• Tuesday, January 26, 2021 11:25 AM | Anonymous

    Please consider submitting book nominations for the 2021 Mississippi Author Awards. The deadline for nominations is March 1st, 2021. Committee members will begin reading and reviewing the nominated titles after March 1st. Winners will be announced in late summer, and the awards will be presented at the annual MLA conference held in October. Please review the criteria below before nominating a title to be sure it meets the guidelines. 

    The criteria for awards include the following: 

    • Awards may be presented in three categories: Adult Fiction; Adult Non-fiction; or Youth Fiction or Non-fiction; if meritorious works have been published in each category. 

    • The honored author(s) must be a Mississippian by birth or have lived in Mississippi for at least five consecutive years. 

    • An editor, illustrator, or translator may be considered. 

    • The honored author(s) must be living. 

    • The award(s) shall be presented for a specific work rather than a body of work. 

    • To be eligible for consideration, a book must have been published within three calendar years preceding the year in which the award is made. 

    • Each work should be judged on its overall quality, with consideration given to literary merit, style and technique, originality, grammar, and if applicable, accuracy, authenticity, and illustrations. 

    Nominations should be sent via email to Caroline Barnett (cbarnett@firstregional.org).  

    Please note that it can be an issue for the committee to get enough copies of the book to read and review. If you know the author or publisher, please ask if they might be able to supply a few copies which we could share among the committee members. Books can be mailed to the following address: 

    Caroline Barnett 
    M. R. Davis Public Library 
    8554 Northwest Drive 
    Southaven, MS  38671 

    Please share this information with others, including authors, publishers, staff members, and library patrons. We would like to reach as many people as possible to get great nominations for this prestigious award. 

    Submitted by: 
    Caroline Barnett 
    Head Librarian 
    M. R. Davis Public Library 

  • Tuesday, January 19, 2021 10:52 AM | Anonymous

    The Singing River Genealogy and Local History Library was recently the recipient of the 2020 Cultural Heritage Digitization Award offered annually by the Mississippi Digital Library (MDL), in conjunction with partners from across the state. The chosen collection is published electronically as part of the Mississippi Digital Library at the University of Southern Mississippi.

    As the awardee of the 2020 Cultural Heritage Digitization Award, the Singing River Library received digitization services for materials highlighting Mississippi’s international history and specialized training to continue to preserve and share the rich history of George and Jackson counties on the MS Gulf Coast.

    The Brenda Brentz Heinsch Papers collection contains letters, photographs, and ephemera recording daily activities and significant life events for Germans and German Americans in the late 1800s/early 1900s through the lens of the Breutz/Brentz-Hansen family of Germany and Escatawpa, MS. Heinsch’s research provides insight into Germany’s social norms and class structure, prejudice towards Germans and German Americans, and poor living conditions in post-WWII Germany.

    MDL has an extensive digital collection of state and local historic collections which now include the local history collection that is being digitized at the Singing River library. Future plans include creating more digital exhibits to help further engage local communities with a hope of helping teachers with local history resources. Anyone may view the collections at MDL at https://msdiglib.org/jsg.

    Singing River Library has been working on digitizing many collections since 2006. With the help of MDL, the library has several collections available on-line - both on the MDL website and a new Singing River Digital Archive. For more information on MDL partners, visit www.msdiglib.org/about/partners/jsg.

    Over the last few years, various volunteers and groups, the library system IT staff and interns, have given hundreds of man-hours to get the collections up and online. So far, SRGLHL has four collections that are fully digitized and made available at http://glh.jgrls.org.

    The Singing River Library is located at 3214 Pascagoula Street, Pascagoula, MS 39567. For more information, call (228) 769-3078 or visit the website at www.jgrls.org.

    Submitted by:
    Rex Bridges
    Public Relations & Marketing Manager
    Jackson-George Regional Library System

  • Monday, December 07, 2020 8:28 AM | Anonymous

    It is with great sadness that we inform you of the death of Mr. William "Terry" Lajaunie. Terry of Poplarville, MS passed away on Thursday, December 3, 2020. Terry was born on December 11, 1970 in Hattiesburg, MS to Richard Peter Lajaunie and Dianne (Anderson) Lajaunie.

