Janet Lee’s Ethiopian Fulbright Journey. December Update

For those following Janet’s newsletter, a December issue has been posted.

Highlights include working amid protests and the shutdown of social media, celebrating Christmas away from home, updates on work at the University of Aksum, and the Axumite Heritage Foundation Library.

Direct link:  https://ilceig.files.wordpress.com/2018/01/ethiopia-2017-12.pdf



Janet Lee’s Ethiopian Fulbright Journey: November update

For those following Regis University Library Dean’s Fulbright Journey, please find her monthly update that is posted on the ILCE-IG web page.

Highlights include a summary of the first African Storybook project workshop held in Debre Birhan and funded by an ILCE-IG grant.

The direct link to her newsletter is at:  https://ilceig.files.wordpress.com/2017/12/ethiopia-2017-11.pdf

Help Requested for a Puerto Rico Library

A request has come from Deb Palmer at the CU Boulder Dept of Education and from Lindsay Roberts at CU Boulder Libraries

A school library in San Juan Puerto Rico is needing to re-stock its entire collection after Maria. Deb’s colleague, a Latino Children’s Literature scholar at Columbia Teacher’s College, Dr. Carmen Martínez-Roldán, was on her sabbatical down there when the hurricane hit. She has a long standing connection with this lovely little school; evidently they use the library for all kinds of projects and they’re missing it desperately.

Carmen has put together this GoFundMe:


Please pass on this opportunity to help.

International Library and Cultural Exchange Annual Report


International Library and Cultural Exchange Annual Report

Submitted by Nancy Bolt


ILCE awarded grants for two International Library Projects

The purpose of the grants is two-fold:

  • Support individual and library partnerships and activities that enhance cultural understanding
  • Support cultural programming and activities that celebrate ethnic and immigrant cultures in Colorado

The two projects are:

$1500 to Janet Lee, Dean of the Library at Regis University. While in Ethiopia as a Fulbright Scholar, Ms. Lee will facilitate workshops on publishing children’s books in local Ethiopian Languages in cooperation with the African Storybook Project.  She will also conduct children’s book publishing training with an emphasis on open access and first language materials.

“Putting attractive, well-written books in local languages in the hands of young children is a reward in itself,” she said.  The work has long been a part of her passion. She previously served as a Peace Corps volunteer and helped create a small school library in Ethiopia from 1974-76.

$1500.00 to Jimena Sagas, Liaison Librarian, CSU-Fort Collins and Rita Puig, Reference Librarian Regis University to host presentations by Asuncion, a librarian from Mexico, to help foster the exchange of ideas and comradery among Colorado librarians and Mexican librarians.

The projects will begin this September, 2017.

International Activities

Janet Lee, Regis University Dean of the Dayton Memorial Library Janet Lee has been named a Fulbright Scholar, a prestigious honor that will enable her to focus on open access publishing in Ethiopia. Lee traveled to Ethiopia in September for two semesters where she will partner with the University of Aksum. She will explore avenues of scholarly publishing in Ethiopia that will give voice to the unheard, sharing their knowledge, perspectives and values.

As a side project, she will be working with the Ethiopian Community Development Council/Axumite Heritage Foundation in setting up a community library in a new building replacing the existing community library that is outgrown its space.  The new library will include a children’s corner, great reading room, auditorium, exhibit space, and three classrooms.

With her vast knowledge of library skills, Lee will provide training to the university and the community library.  As mentioned above, under Grants, she is also providing workshops on publishing books, with illustrations, translated into the local Ethiopian languages and the English.  While in Africa, Lee is posting regularly on the ILCE website and Facebook page.

Nancy Bolt attended the annual IFLA conference in Wroclaw, Poland and moderated a program on accessibility at library conferences.  Bolt also was the co-editor of Guidelines on Library Service to People Experiencing Homelessness. She also represents IFLA on a United Nations Committee on services to people with disabilities in the UN’s 2030 Strategic Development Goals.  Bolt recently conducted an international survey on this topic with the results available in January.

