University Librarians Elected to Offices with MLA and CALA

News item published on: 2016-06-07 13:09:18

Three University Librarians at The University of Southern Mississippi have been elected to executive positions with the Mississippi Library Association and the Chinese American Library Association. 

Xiaojie Duan has been elected to serve as member of the board of the Chinese American Library Association (CALA). Sarah Mangrum will serve as the vice-president/president elect for the Mississippi Library Association (MLA), and Ellen Ruffin has been elected to serve a second term as MLA’s American Library Association (ALA) Councilor. 

Xiaojie Duan, assistant professor and catalog librarian, joined CALA in 2011 upon moving to the United States to begin her masters of library and information science degree. Duan previously served as the president of the Southeast chapter of CALA and has been a part of the bylaws and constitutions committee. As a member of the board for CALA, an affiliate of ALA, she will receive appeals from chapters and board members as well as having a vote in all board decisions. 

“Serving on the board is another way I can contribute to the association, and it is also an opportunity to gain a better understanding of CALA’s structure, allowing me to serve CALA and its members better. It is also a great opportunity for my career as a librarian, allowing me to use what I learn from CALA here at Southern Miss,” said Duan.

Duan has previously served as the liaison for the state of Mississippi, web manager, vice president and president of the CALA Southeast Chapter and co-editor of the CALA newsletter. She is also in the editorial group of CALA Occasional Paper Series, which is an open access publication of CALA and provides an opportunity for CALA members to publish peer-reviewed articles on any aspect of librarianship.

Sarah Mangrum, access services librarian, was recently elected to serve as vice president/president of MLA, which provides leadership for all types of libraries in the state of Mississippi. Mangrum will officially take office in 2017 and as vice president, one of her responsibilities will be to organize the annual conference, which will return to Hattiesburg. She will also serve as a voting member of the executive board and stand in for the president as needed.  

Mangrum, a member of MLA for several years, has been a volunteer at the annual conference and was co-chair of the Peggy May Scholarship Committee in 2014 and 2016. She was a member of the 2014 cohort of the Mississippi Library Leadership Institute, which was made possible by a Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program grant from the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services and administered by the Mississippi Library Commission.   

“Professionally, I feel that this is the natural next step in my career. I have been a librarian at Cook Library for four years and have been very involved in librarianship and committee work at the University level,” Mangrum said. “I am extremely excited to be more involved with the state organization and to be an advocate for Mississippi Libraries.

“My grandmother has been a children’s librarian for the Pike Amite Walthall Library System in McComb, Mississippi for 45 plus years, and she has always told me that if you love what you do it will never feel like work. So far she’s been right, and I hope that 40 years down the road I can still say the same thing.”

Ellen Ruffin, curator of the de Grummond Children’s Literature Collection, has been elected to serve a second term as the ALA Councilor for the state of Mississippi. As the ALA Councilor, Ruffin acts as a liaison between ALA and MLA, attends executive board meetings, attends the ALA mid-winter and annual conferences each year, informs the publicity committee of any items that need to be publicized and completes reports to ALA on behalf of MLA.

Ruffin is active in ALA and MLA. She is currently the chair of the May Hill Arbuthnot Honor Lecture Award Committee, which an annual event featuring an author, critic, librarian, historian or teacher of children’s literature, of any country, who prepares a paper considered to be a significant contribution to the field of children’s literature. She is also an incoming member of the American Library Service to Children (ALSC) Oral History Committee. Ruffin serves on the board of the Mississippi Book Festival, the committee for the Magnolia Book Award and the Ezra Jack Keats executive committee.