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December 12, 2022

Are you interested in an initiative to encourage Ohio library staff to collaborate and develop innovative ideas that address current library needs and challenges? Do you want to be involved in a program that would develop your leadership, team-building, and project management skills?

The State Library of Ohio and OhioNet are pleased to announce ILEAD Ohio is back in 2023. ILEAD Ohio helps develop present and future Ohio library leaders, no matter their position or title, through a team-based, problem-solving project. The goal of ILEAD Ohio is to support participants in addressing professional and/or community needs through the exploration and application of innovative communication, technology, and collaborative tools and skills.

“I’m thrilled that the State Library and OhioNet are once again partnering to bring the immersive, “library camp”-esque, ILEAD Ohio program back in 2023,” expressed Associate State Librarian for Library Development, Evan T. Struble. “Since 2019—our last ILEAD cohort—the planning committee has been coming up with ideas on how to refresh the sessions offered, speakers brought in, and team mentors identified. We’re certain that the 2023 cohort will be in for a fun, thought-provoking, and supportive experience!”

Teams of participants made up of Ohio library staff members will implement collaborative and/or interactive tools that foster community engagement as well as develop leadership, creativity, and solution-focused change. ILEAD Ohio will expand library staff members’ leadership skills and their abilities to use modern communication, web, and collaborative tools to address an identified community need. Through the 9-month program, participants engage in a conversation to identify a community need; identify user representatives to provide critical feedback during the development of the project; and grow as a leader and gain valuable experience in project management.

“Participating in ILEAD gave me the opportunity to network with and get to know library professionals across the state. Hearing their stories and ideas helped me hone in on the aspects of librarianship that I was passionate about and gave me the confidence to go after opportunities I might have otherwise let pass me up. Further, I’ve gained a number of mentors from the program and kindled lifelong friendships. I’ve used a lot of the professional advice and experience from ILEAD in my current role as a supervisor, from teambuilding activities to coaching staff on how to get to the next stage in their career. “ – Hilary Harlan, 2019 alumni, Lead Librarian, Worthington Libraries

The ILEAD steering committee will host an informational webinar on January 12, 2023, at 2 p.m. Participants will learn more about the ILEAD Ohio program, application process, creating a team, and ask questions. The webinar will be recorded. ILEAD Ohio 2023 applications open in early January. Check back for more information on how to apply.

Media Contact:

Marsha McDevitt-Stredney, Public Information Officer and Director, Marketing & Communications (614) 644-6875 marshams@library.ohio.gov