As you have heard, there is a petition circulating that asks for a measure on the ALA spring ballot in an effort to overturn the most recent decision by ALA Council to change the language of the job announcement for the next ALA Executive Director from “MLIS preferred” (or CAEP/school librarian equivalent) back to MLIS required. Many ALA members have felt removed from the search process. However, the Search Committee and the Executive Board did not ask for the change to the job description in a capricious nor unethical manner. Every Division board was asked and endorsed the effort to add the word preferred to the job description following the first, unsuccessful, review of applications for the position. Your leaders, including the Division boards, Courtney Young’s search committee, the ALA Executive Board and the ALA Councilors weighed the issue and provided input to the ALA Executive Board and Council.
ALA members, including members of the search committee want ALA to hire an Executive Director who upholds the values of our profession. We can encourage people with the degree and qualifications to apply. We can also trust the search committee, made up of our peers, to look at applicant skills, experience, temperament, respect for education, and the value of service. The ideal candidate will demonstrate leadership to advance ALA as an organization and library professions for the benefit of all ALA members.