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Advisory Committee to the Nebraska Library Commission Talking Book and Braille Service

Nebraska Library Commission
1200 N Street, Suite 120
Meadowlark Room
Lincoln, Nebraska
Tuesday, June 3, 2014, 1:00 p.m.


Persons in Attendance:
  • Beth Pakiz, Chairperson. She works at Omaha Public Library. She can help promote BARD.
  • Kate Borchman’s family has experience with macular degeneration. She served on School Board.
  • Elizabeth Evermann belonged to Music Teacher Association and plays organ.
  • Susan Ledder uses the library and has worked as a public school, academic and public librarian.
  • John Wick works at Outlook Nebraska, Inc. He serves on Share-A-Fare Board.
  • Patty Candy’s son is visually impaired. She serves on the Foster Care Review Board.
  • Kristal Platt works as a Genetic Counselor and Vision Program Coordinator at Boys Town National Research Hospital. She serves on the Share-A-Fare Board.
  • Jim Berryman lives in Grand Island. His father became blind at age 52. He has distributed brochures to retirement homes.
  • Linda Mentink was not able to attend.
Staff Members in Attendance:
  • Annette Hall and David Oertli.


Main agenda items for the June 3, 2014 meeting include the following but may be modified at such meeting:
  • Welcome; Introductions.
  • Minutes of the last meeting. Kate moved that the minutes be accepted and Jim seconded. The motion carried.
  • Discussion of major findings from our recent borrower survey. This past winter on into early spring, we conducted a phone survey of a sample of our borrowers. We will present what we found out. Annette reported that 51 borrowers were contacted for the survey. 17 were blind. 32 were visually impaired. 1 had a reading disability and 1 was physically disabled. One fourth read the Interchange newsletter. Most people said the new digital player is nice for many reasons. Very Positive feedback.
  • We are in the process of having space on the west side of The Atrium building’s first floor renovated for our studios, audio duplication, and stacks. This means we will be vacating the lower level and moving these operations to the same floor as the rest of the Talking Book and Braille Service. We would like to discuss our plans for this new space for you. David described the blueprint plans. The library will be completely out of the basement level. Sound booths for recording will be added.
  • Once we are settled into this new space, we will look at whether or not to hold an open house for borrowers and other interested parties. What are some ideas about hosting an open-house event effective in order to make our service better known? Suggest piggy-back with other events. Guest speaker. Checking with Chamber of Commerce to send an E-Blast. Have it on a football Saturday. Have the Mayor. Need to approach someone far in advance. Food is important. Beth did a party for the summer reading program and had a clown who made balloon animals. Had lemonade with popcorn and pretzels. Parking would be limited in Lincoln. People like to be in a library rather than a meeting room. Can you promote through bookstores and businesses. Promote through schools.
  • Staff recently attended the National Conference of Librarians Serving Individuals Who Are Blind and Physically Disabled. We will present the broad national trends; then let’s discuss how these trends are likely to impact service in Nebraska. The Library of Congress wants to stress Braille for spelling and learning language. There was a conference held at Perkins School for the Blind. Braille files can be downloaded. The prohibition has been that the devices that read Braille files are pricey. They want to find a low cost Braille reader that will feed off Braille. Susan bought herself a Braille device. She has a refreshable Braille display with 18 cells. The BARD Braille downloads are much easier in the past year for Susan. The LOC has lost paper Braille producers. There was a lengthy discussion on technology including iPhones, iPads, Blue Tooth, WiFi, etc.
  • Other items. How are readers found to read talking books? Annette described the process for recruiting, auditions and scheduling.
  • Date for fall meeting; Adjournment. David will send out some dates. Susan moved to adjourn the meeting and Elizabeth seconded.

For more information contact:
Scott Scholz, Director
Nebraska Library Commission
Talking Book and Braille Service
Scott Scholz

For more information, contact Scott Scholz.