Bolt was also honored to receive the Scroll of Achievement Award from the International Federation of Library Associations (IFLA) at their 2017 annual conference in Wroclaw, Poland.  Bolt won the award for her work over the years with Government Libraries and library service to people with special needs.  Presenting the award was IFLA President, Donna Scheeder, and IFLA Secretary General, Gerard Lightner.

With Dr. Shimelis Assefa, Professor at the Morgridge College of Education Library and Information Science Program at the University of Denver, Janet Lee collaborated on a paper “Public Libraries as a Place to Advance Tolerance,” which surveyed libraries in Colorado and across the nation on programs and practices that promote tolerance.  Dr. Assefa also presented on “Data and Information Literacy.” Lee also partnered with newly Returned Peace Corps Ethiopia Volunteer, Ben Rearick, a student in the University of Michigan’s Library and Information Science Program, on a poster “A Hyena’s Tale: Introducing Children to the Power of Reading in Ethiopia.”  In addition, Dr. Assefa presented a poster “The Well-being of Nations and what Libraries can do to Help:  The Case for Africa.”  A version of the Lee/Rearick poster was presented at International Poster Session at the American Library Association conference in Chicago in June.

Barb Thorne is the Technical Advisor to public libraries in Nicaragua that have been established by Jane Mirandette.   She was appointed following the Executive Librarian tour in November 2015. Since early 2016 Barb has worked closely with Victor Zuniga of the Poudre Public Library District on technical support, reports on the automated system and has cataloged over 2500 books to be distributed to the SJDS Main library, the Mobile project and seven Satellites. She reviewed and revised the system, crated and applied call tags to all the books in the children’s area, over 1500.  She participated in the 16th anniversary had discussions with over 30 librarian/teachers who were sharing in a craft and coffee morning and reviewed procedures and trained staff while in Nicaragua.

Annual Conference

ILCE had a very successful CAL conference.  Barbara Thorne prepared a Lightning Round presentation about ILCE’s activities, focusing on our Sister City activities and our grants.

ILCE held its annual International Reception to welcome and talk with people who have an interest in international librarianship.  We had a lively discussion about ILCE and work with libraries overseas.

Nancy Wood featured ILCE in two presentations she made at the conference and discussed her own international library project.  She writes:

”When humanitarians step in to a foreign culture with a pure intention of helping those less fortunate, many experience shock and confusion, discouraged with disappointment.  Within the 13 year International non-profit partnership of James Kumahn of Liberia, Africa and Nancy Wood of Colorado, USA, co-founders of Hope for Children of Africa, lays a devoted purpose, many disappointments, enlightening experiences, and joyful lessons that have resulted in a constant awakening of ideas. Our approach varies; each situation provides a step that expands our evolution and our ability to better serve humanity.

For More Information about ILCE

https://ilceig.wordpress.com/ or like us on Facebook:  International Library and Cultural Exchange Interest Group


The 4th African Library Summit & 2nd AfLIA Conference, Yaoundé Cameroon

The 4th African Library Summit & 2nd AfLIA Conference, Yaoundé Cameroon

Dr. Shimelis Assefa and Janet Lee

Two Colorado librarians were among the 127 attendees at the 4th African Library Summit & 2nd AfLIA Conference held in Yaounde, Cameroon.  Janet Lee, Chair of the International Library and Cultural Exchange Interest Group, collaborated with Dr. Shimelis Assefa, Professor at the Morgridge College of Education Library and Information Science Program at the University of Denver on a paper “Public Libraries as a Place to Advance Tolerance,” which surveyed libraries in Colorado and across the nation on programs and practices that promote tolerance.  Dr. Assefa also presented on “Data and Information Literacy.”  Janet partnered with newly Returned Peace Corps Ethiopia Volunteer, Ben Rearick, a student in the University of Michigan’s Library and Information Science Program, on a poster “A Hyena’s Tale: Introducing Children to the Power of Reading in Ethiopia.”  Dr. Assefa also presented a poster “The well-being of Nations and what Libraries can do to Help:  The Case for Africa.”   A version of the Lee/Rearick poster has been accepted for the International Poster Session at the American Library Association conference in Chicago in June.

