hour, the first Friday of the month.  Registration and Zoom link on L2.

2023 Dates

Friday, December 1, 10:00 a.m. (inaugural meeting)

2024 Dates

Friday, March 1, 10:00 a.m.

Friday, June 7, 10:00 a.m.

Friday, September 6, 10:00 a.m.

Friday, December 6, 10:00 a.m. 

 

To subscribe to the email list, send an email to listserv@list.railslibraries.org and in the message body, enter: subscribe seniors FIRSTNAME LASTNAME (For example: subscribe seniors JILLIAN MCKEOWN). 

seniors@list.railslibraries.org 

 

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
RAILS Assistant Directors

Join us for our quarterly RAILS Assistant Directors networking group meeting, for anyone at a RAILS library working in an Assistant Director or similar position. Administrators from all library types are welcome.

Meetings are typically in the morning on the third or fourth Friday of January, April, July and October. Specific dates and locations are posted to L2.

Quarterly

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
RAILS City Library Directors Group

A group of library directors from city libraries across RAILS. City libraries are governed by an appointed board. This group supports one another in discussing the unique issues facing city libraries and helping to answer difficult questions.

This group will meet monthly via Zoom. All 2024 meetings are listed below:

This group has a RAILS sponsored email list. Directions for subscribing are below:

Send an email to listserv@list.railslibraries.org with message text:
subscribe citylibraries [your first name] [your last name]
(It is recommended that you delete your email signature from this message.)
You will be sent an automatic reply with a link to confirm your email address. RAILS staff will need to approve your subscription request.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Management, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
RAILS Music Librarianship Group

The RAILS Music Librarianship Group welcomes members from academic, public, school, or special library settings. Music Programming, Collection Development, Listeners Advisory and more will be open for discussion.  This group is open to anyone with a passion for music and librarianship.

The group meets quarterly via Zoom. Meetings will be posted in the L2 calendar.

To Subscribe to the listserv:

Send an email to listserv@list.railslibraries.org with message text:
subscribe music [your first name] [your last name]
(It is recommended that you delete your email signature from this message.)
You will be sent an automatic reply with a link to confirm your email address. List admins will need to approve your subscription request.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
RAILS Technical Services Networking Group

We're an informal group that discusses the latest issues in processing, vendors, collection management, cataloging, and more. Everyone is encouraged to add topics to the agenda and the meetings are open to all levels of staff.

We meet quarterly, either virtually or in person wherever someone will host us. Meetings last about 1 1/2 hours and a library tour usually follows. The meetings are always posted on the L2 calendar. The link for registration is also sent out via email to the list serv.  

To Subscribe to the listserv:

Send an email to listserv@list.railslibraries.org with message text:
subscribe techserv [your first name] [your last name]
(It is recommended that you delete your email signature from this message.)
You will be sent an automatic reply with a link to confirm your email address. RAILS staff will need to approve your subscription request.

Categories:
Collection Development, Member Networking Group, Technical Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Readers Advisory Interest Group (RAIG)

RAIG helps librarians and support staff in Chicagoland develop, improve and update their readers advisory skills.

By connecting patrons with books they'll enjoy, we restore the human connection to libraries.

We meet at 9:30 on the third Thursday of every other month to discuss a particular genre or author and to share what we've been reading.

Check us out on Facebook!

We meet at 9:30 on the third Thursday of every other month. Locations vary and are posted to the Readers Advisory Interest Group Chicagoland Facebook page.

Categories:
Readers Advisory
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Recharge Committee

Recharge Committee is an independent networking and professional development group that provides free continuing education in the Chicago area to inspire library leaders at all levels.

Interested in joining the Recharge Committee? Let us know!

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Reforma Midwest Chapter (The National Association to Promote Library & Information Services to Latinos and the Spanish Speaking)

This group provides information and networking opportunities to librarians who serve Spanish-speaking communities. Information shared focuses on collection development, programming, and overall library services in Spanish. The group also works to recruit prospective bilingual and bicultural librarians, as well as providing scholarship aid for students.