    Terry is survived by his wife of nearly 30 years, Donna, mother Dianne, brothers Richard and Chad (Misty); as well as nieces Haley and Jade, nephew Aiden and a host of family and friends who will miss him dearly. Terry is preceded in death by his father Richard, and maternal and paternal grandparents.

    Terry was raised in Mandeville, La. He graduated from Mandeville High School in 1989 and then moved to Mississippi where he attended The University of Southern Mississippi (USM). He received both Bachelor and Master Degrees in Library and Information Sciences. While in school he worked for Cook Library at USM and once he graduated, Terry began his professional career with the Lamar County Library System in Purvis, MS. Over the last 20 years he became Head of Technical Services, Systems Librarian, and finally Assistant Director. A dedicated member of the Mississippi Library Association, Terry was very well loved, admired and respected by not only his library system, but the entire library community across the state of Mississippi, whom Terry considered to be family. Terry also enjoyed spending time with family and friends, reading and long scenic drives.

    Relatives and friends are invited to attend the graveside services at First Baptist Church Oloh Cemetery, 36 Oloh Church Rd, Sumrall, MS 39482 on Tuesday, December 08, 2020 at 1:00 PM. Due to COVID-19, those in attendance must wear masks and social distancing is highly encouraged. In lieu of flowers, donation information may be found at https://lclsms.org/.

  • Monday, November 23, 2020 9:36 AM | Anonymous

    The Ridgeland Library invites Ms. Seetha Srinivasan, Director Emerita of the University Press of Mississippi, and Jackson resident to talk about becoming a part of the American mainstream while retaining one’s ethnic identity (in this case, Indian) and asks the following questions: Can it be done? To what extent? What are the challenges, frustrations, rewards? 

    Please join us on Zoom on Dec. 7th at 12 pm (Noon) for this online presentation. Everyone will have an opportunity to ask questions at the end of the presentation. Please email Peter Dean at pdean@mcls.ms to register to join the presentation. 

    This presentation is made possible, in part, from an honorarium from the Mississippi Humanities Bureau. The Speaker’s Bureau features the state’s finest historians, writers, and storytellers talking about a variety of subjects related to Mississippi and beyond. The MHC selects speakers based on their credentials and the quality of their program and pays them an honorarium for presenting to nonprofit groups around the state. 

    For more information about this event, call the Ridgeland Public Library at: 601-856-4536 or email Peter Dean at pdean@mcls.ms. 

    Submitted by: 
    Maggie Mayer 
    Public Information and Marketing Specialist 
    Madison County Library System

  • Monday, November 23, 2020 9:34 AM | Anonymous

    The University of Southern Mississippi Libraries are now accepting proposals for the 2021 Southern Miss Institutional Repository Conference, which will take place virtually on April 29-30, 2021. 

    We are accepting proposals for short concurrent sessions (approx. 25 minutes), full concurrent sessions (approx. 50 minutes), panels (multiple speakers on a common topic, approx. 50 minutes), workshops (hands-on opportunity for participants to learn about a specific topic pertinent to IRs, approx. 2 hours), lightning talks (approx. 5 minutes), and posters. 


    We welcome proposals from all institutions that either have an IR, regardless of platform, or that are interested in pursuing an IR for their campus. Topics for proposals may include (but are not limited to): 

    • Choosing an IR platform 

    • Promoting an IR on campus 

    • IR staffing models 

    • New and emerging IR platforms 

    • Accessibility for IRs 

    • Getting faculty participation in IR initiatives 

    • IRs and student scholarship 

    • Supporting underrepresented minority researchers through IRs 

    • Electronic theses and dissertations 

    • Library-led publishing through the IR 

    • Open educational resources and IRs 

    • Data management and IRs 

    • Open access and IRs 

    • Supporting DEI initiatives through the IR 

    • Author rights 

    • Metrics and tools for evaluating IRs 

    • Migrating from one IR platform to another 

    The deadline for submitting proposals is December 18, 2020. Acceptance emails will be sent no later than February 1, 2021. Registration is free for all attendees, and will open in January. Proposals may be submitted at https://www.lib.usm.edu/smirc/proposals.html.  Please contact joshua.cromwell@usm.edu for any questions about proposals or about SMIRC. 

