NCTPG Officers 2018-2019

Rice Majors, UC Davis (Chair)

Swetta Abeyta, St. Mary’s College (Vice Chair/Chair Elect)

Sarah Spindle, Contra Costa County Public (Secretary)

Fabiola Hernandez, University of San Francisco (Treasurer)

Anders Lyon, University of San Francisco (Webmaster)

Justine Withers, University of San Francisco (Past Chair)

Suzette Caneda, Stanford (Member at Large)

Prema Desai, Stanford (Member at Large)

Stella Tang, UC Berkeley (Member at Large)

Emily Koster, Contra Costa County Public (Member at Large)

Susan Boone, UC San Francisco (Member at Large)

Brenda Carrillo, University of the Pacific (Member at Large)

Michelle Polchow, UC Davis (Member at Large)

Choosing Your Battles – NCTPG 81st Annual Meeting

San Francisco Public Library • Koret Auditorium

Friday April 6th, 2018 • 9:00 am to 1:00 pm

Choosing Your Battles

(Note: Registration begins at 9:00 am; NCTPG Annual Meeting starts at 9:30 am)

We all agree people who work in libraries are amazing, right? It’s rare that we do just one or two things in our day-to-day job. We work with systems and people, print and electronic, old and new, bulk and unique. Even so, we can’t do everything, no matter how much someone wants us to. Thus this year’s theme: Choosing Your Battles. Our speakers will share how they re-examined and reshaped their workflows to meet modern needs and capacities. Make time for new skills within current duties. Discern best practices from outmoded habits.  Get buy-in to let go and say no.  

We’re going to tap the experience of all our NCTPG members as well. We’ll have space available throughout the day to post problems and gather ideas, and network.

As always, we aim for a broad representation of types of libraries (public, academic, special) and a diverse representation of roles within and around technical services.  

Program and Speakers:

Permanent Collections vs Temporary Collections: Considering the Future of Academic Library Collection Development

Michael Levine-Clark – Dean of Libraries, University of Denver

For most of their history, academic libraries have built permanent collections, maintaining and preserving content for future generations while also serving the needs of current users. Those two roles of the library – steward of cultural heritage and provider of resources to support the research and curricular needs of students and faculty – have coexisted, because in the print era they had to. Today we can think about those roles separately, and can divide our collection development strategies between building permanent collections to preserve material for future generations and building temporary collections to give current users the broadest and deepest collections possible. In this talk, we will consider some of the implications of this split, some related trends in collection development, and some strategies for thinking differently about our collections.

Raising the Bar on High Volume Depositories:  Barcode-based Accession Shelving

Agustin Castaneda – Print Materials Manager & Ricardo Dominguez – Library Page Supervisor, University of Southern California

Physical space for print materials is at a premium in libraries. University of Southern California’s library system is no exception. In the last two years, we have experienced higher than average weeding in the branch libraries to make room for student study spaces and additional offices. Grand Depository, which houses the largest part of the print collection, faced a shortage of space needed to maintain the large collection and accept the increased volume from other libraries. 

In 2015, the collections maintenance staff developed a project with a goal of maximizing the available physical space and streamlining the ingest process. The project team started by compacting the entire monograph collection. Then, we employed a barcode-based accessing shelving system to the remaining uncompacted items including newly transferred items. The new system significantly cut down on student workforce needs, increased capacity for staff to pursue other work, and accelerated the process of titles being discoverable in the catalog. Barcode-based accession shelving is replicable in small or large institutions, for the whole or a portion of the print collections, and with some variation to address prevailing issues. 

Short programs:

Before and After: Seeing is Believing

Yu-Lan Chou – Program Coordinator for Technical Services, Santa Clara City Library  

The short program will have a slideshow of changes made to the technical services workflow at the Santa Clara City Library. Output statistics as well as outcome will be examined.  

Weeding Made Easy and Green

Wen-Ying Lu – Head of Cataloging, Santa Clara University

This presentation shares how Santa Clara University Library saves time, effort and paper in using OCLC’s GreenGlass (part of their Sustainable Collection Services) and Innovative’s app Mobile Worklists to assess collection and streamline a multi-year weeding program.

Collaborating with Coworkers and Community: Establishing a Zine Library

Anders Lyon – Stacks Coordinator, Matthew P. Collins – Reference Librarian & Bryan Duran – Evening/Weekend Circulation/Reserves Coordinator, University of San Francisco

Zines are short-run, independently published magazines on a variety of subjects. Common themes include art, comics, poetry, short stories, memoirs, cultural criticism, and social commentary. The Gleeson Zine Library is a small collection of zines that circulate to the University of San Francisco community. They host zine making workshops and regularly work with classes to bring attention to this collection. Functioning as a collaborative collection, Gleeson’s Zine Library is made up of donations and contributions that foster the unique voices from our community and those around us.

They will briefly discuss the importance and history of zines, zine culture, and zine distributors. They will talk about how they gained buy-in from library administration to establish the collection, created policies for access to the collection, and collaborated with technical services departments to develop and catalog the collection. The conversation will also cover zine resources, collection development strategies, and ideas for promotional workshops.

Problem Sharing Activity

Have a problem? Someone (probably) has an answer!