Meetings will be held quarterly and will include a mixture of networking and presentations.

The next meeting will be held on Friday, February 5th, from 1-5 pm, at the University of Illinois at Chicago's Richard J. Daley Library, 801 S. Morgan St., Room 1-470 (first floor). Dr. Nicole A. Cooke, assistant professor at the University of Illinois' Graduate School of Library and Information Science, will speak about cultural competence and how it can best serve our diverse communities.

Library Types:
Academic, Public
Categories:
Advocacy, Collection Development, Customer Service, Library Programming, Literacy, Services to Special Populations
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Renegade Reference of West Central Illinois

Renegade Reference of West Central Illinois is a networking group. We welcome anyone who plans programs, works a service desk, makes decisions about library technology, does readers' advisory, manages a collection, etc., whether or not they work in a Reference department.

We meet every three months or so in the Peoria area, often at the Jubilee Cafe in Kickapoo over lunch. The meetings last 90 to 120 minutes and usually take place at 1:00 pm. The day of the week varies, although we often meet on Wednesdays.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Collection Development, Interlibrary Loan & Resource Sharing, Library Programming, Readers Advisory, Technology, Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Rural Directors

Rural Directors is a long established networking group of library directors in West Central Illinois. The group meets once a month at member libraries. Agendas include a previously chosen topic of interest and items of current importance.

Meets the third Friday of the month at 10:00 AM.

Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
SASSY (Storytelling and Sharing Skills for Youth) (SASSY)

Join youth services librarians in the Reaching Across Illinois Library System Area, as they share program and storytime ideas for children and teens. This group is for people who work with the youth in our libraries.

We meet the third Friday of the Month. We do not meet in June or July.

Categories:
Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
School Facilitators Networking Group (SFNG)

We are a group of School Services Librarians serving grades K-12. Meetings are typically held alternately on the second Monday or Tuesday of every other month during the school year. We begin at 9:15 a.m. with introductions and conversation. The discussion portion runs from 9:30 a.m. to 11:00 a.m. This networking group does not charge dues.

Sign up for our email list by sending an email to listserv@list.railslibraries.org, using the subject line "subscribe schoolfacilitators" and your first and last name. If this does not work, please email Stephanie Forrest at sforrest@rosellepld.org to join!

Visit our website here.

Upcoming meetings:

September 12, 2023

November 6, 2023

January 9, 2024

March 11, 2024

May 7, 2024

 

All meetings will be held virtually on Zoom for the foreseeable future.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group, Outreach, Young Adult Services, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Serving Patrons with Dementia Group

Meeting of the minds to discuss programs and services libraries offer to people with dementia and Alzheimer's disease.

Growth of the Age 85 and Older Population The number of Americans in their 80s, 90s and beyond is expected to grow dramatically due to the aging of the large baby-boom cohort. This will lead to an increase in the number and percentage of Americans 85 and older. Between now and 2050, this age group is expected to comprise an increasing proportion of the U.S. population age 65 and older — from 11% in 2023 to 22% in 2050. This will result in an additional 12 million people age 85 and older— individuals at the highest risk for developing Alzheimer’s dementia. • In 2023, about 2.4 million people who have Alzheimer’s dementia are age 85 or older, accounting for 33% of all people with Alzheimer’s dementia. • By 2060, 6.7 million people age 85 and older are expected to have Alzheimer’s dementia, accounting for about half (48%) of all people 65 and older with Alzheimer’s dementia. ~2023 Alzheimer's Disease Facts and Figures Special Report.

Libraries and librarians need to ask themselves:
1) How does this increasing demographic affect our library and community?
2) How do we serve this growing population?

The group of librarians, managers, and support staff are dedicated to bringing services and information together to meet the unique needs of serving the caregivers and those suffering with dementia and Alzheimer's. We meet to share programming ideas, collection development ideas, marketing tips, and ways to partner with community organizations.

