Trustee Meet-ups

Trustee Meet-ups are casual, fee-free, and just for trustees. Babs Kelly, BCLTA Director for Learning and Development hosts and moderates these sessions which are done through the BCLTA Zoom account.

Meet-ups are different from BCLTA Core Governance Workshops and BCLTA does not necessarily endorse all of the governance practices that trustees share in the Meet-ups.

The Meet-ups are an opportunity for trustees to come together from across the province to discuss their questions, ideas, and board practices. All trustees are invited to send their suggestions for topics and their offers to lead a BCLTA Trustee Meet-up discussion to Babs Kelly, BCLTA Director of Learning and Development at babs.kelly@bclta.

The details:

  • Fee free and just for BC public library trustees
  • We use Zoom, but you do not need a Zoom account to join the session
  • Sessions run from 45 to 60 minutes
  • At this time there is no cap on the number that may attend
  • Meetings are hosted by Babs Kelly (BCLTA Learning and Development)
  • To register email Babs at

Fall 2022

October 12th, 7PM to 8PM (PT).

BC Public Library Boards and Dress Code

Join Babs Kelly (BCLTA Director of Learning and Development) and trustees from across the province to talk about BC public library boards and dress codes. Dress codes, stated or not, are part of your board’s culture – let’s talk about it! 

  • How does your board discuss and decide (implicitly or explicitly) board meeting and events dress code?
  • How does the dress code reflect the work of the board and the values and culture of the organization?
  • How do you talk about dress code with new trustees?

November 2nd, 7PM to 8PM (PT)

BCLTA, UBCM, and Provincial Advocacy

Come meet with Jerrilyn Kirk, BCLTA’s Executive Director and Josie Chuback from the Board of Directors of BCLTA!

Jerrilyn will share with us her portion of the Partners’ 2022 UBCM Convention presentation and then we will have time for a chat with her and Josie about the Partners’ UBCM Open House and Jerrilyn’s work with the Partners, and her role at BCLTA in representing trustees at the Partners’ table and to the provincial government.

Past Trustee Meet-ups

April 2022

Rules of Order: Transparency and accountability at meetings

This Meet-up topic is back due to popular demand! We need rules of order (or an agreement on process) and so let’s talk about how they can engage or bore, include or exclude, make it easy or make it hard, and share power or hold power at board meetings.

And most importantly we will discuss what this means in your local context and to your public library’s governance. 

February 2022

Mari Martin, Director of the Public Libraries Branch will joined usin exploring a few common discussions that arise from the Library Act, such as Section 54 (protection against lawsuits), appointment of council or regional district representatives, and board recruitment responsibilities.

October 2021

  • It all Depends: The 2nd Annual Round-up! 
  • With guest Mari Martin, Director, Public Libraries Branch
  • Questions commonly brought to BCLTA where the answers tend to begin with “It all depends”.

September 2021

  • Back to board business – but is it business as usual?
  • As your board reconvenes after the summer, what’s different, better, and stronger with your meetings and what would you like to see grow or change further?

June 2021

  • Rules of Order: Transparency and accountability at meetings
  • Led by Babs Kelly, trustees discussed how rules of order (or an agreement on process) are about how we engage or bore, include or exclude, make it easy or make it hard, and share power or hold power.

May 2021

  • Succession planning, mentoring, and terms of office. Andy Ackerman will start the conversation and Babs Kelly will moderate and highlight what recent learnings around inclusion, equity, and decolonization bring to this topic.

April 2021

  • Janet Hodgkinson, Chair of the Gibsons & District Public Library, will start this Meet-up by sharing her board’s experience in taking turns giving the territorial acknowledgment that is at the beginning of each monthly meeting.
  • We will then move into a discussion about other practices or aspired-to-practices across the province and what this means for public library governance and reconciliation. 

March 2021

  • Inclusive Public Library Governance. Felicia Zhu, a trustee with the West Vancouver Memorial Library Board, posed questions to start a conversation about inclusive governance and the public library board.

February 2021

  • Welcoming New Trustees: What are you doing? Babs Kelly presented tried and true practices and emerging trends to start a discussion on what boards are doing, or would like to do, to welcome new trustees to the governance team. 

January 2021

  • Who are our Stakeholders and Why are They Important? Anni Holtby shared a practical and interactive visual for charting influencers and community stakeholders for board advocacy work.

November 2020

  • COVID-19, Where are We Now? Babs Kelly, BCLTA Director for Learning & Development, with special guest Mari Martin, Director of the Libraries Branch, hosted a discussion with trustees from across the province on how they are governing during COVID-19 and their hopes and plans for 2021.

October 2020

  • Babs Kelly and Andrea Freeman, the Executive Director for the Association of BC Public Library Directors, led discussions on two different Saturdays on the board’s roles and responsibilities for library director support, evaluations, and compensations.

September 2020

  • Susan Koch, former Richmond Public Library trustee and BCLTA Director, and currently the COO & VP Accounting at Carbon Engineering Ltd. returned to BCLTA to offer her very popular overview of how to read public library financial reports.
  • Andy Ackerman, Fort St. John Public Library Board Chair led a discussion on chairing Public Library Association (PLA) AGMs.

August 2020

  • Babs Kelly explores the questions commonly brought to BCLTA where the answer tends to begins with “It all depends”. Due to popular demand this theme will be repeated every now and then.

July 2020

  • Mari Martin, the Director of the Libraries Branch at the BC Ministry of Education provided an overview of the provincial strategic plan for public library service, the mandate and work of the Libraries Branch, and how one-time funding (see the April news release) in 2020 will help British Columbians gain access to technology and digital resources through libraries.

May 2020

  • Andrea Freeman, the Executive Director of ABCPLD, provided an overview of ABCPLD and outlined the services that are available to library directors.

April 2020

  • The first Trustee Meet-up was with Kyla Epstein, BCLTA Governance Workshop facilitator and former Chair of Vancouver Public Library, who led a discussion on governance and power.