For those that may not know who I am, my name is Kenny Garcia and I’m the REFORMA National President for 2019-2020. I’m a research and instruction librarian at California State University - Monterey Bay. I’m also a member of the Bibliotecas Para La Gente chapter. It has been an honor being president of REFORMA! We have an awesome, dedicated executive committee that meets virtually on a consistent basis. There’s a lot of work to do and look forward to continuing the work of strengthening REFORMA as an organization, supporting the work being done by members and chapters at the chapter level, supporting library workers and students that are interested in promoting library and information services to Latinos and the Spanish-Speaking, and advocating on behalf of the information needs of the Latino communities.
I am following in the path that Past-President Madeline Peña blazed in attempting to visit and speak to REFORMA chapters throughout the year. Since July, I have attended chapter meetings and/or fundraisers held by Bibliotecas Para La Gente, Northeast, Los Angeles, and Del Valle Central. I plan on attending virtual meetings for Central Coast and Oregon in the near future. My goal is to physically or virtually attend at least one chapter meeting for each active chapter.
REFORMA was represented by Elizabeth Garcia at the Feria Internacional del Libro en Guatemala (Filgua) this past July. A special thank you to Elizabeth and Patrick Sullivan for making sure that REFORMA was present. Elizabeth shared a short video in Spanish that I put together to share what REFORMA does, to speak about the Children in Crisis project, and to recruit international members for REFORMA. It was a great opportunity to make connections with partners in Guatemala.
In October, the REFORMA Executive Committee hosted its first ever virtual board of directors meeting. We felt that it was an important opportunity to work, share, and learn from each other beyond the face-to-face meetings at Midwinter and Annual. It’s something that I’m committing to this year and hope that folks find it beneficial. While it was a learning experience for me and others, I hope that folks are able to make the next virtual meeting in April.
If you are planning to attend ALA Midwinter in Philadelphia, please look for the schedule of meetings and events on our website. We are still confirming meeting room locations and will share that information with everyone as soon as we can. I look forward to meeting folks and building community in Philadelphia!
I plan on reaching out to members on a monthly basis to better connect REFORMA National with all of its members, chapters, and supporters. If you have any questions, comments, or concerns, please reach out to me via email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Thank you for all that you do for your libraries, communities, and chapters! You are appreciated!