University of Michigan Student and RPCV Ethiopia, Ben Rearick

Janet Lee and AfLIA President John Tsebe







Over 45 African countries sent representatives to the conference from Egypt to the north and South Africa to the south, South Africa once again sending the largest number of representatives. The conference was simultaneously translated from English to French and French to English serving the multi-lingual needs of conference attendees.

The University of Yaoundé choir


The University of Yaounde Choir opened the ceremonies with a round of musical selections. IFLA Secretary General Gerald Leitner and IFLA President-Elect Gloria Perez-Salmernon opened the conference.  Both noted the strong presence of IFLA in Africa and its growing role in the development agenda:  access to information.  Deborah Jacobs, Global Libraries, followed and challenged African libraries to be the model for other regions of the world.

The “Ethiopia” contingent: Ben Rearick, Garoma Daba (Librarian, African Union), Janet Lee, Shimelis Assefa

The next three days were filled with plenary sessions, keynote speakers, panels, an unconference, and exhibits. Many excellent presentations covered themes of Development Agenda, ICT in Academic/Research Libraries, Research Data, Role of Libraries in Building Peace and Justice in Africa, Libraries in the Development Agenda, Women, Youth, and Children’s Services in the Development Agenda, Preservation of Africa’s Culture and Heritage, and Linking the Cape Town Declaration with Africa’s Future.  Attendees also represented all types of libraries: schools, public, academic, national and international.  Each attendee received a CD complete with the full text of the presentations in lieu of a print copy of the proceedings.

There were ample opportunities to network with librarians from across Africa including a cultural evening with traditional dancing and an all-conference dinner closing the conference.

Traditional dances

Traditional dances






Because of a national holiday all libraries and businesses were closed canceling the anticipated library visits.  However, attendees were able to visit the National Museum the evening prior.

Outdoor art at the National Museum

Outdoor art at the National Museum







The next African Library Summit will be held in Cape Town and the combined Summit and AfLIA conference in two years at a place to be determined.



ILCE-IG Events at MPLA/CALCON 2016

Library Globetrotters: Library experience in five countries

Track: Wild Card
Canyon Maple A
Thursday, October 20, 2016
2-3 p.m.

Colorado has many “globetrotters,”  librarians who can share experiences in international libraries they visit or help.  Four librarians will share their experiences in five countries.  Nebeyou Nunamo, Ethiopia, will describe libraries in his home country and his immigrant experiences  in the United States.  Lisa Priebe spent the last three years in Whitehaven, Cumbria, England and will present a travelogue of rural libraries.  Nancy Wood will describe the challenges, obstacles, and opportunities in building the first public library in  Liberia.  Sue Keefer will share her experiences in Nicaragua on the recent CAL tour.   Enjoy an international experience!

Lisa Priebe

Lisa Priebe

Lisa Priebe is a former librarian from Colorado and has spent the past three years living in Whitehaven, Cumbria, England. She benefited from access to the community’s public library and historical archive centre. Lisa wishes to share what she has learned about the public libraries in and around Whitehaven during her marvelous adventure living in this beautiful green land where there are more sheep than people.



Nebeyou Nunamo

Nebeyou Nunamo

Nebeyou D Nunamo is originally from Ethiopia. He graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Information Science from Jimma University, in Jimma, Ethiopia, and Master’s in Library and Information Science from University of Denver.  He is currently employed at the Aurora Public Library as a Library Assistant and is the web content manager for Yehabet Educational and Entertainment.  In his current role with Yehabet Educational and Entertainment,  he supervises four people located overseas and is responsible for the overall operation of the organization website (http://www.yehabet.com/), media collection, and marketing strategies. While at the Aurora Public Library Central Branch, he teaches classes, assists with circulation and records management using Sierra (Innovative Interfaces Inc.), provides instruction to customers in the use of the library resources and equipment, performs reference searches using online databases, provide patrons with information and reference services by accessing and demonstrating how to access information through books, computers, and media services.

