Concurrent Program Session

It Happened in My Town: Collaboration in Crisis

Thursday, April 7, 2016, 2:00 PM - 3:00 PM

Colorado Convention Center, Room 102/104/106

An EF5 tornado rips through your town, taking lives, destroying homes, flattening businesses. A shooter opens fire in a theater. Riots break out and rally for days. A wildfire rages, burning everything its path. Flooding swallows a town, threatening lives. What would you do if this happened in your town? Learn firsthand from the survivors of natural and man-made disasters, and hear how they turned crises into opportunities by working collaboratively.

At the end of this session, participants will:

1: Learn the significance of being connected to your unique community well in advance of a disaster, and what to do if you are not. 2: Understand what resilience looks in the aftermath of man-made and natural disasters. 3: Gain compassion and hear about lessons learned by library staff as they faced difficult days during and following a disaster

The session organizer(s) identified this session as appropriate for:
Level 1: People with no previous knowledge of the topic.

This session will have: Low interaction: single speaker/panel with Q&A at the end of the program

Handouts: Download 1   Download 2  

Track: Collaborate

Tags: Leadership


Miriam Anderson Lytle,
Gail Borden Public Library District, Elgin, IL

Miriam Anderson Lytle, MLIS and PLA Leadership Academy grad, is Community Services & Program Development Division Chief for Gail Borden Public Library District in Elgin, one of Illinois largest library districts. Miriam oversees Branch Services (Rakow and South Elgin), Library on the Go (ReaderShip, Education, Life Enrichment, Home Services), Hispanic Services, Public Programs, Community and Civic Engagement, 21st Century Readers Advisory, grants and special projects. Miriam is a 2016 PLA Program Liaison in Denver.

Patti Bateman, Director
Aurora Public Library, Aurora, CO

Patti Bateman is Aurora's Library & Cultural Services Department since 2009, with the City of Aurora since 1977 in many positions. Her MLS is from the University of Denver. George "Skip" Noe, Aurora's City Manager since 2010, has been in public service for 35+ years, holding government management positions in Texas and Colorado. He was 2013 City Manager of the Year by Colorado City Management Association and Aurora's Chamber 2014 Man of the Year.

George Noe, City Manager
, Aurora, CO

Paula Watson-Lakamp, Communications Manager
Poudre River Public Library District, ,

PAULA WATSON-LAKAMP is Communications Manager for Poudre River Public Library District, Fort Collins, Colorado. She has a background in communications, marketing, special events, graphic design, brand management, and social media. Paula has a passion for "pushing the envelope" and sees marketing and promotions as fun, creative endeavors that can be enjoyed by all. She is the author of the book, Marketing Moxie for Librarians: Fresh Ideas, Proven Techniques, and Innovative Approaches.

Aiden Street,
Pioneer Library System, ,

Aiden Street is a County Coordinator for the Pioneer Library System- a three county system with 11 branches and 7 information stations located in central Oklahoma with oversight for the Moore, Noble and S OKC public libraries. Aiden graduated from the University of Oklahoma with her MLIS and has worked for 15 years with PLS in many roles. She is a graduate of the PLA Leadership Academy and the MPLA Leadership Institute.

For questions about…

Cancellation Policy

Written cancellations, requests for refunds, and/or changes will be accepted until February 26, 2016, and are subject to a $30 handling fee. Refunds will be processed after April 25, 2016. According to PLA policy, all meal events require preregistration. The above cancellation/change information also applies to all preconferences, meal events, and tours.

The PLA 2016 Conference is offered on a cost-recovery basis. PLA reserves the right to cancel all or any part of this event if there is insufficient registration or for other reasons. Neither ALA nor PLA is responsible for cancellation charges assessed by the airlines or travel agencies, or other losses incurred due to the cancellation of the workshops. All information listed on this website is subject to change.


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Appropriate Conduct

All participants are expected to observe the rules and behaviors described in the Statement of Appropriate Conduct in all conference venues, including online venues, and conference social events.


There is no formal dress code at the PLA Conference. What’s most important is to dress for comfort.

Conference Logo

The custom logos of the PLA 2016 Conference are the property of PLA. Anyone wishing to use the logos in their communications and promotional materials must: 1) Seek permission from PLA; and 2) Submit communication/artwork incorporating the logo to PLA for final approval. The logo may not be modified and must be reproduced in its entirety (i.e., no outlines, cropping). To request the use of the logo, companies should contact Carly DiVito at Corcoran Expositions at 312-541-0567 or; all others should contact PLA at 800-545-2433 x5PLA (x5752) or


Contact Carly DiVito, Corcoran Expositions, 312-541-0567 or


No carrying of firearms allowed in the Colorado Convention Center unless you’re on-duty law enforcement or off-duty and on payroll of the show or SMG (convention center management).


The official conference hashtag is #PLA2016.


Contact Heather Cho, ALA Media Relations Specialist, 312-280-4020 or Please review our conference media policy.


ALA and PLA membership is managed by the ALA Membership & Customer Service (MACS) unit. To join, renew, rejoin, or add to your membership, fill out a secure form online; or print and fill out a membership form and fax or mail it in; or call 800-545-2433 and press 5. Direct your membership questions to MACS at or 800-545-2433 and press 5. MACS representatives are available Monday–Friday, 8:30 AM–4:30 PM Central.

Mobile App

Attendees can access full event schedule, evaluate sessions, customize their own agenda, and compete in the Extraordinary Exhibits photo challenge game on the PLA 2016 mobile app. To request assistance with the mobile app, please e-mail

PLA Office

The PLA Office is located in A Mezzanine in the Colorado Convention Center. You can access the A Mezzanine from any of the lobbies using Elevator A, across from registration, and press the MZ button to get to the Mezzanine. You can also access A Mezzanine from Exhibit Hall A using Stairwell 30. The office phone numbers are 303-228-8450 and 303-228-8451. Onsite office hours are Monday, April 4–Friday, April 8, 8:00 AM–5:00 PM; Saturday, April 9, 8:00 AM–1:00 PM.

Registration & Housing

Onsite registration hours are Tuesday, April 5, 7:30 AM–5:00 PM; Wednesday, April 6, 7:30 AM–6:30 PM; Thursday, April 7, 7:30 AM–5:30 PM; Friday, April 8, 7:30 AM–4:00 PM; and Saturday, April 9, 8:00–10:00 AM. Conference registration and housing is managed by Experient. Call or e-mail your questions, 800-424-5249 (U.S. and Canada), 847-996-5829 (all other countries), or Experient representatives are available Monday–Friday, 9:00 AM–5:00 PM Eastern. PLA Conference is a professional event. It is not open to the public.


Contact Corcoran Expositions, Mary Michalik at 312-265-9650,; or Matt McLaughlin at 312-265-9655,

Thank you PLA Conference Sponsors!


Most conference events—including all preconferences and concurrent program sessions—will take place in the Colorado Convention Center (CCC), 700 14th Street, Denver, CO 80202. Additional events will be held at the Hyatt Regency Denver at Colorado Convention Center, 650 15th Street, Denver, CO 80202, and other venues as indicated.

Other Questions

Contact PLA, 800-545-2433 x5PLA (x5752) or; or find someone to help in the PLA Staff directory.