Advocacy Policies and Procedures

ILA’s Quick Response Team

The QRT is intended to enable the association to respond to rapid developments in the legislative arena that require a response in between Public Policy Committee and/or Executive Board meetings. Members are: the ILA executive director, president, past-president, vice president/president-elect, and chair of the Public Policy Committee.

The history of the team is as follows:

In 1996, ILA President Sue Stroyan appointed a Legislative Consultant Task Force. The mission of the Task Force was to evaluate ILA’s legislative and public policy program and develop recommendations to establish and maintain a vital legislative presence for ILA with the Illinois state legislature and the Office of the Governor (see ILA Reporter, July/August 1996, pp. 2-4). One of the task force’s recommendations was the establishment of a Quick Response Team. 

“On rare occasions during a legislative session when the legislative consultant identifies a need for a change in or variation of ILA’s official position on a bill, the board believes that a quick response group consisting of the ILA president, chair of the Public Policy Committee, the director of the Illinois State Library, and the ILA executive director should consult by telephone, e-mail, or fax, if necessary, to give the consultant guidance.”

The Illinois Library Association’s Executive Board reaffirmed this policy at the June 7, 2002 ILA Executive Board meeting and added the past president to the Quick Response Team.

As requested by the Illinois State Library Director, the Illinois Library Association’s Executive Board removed the Illinois State Library Director as a voting member of the ILA Quick Response Team and added the incoming ILA President as a member of the Quick Response Team. This action was taken on December 4, 2009. 

Guidelines for Political Forums

Illinois Library Association sponsors forums* for political candidates to:

(* Forums are defined as ILA sponsored in-person meetings, print and/or electronic communications between candidates and members.)

Criteria for Political Candidate Inclusion

To insure that these goals are met, the following criteria for candidate participation will be considered.

The candidate must meet the requirements of the Illinois Constitution and the United States Constitution.

1. The candidate must meet the requirements of the Illinois Constitution and the United States Constitution.

2. The candidate must meet all requirements to be on the ballot according to state election laws.

3. The candidate must have made a public announcement of his or her candidacy.

4. The candidate must show evidence that a formal campaign is being waged, e.g., presence of headquarters (office, storefront or other publicly accessible site other than the candidate's personal residence), campaign telephone number, stationery and staff (campaign manager, treasurer, public relations person), scheduled campaign appearances, calendar of events which the candidate will attend.

5. Demonstration of voter interest and support. In assessing the significance of a candidacy, ILA will require that either: (a) a candidate's party received at least 5 percent of the popular vote in the most recent prior general election; or (b) by September 15 has shown at least 15 percent support in a reputable statewide poll. ILA may consider other factors, as well.

In all cases, the Illinois Library Association will exercise its good faith judgment in deciding whether or not a candidate has demonstrated sufficient voter interest and support.

Passed by the ILA Executive Board, February 28, 2002.

Guidelines for Campaigning by Candidates for the ILA Offices

These guidelines are intended to insure, insofar as possible, that there is equality of opportunity for all members of the Illinois Library Association to seek elected office regardless of their personal financial resources or their access to organizational or other financial support.

The association encourages candidates to use good judgment in their use of financial and other resources available to them in conducting their campaigns.  

ILA Support:

Support provided to candidates by ILA:

• A link on the ILA website to a web page maintained by the candidate, as well as a link on the ILA election page with the candidates’ photo and biography.

•  The publication of the names and library affiliations of the candidates proposed by the ILA Nominating Committee in an ILA communications channel no later than 30 days prior to the election.

•  A candidate’s statement of no more than 500 words that is included in the ballot to all members. 

Other than the support listed above, no ILA funds or staff time may be used to support the candidacy of any individual candidate. 

Campaign contributions:

Soliciting campaign contributions is prohibited. Campaign contributions by vendors, either in cash or in kind, have the potential of seriously skewing the election process.  Candidates must avoid such contributions. Vendors should be encouraged to make financial contributions to recognized ILA endowments and special funds previously established to receive these.


ILA does not provide funding for candidate travel. All travel arrangements and expenses are the responsibility of the candidate.


Individuals who are elected officers of the association are considered official representatives of the association and are presumed to be speaking as official representatives. Therefore, they may not endorse candidates. Members of the Nominating Committee may not endorse individual candidates.

Campaign materials:

Candidates are encouraged to use creativity to reach out to association members and to minimize personal costs through the use of electronic resources such as e-mails, websites, podcasts, etc. Campaign materials should reflect only the goals and perspective of the candidate. All discourse should reflect positively on the association and its members.

Violation of the above guidelines may result in disqualification. These guidelines will go into effect as of July 2008.

Passed by the ILA Executive Board, February 28, 2008. Updated November 1, 2019 following a bylaws change to remove reference to the "February issue of the ILA Reporter" for printing the slate and replace it with "an ILA communications channel no later than 30 days prior to the election," approved by the general membership at the Membership Meeting 10/23/19.

Use of ILA’s Name

The Illinois Library Association (ILA) is a nonprofit organization serving as the voice for the interests of libraries located in Illinois.   It provides leadership for the development, promotion, and improvement of Illinois library services through a structure of forums and committees and task forces.

All units in the ILA structure are responsible to the Executive Board that determines policies. The Board’s actions, however, may be changed by a two-thirds vote of the membership (Article V, Section 4). Thus, the ultimate responsibility for the use of the Illinois Library Association name rests with the membership.

The Executive Board is a governing board, appointing an executive director who is in charge of the day-to-day running of the association.

ILA leadership, in carrying out their assigned duties and responsibilities, are called upon to use ILA’s name and, in that name, to commit the association to programs and activities. All such use of ILA’s name requires approval of the executive director and, ultimately, the Executive Board. 

ILA leadership, using ILA’s name in executing their responsibilities or in entering into formal relationships with other organizations, abides by stated ILA policies and principles. Formal relationships which permit another organization to use the name “ILA” or that of the ILA unit, other than to identify the provider of information or services, must be based on a written agreement pursuant to which ILA retains control of the use of its name or the unit's name. Again, all such agreements require the approval of the executive director and, ultimately, the Executive Board.

Passed by the ILA Executive Board, June 8, 2001.


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