    Submitted by: 
    Josh Cromwell 
    Scholarly Communications Manager 
    University of Southern Mississippi  

  • Monday, November 23, 2020 9:33 AM | Anonymous

    The South Mississippi Regional Library system is pleased to be a recipient of a Save the Children reading grant.


    Since being founded in 1919, Save the Children has worked in over 100 countries to give children a healthy start in life, the opportunity to learn, and protection from harm. Working in Mississippi since 1933, they began implementing evidence-based education programs in 2003 and currently serve almost 900 children in Marion County. The grant funds were awarded to promote literacy during the Covid-19 pandemic. 


    Supporting reading initiatives from June to August 2020, the grant enabled the Library to provide local children with free books, take home activity kits, and prizes for reading and participation. “We are grateful to have a partnership with Save the Children to serve the youth of our community,” stated Library Director, Ryda Worthy. “They are truly committed to bettering the lives of our children, and we look forward to working with them on future pro-jects.” 


    The South Mississippi Regional Library, serving Marion and Jefferson Davis counties, with libraries located in Columbia, Bassfield, and Prentiss, provides resources and information for the educational and recreational needs of its customers. Founded in 1912, the Library has been offering a Summer Reading Program for almost 65 years. The system is supported by the cities of Columbia, Prentiss, Bassfield, and the Marion and Jefferson Davis Counties. 

    Submitted by: 
    Ryda Worthy 
    Library Director 
    South Mississippi Regional Library 

  • Monday, November 23, 2020 9:31 AM | Anonymous

    The Columbia-Marion County Public Library is pleased to be a recipient of a Weyerhaeuser Giving Fund donation.


    Weyerhaeuser, an American timberland company which owns over 12,000,000 acres of timberlands in the U.S., made its first charitable donation in 1903 and has provided more than $239 million in grants through its formal giving program, established in 1948. Foundation giving is limited to areas where they have a significant presence, including communities where they have operations and/or where they own or manage forestlands in the United States and Canada. Weyerhaeuser’s Mississippi operating locations are in Bruce, Columbus, McComb, and Philadelphia, but they manage timber forestlands in Marion County. 


    The Library at 900 Broad Street has been closed for construction since being damaged by a tornado that traveled through Columbia on December 16, 2019. Significant roof damage and accumulated overnight rain resulted in severe interior damage. “It is so gratifying to know that we have the support of not only our local government and citizens, but also the business and corporate community, in our efforts to return to providing Marion County with the library services that its citizens have deemed necessary and supported for over 100 years,” states Library Director, Ryda Worthy. Weyerhaeuser Funds will be used for construction projects not covered by the County’s insurance policy on the building. 


    The Columbia-Marion County Public Library, part of the South Mississippi Regional Library system, provides resources and information for the educational and recreational needs of its customers. The Library has been housed at the Broad Street location since 1975, with the building, owned and maintained by Marion County, being dedicated on December 16, 1975. Funding necessary for all Library operating expenses is provided by both Marion County and the City of Columbia.


    Submitted by: 
    Ryda Worthy 
    Library Director 
    South Mississippi Regional Library 

  • Monday, November 23, 2020 9:24 AM | Anonymous

    Choctaw County Library System was able to replace all staff and patron computers, create a computer lab space, and increase the amount of patron computer stations in the Ackerman Branch with funding provided by the Appalachian Regional Commission (ARC).  

    At the beginning of 2020, the Ackerman Branch Library’s patron computer area consisted of only six patron computers lining a wall near the circulation desk. In April, library director Cristin Chandler wrote an ARC grant requesting $30,000 to use toward replacement of all computers at both CCLS branches, additional computers and laptops to meet the need of public computers and technology classes, and desks and chairs for a computer lab at the Ackerman Branch. 


    The grant was awarded in June, and CCLS employees were hard at work during the summer rearranging materials in the library to make room for a new computer lab. Installation of an eleven-station computer lab is now complete, including a new printer and print system for patron use and a charging table for patrons’ laptops or devices. With grant funding, all staff and patron computers at both the Ackerman and Weir branches have been upgraded for the first time in almost ten years. 


    As part of the ARC grant agreement, CCLS was able to purchase a group of laptops and will offer computer classes over the next two years. These classes will support adults through workforce development skills, resume writing and computer proficiency. CCLS will also implement STEAM focused youth programs, introducing different technology-driven career opportunities. 