Topics include:
*what libraries are currently offering to those with dementia
*possible library programs and services to those with dementia
*sharing experiences about how we can or how we already serve this population

Serving Patrons with Dementia - 2024
ZOOM on Fridays from 9:00am-11:00am
February 9
April 12
June 14
September 13

Contact Tina or David for the ZOOM Link.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Customer Service, Library Programming, Member Networking Group, Outreach, Readers Advisory, Services to Special Populations
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
SirsiDynix Library Users of Illinois (SLUI)

SLUI (SirsiDynix Library Users of Illinois) is a not-for-profit organization whose purpose is to share knowledge regarding SirsiDynix Corporation developed and supported applications, collectively express concerns and make enhancement requests, affiliate with other regional and national SirsiDynix Users Groups, facilitate regional training and educational sessions, and foster communication and activities among Illinois SirsiDynix users.

All libraries in Illinois (public, academic, school, and special) that use SirsiDynix can be members of SLUI and attend our meetings and programs.

SLUI hosts one annual meeting and program in the fall. Planning meetings are held virtually a few times a year.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Acquisitions, Cataloging, Circulation, Member Networking Group, Technical Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
SLA Illinois Community (SLA-IL)

Special Libraries Association – IL (SLA IL) is a network of information professionals based in Illinois. The largest cluster is in the Chicago metro area, but we also maintain connections downstate. It's a resource for everyone to connect online and through in-person events, share challenges and solutions, and continue to grow professionally. Our networking and professional development events range from in-person meetings to online webinars to very popular "dine-arounds" where we meet at a popular restaurant to get to know each other better.

SLA Illinois is a community affiliated with the national SLA organization. Members must be a member of the national organization to join the local community. To learn more about membership, please visit the SLA national membership page.

Library Types:
Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Small and Rural Libraries Group (SARL)

The Small and Rural Libraries Group represents the interests of small and rural libraries in Illinois, provides a space for staff at all levels and trustees to discuss issues of particular interest to small and rural libraries, and encourages active participation in Illinois library organizations.

Meetings bi-monthly via Zoom and/or in person.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special, Other
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Small Libraries United (SLU)

Networking group for directors of small public libraries in northwestern Illinois. All in-person meetings take place west of I-39. 

Bimonthly, locations vary.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Social Work in Libraries Networking Group

The Alliance for Human Services, DuPage Federation on Human Service Reform, and Reaching Across Illinois Library System (RAILS) are partnering to create the Social Work in Libraries networking group. Together we seek to create a safe space for frontline and social workers (working in libraries and nonprofits as well as other stakeholders) to explore the intersection between social work and libraries. Subjects of interest include best practices for developing social worker positions in library spaces, including but not limited to logistics, evaluation, and implementation; developing connections between social service organizations and libraries; and creating a safe welcoming space for all library patrons.

The group's next meeting will be Tuesday, March 12, 2-3 p.m.. We look forward to your participation. Please register via Zoom.

Library Types:
Academic, Public, School, Special
Categories:
Member Networking Group, Services to Special Populations
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
South & West Suburban Business Networking Group (SoWBusi)

We focus on how libraries can serve their business communities.

Topics of discussion include information relating to business services offered by the library and librarians, including for job searchers, local businesses, and financial literacy.

We meet quarterly (February, May, August, and November) in South and Western Suburban libraries. We meet from 9:30am - 11:00am.

Library Types:
Academic, Public
Categories:
Library Programming, Member Networking Group, Outreach
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
South Suburban Adult Programmers (SSAP)

We are the adult services programmers of the south suburbs of Chicago. We meet to share presenter contact information, newsletters, and anything else related to programming for adults.

2023 Meetings

Check back for information on the 2023 meetings.

