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Primary Source Director's Message -- July 2011

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IMLS Director Susan Hildreth
Friday, July 15, 2011

The 4th of July has come and gone and mid-summer is upon us. Hopefully you have some time to relax this summer, maybe vacationing, staycationing, or spending time with family and friends. While the summer can be a busy time for museums and libraries, visitors and children on summer vacation can spend more time using our services, remember that downtime is necessary! It helps us recharge and can increase creativity and productivity.

While recharging, use that extra creativity to help us plan for the future of IMLS. IMLS is in the process of creating a five-year strategic plan and we want your ideas on how we can carry out our statutory responsibility "to support museum, library, and information services to meet the information, education, research, economic, cultural, and civic needs of the people of the United States."

This is a time of rapid change and the need to plan and be strategic is more important than ever! Your intimate knowledge of challenges facing us, and creative solutions you suggest, will help us examine all our grant programs, research, and leadership initiatives to assure that we continue to meet the evolving needs of the American public.

Through discussions with the National Museum and Library Services Board, IMLS stakeholders, and the public, we have developed five strategic questions to help envision future services. Using a social media tool called IdeaScale, we are inviting the public to suggest answers to these questions, read the comments others have provided and vote on the ideas that have the greatest merit. The comment period will continue until Friday, August 12.

—Susan Hildreth, Director, IMLS

IMLS Press Contacts
Natasha Marstiller,
Mamie Bittner,

About the Institute of Museum and Library Services
The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation's 123,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute's mission is to create strong libraries and museums that connect people to information and ideas. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture, and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. To learn more about the Institute, please visit