Call for MLS Committee Participation (Volunteers & Nominations)

Dear Massachusetts Library System Members,

We are seeking librarians and staff from member libraries to provide input to align MLS development with member needs.  We need your support and active participation to strengthen our Massachusetts library community through the services and activities of the MLS.  We are striving to unite, empower, and enhance libraries.  Such participation is a great way to prepare for further leadership at MLS such as serving as a committee chair or on the Executive Board.

Our advisory committees provide an open communications channel between members, staff, and the Executive Board.  While the best communications is face to face, we recognize that it is not always possible and we are usually able to provide a mechanism for virtual participation.  Advisory committees normally meet about four times per year.  We ask you to make a two-year commitment when you join to allow for continuity of group knowledge and processes.

We are calling a new one-year task force to advise MLS on services and programs for academic libraries.  Kelly Woodside, Advisor and Liaison to Academic Libraries, and I will work with a group of members to identify and prioritize programs and services.

We also have four committees that provide advice to the Executive Board and management on the budget, bylaws, personnel, and Executive Board nominations.

Please consider applying for a committee or committees in your area of expertise/interest or nominating a qualified colleague.  We always have more applicants than slots to fill and apologize in advance for our inability to place all applicants.  We strive to recruit a mix of members from various types of libraries from various locations in the Commonwealth.

Please respond using the links at the bottom of this posting by April 15th, at which time we will begin making selections.

Please contact a committee liaison or me if you have any questions about the work of these important groups.

We look forward to working with you,

Greg Pronevitz, Executive Director


Committee Charges

Budget Committee

  • Make recommendations on the budget and plan of service.

Bylaws Committee

  • Review the Bylaws for the purpose of considering any additional, revisions or amendments, which may be deemed necessary.

Nominating Committee

  • Make recommendations to fill vacancies on the Executive Board and to fill officer positions for annual election.

Personnel Committee

  • Work with the Executive Director to make recommendations on personnel policies.


Advisory Committees help shape direction for MLS. Staff from all types of libraries provides advice to the Executive Board and staff.  This input builds the annual Plan of Service and influences the budget.
In forming committees, MLS aims for diversity in library geography, type, and size. Advisory committees meet quarterly or less frequently. Members are appointed for renewable two-year terms. 
Each Committee will have an Executive Board and staff liaison.

Continuing Education and Advisory Services Committee 

  • Advise MLS about continuing education topics of interest to member libraries.
  • Investigate and recommend technologies to deliver continuing education.
  • Recommend policy changes to MLS Executive Board.
  • Advise MLS staff on issues related to providing advisory services to member 

Delivery Advisory Committee 

  • Assess delivery workflow as implemented in member libraries
  • Evaluate practices and technologies that lead to improvement
  • Recommend policies for member eligibility for delivery service
  • Make recommendations to the MLS board to realize improvements for adopting libraries

MassCat Advisory Committee  (Call for participation made separately to MassCat members)

  • Develop and recommend MassCat system policy
  • Provide input on vendor selection
  • Assist in system planning

Resource Sharing Advisory Committee

The new Resource Sharing Advisory Committee reflects the merger of the previous Resource Sharing Advisory Committee with the Online Content Advisory Committee as well as MLS’ focus on the convergence of print and online access and resource sharing. The new committee will meet quarterly and advise MLS on its activities and its role to provide interlibrary loan, document delivery and eContent services (database, eBook, etc.), as well as on related training, support and leadership for member libraries in these areas.

Youth Services Advisory Committee 
(no openings at this time.  We’ll call for volunteers next year.)

  • Assess ongoing needs in the areas of youth services (school and public) and 
young adult services
  • Evaluate and suggest programs and services


Academic Library Services Planning Task Force

The Academic Library Services Planning Task Force will serve for one year beginning in summer 2014.  We hope to recruit members from all quarters of academic library work, e.g., access services, reference and instruction, collections and technical services, and administrators and from public and private academic institutions of various size.  Members will work with staff and Executive Board liaisons to study opportunities for MLS to provide meaningful, valued services to our 128 academic library members and develop practical directions to prioritize and deliver them to members.  The Task Force will meet four or five times during the year.  Some members may work on Task Force projects between meetings.  We’ll ask the Task Force to elect its own Chair.

Click to apply for one or more committees.

Click for rosters and liaisons.

Executive Board Acts to Accept Offer to Purchase Whatley Facility

Dear Massachusetts Library System Members,

The Executive Board met on March 17th to discuss interest by multiple parties in occupying the Whatley facility. We received an offer to purchase the facility from a local businessman that would allow MLS to remain in-place for up to 18 months to give us sufficient time to find a suitable office/training facility in Western Massachusetts. We also received letters of interest in creating a joint use facility from local communities (Deerfield, Sunderland, and Whately).

After meeting with town representatives and a thoughtful discussion about the pros and cons of accepting the offer to purchase and the towns’ interest, the Board voted to accept the offer to purchase from the local businessman. This decision will allow MLS to focus funding and efforts on services to libraries. MLS has occupied and covered the expenses for the facility, which is too large for our needs since July 2010. The expense and management of the surplus space is a burden.

When MLS was formed, we expressed our commitment to maintain an office and training facility in Western Massachusetts. Nevertheless, we planned to sell the facility to operate as efficiently as possible. However, there was a strong interest among librarians in Western Massachusetts to remain in the facility, which caused us to reconsider. We sought a tenant to make the facility cost effective. We did so for more than a year to no avail.

We then put the facility on the market for sale. An offer to purchase came quickly but it didn’t work out because the buyer could not sell his existing building, which was a contingency of his offer.

We put the facility back on the market last month. We were presented with a second offer very quickly. We also received letters of interest from local communities. We invited the town representatives to our Board meeting to discuss their plans. We learned that the towns would have needed to go to town meeting prior to making a firm offer.

The Board decided to accepting the time-sensitive offer to purchase as a clear path to eliminating the financial and management responsibilities the Whately facility requires.

Please contact me if you have any questions.


Greg Pronevitz

Executive Director


It’s time for the March Delivery Survey!

 Use the link below to access the online survey:

Once again, MLS will be collecting delivery statistics from all member libraries that receive delivery via the delivery service during the week of March 17th-March 21st. Accurate figures on how delivery is used to help us determine how to allocate funding during our planning and budgeting process.
As we did in October, we will be collecting data online using a Survey Monkey survey. We have created an online survey to capture delivery statistics, including bins put into delivery, bins delivered and items put into delivery. In addition to the delivery survey statistics we are attempting to capture, we have included an optional section relating to your overall satisfaction with the delivery service. We ask that you answer these questions as best you can.

Lastly, we understand sometimes the designated week does not work for all libraries. If necessary, you may complete the survey for the week after.
Please review the instructions and if you have any questions, comments or concerns, you may contact us at either 508-357-2121 / 866-627-7228 or via email at

Thank you for your help!