From the Director

News, articles, and other messages from Minitex Director Valerie Horton and former Director Bill DeJohn.


  • Future Focused: Trends Impacting Library Services – the Minitex Perspective Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 3.7 MB)
    Valerie Horton shared her thoughts about trends facing libraries during a presentation at the Annual Conference of the Minnesota Library Association on Thursday, October 20, 2013. Valerie centered her discussion around three fundamental shifts – from physical libraries to virtual libraries, from libraries with a focus on individual patrons to libraries focused on their wider community, and from libraries focused on collecting materials to libraries involved in various ways in creation of content – and commented about how she sees them impacting Minitex participating libraries, and all libraries, in the years to come. Also, Tim Johnson, University of Minnesota Libraries, provided interesting comments about Valerie's presentation on his blog, "Special & Rare On A Stick."
  • Listening to the Library Community – September 6, 2013 Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 230 KB)
    Valerie Horton has been traveling throughout the Minitex region this past spring and summer to meet with staff of libraries throughout Minnesota, North Dakota, and South Dakota. She has had two goals in her meetings – to introduce Minitex services to her audiences and to learn about the concerns and issues of interest to the Minitex region library community. In this essay, she describes the concerns and opportunities that were identified during her conversations.
  • Library Consortia Overview – August 14, 2013 Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 315 KB)
    An article compiled in preparation for a longer article on library consortia by Valerie Horton, which will be published in Cooperative Librarianship this fall. It is also being used as one of the discussion documents for the Minitex strategic planning process that is currently underway. Valerie welcomes your thoughts and comments (, 612-624-4002, 800-462-5348).
  • Memorial Resolution Honoring Bill DeJohn – August 12, 2013 Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 63 KB)
    A resolution honoring former Minitex Director Bill DeJohn submitted to the University of Minnesota Senate by the University Libraries, August 12, 2013.
  • Delving Deeper into Library Collaboration – May 2013 Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 468 KB)
    We welcome Valerie Horton to the Minitex region. Her first article for the Minitex MESSENGER was about a topic that has been a major focus for her for years: collaborative librarianship. As Director of Minitex, she will have many opportunities to delve deeply! (Her article provides a link to a longer version of her thoughts newly published in Collaborative Librarianship, Volume 5 2013. Valerie is co-general editor of the online journal.)
  • Memorial Resolution Honoring Bill DeJohn – January 22, 2013 Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 88 KB)
    A resolution honoring the work of former Minitex Director Bill DeJohn adopted during the ALA Midwinter Meeting in Seattle, January 25-29, 2013.
  • Bill DeJohn, 1940-2012
    We are very sad to report that former Minitex Director Bill DeJohn died on Monday, December 31, 2012 at his home in Northfield, MN after a brief illness. It was just less than a year ago that several hundred of his friends and colleagues from around the state came together to celebrate Bill's distinguished career, including 27 years as Director of Minitex. In addition to the formal obituary, please take a moment to read "Bill DeJohn and the Value of Sharing" – a heartfelt remembrance by Barbara Fister of Gustavus Adolphus College.


  • Departing Thanks and Well Wishes from Bill DeJohn – February 14, 2012
    Bill DeJohn sent his departing thanks and well wishes for the future to Minitex participating libraries staff on February 14, 2012.
  • Bill DeJohn's Retirement Party – January 10, 2012 Movie Icon
    More than 200 friends and colleagues gathered to thank Bill for his leadership of Minitex over the past 27 years and to wish him well in his retirement at his retirement celebration, January 10, 2012. Bill shared brief remarks about Minitex, friends, and family. (The photo over his head in the video shows the five Newfoundlands with which Bill and his wife, Kathi, share their home.)



  • Minitex Public Library Library Node Meeting – August 17, 2010 Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 148 KB)
    Bill DeJohn presented an update on issues related to the MnLINK Gateway during the Minitex Public Library Library Node Meeting on August 13, 2010. Among other topics, Bill reported on the number of requests passing through the MnLINK Gateway and on comments that MnLINK Gateway users have made about the service.
  • Minitex Update – May 4, 2010 Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 5.0 MB)
    Bill DeJohn presented an informal Minitex year-in-review during the 19th Annual ILL Conference on May 4, 2010.
  • Role of Libraries Pre-K & Beyond: Lifelong Learning Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 1.1 MB)
    This graphic shows the journey of a student from pre-kindergarten through the K-12 educational system and either into the workforce or on to a higher education institution. Along the way, school, academic, and public libraries are all available to provide services to the student and parents in support of learning and information literacy. This graphic was developed after attendance at various P-20 meetings where it seemed important to show that libraries play an important role throughout the life of students and adults. Minnesota libraries collaborate in sharing services and resources. Once in the workforce, information continues to be available through the public library for lifelong learning and recreation activities.


  • Minitex Update – May 19, 2009 Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 3.7 MB)
    Bill DeJohn reported on Minitex's resource sharing activities during the 18th Annual Minitex ILL Conference and looked forward to the coming year.
  • Policy and Participation Framework for the Electronic Library for Minnesota (ELM) by Libraries – January 9, 2009
    At the request of the Minitex Policy Advisory Council, a framework document for participation by libraries in the Electronic Library for Minnesota has been developed. The statement outlines methods of accessing ELM, responsibilities of staff of libraries using the ELM Portal or ELM resources, and identifies those responsible for administrative decisions. The Minnesota Office of Higher Education has approved the statement, and we'd like to share it with the Minnesota library community.


  • Some Quick Notes – December 18, 2008
    Bill DeJohn provides some quick notes about the availability of the video of Cathy De Rosa's presentation about OCLC's "From Awareness to Funding: A Study of Library Support in America"; posting of the members reports from the Minitex Policy Advisory Council on WebJunction Minnesota and stories from MnLINK users on the Minitex website; and more...
  • Minitex Resource Sharing, Current & Future Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 2.2 MB)
    Bill DeJohn provided a presentation during the December 2008 meeting of the Minitex Policy Advisory Council to review current resource sharing activity in the Minitex region. DeJohn's presentation talks about the significant increase in MnLINK Gateway ILL activity, challenges facing the area's libraries, and more...
  • Sharing Reference Services through Electronic and Innovative Means Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 18 KB)
    Bill DeJohn discusses the history and the current status of AskMN—The Librarian Is In, a statewide cooperative virtual reference service that provides 24/7 coverage for online interactive chat with an experienced librarian. The article was prepared for the November 26, 2008, issue of the Minitex MESSENGER and includes references to an article by Carla Steinberg Pfahl on page 2 of that issue.
  • Share Your MnLINK Stories Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 255 KB)
    Bill DeJohn provides a compilation of comments provided by users about the MnLINK Gateway. Prepared for the September 2008 meeting of the Minitex Policy Advisory Council.


  • In My Opinion, I.L.L. – A Different Option: Buy vs. Borrow Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 27 KB)
    Bill DeJohn urges staffs of Minitex-region libraries to consider pilot projects to test whether purchasing materials that meet established criteria is a reasonable way to stem the increasing numbers of interlibrary loan requests. From the November 2007 issue of the Minitex MESSENGER.
  • In My Opinion, Technological Diversity & Challenge Adobe PDF Icon (PDF; 445 KB)
    In the July 2007 issue of the Minitex MESSENGER, Bill DeJohn provides an overview of the Integrated Library Systems and other aspects of the technology environment in the three-state Minitex region. Please help us keep this article up-to-date.




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University of Minnesota
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