HSLI Newsletter


Serving Illinois Health Information Professionals

Conference Report – Leslie Menz

Thank you so very much to the 2013 Syed Maghrabi Scholarship Committee for awarding me a scholarship to Midwest Chapter MLA 2013 Navigating a River of Information October 4 through October 8, 2013 in East Peoria, IL. It was an honor to be chosen.

The conference was held on the banks of the Illinois River at the East Peoria Embassy Suites East Peoria Hotel & River Front Conference Center. I am compelled to congratulate the planning committee for its choice of venue and most importantly, the food, which was exquisite.

On Saturday, October 5, 2013 I attended Emerging Technologies which was presented by Melissa DeSantis and Gabriel Rios. Not only did I learn more about new technologies than I ever thought I could, but Melissa and Gabriel’s presentation style made the four hours fly by.

Vendors and more food completed the day with Nancy’s Reception.

Sunday, October 6, 2013 I attended Keynote Speaker Michelle Kraft (the Krafty Librarian), again, learning more about new technologies and what they mean to the medical librarian. Having followed Michelle’s blog for many years, it was a pleasure to hear her speak in person. I also agree heartily with her suggestion to simplify cataloging. Revolutionary? Indeed, but much needed.

Following Michelle’s presentation was the GMR Technology Forum: Technology in Disaster Planning and Response. This information came in exceptionally handy (unfortunately) when the November 17 tornado hit my home town of Washington, Illinois. I remember one piece of advice that came in very handy, use your phone as a flashlight.

Hospitality Welcome Event, Peoria Riverfront Museum.

The museum event was very fun, with food catered from One World. It was odd to be in the Museum after hours and a chance for me to finally see the facility.

Monday, October 7, 2013 Plenary Speaker Sarah Houghton The Librarian in Black. Sarah was the highlight of the convention for me, having followed her blog for years. I didn’t know she was from Illinois until she spoke. Her tales of her adventures as Director for the San Rafael Public Library (California), were edifying and entertaining. Her quirkiness is part of her charm. That, combined with her practical solutions that fell under the category of “why didn’t I think of that?” wrapped up the conference for me most satisfactorily.

Last but not least was the opportunity to so many of my colleagues from the past conferences, networking, and catching up with them. Again, thank you to the Scholarship Committee for providing me this opportunity.

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