...una biblioteca es un gabinete mágico en el cual hay muchos espíritus hechizados. Despiertan cuando los llamamos; mientras no abrimos un libro, ese libro, literalmente, es un volumen, es una cosa entre las cosas.      - Emerson

Public Libraries Using Spanish





Yes, Flaco is really gonna miss L.A.

SOL 67 Contents:

October 15, 2001
1. Who's that Spanish-speaking guy who hangs out at the library?
2. A chance to purchase libros from a library person
3. Know any great libraries in Guadalajara?
4. Denver schools get 30,000 Spanish-language books--for free
5. Feds launch Web clearinghouse for health info in Spanish
6. Fundraising for Mexican WTC victims' families
7. Parenting advice in Spanish: Teaching tolerance
8. http:// is not a four-letter word

1. Where Juanes probably wrote some of those great songs

Nobody got as many Latin Grammy nominations this year as Juanes: his sensational debut album Fíjate Bien was up for awards in seven categories. It would've been a big night for the young Colombian musician. Too bad the ceremonies were scheduled for September 11.

He spent a few years in Los Angeles, writes Agustin Gurza in the October 7 LA Times, but he wasn't here to party. "In L.A., Juanes became somewhat of a recluse who had to be encouraged to go out to a movie...He'd spend time in the local library learning how to conjugate the verb 'to be.' "

Juanes was, is, and will be an important voice in Spanish-language pop. Read more about him and see him play the album's title track (it's about land mines, folks) at

2. Materials in Spanish, from a Spanish-language library specialist

From: Carolyn Ramirez
Subject: Spanish titles

I provide Spanish services for a local public library near Chicago on a part-time basis.  In my other capacity, I work also part-time for Independent Publishers Group (IPG) as the Spanish specialist.  Essentially I wear two hats, one in the private sector and one in the public. It is sometimes hard to juggle.  In both I try to market Spanish books.  I would like to let the SOL members know about IPG's Spanish initiatives. 

I'd be happy to send each member a free catalog, and I would welcome any suggestions you might have. We do exhibit at ALA and I have been in touch with Reforma. Thank you in advance for your time and attention.  If you would like to learn more about IPG you can visit our website at

Sincerely, Carolyn Ramirez
Independent Publishers Group
814 Franklin Street
Chicago IL 60610

3. The Feria Internacional del Libro

From: Lisa Regimbal
Subject: Libraries to visit in Guadalajara

Bruce-I was wondering if anyone had suggestions of libraries to visit in Guadalajara when we go for the book fair in November. There are 3 of us from Multnomah County going to the FIL and we'd like to add a library visit to our trip. Has anyone done this? Thanks, Lisa

Lisa Regimbal
Libros Librarian
Multnomah County Library
385 NW Miller
Gresham, OR 97030

[Flaco replied:]
Hi Lisa! I'll put your inquiry in the next SOL, but in the meantime I think you'll really enjoy this item from the 'Library Links' page of PLUS:

Lessons Learned by an Exchange Librarian in Guadalajara: "On Valentine's Day 1998, I arrived in Guadalajara, Mexico, for a two-week adventure in Mexican librarianship..." writes Lisa Katzenstein. The Texan's story is perceptive and informative.

[And if you read Spanish be sure to visit this year's FIL XV website at]

4. Mexico gives a mountain of books to US school system

October 4th's Denver Post ran a story about a windfall the city's school district received from the Mexican government. Here's the lead: "Mexicans in Denver send a ton of money south, so Mexico returned the favor Wednesday by sending 30,000 Spanish-language  textbooks for use in Denver Public Schools."

The article goes on to say, "Even Denver's most vocal critic of bilingual education said the books would help. 'I don't care if they're reading English books or Spanish books, as long as they're reading,' said Rita Montero, who heads the Colorado branch of English for the Children, a California-based group trying to ban the use of languages other than English in classrooms."

Get the whole story at,1002,53%257E168372,00.html

5. Salud on the Web: healthfinder español

[This, from REFORMAnet:]

From: "Marlo Young" <>
Subject: Consumer Health Information en español

October 5, 2001

The Department of Health and Human Services  Launches  healthfinder español to Provide Spanish-Speaking Consumers with Easy Access to Reliable Health Information

HHS Secretary Tommy G. Thompson today announced the launch of healthfinder español, a Spanish-language Web site that helps consumers track down reliable health information quickly and easily on the Internet.

Available at the new site creates an easy-to-use Spanish-language consumer resource modeled after the award-winning healthfinder site.  healthfinder español brings together in one easy-to-use site Spanish-language health information on over 300 topics from 70 government agencies and nonprofit organizations, including those health issues of greatest concern to those of Hispanic heritage.  The site offers both a Spanish text search and a list of topics in Spanish that can be browsed.

