Tess Tobin- Statement

REFORMA’s mission of bringing library and information services to Latinos and the Spanish speaking community is more important than ever. Over the past 16 years, I have worked side by side with passionate librarians whose ardor and advocacy have served the Latino community. Past leaders have brought with them their histories and knowledge to make the organization robust and their legacy needs to be preserved and the work needs to continue. I am seeking the position of Vice President/President elect so I can advance the mission and goals of REFORMA.        

I came to librarianship as a second career having taught English to Speakers of Other Languages (ESOL) to adult learners for over 25 years. I was invited to my first REFORMA meeting in September 2000 at the Brooklyn Public Library (NY). I was totally taken away by the warmth and energy and the feeling of community of the REFORMISTAS sitting around the table. A few had already served REFORMA as President and a few would become a REFORMA President over the next ten years. I knew that day that REFORMA had a purpose - advocate and provide opportunities for Latinos and the Spanish speaking to access information and better themselves here in the United States. From that moment, I was determined to help achieve REFORMA’s goals.  


I have held executive positions within ALA as Chair of EMIERT and as Chair of the IFLA section Library Services to Multicultural Populations. I also have been active in the REFORMA Northeast Chapter serving as President and Secretary. I served on the REFORMA Executive Board in the capacity of Chapter Representative. I am prepared to lead on issues that matter to REFORMA. I will bring my leadership skills and experience to REFORMA and will strive to keep the organization both vibrant and relevant. The current social and racial issues facing our country are profound, so REFORMA has to remain in the forefront and voice the importance of literacy and education for the growing Latino population in the United States and to advocate for those who are being marginalized and forgotten.


Working closely with Reformistas I contributed to the strategic planning process and I will strive to advance the organizational goals to improve communications, increase membership, foster participation, and stabilize finances so REFORMA has a future. It will be of essence to review the 2012 strategic plan to see what we have accomplished and to see where we are going. I am a good listener which is the first step to any communication. Encouraging coalition building and fostering strong communication are the attributes that I will bring to REFORMA so the organization will grow and stay current.   


REFORMA has helped me to become the professional that I am today. It has shown me that initiatives can be accomplished and issues resolved with dedication and hard work.  I am committed to giving back to REFORMA by serving as Vice President/President Elect. I respectfully ask for your support in my candidacy for Vice President/President elect.



Tess Tobin

Statement of Purpose

March 11, 2016