NCSL Legislative Summit
July 20-24, 2009
Philadelphia, Pennsylvania

Legislative Research Librarians Staff Section

(as of July 13, 2009)

Staff Section activities noted in bold.

Sessions will be in the Pennsylvania Convention Center unless otherwise noted.

Monday | Tuesday | Wednesday | Thursday | Friday

Monday, July 20
 8:00 am - 5:00 pm


 8:00 am - 5:00 pm  Pre-conference Meetings
 NCSL Executive Committee Meetings
 9:00 am - 12:00 pm  Legislative Staff Coordinating Committee
 9:00 am - 4:00 pm

"How to Make Your Boss a Rock Star"
Special Training Session for Personal Staff
(additional fee required)

 1:00 pm - 2:45 pm


Tour of the Library Company of Philadelphia

The Library Company of Philadelphia is an independent research library specializing in American history and culture from the 17th through the 19th centuries. The Library Company is America's first successful lending library and oldest cultural institution, founded in 1731 by Benjamin Franklin as a subscription library supported by its shareholders, as it is to this day. To participate in the tour, please contact Heather Morton, NCSL Staff Liaison to LRL.
 3:00 pm - 5:00 pm

Standing Committees

 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

NCSL Executive Committee

 7:00 pm

Optional Event: Chicago Cubs vs. Philadelphia Phillies

(additional fee required)

Tuesday, July 21
 7:00 am - 5:30 pm


 7:00 am - 8:30 am Ancillary Meetings
 8:30 am - 10:15 am
Ballroom Above Grand Hall

General Session
Bill Gates: A Bold New Vision for Education

Bill Gates, America's most famous technology entrepreneur, has turned his energy and genius to improving education in our country. Mr. Gates believes that economic stimulus money for education provides a unique opportunity--a moment in time--to create bold innovations that will redefine educational excellence. Come to Philadelphia and be inspired by his ideas!

 10:00 am - 5:00 pm  Exhibit Hall Open
10:30 am - 12:00 noon
102AB - Street Level
Opening Up Legislatures Through Social Media
Joint with National Association of Legislative Information Technology

Citizens expect information to be available on the Internet and on social networks they use most, such as Twitter, Facebook or the next new site. Learn how legislatures can use social media to enhance the institution, improve the public's perception about legislative transparency and accessibility, and increase public participation.


  • Sharon Crouch Steidel, Director of Information Systems, House of Delegates, Virginia
  • Ric Cantrell, Chief Deputy of the Senate, Utah
  • Andrew Hoppin, Chief Information Officer, Senate, New York
12:15 pm - 2:30 pm

Standing Committees

2:30 pm - 4:00 pm
Auditorium/Lecture Hall - Street Level
Legislative Staff MegaSession - Doing More with Less: Become a Creative Innovator
Speaker Lisa Bodell is founder and CEO of futurethink, a company designed to help organizations plan better for the future. The company has the largest database of innovation research and tools in the world. Bodell’s expertise is in foresight, innovation and change to help corporations and organizations understand not only what’s next, but why it matters. Hear ideas and learn the tools to creatively do more with less—less money and less staff while still being responsive to the legislature and the public.
6:30 pm - 9:00 pm

Social Event
"Philadelphia Freedom"

“The Most Historic Square Mile in America” will play host to our opening extravaganza of history, culture, food and festivity on Independence Mall, the place America was born. Two hundred and thirty-three years of history mixed with a multitude of music and a cornucopia of culinary delights will make your welcome to Philadelphia memorable. With Independence Hall and the Liberty Bell as a backdrop (both will be open for touring), the evening’s festivities will begin with a rousing Philly-style welcome at the National Constitution Center, the repository of a fascinating exhibit of how our country is governed. “Once Upon a Nation” storytellers will mesmerize guests of all ages. Strolling musicians and dance bands will perform inside and out. Historic characters at every twist and turn will have you reliving the colonial experience. Games and interactive activities will keep everyone amused and bemused. And you’ll sample delicacies from different neighborhoods to satisfy every palate. As dusk sets in, watch the magic begin as we light up Independence Hall for a night glow that will inspire everyone. All this … and one bell! After all, this is Philadelphia.

Wednesday, July 22
 6:30 am - 8:00 am  Walk for Wellness
 7:00 am - 8:30 am  Ancillary Meetings
 7:00 am - 5:00 pm  Registration
 8:30 am - 10:00 am
Ballroom Above Grand Hall

General Session
The Economy: What's in Store?