_____________________________________________________________________________

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Programming
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
SPARK (Spanish Programming And Resources for Kids)

SPARK (Spanish Programming And Resources for Kids) is a networking group of librarians and other library staff members who are interested in Spanish programming for children. We meet quarterly to share ideas, tips, favorite resources, and more.

Meetings are held quarterly at 10:00 am on the second Wednesday of the month in January, April, July and October.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Programming, Member Networking Group, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Special Needs and Inclusive Library Services (SNAILS)

SNAILS is a networking group made up of professionals from Chicago-area public libraries. We support one another's efforts to provide specialized services and programs to children and teens with disabilities through collaboration and training. Our meetings and blog are forums to exchange ideas, learn, advocate, and inspire. SNAILS is passionately committed to inclusivity and making a positive impact on the lives of all children.

SNAILS meets in-person quarterly (August, November, February, May) on Wednesday mornings at various libraries.

Categories:
Services to Special Populations, Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Supporting Administrators in Libraries (SAIL)

The SAIL group is open to all library administrators. We usually have a meeting topic but members are also welcome to bring questions for group feedback. Attendees are also invited to lunch, at own cost, at an area restaurant.

Meeting are held bi-monthly in January, March, May, July, September and November on the fourth Thursday of the month at 10:00 a.m. Libraries volunteer to host meetings.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Management, Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Teen Librarians Special Interest Group

The teen/young adult librarians from the former DuPage Library System (DLS) libraries meet every three months to discuss programming, young adult novels and issues related to teen services. We meet at various Illinois libraries in the former DLS area. Any interested young adult librarians are welcome to attend.

Facebook Group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/411394192392249/

We meet in February, May, August and November usually on the third Thursday of the month. The meetings are in the morning from 9:30-Noon.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Teen or Youth Selectors Networking Group (TOYS)

T.O.Y.S. (Teen or Youth Selectors) connects Youth/Teen Collection Librarians and library staff with each other to share and develop ideas related to collection development. Anyone who participates in collection development for ages 0-18 in welcome to attend.

We meet 3-4 times a year; we have been virtual, but that may change.

Please join the TOYS email list for the meeting agendas and Zoom meeting information.

Library Types:
Public, School
Categories:
Collection Development, Member Networking Group, Young Adult Services, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Tinker

Tinker is a networking group for library staff who work–or want to work–with children, teens, and technology. We are interested in sharing programming ideas and providing an opportunity to work hands-on with technology and STEAM projects.

The Tinker group meets on selected Tuesday mornings from 9:30-11:30, at rotating libraries around the Chicago area. For a schedule of meetings see https://tinkergroup.wordpress.com/meeting/.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Technology, Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Tri-County Directors

This group consists of small, rural libraries serving the McLean, Woodford, and Livingston counties in central Illinois. Member libraries are village, district, or municipal public libraries.

Meetings are held at one of the participating libraries on the 2nd Friday of each month (August- May). A light breakfast is provided by the host beginning at 9:00 AM. The meeting follows at 9:30 AM. The conversations often continue during lunch at one of the local restaurants. Please contact Kristin Holzhauer- director@pontiacpubliclibrary.org for the next meeting location.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Tween Illinois Librarians (TWILL)

Networking, program sharing, and discussion for library staff working with tweens. We meet four times a year in the suburbs of Chicago to discuss library services to kids in approximately grades 3 to 8. Each meeting has a topic (including a discussion and sometimes a presentation), around-the-table time to discuss our successes and challenges, and a tour of the hosting library.

Friday mornings four times a year

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group, Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Upper Rock Island County Libraries (URICL)

Upper Rock Island County Libraries is comprised of staff members from neighboring library districts who meet quarterly to discuss ways to collaborate with and support one another. We share ideas about programming, professional development, training, resource sharing and grant writing.

We meet quarterly at alternating locations.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
West of 47

Primarily public library directors in the LaSalle area.

