Quarterly Update

Carol Schuetz, editor



Elizabeth Malafi, Editor

From the BRASS Chair

BRASS Notes Executive Committee

Future of BRASS Task Force
The BRASS Exec established the Future of BRASS task force after 2018 ALA Annual. Their charge was to explore possible scenarios for BRASS as an organization without making a recommendation for action, to be presented to the BRASS Executive Board by Midwinter. It is our hope that the report will serve as a starting point for informed BRASS-wide conversation.

BRASS Handbook Review
BRASS Exec also focused on reviewing current BRASS practices, aligning them with the changes taking place at RUSA and ALA, and communicating with members. The review of the BRASS Handbook is under way. The Exec reviewed the committee charges proposed by the committees; reviewed BRASS by-laws and submitted changes to RUSA office to be placed on the ballot; and is currently in the process of updating Tips for Chairs section of the Handbook.

ALA Connect
Another priority for BRASS Exec is to better understand how ALA Connect may be used for committee work, communicating with BRASS members, and archiving documents for future members. The new ALA Connect inherited its organizational structure from the previous ALA Connect, with all its “warts.” We were able to address some issues with BRASS on ALA Connect, such as correct hierarchy of BRASS nodes and consistent renaming BRASS committees on ALA Connect. Outstanding issues include renaming BRASS committees across ALA Connect, RUSA BRASS website, and ALA appointments database; developing folder structures for archiving documents; document naming and saving conventions across all BRASS committees; and ensuring correct level of permissions for BRASS committees and communities.

Make ALA Connect Work for You
We will be using BRASS (Business Reference and Services Section) community on ALA Connect to communicate with our members. It is a good time to login to your ALA Connect account (top right corner) and update your profile information.

Are you tired of being bombarded with ALA Connect emails? Adjust your preferences! Once you login, go to your Profile > My Account tab > Community Notifications and review your Discussion Email settings. You will be able to choose Daily Digest, Real Time, or No Email for each ALA/RUSA/BRASS unit that you belong to. If you are passionate about BRASS, make sure that BRASS (Business Reference and Services Section) is set to Real Time, or at least to Daily Digest. Otherwise, you’ll never hear from BRASS!

BRASS Demographics
ALA Connect supports on-demand reports for BRASS membership and those who left or joined, providing a useful tool to our Membership Committee. We were able to gain interesting insights into demographics of BRASS. Based on November 2018 report, we have approximately 650 BRASS members; 110 of them are volunteering on BRASS committees.

You can see additional information here, including specific categories of Other; breakdown by state, academic and public; and international membership.

BRASS Events at ALA Annual
We are working with BRASS committees to deliver solid programming to our members virtually and at ALA Annual Conference in D.C. in June. Follow the announcements of brass-L and ALA Connect BRASS for discussion groups, publishers’ forum and lightning talks. If you are planning your trip to D.C., keep these dates in mind:

  • Friday, June 21 – all day preconference; Guardians of the (Financial) Galaxy: How Financial Regulators Generate Free Data, Tools, and Information Along the Way [Contact: Jennifer Boettcher; Bobray Bordelon]
  • Friday, June 21, evening – BRASS membership reception (not on ALA official schedule)
  • Saturday, June 22, 4:00 pm – 7:00 pm – Emerald event on Women MBAs (not on ALA official schedule) [Contact: Bridget Farrell]
  • Sunday, June 23 4:00- 5:30 pm – BRASS Program The Data of D.C.: Open Sources for Business Research [Contact: Ash Faulkner]
  • All Committees Meeting (TBD)
  • BRASS Discussion Group (TBD)
  • Monday, June 24, evening – BRASS dinner (not on ALA schedule)

Call for BRASS Volunteers
Ilana Stonebreaker, BRASS Chair Elect, recently sent out a call for volunteers for the next term starting on July 1st, 2019. If you are new to BRASS or your term on a BRASS committee expires in June, please consider volunteering. Fill out ALA Volunteer Form > Select RUSA, then RUSA-BRASS as your section.

