The Conference Convenor is a person in your neighbourhood...

The Conference Convenor is a person in your neighbourhood...

Remember that song from Sesame Street?  The “who are the people in your neighbourhood” one?  Well, this is the first in a series of posts where we introduce the people  in the LIANZA Conference neighbourhood and who better to start with than the Conference convenor, Lynley Macleod?

Kia ora Lyn, can you tell everyone what your library (or possibly non-library) background is?

I started my library life as a library assistant in Circulation at Dunedin Public Libraries in 1986. I moved on to being a library assistant on the Bookbus for almost 11 years – the most fun I have had in my library career was had on the bus. The highlight being when Elaine and I took the bus on a tiki tour from Dunedin to Palmerston North to the Mobile Meet – we are available any time you like to autograph your copy of New Zealand Classic Car!

I took on various roles at DP, lastly as Head of Marketing and Administration, retiring from this in 2007. I am now enjoying life, being back in my home town and getting to meet all sorts of fascinating, amusing and occasionally fraudulent people in my new job as a motel owner.

Being convenor of a LIANZA conference is a fairly large undertaking. What made you want to take on the role?

When word got out that I would be living in Christchurch and would not have ‘a real job’ it was suggested that I go for this role. I leapt at the chance as I was wondering how I would manage being completely cut off from libraries and librarians. Can you imagine a life without a daily helping of librarians? Not sure how I can keep this up after the conference. Any suggestions welcome.

Do you ever get freaked out that there are so many things to organise?

Never – we have such a great team of volunteers working on the conference and a fantastic professional conference company. I am constantly amazed at the drive and enthusiasm there is in libraries in the Aoraki region and know that each portfolio is so well managed. The team around me make this a dream job. Library Managers around the region need a huge pat on the back for freeing up so much of their staff time to make this conference work.

What does the theme of this year’s conference “he tangata, he tangata, he tangata” mean to you?

To me it encapsulates what libraries are all about. Without people we would not have libraries. Our founders, our customers, our staff, our business partners all make us what we are. The theme gives us a chance to listen to and learn from the wise seniors of our profession – it lets us mix and mingle with the present high flyers and library enthusiasts and lastly we get to delve in the future and crystal ball gaze at what might be out there for us in the future.

Which literary character do you most relate to and why?

Sybil Fawlty – lots of similarities, not that Sybil was a librarian in her first life.

Anything else you’d like to share with potential conference attendees?

If you are not the person who makes the decisions about who attends conference, try talking to those who do and convince them as to why it should be you. Conference 2009 should be top priority on training calendars. Never will you get so much value for your training $$$$. Our keynote speakers will WOW all who hear them, exhibitors are knocking at our door to sign up for stands and we can assure you that the concurrent sessions will offer something for everyone. Oh, and there will be some social activity, but Managers may not get to hear all about this in the mandatory conference report back.