A look back at 2010…

‘Tis the season for “Best of” lists, “Year in Review” articles and the like… I can’t resist a look back at what was a pretty exciting year.

In January I launched SustainableLibraries.org, thinking I’d have a holding pen for all the ideas racing around in my head and hoping these random thoughts would be useful to libraries around the country. In March I was named a Library Journal Mover & Shaker which really changed things!

The M&S nod opened the door for me to participate in two Design Institutes through Library Journal. The first in Atlanta, GA and the second in Greenville, SC. I moderated panels on sustainable design and rural libraries. What was exciting about both panels was that it became clear I wasn’t crazy. Despite all the resistance I’ve received in NY, in other parts of the country “green is a given” for library designers. This experience really solidified for me that I’m on the right path.

I did “Greening Your Library” workshops from one end of New York State (Long Island) to the other (Potsdam) and a few in between. The reception was great at each stop along the way. It was so much fun to meet people who were as interested as I am in the topic and I learned a lot along the way (bird strikes anyone?)

I am so grateful to have the opportunity to talk to others about what I think is a pretty exciting idea, the combination of libraries and sustainable design. Sustainability has been defined as “meeting the needs of the present without compromising the ability of future generations to meet their own needs.” If we want our libraries to be sustainable it has to happen on all fronts – funding, community outreach, technology, operations and facilities.

2010 will be hard to top but I’m open to trying in 2011.

Thank you to all the readers of SustainableLibraries, those of you who trekked out to a workshop and my fans on Facebook!

-Rebekkah Smith Aldrich
Sustainable Libraries

p.s. Here are my TOP TEN favorite SL posts from 2010:
Sustainable Spectrum
40 Tips for the 40th Anniversary of Earth Day
5 Ways to Make Computing Greener in your Library
When a Bulb Breaks (CFLs)
Upgrade to LEDs or the Easter Bunny Gets It!
Green Roofs…Revisited
MHLS Green Team Series
Louise & the Eco Machine
Greening & Historic Preservation
Living Building Challenge