    These classes and programs align with ARC’s Ready Workforce strategy to increase the education, knowledge, skills, and health of residents to work and succeed in Appalachia and with Mississippi ARC strategy to develop a globally competitive workforce through improvements in workforce training and readiness, education initiatives, healthy workforce initiatives, and increased educational achievement.


    Submitted by: 
    Cristin Chandler 
    Library Director 
    Choctaw County Library System

  • Monday, November 23, 2020 9:21 AM | Anonymous

    The Institute of Museum and Library Services has announced $13,800,000 in IMLS CARES Act Grants to support the role of museums and libraries in responding to the coronavirus pandemic. The funded projects were selected from 1,701 applications.


    The Harrison County Library System received $276,107 to fund its Libraries Unbound Mobile Outreach Project.


    Library Director, Sarah Crisler-Ruskey stated, “Capital grants for libraries are rare, so we are elated to receive this funding. Not only will our Libraries Unbound Mobile Outreach Project allow us to better serve the community in the event of future pandemic or natural disaster challenges, it will also allow us to connect more people in the community with the benefits of library services on a regular basis.” 

    The Harrison County Library System will launch a dual approach to respond rapidly to patron needs in a pandemic and provide ongoing connectivity to its users. The library will partner with Coast Transit Authority to supply hotspot access to several county bus routes and a digital material hotspot at the main transit hub. The library will also purchase a mobile outreach vehicle to provide devices, internet access, and library materials where and when needed. Current service figures show over 800,000 trips on CTA routes, giving the library an opportunity to reach thousands of patrons with transportation challenges and time constraints that prevent them from accessing current library services. 

    CTA Executive Director, Kevin Coggin added, “CTA looks forward to partnering with HCLS on this project that will enhance services for our riders and improve the quality of life in our communities.” 

    This IMLS grant opportunity will support 68 museum and library services projects that will take place over the next two years, supporting communities across the nation.


    About the Institute of Museum and Library Services 
    The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's libraries and museums. We advance, support, and empower America's museums, libraries, and related organizations through grant making, research, and policy development. Our vision is a nation where museums and libraries work together to transform the lives of individuals and communities.  


    Submitted by: 
    Sarah Crisler-Ruskey 
    Harrison County Library System 


  • Friday, November 20, 2020 11:14 AM | Anonymous

    Fant Memorial Library has had four new additions: Makaila Offutt, Linda Morgan, Russell Brandon, and Josh Herrick.  All four individuals bring a strong skill set and educational background to our growing program.   


    Makaila Offutt started as a public services associate in April.  She serves patrons at the checkout desk, staffs our online reference chat, helps process interlibrary loan requests, and works on library projects with a particular interest in research guides and accessibility.  She holds a Master of Science in Library Science, a Master of Arts in Education, and a Bachelor of Arts in English.  She is currently pursuing a Master of Fine Arts in Creative Writing.   


    Linda Morgan serves as the assistant to the dean.  She helps to keep our library running smoothly by making sure staff have the resources they need to serve our campus and supports our dean in new initiatives.  Her educational background includes a Diploma in Anglican Studies, Master of Divinity, Bachelor of Arts in English, and a Bachelor of Arts in Biblical Studies.   


    Russell Brandon started working as public service associate in September.  He serves patrons by helping them find the information they need, working with our 3D printers, and developing research guides.  He has strong interests in learning and technology.  Russell holds a Master of Science in Cognitive Science and Psychology, a Cognitive Science Certificate, and a Bachelor of Arts in Psychology. 


    Josh Herrick began serving as a public services associate in September.  In this position, he works with patrons at the checkout desk and via online reference chat, helps develop research guides, and serves on various committees.  He has a particular interest in 3D printing and social media.  He earned a Bachelor of Arts in History, and he is currently enrolled in the graduate library science program as University of North Carolina Greensboro. 


    Submitted by: 
    Makaila A. Offutt 
    Library Associate 

    Fant Memorial Library 

    Mississippi University for Women 


MLA's mission is to provide professional leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of library and information services and the profession of librarianship in order to enhance learning and ensure access to information for all.

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