ILTACON: An Opportunity for Information Professionals

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By Emily R. Florio, Director of Library Services at Finnegan, Henderson, Farabow, Garrett & Dunner, LLP

From August 28 through September 1, ILTACON, the International Legal Technology Association’s annual conference, took over National Harbor, Maryland.  The conference filled the immediate area with close to 200 educational sessions, presented by more than 350 speakers, on topics such as information management, business management, applications/desktop and technology operations.  Just from this small sampling of topics that are of interest to ILTACON attendees, it is clear that there are opportunities for law librarians and information professionals to be involved with creating and attending programming during this event.

In fact, over a dozen law librarians attended this year’s conference, and many were involved as ILTA volunteers who presented or assisted with program curation.   For example, Steven Lastres, Director of Knowledge Management Services at Debevoise & Plimpton, Catherine Monte, Chief Knowledge Officer at Fox Rothschild, and Deborah Panella, Director of Library and Knowledge Services at Cravath, are all AALL and PLLIP-SIS members, as well as being longtime ILTA volunteers.  At this year’s event, Steven and Deborah helped put together the educational sessions in the Information Management Area of Focus, and Catherine served as an Innovative Thought Leader.  In this role, Catherine was one of the advisors who reviewed the work of the various committee programming tracks.

While many ILTA speakers have titles such as Helpdesk Architect, Director of IT, CIO or Pricing Manager, as mentioned above, there were also a number of librarians among the presenters.  The following American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) members were ILTA speakers:

  • Julie Bozzell, Chief Research and Knowledge Services Office at Hogan Lovells,
  • Marlene Gebauer, Director of Knowledge Solutions at Greenberg Traurig,
  • Katherine Lowry, Director of Practice Services at Baker & Hostetler LLP, and
  • Anne Stemlar, Director of Research and Knowledge Services at Goodwin.

Along with Catherine Monte, Deborah Panella and Steven Lastres, these leaders helped guide the way for other librarians and information professionals to expand on traditional library duties and embrace the role of technology and future thinking.  There are endless intersections of content, strategy and initiatives between AALL and ILTA, and I look forward to exploring these further and finding concentrated ways to collaborate.

Grant Opportunities

Special thanks to the Law Librarians’ Society of Washington, D.C., which graciously provided a grant to cover my registration dues.  In a future post I will share information I gleaned from the eight educational sessions I attended over two days of the conference.  In addition to LLSDC, I am aware that the Law Library Association of Greater New York (LLAGNY) and AALL’s Private Law Libraries & Information Professionals SIS provided grants for individuals to attend ILTA.  I encourage you to take advantage of these opportunities and apply for support to attend ILTACON 2017 in Las Vegas.

ILTA Membership

Unlike many of our law librarian associations, ILTA membership is by organization rather than individual.  This means that if your employer is already a member, you can join at no additional cost!  Check the Member Search on the ILTA website to find out if your firm or organization is already a member.  Please contact Steve Lastres or Deborah Panella if you are interested in getting more involved with ILTA.

I have barely touched the surface on what I encountered and learned at ILTACON 2016, so stay tuned for further musings in future blog posts.

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