University Library Committee

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November 27, 2007

Members Present
Allen, Barkan, Bhasin, Corfis, Frazier, Jasper, Kemnitz, McClements, Olneck, Schneider (recorder), Silberman, Van Gemert

Burton, Carr, Gilbertson, Gottlieb, Guthrie, Helman, Owens, Reeb, Wilson

Graham, Sullivan-Fowler

Minutes of the August 11meeting were approved by consensus

All present introduced themselves


  • The Spring schedule for ULC was discussed. Some possible times will be distributed to the committee members for the ideal time & dates. Frazier asked if there was interest in having the ULC meetings at different libraries around campus. ULC members agreed that they would be interested in having the meetings rotate among campus libraries and include a tour of that library.
  • 2007/2008 Campus Libraries Budget. There has not been a state-funded increase to the budget for the last 10 years. The flat budget combined with significant annual increases in journal costs have required additional cancellations in journal subscriptions this year. Campus administration is aware of the difficulties in providing access to needed library resources and has supported the libraries with one-time funding last fiscal year. Olneck agreed to forward a resolution to the Faculty Senate calling for support of campus library services and staff.

Director’s Report, Ken Frazier

  • Frazier reported that the Big Ten Network will provide 20% of the academic portion of the initial contract (from remaining dollars after money is first allocated to the athletic department) to be allocated to the library. One of the proposals is to use the monies for electronic resources that are core content. There was a question whether the Big Ten Network monies might negatively impact the allocation from the state legislature. Frazier answered that it is not known what the impact would be but it would be hoped that there was a recognition of the serious need for additional collection dollars. Frazier and Van Gemert met with Rebecca Martin, Senior Vice President for Academic Affairs of the UW System, and discussed the library’s need for UW System support for collections.
  • Because of staffing difficulties, the McBurney Disability Resource Center has discontinued their service of providing testing for students with disabilities.  Frazier stated that the library should explore how they might assist in continuing this needed service campus-wide.
  • Copyright continues to remain a critical issue for libraries and for the campus as a whole. The RIAA (Recording Industry Association of America) targets students of the UW and many other universities across the U.S. with cease and desist letters almost daily. The recording industry and others are working aggressively to protect their intellectual property. Frazier and Van Gemert will work with students and library staff in planning a Spring forum on copyright.

Development & Fundraising
Graham began the discussion by describing the work of the UW Foundation and its collaboration with libraries.

  • Gifts and endowments are one of the fastest growing fund lines for the library.
  • Nearly 5% of annual collections spending comes from endowments and gift funds. Much of the spending for special collections also comes from gifts & endowments. Continued spending for special collections comes from estates.
  • Campus buildings, remodeling, and new initiatives are impossible without gifted funds. One example is that the remodeling of the Reading Room of the WHS was possible because of gift funds.
  • The library as space is a very important concept. Much of the College Library is in need of remodeling and space repurposing. The College Library alone has an annual gate count of over 1.3 million. Gift monies will be needed for reworking this important library space. The Memorial Library is over 50 years old and is another space that is badly in need of remodeling and repurposing. One idea that has been put forward is to build a separate space for special collections. Unfortunately new construction is, at best, a long term planning process of at least ten years out. Some of the newest buildings on campus have been specially designed to facilitate research collaboration.
  • The Friends group have built a nearly $1 million endowment for university libraries.
  • Graham & Frazier work closely together and share contacts with each other as needed.
  • A question was forwarded on whether the library talks with departments about their needs. Frazier indicated that the library recognizes the importance of the collections that are in departments and it is hoped that these collections can be identified. It was also pointed out that the library needs to let faculty and staff know about critical collection needs.
  • Committee members wondered whether the UW Foundation has any international efforts in fundraising. Graham indicated that there has been more focused efforts in the last 10-15 years overseas; particularly in the Far East.
  • There was a final question about whether the library has considered creating a Friends’ Board. Frazier indicated that a Board has been considered in the past but there are difficulties in the concept.

The Committee Moved the Meeting to the Reading Room of the Wisconsin Historical Society.
Brown and Gottlieb described the recent fundraising and capital campaign of the WHS. Money has been raised to apply to historical sites around the state ($8 million), to endow a chair ($2.5 million), and also to remodel the Reading Room ($2.1 million). Fundraising is about building relationships and connections. Part of the fundraising efforts of the WHS was a branding campaign that turned out to be very successful. It is who you are as an organization that captures people’s attention and people’s hearts.

Meeting adjourned at 4:20 PM.


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