SILS has strong presence at 2016 IFLA events

September 19, 2016

The UNC School of Information and Library Science (SILS) was well-represented at International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) events in August.

Alumni Jennifer Manning (MSLS ’91), Sundeep Mahendra (MSLS ’10), and current master’s student Anna Groves were instrumental in the execution of the 32nd Annual Pre-Conference of the IFLA Section on Library and Research Services for Parliaments (IFLAParl) held at the Library of Congress in Washington, D.C.

Manning served on a year-long planning committee and as a session emcee. Mahendra helped build and maintain an extensive website, blog, email and registration system for the IFLAParl preconference, as well as two other IFLA section preconferences also held at the LOC. Groves, a summer intern, worked day and night to help pull everything together.

IFLAParl welcomed over 150 delegates from almost 50 parliaments and international organizations on six continents—from Kosovo to Kiribati, and Canada to Cameroon. Delegates enjoyed a Potomac river dinner cruise, a reception in the Library’s Great Hall, a keynote address by journalist Cokie Roberts, and sessions translated into Spanish, French and Arabic.

Several SILS alumni, as well as SILS Librarian Rebecca Vargha who has a long history of involvement with IFLA, attended the IFLA World Library and Information Congress in Columbus, Ohio, August 13-19. SILS Assistant Professor Mary Grace Flaherty gave the keynote on a panel presentation about public library services to multicultural populations at the the IFLA World Library and Information Congress in Columbus, Ohio. “Here, There and Everywhere: Disasters and Public Libraries,” a paper based on her talk can be found at

Gerald Holmes (MSLS '85), Reference Librarian and Diversity Coordinator for University Libraries, University of North Carolina at Greensboro, and Carla Y. Davis-Castro (MSLS ’14), Librarian for the Indigenous Law Portal, Library of Congress, presented at the poster session. Mary White (MSLS ’04), Global Public Health Librarian at UNC’s Health Sciences Library, also presented at the conference.

Meg Phillips (MSLS ’97), External Affairs Liaison for the National Archives and Records Administration, presented on behalf of the International Council on Archives (ICA) about their involvement in the UNESCO PERSIST project. She is also on the IFLA Rare Books and Special Collections Standing Committee for NARA.

Kate McNamara (MSLS '13), Research Specialist at the U.S. Census Bureau, attended as a national fellowship grantee, and Mea Warren (MSLS ’15) was on hand representing the University of Houston, where she is the Natural Science and Mathematics Librarian.

Sundeep Mahendra, Jennifer Manning, and Anna Groves

Gerald Holmes, Carla Y. Davis-Castro, and Mary White

Meg Phillips, Carla Y. Davis-Castro, and Gerald Holmes

Mea Warren and Gerald Holmes