Renowned economists will share their ideas on how to get out of the recession. They will discuss whether the stimulus money is enough to stabilize the American economy, whether or not the United States will lead the recovery, and what roles the EU and China will play. Simon Johnson, of MIT’s Sloan School of Management, is an expert on financial and economic crises and has focused on global economic stability. A senior fellow at the Peterson Institute for International Economics in Washington, D.C., he is also a member of the Congressional Budget Office’s Panel of Economic Advisers. David Wyss, chief economist at Standard & Poor’s, is responsible for S&P’s economic forecasts and publications, and is co-author of the weekly "Financial Notes" and the monthly "Equity Insight." Wyss testifies regularly before Congress and writes on finance and the economy. David L. Cohen is executive vice president of Comcast in charge of corporate communications and government affairs, and chairman of the Philadelphia Chamber of Commerce. He has been chief of staff to the mayor, where he worked on budgetary and financial issues, and co-chair of the Host Committee for the 2000 Republican National Convention.

 9:00 am - 4:00 pm  Exhibit Hall Open
10:15 am - 12:00 noon
Marriott Grand Ballroom Salon D
5th Floor 
Valuing Differences, Creating Success
Joint with American Society of Legislative Clerks and Secretaries and National Association of Legislative Information Technology

Differences in generational and cultural perspectives, institutional knowledge and technical expertise can create challenges in developing legislative information systems. Explore ways to build relationships among all kinds of staff and legislators, plan for retirements, train new staff, and discover new programming and project management methods.


  • Duncan Goss, Vermont, NALIT Chair


  • Michael Adams, Director, Legislative Information Services, Colorado
  • Mary Camp, Director, Legislative Reference Library, Texas
  • Susan Clarke Schaar, Clerk of the Senate, Virginia
  • James Tamburro, General Assembly, Connecticut
 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm  Issue Forums
 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm

Issue Forums

5:00 pm - 6:30 pm
Ballroom Above Grand Hall

Kentucky Social Event
"A Taste of Kentucky"

The mystique of Churchill Downs, the excitement of the Kentucky Derby—you’ll be transported to this land of wonder and beauty, with more than a dollop of Southern charm, hospitality and great cuisine that will have you looking forward to the 2010 Kentucky Legislative Summit.

   States Night
Thursday, July 23
 7:00 am - 8:30 am  Bipartisan Bike Ride 
 7:00 am - 5:00 pm  Registration 
 7:30 am - 8:45 am  New Staff Section Officers Orientation 
 Statehouse Ambassador Breakfast
 Ancillary Meetings
 9:00 am - 11:30 am
Ballroom Above Grand Hall
The Word from Washington and NCSL Business Meeting
Hear from Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke on White House initiatives and their impact on the states. Attend the business meeting to vote on policy positions that guide NCSL's advocacy efforts before Congress and the administration. After Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke speaks, join us in honoring Senator Richard J. Cohen, Minnesota, as the recipient of the 2009 State Legislator Public Leadership in the Arts Award presented by Americans for the Arts.
  • Speaker Joe Hackney, North Carolina, NCSL President
  • Speaker Terie T. Norelli, New Hampshire, Chair, NCSL Standing Committees
 9:00 am - 3:00 pm  Exhibit Hall Open
 11:30 am - 1:00 pm
201C - Level 2
LRL Luncheon and Business Meeting
LRL & NCSL gratefully acknowledge the support of Thomson West

The Legislative Research Librarian Staff Section will meet to discuss staff section business over lunch.


  • Jacqueline Curro, Maryland, LRL Chair
 1:30 pm - 3:00 pm
Issue Forums
 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
105AB - Street Level
Issue Forums
Connecting to Constituents through Social Media
Social media formats such as Facebook, blogs and Twitter are revolutionizing the way news is delivered and received. Learn how to harness new and emerging media as well as effectively frame your message to traditional, mainstream news outlets in a dynamic news media industry.
  • Representative Rosie Berger, State Representative, Wyoming
  • Senator Bruce Starr, State Senator, Oregon
  • Brad Blake, Director, New Media & Online Strategy, Office of the Governor, Massachusetts
  • Ric Cantrell, Chief Deputy of the Senate, Utah Senate, Utah
  • Tim Rice, Executive Director, Legislative Information System, Illinois

 3:30 pm - 5:00 pm
102AB - Street Level

Hidden Resources: State Humanities Councils

State humanities councils receive federal funds that can be used to support K-12 education, public libraries, museums, historical and arts organizations, civic groups, and senior centers. But they also get money from state governments and private organizations. Explore the variety of ways that councils and legislators collaborate to have the best impact in their states.