Meetings held monthly, usually at Starved Rock Lodge in Utica.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group, Library Management
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
West Suburban Adult Programmers (WSAP)

Welcome to the West Suburban Adult Programmers Group! This group is mainly comprised of people from libraries in the western suburbs of Cook, DuPage, and Kane counties, but it is open to all areas. We meet quarterly and discuss issues of interest to library staff members responsible for coordinating library programs for adults and other events, regardless of the intended age group.

2024 Meeting Schedule:

Thursday, February 1, 2024 @ 2-3:30 PM via Zoom

Thursday, May 2, 2024 @ 10-11:30 AM via Zoom

Thursday, August 1, 2024 @ 2-3:30 PM via Zoom

Thursday, November 7, 2024 @ 10-11:30 AM via Zoom

Register for all meetings here: http://bit.ly/WSAPMTG.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Programming
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
West Youth Services Managers (WYSM)

Issues of interest to Youth Services Managers serving children and teens in DuPage and Kane Counties.

We meet quarterly on Friday mornings at various public libraries.

Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Member Networking Group
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
World Languages Networking Group (WLNG)

Resource and information sharing for librarians who work with World Language and ESL collection development, cataloging, promotion, and programming.

Contact Larissa Yabloch at lyabloch@skokielibrary.info or Anna Golash at AGolash@palatinelibrary.org.

Three times per year - February, May and October. Wednesday mornings from 10:00 until 12:00 pm.

The next meeting will be on May 8th, 2024 10.00 am - 12.00 am. Location TBD. 

 

Library Types:
Public, School
Categories:
Acquisitions, Cataloging, Collection Development, Customer Service, Services to Special Populations, Technical Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Young Adult Librarian Discussion Group (YALD) (YALD)

The YALD Group (Young Adult Librarians Discussion Group) is a former NSLS networking group, but is open to anyone interested in YA/Teen Services. Anyone is welcome, meeting agendas are open to all topics.

Contact Emmy Neal at eneal@lakeforestlibrary.org

We meet 6 times a year, on the 3rd Wednesday of every other month September - May (including an extra meeting at the beginning of August), primarily through Zoom at this time. We meet from 9:30 - 10:30 AM.

Schedule for 2022/2023:

  • Wednesday, May 18, 2022
  • Wednesday, August 17, 2022
  • Wednesday, September 21, 2022
  • Wednesday, November 16, 2022
  • Wednesday, January 18, 2023
  • Wednesday, March 15, 2023
  • Wednesday, May 17, 2023
  • Wednesday, August 16, 2023
Categories:
Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Young Adult Special Interest Group (YA SIG)

This group is for teen librarians and those that work with teens. We provide opportunities for sharing ideas, concerns, and success stories with respect to all areas of service to young adults, and have recently begun collaborating to bring our teen patrons some great larger scale programming (like the inter-library Hunger Games) . We meet 4 times per year in person at various libraries in the Illinois (former) Metropolitan Library System in Chicago-land. Feel free to join our google group if you would like more information.

1st Monday of month Feb, Apr, October, December

Library Types:
Public, School
Categories:
Young Adult Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)
Youth Programmers Group (YLA-Youth Librarians Association) (YLA)

We are a group of youth services librarians, programmers and special events extraordinaires! We usually have a special topic of discussion, share our program successes and failures, ask and offer tips and advice, and share helpful information about paid performers.

We are currently running meetings via Zoom.

Most of us are from public libraries in the north and northwest suburbs, but our members come from all over the suburban area. We welcome you to join our always engaging conversations and meetings.

We began and were known in RAILS as the Youth Librarians Association (YLA) and have since evolved.

  • Our meetings are usually held in September, November, January, March and May.
  • We hold meetings on the second Friday of the month from 9:30 AM to 11:30 AM, unless otherwise specified.
  • We do not meet in June, July or August so attention can be focused on our own library's summer reading program. September's meeting topic is centered on recapping summer reading successes and challenges.
Library Types:
Public
Categories:
Library Programming, Member Networking Group, Young Adult Services, Youth Services
Contact: (Log in for contact info)