Finally, he has a dream to be a world class data scientist. It always has been his dream to increase his leadership skills to contribute to the information organizations greater goal. He considers himself an innovator and a good leader and desires to be part of an organization that seeks a problem solver.

Nancy Wood

Nancy Wood

Nancy Wood serves as Branch Manager of Park County Public Library – Fairplay Branch.. When she co-founded “Hope for Children of Africa” in January of 2005, she was not a librarian. After recruiting a global alliance in 2010, to build the first public library in Liberia, West Africa, and was given the title of program manager, did she seek to become a librarian. She will share with us her adventure through a style of storytelling that she witnessed in Liberia. The presentation title is “Hearing a different drummer with a beat from West Africa”

Sue Keefer

Sue Keefer

Originally from northern Illinois, Sue Keefer has lived in Colorado since 1978. She has a bachelor’s degree in journalism from the University of Missouri and has worked on daily and weekly papers in Illinois, Iowa, and Colorado. She began her library career in 1983 and has worked at public libraries, school libraries, a bookmobile, and a prison library before receiving her MLS from Emporia State University in 2010, when she also was hired for my current position of Learning Resources Director of the Otero Junior College.

Going to Nicaragua was an amazing experience for her. The gratitude and smiles received for simply delivering books was a humbling experience. Being able to participate in the Anniversary Celebration was icing on the cake.

IFLA President, Donna Scheeder, to Speak at MPLA-CALCON 2016

Donna Scheeder

Donna Scheeder

Donna Scheeder, outgoing president of IFLA, will speak on So People May Know; Access to Information Around the World on Friday, October 21, at 5:00 p.m. This program is co-sponsored by the ILCE-IG of CAL.

Donna Scheeder is the current President for the International Federation of Library Associations, where her presidential theme is “Libraries: A Call to Action.”

Prior to becoming IFLA President, Ms. Scheeder served as the Deputy Chief Information Officer for the Congressional Research Service at the Library of Congress. She provided leadership for the provision of a wide range of information and collection services for the U.S. Congress, the Courts, the Executive Branch agencies and the public. Ms. Scheeder introduced a number of innovative services during her career including establishing the first collection of legal blogs and instituting the Electronic Briefing Book product for the Congress. She serves on the organizing committees for both the Computers in Libraries and Internet Librarian conferences which place a heavy emphasis on showcasing the latest developments in the field and the innovative services that take advantage of those developments.

Ms. Scheeder has been a member of the IFLA Governing Board for 8 years including two as Treasurer. Her networking skills have been sharpened over her 45 year career and record of volunteer public service. She is a former President and Treasurer of the Special Library Association (SLA). She is also a SLA fellow and a recipient of the John Cotton Dana award given in recognition of outstanding contributions to the field of special librarianship. She was elected to the SLA Hall of fame.

Ms. Scheeder lives on Capitol Hill in Washington DC. She is a founding member of the Board of Directors of the Hill Center and she also serves as Chair of the Eastern Market Community Advisory Committee.

International Adult Beverage Reception

Adult beverage reception

Adult beverage reception

Please join us for an international adult beverage reception following Donna Scheeder’s program. We will be featuring adult beverages from around the world. Location to be announced.




Support the ILCE-IG through International Jewelry Purchases

Nancy Bolt supports ILCE-IG with international jewelry sales

Nancy Bolt supports ILCE-IG with international jewelry sales

Stop  by Nancy Bolt’s booth in the exhibit area. A percent of all sales is donated to the ILCE-IG to be used for grants and programs.