by Leah Hinds (Assistant Director, Charleston Conference)
We announced in late May that the Charleston Vendor Showcase will be moving to the Grand Ballroom of the Gaillard Center this year. We’re very excited about the extra room and the ability to keep all the vendor tables in one location. Toni Nix, the powerhouse who manages the event, worked tirelessly to facilitate all logistics that made the move possible. Please note that the Registration Check-in Desk will remain at the original location in the lobby of the Francis Marion Hotel, and shuttle transportation will be available between both locations.
Speaking of the registration desk, our Conference Registrar Sharna Williams has retired from the College of Charleston Addlestone Library as of May 31! She will continue to work with us for the conference (whew!) and is looking forward to a more flexible schedule. Congrats, hugs, and high fives, Sharna!
Excited to announce some of our plenary presenters for 2017! Brewster Kahle, Founder and Digital Librarian of the Internet Archive, Loretta Parham, CEO and Director of the Atlanta University Center (AUC) Robert W. Woodruff Library, and Georgios Papadopoulos, Founder and CEO of Atypon, will all be presenting in Charleston this year. We are greatly looking forward to hearing their contributions. More to be announced soon!
We had a large number of top notch preconference proposals this year! A full list of sessions is available at http://www.charlestonlibraryconference.com/preconferences/. Some of the topics included are an acquisitions bootcamp, budgeting, electronic resources management, combatting “fake news,” enriched metadata, negotiating with vendors, and more! Registration for the preconferences is available on the main conference registration page.
The launch of the Charleston Fast Pitch session was a great success at last year’s conference. The aim of the contest, which was modeled after venture capital funding competitions, was to recognize and reward new innovation in academic library and information management. From a pool of many qualified applicants, the committee selected four finalists to present their “pitches” at the conference. Two winners were selected, one by a panel of judges and one by popular audience vote. Winners were awarded $2,500 each to further fund their projects. We’re happy to say that the Fast Pitch competition will be back for 2017! Application information will be posted on the conference website. Summaries of the 2016 winners and runners up can be found at https://www.against-the-grain.com/2017/01/atg-special-report-the-charleston-library-conference-fast-pitch-2016/. Start warming up your pitch!
Speaking of conference sessions returning for 2017, the Charleston Premiers are going to be back and better than ever! Get ready to walk the red carpet to a Hollywood-style awards show. Designed to offer publishers and vendors the chance to showcase their newest and most innovative products, platforms, and/or content, this session will be augmented with an audience voting segment this year. We will be awarding several “Best Of” categories to increase audience engagement and participation. Presentations will still be organized in a “lightning round” format with 5 minute presentations, back-to-back. The Premiers are organized and moderated by Trey Shelton, Chair, Acquisitions & Collections Services at the George A. Smathers Libraries, University of Florida.