6. Aid gathered for Mexican 9/11 victims' families

From: Maria Chacon
Subject: Mexican Immigrant WTC Victims May Number 500

According to USA Today, as of September 20th, Mexican losses numbered five hundred people, more victims than from any other nation outside the U.S. They worked at Windows on the World, office cafeterias, cleaning services, and delivery companies.  The media has paid little, if any, attention to this group of innocent victims. They worked and lived in New York City and the attack has left their families in despair and sorrow, just as with all the other victims.

The Asociación Tepeyac, a not-for-profit organization that represents Mexican and other Latino immigrants in NYC, is receiving donations for the victims' relatives.

The address is:
Asociación Tepeyac de New York
251 W. 14th Street
New York, NY 10011

Maria Chacon, Ph.D.
Policy Research Coordinator
California Policy Research Center
University of California Office of the President
1950 Addison Street, Suite 202, Berkeley CA, 94704-1182
Phone: (510)-643-1538  Fax: (510)-642-8793

7. Pluricultural parenting resource in Spanish

The Anti-Defamation League offers a Spanish-language version of its "What to Tell Your Child About Prejudice and Discrimination" at

8. On URL prefixes

[Thanks to Kathleen for this heads-up. And please don't forget that each issue of SOL is posted on the Web, sometimes in an enhanced version, before it's mailed out--the one you're reading, for example, is already up at with the addition of a stirring photograph that illustrates street-level culinary syncretism]

From: Kathleen Hanselmann
Subject: Citing sites


If you give the address for a site with the http:// in addition to the people can click on it directly instead of having to print your message - quite long or copy and paste the address.

What I am trying to say is that clicking on it would mean I would have tried the Michoacan site, but going to more trouble means that I give it a miss.

Thanks for your great information!


9. All on the same page

Seems that a lot of towns and even entire states have latched on to the exciting "let's all try'n read the same darn book at the same time" craze. Flaco shudders at the thought of being asked to select one book for a whole city, but Racine, Wisconsin made an inspired choice for its program. The September 18 Milwaukee Journal Sentinel reports, "Outside literary circles, inside coffeehouses and across town, people in Racine are reading Rudolfo Anaya's classic, Bless Me, Ultima...So far, at least 50 people have read or are reading the 24 library copies of Anaya's book...The library also has six copies of the book in Spanish, Bendíceme, Ultima, and several interlibrary loan copies. Those numbers don't include the books in both Spanish and English sold at local bookstores...Anaya's book was chosen, in part, to coincide with and celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month..."

Find the rest of the article at

10. Latino Technology Network to link community groups nationwide

[This item comes by way of Kathleen de la Peña McCook's outstanding e-newsletter, "A Librarian At Every Table":]

The Latino Technology Network (LTN) has been awarded a federal grant to establish a virtual private network to connect 12 diverse Community Based Organizations (CBOs) across the nation. The LTN project will facilitate information sharing, web hosting, education, health, public policy education, and promote cooperation among groups providing services to Latino communities. Community Technology Centers will be established within 11 of the organizations for educational and technology training.

Kathleen de la Peña McCook
University of South Florida, Library & Information Science

11. Still more library Spanish on the Web

From: Wanda Reinford
Subject: Tu Bibliotecario Electrónico/PLUS websites

Hi, I'm a librarian at San Antonio Public Library, and am working on updating our "Enlaces en Español" website. You've got some great links on your sites, and we appreciate your linking to our site.  I just have a few suggestions for you: 

* Some sites you might want to add to the PLUS site (sorry if they're already there someplace, but I couldn't find them):
--Basic Spanish for Librarians
--English-Spanish - Spanish-English Language Resources for Library and Information Science Professionals
--Spanish Storytimes, for librarians with limited Spanish skills:

Hope this is helpful.

Wanda Reinford
Reference Librarian
San Antonio Public Library, Central Library
600 Soledad, San Antonio TX 78205
(210) 207-2565

12. About La migra

Wanda also noted a lack of timely US Immigration & Naturalization Service information on Tu Bibliotecario Electrónico. The INS does not yet bother to furnish much Spanish-language content on the Web, so I've revised TBE to link to Terra's frequently updated immigration news page at

A general overview of key immigration facts, posted in 2000 by the University of Minnesota Extension Service, is side-by-side bilingual and might also be of interest to you:

If you know of good, up-to-date sites about immigration law, please do tell your SOL sisters & brothers about them!

