Vision 2010


By all accounts, the Oregon Library Association is one of the more active and productive chapters within the library profession. Our successes include the passage of important legislation to improve the funding for libraries, creative collaboration to enhance efficiency, the widespread incorporation of technology, and the promotion of intellectual freedom issues.

One of the reasons behind the Association's recent success is the ambitious plan outlined in the Vision 2000 document. Vision 2000 grew out of a need identified by the OLA Executive Board for an effective long-range planning tool. The final product, submitted to the membership in 1991, was a combination of vision and practicality. Vision 2000 was successful because it stretched well beyond the status quo and looked at future possibilities, such as statewide reference services. Then it indicated specific paths to accomplish those visions. The document has provided the library community with a useful set of goals which address the quality of library collections and services, the need for unrestricted access to resources, and the necessity of a well-trained and knowledgeable staff.

In 1999, the OLA Executive Board charged a new Vision 2010 committee to develop a road map for the next decade, building on the success of Vision 2000. The Vision 2010 committee developed its plan by meshing the library community's perspective with a vision of what Oregon will be like in 2010. The final product describes a vision of excellent library service in the year 2010 from multiple perspectives. It also frankly addresses the possibility of our failure to adapt to a changing world and those consequences.

We believe the future of Oregon's libraries is based on a sound and thorough understanding of Oregon's future. Consequently, our first task was to understand the current state of Oregon and our libraries. We conducted three environmental scans to this end. The first scan describes the external environment in Oregon. It includes trends in the economy, politics, education, demographics, social issues, etc. The second scan examines the library profession within Oregon - its demographics, its strengths and weaknesses. The third scan highlight trends within our profession. It identifies four challenges: maintaining collections, copyright and privacy, staffing issues, and users expectations of our services.

Our next step was to solicit visions from our members and then draft a preliminary document to share for feedback. This was done by spring of 2000. After that we struggled for several months trying make traditional planning terminology cover the future. Then, the committee experienced an epiphany; our real challenge was to describe how libraries had to transform to become successful in a competitive environment. Through our reading and discussion, we realized that libraries no longer had a lock on the information dissemination business. Casual readers and serious researchers had other more convenient options. The print–on–paper world gave us a comfortable monopoly. We could say to our users, "Come to us and do it our way." We just needed to figure outhow to communicate this urgency to our members and frame a roadmap for the next ten years.

So in September of 2001, our vision was adopted by the OLA Executive Board and published as the fall issue of the OLA Quarterly. It does not have goals, objectives and strategies. Rather, it has a central call to action surrounded by stories describing libraries in the future, an editorial that should scare people into action, classified ads that reflect the reality of our future. Some may think this approach is whimsical or bizarre. Rather, we anticipate that people will read it and use its ideas and images as resources for both OLA and libraries throughout the state. Individual libraries can start to address identified needs at the local level-within their city, their campus, their school district, or their user community. OLA is using the vision to stimulate discussion create legislative proposals, promote collaboration, and provide staff development opportunities to keep pace with internal and external changes.



The Vision 2010 Committee believes that the citizens of Oregon are best served if libraries remain at the center of our communities and campuses as primary providers of information services.

As described in the various scenarios of the future, we face many challenges headed into this next decade. We also face at least three major risks. The risk of inertia is perhaps the most serious threat to the future of libraries. Inertia is often described as a preference for the status quo, but it also can refer to an incremental pace that lags behind the rate of change elsewhere in our communities. The second risk is adopting a plan so inclusive that it lacks power, focus, and significance. The Vision 2010 Committee wanted to suggest a call to action that would result in substantial progress in a few key areas. And the final risk is that our libraries' valuable resources will be underutilized, and our opportunity to continue to serve the needs of our citizens will be lost. To this end, the Vision 2010 committee challenges our profession to take creative steps to maximize the use of our collections and services.

Statewide Library Card

·         Sweep away regional, jurisdictional and procedural boundaries so every Oregonian has a library card that works at any publicly supported library.

Statewide Library Catalog

·         Make the holdings of all Oregon libraries accessible through one catalog.

·         Encourage Oregonians to place inter-library loans through the statewide catalog.

·         Deliver library materials and information directly to the customer.

Statewide Access to Electronic Resources

·         Secure a broad and deep menu of state–funded electronic databases that are avaliable to all libraries and library customers in Oregon.

E–Reference Services<

·         Create a collaborative on–line reference service that is available 24 hours a day, 7 days a week.

Statewide High Speed Network

·         Ensure that every library has easy and affordable access to a high quality, high bandwidth telecommunications network.

Serve Every Child

·         Nurture the joy of reading by providing every child in Oregon with quality library services from both public and school libraries.

Strong and Diverse Workforce<

·         Bring the highest caliber of leadership to every Oregon library.

·         Use the broadest range of skills and abilities from people with diverse educational, experiential, and cultural backgrounds.



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·  Margaret Barnes
[email protected]
Dallas Public Library

·  David Bilyeu
[email protected]
Central Oregon Community College, University Center

·  Eva Calcagno
[email protected]
Washington County Cooperative Library Services

·  Mary Devlin
[email protected]

·  Dale Edwards
[email protected]
Treasure Valley Community College

·  Michael Gaston
[email protected]
Deschutes County Library

·  Jeanne Goodrich
[email protected]
Multnomah County Library

·  Jan Griffin
[email protected]
Eugene Public Library

·  Lajean Humphries
[email protected]
Schwabe, Williamson & Wyatt

·  Curtis Kiefer
[email protected]
Corvallis-Benton County Public Library

·  Jeri Petzel
[email protected]
Wilsonville Primary School

·  Charles Piquette
[email protected]
Oregon Coast Community College

·  Wyma Rogers
[email protected]
Newport Public Library

·  Terry Rohe
[email protected]
Portland State University

·  Joanna Rood
[email protected]
Library Information Network of Clackamas County

·  Jim Scheppke
[email protected]
State Librarian

·  Janet Webster
[email protected]
Hatfield Marine Science Center

·  Dallas Young Shaffer
[email protected]
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Oregon Library Association
P.O. Box 2042, Salem OR 97308
[email protected]