Directors University

Directors University
July 30, 2024 - August 1, 2024
Bloomington-Normal, Illinois


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The eighth annual Directors University will be held July 30, 2024 - August 1, 2024, at the Marriott in Bloomington-Normal, Illinois. This professional development is intended for first-time directors and directors new to Illinois from public libraries of all shapes and sizes. 

What is Directors University?

The training will prepare public library directors for their new executive roles. The University will also provide opportunities for networking and team building through lectures and small, informal discussions. Topics include library & employment law, policies, budgeting, board-director relations, leadership, and Illinois State Library and system competencies.

This year the Directors University planning committee has instituted a hybrid structure with half of the content in-person and the other half virtual.

During June and July, the remote content will be sent to participants in one week increments with virtual components that will be live and recorded. Participants will be able to work at their own pace and have an opportunity to meet virtually with a facilitator on the topic, discuss with other directors, and ask questions.

The in-person workshops will be held July 30, 2024 - August 1, 2024, at the Marriott in Bloomington-Normal, Illinois. The committee will post a complete schedule of topics and speakers as soon as it is confirmed.

When is Directors University?

In-person programming starts at 10:00 a.m., Tuesday, July 30 and ends at 4:00 p.m., Thursday, August 1. The virtual components will begin the week of June 24th. The schedule is still be finalized with the speakers. Attendees are highly encouraged to attend the virtual events in person but there will be recordings available. 

How much is Directors University?

The registration fee is $200. Participants will be responsible for their own travel expenses. Materials, lodging, and meals will be covered by the registration fee and support from the Illinois State Library using funds provided by the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, under the provisions of the Library Services and Technology Act (LSTA).

After applicants are notified that they have been accepted for the 2024 Directors University class, they will receive an invoice to be paid prior to attending the first virtual event.

All cancellations and refund requests must be received in writing via emailing by July 15, 2024. No refunds can be issued after July 15. All cancellations are subject to a $30 processing fee.

Who can attend Directors University?

Approximately fifty participants will be selected to attend, with the intent of maintaining both geographic distribution and variation in size and structure. Preference will be given to new directors who have not previously attended Directors University or SPLMI. Applicants must have been named the permanent director of the library by May 1.

Applications will be accepted until May 15. Attendees will be notified of their selection on May 24.

Contact RAILS, IHLS, ILA, or Directors University Co-Chairs with questions. If the registration fee is prohibitive, please contact your library system contact below.


Kate Niehoff, Director of Consulting
and Continuing Education


Kate Kite
Continuing Education Coordinator Liaison


Kristin Pekoll
Conference and Continuing Education Manager

Directors University Co-Chair:
Monica Cameron, Director 

Shelbyville Public Library
Directors University Co-Chair
Jamie Paicely, Director
Flossmoor Public Library

Directors University is a joint project of the Illinois Heartland Library System, Illinois Library Association, Illinois State Library, and Reaching Across Illinois Library System.

DU Committee
Betsy Adamowski, Wheaton Public Library
Amy Byers, Chatham Area Public Library
Monica Cameron, Shelbyville Public Library *
Celeste Moutos, The Urbana Free Library
Janet Cler, Tolono Public Library
Rick Meyer, Decatur Public Library
Jamie Paicely, Flossmoor Public Library *
Kathy Parker, Library Consultant 
Bobbi Perryman, Vespasian Warner Public Library
Heidi Smith, Highland Park Public Library
Leander Spearman, Belleville Public Library
Alex Todd, Prospect Heights Public Library

Ex-Officio Members
Leslie Bednar, Illinois Heartland Library System
Joe Filapek, Reaching Across Illinois Library System
Monica Harris, Reaching Across Illinois Library System
Kate Kite, Illinois Heartland Library System
Kate Niehoff, Reaching Across Illinois Library System
Kristin Pekoll, Illinois Library Association
Cyndi Robinson, Illinois Library Association
Rita Stephens, Illinois State Library

* 2024 Co-Chair

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