13. Ask the experts, in Spanish, why your boss is loco

A Spanish-language, advertising-supported site called AyudaCentro works something like, with the added feature that many of the resident 'experts' (on topics such as, for example, immigration, auto repair, and workplace psychology) field user questions free of charge:

14. Meet William Yurvati

From: William Yurvati


I am a library technician at Kutztown University in Pennsylvania and a graduate student in the MLIS distance education program at the University of Pittsburgh.  I come from a mixed background.  My mother is Puerto Rican and my father Slovak/Hungarian.  I am interested in Hispanic/Latino library issues and discovered the SOL discussion list while browsing the Internet.  I would like very much to subscribe to the discussion list.  ¡Gracias!

Bill Yurvati
Rohrbach Library
Kutztown University

15. Araceli goes to library school--hey, she must really enjoy this kind of work!

[As noted back in SOL 65, Araceli Quezada's outreach, programming, and collection development work at the Alameda Free Library in California received a glowing writeup in the Alameda Journal. Here she checks in with some good news and to describe a couple successful recent programs:]

From: Araceli Quezada
Subject: In the paper

----Hola Bruce,

I didn't know what to expect but was very pleased with the article.  I really appreciate your support and especially the incredible resources you provide so many of us.  I am definitely staying on now that the grant is ending.  I have been hired as a library technician and will still be overseeing the Spanish Collection.  I remain the only Spanish-speaking staff person.  And the best news is that there has been a significant increase in library usage by Spanish-speaking patrons.  There is a visible presence at our libraries now.  Every time I come in to work, I am bombarded with messages and requests.  And even other staff members have commented on how successful the program has been.  I am very pleased because of the collection and the many new friends I have made.

Oh, and I've decided to go to library school.  I am currently finishing a master's in Ethnic Studies at San Francisco State that I began a few years ago.  My studies were interrupted by the birth of my three children.  I am just now feeling ready to resume and have a new direction as well.  I plan to do a combined program or double master's with the library science program at San Jose State. 

I have been so busy keeping up with the program that I had not had the time to update you on the programs that I implemented.  I wanted to report that they were very successful in bringing in new users.  I did an internet workshop, entitled, "El Internet es Fácil" which was a basic introduction to the world wide web and e-mail.  A Spanish-speaking patron volunteered to teach the workshop and it was awesome.  Patrons found it very helpful and wanted the classes to continue. Many who came to the workshop are now regular users at the library.  They are no longer intimidated by the language or technology.  It's really exciting when we can make resources accessible to everyone. 

Also, Pathfinder Books called me to offer their Spanish-language titles.  In the process, we organized a Teen Book Talk in Spanish.  I invited Spanish-language classes from the local high school.  One 'Spanish for Native Speakers' class came in addition to community members.  In all, every chair was taken.  It was relatively easy to organize and very effective.  I got young adults and their parents to register for new library cards and I was able to inform their families about our services as well.

These are just a couple of programs that really worked to bring in new users.  I hope they can help others in their outreach efforts.

Thanks again for helping our program with your contribution to the article.


16. Here's your chance to work where Sandy Berman made library history

Subject: Principal Librarian Posting for SOL

Hennepin County Library Promotes Full and Equal Access to Information and Ideas, the Love of Reading, the Joy of Learning, and Engagement with the Arts, Sciences and Humanities.

The list formed will be used to fill current positions in Collection Management and Bibliographic Services (CMS) and Public Services and positions that occur in the next 12 months.

The Collection Management position will:

§    Provide leadership in collection development for the library system
§    Manage the annual materials budget of $4.2 million
§    Identify collection needs, gaps and future initiatives
§    Supervise
§    Facilitate planning of and convene Collection Management meetings
§    Initiate and maintain collaborations with other library systems in the area
§    Participate in County-wide teams
§    Participate in User Centered Services leadership

In addition to managing and planning library services and resources, the Public Service position will:
§    Assist patrons in the selection of appropriate materials
§    Research and answer reference questions
§    Select, train, and supervise staff in library policies and procedures
§    Weed the materials collection
§    Explain library services to community groups
§    Lead or be a member of special project teams
§    Participate in County-wide teams
§    Participate in User Centered Services leadership

The ideal candidates will have:
§    ALA-accredited Masters degree in Library Science of Information Management
§    Four years of professional library experience including two years of supervisory experience of professional and support staff in a large public library
§    Ability to relate collection development and management to a centralized collection program and to the overall library mission

Résumés will be reviewed and invitations to interview will be based on an assessment of education and experience.

Hennepin County, an Equal Opportunity Employer, will hire and promote without regard to such non-job-related distinctions as race, creed, religion, age, sex (except when sex is a Bona Fide Occupational Qualification), disability, marital status, sexual orientation, public assistance or national origin.

Sandra Thoma
Human Resources Assistant
Hennepin County Library
(952) 847-8591


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