  • Jeanne Schmedlen, Director Special Projects, Office of Speaker of the House, Pennsylvania


  • Joseph Kelly, Executive Director, Pennsylvania Humanities Council, Pennsylvania
  • Esther Mackintosh, President, Federation of State Humanities Councils, Virginia
  • Phoebe Stein Davis, Executive Director, Maryland Humanities Council, Maryland
  • Robert Vaughan III, President, Virginia Foundation for the Humanities, Virginia
 6:30 pm - 8:30 pm

LRL Dutch Treat Dinner

Join librarian colleagues from around the country for a great evening at a local restaurant. Spouses and guests are welcome. Contact Heather Morton for more information.

Friday, July 24
 8:00 am - 11:00 am  Registration 
 8:00 am - 10:00 am
Ballroom Above Grand Hall

General Session
The Politics of Change
Peggy Noonan, a columnist for The Wall Street Journal, a frequent guest on political talk shows, and the best selling author of seven books on American politics, history and culture provides insight into American politics today. She will be signing her most recent book, Patriotic Grace: What It Is and Why We Need It Now, following the session.

Health Care: Finding the Right Prescription
Health and Human Services Secretary Kathleen Sebelius, former legislator and governor of Kansas, gives her perspective on the movement to reform health care.


  • Senator Richard T. Moore, Massachusetts, NCSL Vice President
 10:15 am - 11:45 am
 Issue Forums
 12:00 noon - 1:45 pm
Ballroom Above Grand Hall
Legislative Staff Luncheon
Elemental Leadership in Crisis Times
Bill Purcell's insights into the elements of leadership have been honed by a lifetime's dedication to public service. Now director of Harvard's Institute of Politics at the John F. Kennedy School of Government, he has served as the majority leader of the Tennessee House of Representatives and the mayor of Nashville.
 2:00 pm - 3:45 pm
Auditorium/Lecture Hall - Street Level

Legislative Staff Megasession: Building a Thriving Organization

Join legislative staff for an interactive session on the book "Tribal Leadership," by Dave Logan, John King and Halee Fischer-Wright. Based on an eight-year study of organizational behavior, the authors discuss organizations as “tribes” and teach how to strengthen and elevate a tribe to a level that maximizes teamwork and productivity in challenging economic environments.

 6:30 pm - 9:30 pm

Social Event
Philadelphia Finale: A Concert on the Rocky Steps

One of the most famous art museums in the world serves as backdrop to one of the world’s most heroic movie moments—the ascension of Rocky to the top of the steps of the Philadelphia Museum of Art overlooking the skyline of the City of Brotherly Love. You’ll arrive at the top of the “Rocky steps” for a breathtaking view of the Philadelphia skyline above Benjamin Franklin Parkway, known as the Champs Elysee of America. Enjoy an evening of food and entertainment with pictures by the Rocky statue and a grand outdoor concert at dusk with the skyline as the ultimate backdrop. A summer evening captures the vitality of this urban masterpiece—Philadelphia—and allows you to become Thomas Eakins for the night as you try your hand at creating sculptures or painting landscapes. There will be artists/teachers on hand to lend moral support! In between mini-cheesesteak eggrolls and a special Schuylkill punch will be a vast spread of al fresco dining, punctuated by live music throughout the park. And as the sun sets in a blaze of color, we invite you to take a seat where Rocky ran to enjoy a concert of the Sound of Philadelphia, featuring some of Philly’s most popular musicians. Stick around for the finale where we get everyone, a la American Bandstand, up dancing.


The NCSL Legislative Research Librarians Staff Section
will next meet in St. Paul, Minnesota, October 14-17, 2009

Please plan to attend!


2008-2009 Staff Section Officers


Jacqueline Curro
Legislative Librarian

Library and Information Services



Shelley Day
Legislative Information Liaison

Office of Legislative Research and General Counsel



Elizabeth Lincoln
Research Services Group Manager
Legislative Reference Library

Immediate Past Chair:

Cathy Martin
Legislative Librarian

Legislative Library

North Carolina


Staff Section Contact