Natasha Arguello, BRASS Chair 2018-2019



Business Reference in Academic Libraries Committee
The Business Reference in Academic Libraries Committee met on February 11 to debrief on the Fall Lightning Talks and begin planning the spring program. Emily Mross, Rashelle Nagar, Penny Scott and Alan Witt will serve as a planning committee for spring programming. Based on attendee feedback from the fall lightning talks, the spring program will focus on best practices in instruction and will have interactive components with practical takeaways for attendees. The committee will issue a call for proposals on March 1 for 45-minute sessions.

Lightning Talks were held on October 20 and November 16, 2018. October 20th Lightning Talk had 139 registrants and 49 attendees. The presentations were A Successful Journey from Past Practices to Best Practices in Information Literacy (Marwin Britto, Business, Economics and Public Policy Librarian, University of Saskatchewan) and Test, Build, Grow: How do Entrepreneurs Inform their Business Decisions? (Kim Buschert, Management Liaison and Outreach Librarian, Okanagan Library, University of British Columbia, Irena Trebic, Librarian, David Lam Management Research Library, University of British Columbia and Nick Rochlin, Public Services & Business Librarian, Okanagan College)

November 16th Lightning Talk had 135 registrants and 40 attendees. The presentations were Providing Asynchronous, Online Instruction with the Business Research Toolkit (Kara Van Abel, Reference Librarian & Liaison to the School of Business, University of Alabama at Birmingham) and Capturing Student Attention: Engagement Strategies for Instruction (Alan Witt, Research Instruction Librarian [Business], SUNY Geneseo)

Emily Mross, Chair 2018-2019


Business Reference Sources
The Outstanding Business Reference Sources 2018 column was published in the Winter 2018 issue of Reference and User Services Quarterly (volume 58, number 2). It includes reviews for one outstanding title, seven notable titles, and two notable new additions. The committee has begun the process of nominating sources to be selected and reviewed for this year’s issue.

The committee is actively planning for the next Publishers’ Forum, tentatively scheduled for late March. The theme of the Forum is visualizing data and more information will be provided in the coming weeks.

Felipe Anaya, Chair 2017-2018


Education Committee
The BRASS Education Committee selected the winners of the 2019 Best of the Best Web Resources award which were announced at Midwinter. The theme was “Travel & Hospitality” with the 3 winners being: International Trade Administration National Travel & Tourism Office; United Nations World Tourism Organization; and U.S. Travel Association.

Looking forward, the Committee is soliciting submissions for paid webinars, continues to edit and update the BRASS Business Guides, and looks forward to supporting the BRASS Preconference.

Robbi De Peri and LuMarie Guth, Co-Chairs 2018-2019


Emerald Research Award
The nomination period for awards closed on February 15. The BRASS Emerald Research Award Committee received 9 proposals and hopes to have the winning proposal selected by March 1 with the winner being notified the following week.

Lisa Louis, Chair 2018-2019


Excellence in Business Librarianship Award
The committee is on track. We have 4 nominations. Nominations were due by Feb. 15. I stopped by the Mergent booth and thanked the vendors at ALA.

Chris LeBeau, Chair 2018-2019


Global Financial Data Academic Business Librarianship Travel Award
The committee has received 11 nominations. We hope to begin reviewing nominations and make a selection within the next few weeks.

Hilary C. Smith, Chair 2018-2019


Program Planning
The Program Planning Committee is continuing to work on the BRASS Program for ALA Annual Conference 2019. Our program submission, “The Data of D.C.: Open Sources for Business Research” was accepted and is currently scheduled for 06/23/2019 from 4:00 – 5:30pm. The Committee will soon begin work with our presenters, Jennifer Boettcher of Georgetown University and Andrew Hait of the U.S. Census Bureau, to solidify program details.

Ash Faulkner, Chair 2018-2019