Strategic Plan

On April 18, 2019, the ILA Executive Board voted to approve the association's strategic plan for 2019-2022. The plan development process began in spring 2018 with Executive Board planning sessions followed by a broad survey of members and non-members, a strategic planning workshop with ILA committees and forum managers in July, a series of focus groups held online and in locations around the state, and additional Executive Board review and discussion. 

This plan is intended to guide our focus over the next few years. It is not a "to-do list," nor is it a comprehensive description of the ILA portfolio of activities. Rather, a strategic plan is a directional document and statement of priorities for the near future. We are so very appreciative of all those who have helped in the development of this plan by sharing your hopes, aspirations, praise, and constructive criticism of and for the association with during the plan's development!


Collaboratively shaping a new future for libraries in Illinois


Leadership, advocacy, partnership, and learning for the benefit of Illinois libraries

Core Strategic Values

  • Energizing, visionary leadership
  • Adaptation to change
  • Long term strategic perspective/direction
  • Member service focus
  • Partnerships and alliances
  • Diversity and equity of opportunity

Core Values of the Profession

Information access, equity, intellectual freedom, and objective truth

Strategies, Goals, and Desired Outcomes

Strategy: Advocacy

Goal: Legislative Advocacy

  • Invest in advocacy. Educate and mobilize activist groups and other professional associations to understand and support the cause and critical nature of libraries.
  • Desired outcomes: Activated strategic alliances and informed advocacy at all levels achieve adequate funding for libraries. Governmental decision-makers increase support for libraries.

Goal: Community Advocacy

  • Develop education and tools for library leaders and staff to establish clear understanding of libraries' worth among the people served, resulting in community and stakeholder ambassadorship and engagement.
  • Desired outcomes: The communities and people served value the presence and vitality of libraries. The communities and people served are vocal advocates for libraries.

Strategy: A Culture of Diversity and Inclusion

Goal: In the Profession

  • Develop education for library leaders and staff about increasing diversity in collections and programs and creating an inclusive environment in libraries and librarianship.
  • Desired outcome: Library leadership and staff are cultivated and engaged in advancing equity, diversity, and inclusion in the communities they serve.

Goal: In the Association

  • Review and revamp the committee and volunteer system for functionality, diversity, inclusivity, and recognition. Increase awareness, understanding, and commitment to creating an inclusive environment in ILA.
  • Desired outcomes: Members recognize their ownership in and have equitable access to participate and be heard in ILA's volunteer structure. Members connect collaboratively for sharing and creation of knowledge.

Strategy: Delivery of Member Value

  • Goal: Assess and refresh programs and services, integrating new approaches and technologies to deliver member value in programming, communication, and involvement.
  • Desired outcome: Members in every segment find relevant value from ILA programs and services.

Strategy: Leadership

  • Goal: Convene critical conversations with partners in the library ecosystem including the Illinois State Library, the three systems, AISLE, and other related consortia and organizations.
  • Desired outcomes: Access to library service continually expands to increasing numbers of Illinois residents. Librarians, library staff, and trustees are supported effectively and efficiently by the library ecosystem in the state.

Approved by the ILA Executive Board, April 18, 2019

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