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2022 WLA Keynotes & Events

Stay tuned for announcements on special events and conference keynotes for #WLA2022.

Featured Virtual Speaker: Patty Wong, ALA President
Join ALA President Patty Wong for this virtual, on-demand address on the future of libraries! Joined by 2022 Conference Co-Chair Elena Maans-Lorincz, Patty will discuss equity, diversity, and inclusion; libraries' adaptability to meet community needs; and sustainability in libraries.

Thursday, May 5

WLA's Got Talent! Meet & Greet Reception | 7:00–9:00 pm
Isn't it about time that WLA members had a chance to show off their many amazing talents!? Join us for a kickoff reception and open mic where WLA members from across the state will share their creative passions with us, from juggling and dancing to knitting and singing (not necessarily but possibly all at the same time). While enjoying light snacks and a no-host bar, you'll have the opportunity to make some friends, learn how to make the most out of your conference attendance, and discover opportunities to get involved within WLA.

Friday, May 6

" "Opening Keynote & Breakfast with Rena Priest | 8:30–9:45 am
Join us for our opening keynote with Washington State Poet Laureate Rena Priest! Stay tuned for more details.

Rena is a poet and an enrolled member of the Lhaq’temish (Lummi) Nation. She has been appointed to serve as the Washington State Poet Laureate for the term of April 2021-2023.  She is a Vadon Foundation Fellow, and recipient of an Allied Arts Foundation Professional Poets Award. Her debut collection, Patriarchy Blues was published by MoonPath Press and received an American Book Award. She is a National Geographic Explorer (2018-2020) and a Jack Straw Writer (2019). She holds an MFA from Sarah Lawrence College.

Exhibit Hall Grand Opening | 10:00–10:45 am
Join us for the kick-off celebration of the 2022 WLA Exhibit Hall! Enjoy your morning coffee or tea in our Exhibit Hall, where vendors will be hosting live demos, raffles, Q&As, giveaways, and more.

New Connections Lunch | 12:30–2:00 pm
Over the past two years of online meetings, we’ve been missing out on the vital experience of making connections face to face. At this lunch you’ll be encouraged to branch out from your circles to sit with strangers who have shared interests and job roles—but they won’t be strangers for long! Whether you came to conference with colleagues or solo, you’ll leave this lunch with stronger ties to your WLA community.

WLA Awards Reception | 6:45–8:45 pm
Help us celebrate the people who make the Washington library community so special! All attendees are invited to celebrate our 2022 WLA Merit Award winners at our Friday evening reception.

Saturday, May 7

8th Annual WLA Scholarship Fund Run/Walk | 7:00 am
The annual Fund the Future Run is back! This 5k run/walk will take place at your own speed along a scenic route in Bellevue. More details will be available soon.

The $35 to participate in the Fund Run will go to WLA's Scholarship Fund to support the education and professional development of WLA members.

" "ScLD & CAYAS Author Breakfast with Dan Gemeinhart | 8:00–9:45 am
Join WLA’s School Library Division and the Children and Young Adult Services (CAYAS) Section for a Book Award Breakfast on Saturday morning, featuring Dan Gemeinhart! Representatives from WLA's Book Awards will also be in attendance to announce next year's 2023 nominees!

Dan is an author and former Washington State teacher-librarian. He lives in Cashmere with his English teacher wife, and three daughters. He is the author of six books for young readers: The Honest Truth, Some Kind of Courage, Scar Island, Good Dog, The Remarkable Journey of Coyote Sunrise, and The Midnight Children (which comes out this August)!

LibraryCon Panel & Lunch: Follow Your Fandom with Brittney Morris, Sydney Adams, Kristine Hassell, & Kit DeForge | 12:45–2:00 pm
At the center of the gaming industry, Bellevue is filled with vibrant communities centered around role playing games, virtual reality, cosplay, comics, and more. How can we support and grow these communities within our libraries? Join us for a conversation between a librarian, author, game designer, and convention planner on all things nerdy. Get a behind-the-scenes look into their work, and leave with ideas for implementing gaming into your collections and programming, making participation equitable and accessible for all, and encouraging fandoms to thrive in your library.

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Brittney Morris is the bestselling author of SLAY, The Cost of Knowing, and Marvel's Spider-Man: Miles Morales - Wings of Fury. She also writes video games and has contributed to projects such as The Lost Legends of Redwall, Subnautica: Below Zero, and Spider-Man 2 for PS5. She spends her spare time reading, playing indie video games, and enjoying the rain from her home in Philly. She lives with her husband Steven who would rather enjoy the rain from a campsite in the woods because he hasn't played enough horror games, and their tiny bundle of love, Atlas.

Sydney Adams is a Game Designer for Dungeons & Dragons at Wizards of the Coast. She is best known for her work as the Creative Lead of the Magic the Gathering, Secret Lair: Black is Magic, co-creator of the Planeswalker, Basri Ket, and as a contributor to both the Magic and D&D versions of Strixhaven: School or Mages. Sydney is an activist for diverse representation in games, and constantly strives to champion equity for women and minorities within the gaming industry. Her work has been featured in Polygon, NPR: Here and Now, and Hipsters of the Coast. Sydney can be found posting the chaotic results of her latest charity D&D stream to her Twitter, @Raini_Fro.

Kristine Hassell acknowledges that she lives and works on the unceded, traditional land of the Coast Salish people, including the Duwamish People past and present. She is a first-generation Filipino-American who is a cultural consultant, community manager, and all-around geek. She received her first published RPG credit in 2015 and was nominated in 2020 for an ENNIE Award. She is the Director of Panel Programming at GeekGirlCon and the Big Bad Con Social Media and Community Coordinator. She is also the Social Media Manager and Twitch producer for Bully Pulpit Games.

Kit DeForge has worked in public libraries as a paraprofessional in California and Washington for 16 years officially, but has been pushing carts since eight, helping their grandmother in her duties as a school librarian. Kit enjoys connecting teens to creative resources of all kinds, arguing about comics and graphic novels with friends, costuming, and working on completing their stop motion film. They appreciate any book recommendations that involve robots with feelings, sequential art, Hollywood history, and the bizarre. They live in Olympia with their best friend, two cats, a beta fish, and a 20-year-old tarantula.

Exhibits Grand Finale | 3:00–3:45 pm
Join us for the concluding celebration of the 2022 WLA Exhibit Hall! Enjoy your afternoon coffee, tea, snacks in our Exhibit Hall, where our vendors will be announcing winners to raffles, giveaways, and more.