Facilitated by Michelle Paquette – Cataloging & Metadata Librarian, Stanford University

When you join us at our annual meeting this year, please come thinking of ONE problem you have at work that you need help with. Among our members’ varied skill sets, there will probably be at least one person at the meeting who has the knowledge you’re looking for, and we’re going to help you find them. You’ll get to know your fellow NCTPG members a bit while simultaneously helping you get one step closer to solving that problem.

Optional Tours:  

After lunch, you are invited to join your colleagues on one of three tours of local collections. All tours are 3:30 – 4:30.

  • San Francisco History Center at SF Public Library Get an overview of the collections, see highlights from the archives and rare books, and see the DigiCenter in action, including the Internet Archive scribes and other equipment.
  • Prelinger Library The Prelinger Library is an independent research library open to anyone. It is uniquely organized to optimize browsing the collection of 19th and 20th century historical ephemera, periodicals, maps, and books, most published in the United States. Much of the collection is image-rich, and in the public domain. The library specializes in material that is not commonly found in other public libraries.
  • California Judicial Center Library Look behind the scenes at the library serving the California Supreme Court and Court of Appeal, First Appellate District. The Judicial Center Library is not usually open to the public. CJCL’s collections contain more than 200,000 volumes, including all Federal and California primary legal resources, major secondary legal resources, and law reviews and journals of California and other major law schools. In addition, the Special Collections/Archives at CJCL collects the personal papers and other memorabilia of past and present California Supreme Court justices and other notable legal scholars, as well as the archives of the California Supreme Court Historical Society.

Registration & Information

Register online to start or renew your membership and attend the Annual Meeting.  
$35 in advance, $40 at the door.

Tour Sign Up

Please visit our Google survey for more information and to sign up for your tour in advance.

If you have any questions about the event, please contact Rice Majors at or you can email us at

This is not a San Francisco Public Library Sponsored Program. Please use public contact information provided above.

Note: Refreshments are not allowed in the Auditorium.

Call for Presentations

We are pleased to announce that the next Annual Meeting of the Northern California Technical Processes Group (NCTPG) will take place in San Francisco April or May 2018.

Our 81st annual meeting will be organized under the theme “Choosing Your Battles.”

For 2018, we will have two options for presenting.  Full presentations are usually 20-30 minutes with additional participation in a panel discussion.   We are also excited to say that we are seeking proposals for 5-minute presentations where speakers can discuss one change they have made in their library.

At this event, we expect to have a broad representation of types of libraries (public, academic, special) and a diverse representation of roles within and around technical services.  We are planning a half-day event to be held in Koret Auditorium at San Francisco Public Library.

Possible topics could include:

  • System migration(s)
  • Flying solo in a smaller technical services setting
  • Collection building & assessment
  • Small projects ($5k or less) that have big impacts
  • Hiring for technical services
  • Improving workflows

Please submit your proposal to the NCTPG steering committee with the subject “2018 Call for Presentations” at

Deadline for submission: Wednesday, 13 December, 2017.

NCTPG Officers 2017-2018

Rice Majors, Santa Clara University (Chair)

Justine Withers, University of San Francisco (Past Co-Chair)

Renata Ewing, California Digital Library (Past Co-Chair)

Erin Lybrand, California Law Library (Secretary)

Michelle Paquette, Stanford (Treasurer)

Sarah Spindle, Contra Costa County Library (Webmaster)

Renee Bu, Alameda County Library (Planning Committee/Member-At-Large)


NCTPG 2017 Annual Meeting Recap

The theme of NCTPG’s 80th Anniversary Annual Meeting was “Libraries in Motion: Managing Change and the Evolution of our Work.” Luis Herrera, City Librarian of the San Francisco Public Library; Xiaoli Li, of UC Davis; and Mark Matienzo, of the Stanford University Library, were our speakers.


From left to right: Luis Herrera, Mark Matienzo, Xiaoli Li

Mark Matienzo got the event rolling and created a solid foundation for the day by quickly overviewing changes that libraries confront on a daily basis. Mark recently located to the Bay Area to serve as Collaboration & Interoperability Architect in Digital Library Systems and Services at the Stanford University Libraries, so managing change is very much part of Mark’s current experience.


Mark Matienzo introduces the theme of change in libraries in an untitled presentation

Mark reminded us that libraries do understand change and that we are already managing it. “We got this,” Mark confirmed, yet then admitted “but… Change is (still) scary. Why?” Mark queried the audience before providing an answer: because change feels like you’ve become lost and no longer know who you are.

To counter the scariness of feeling lost when change occurs, Mark proposed we make a map, starting with where we are. Mark reviewed changes currently confronting libraries such as new discovery expectations, new types of information objects and resources, cultural and political pushback in authority control practice, the disintegration of ILS systems, the rise of open source implementations, and collections as data for computational research, among many others. “Users ask for more. Users ask machines first. Our data has to do things it never had to before now.”

After mapping Where we are, Mark suggests we next consider who are we?  What are our professional values and ethics? How do we balance openness and transparency? How do we cultivate, tend to, and respect our community? Mark made a passionate plea for libraries to address systematic issues by supporting the underrepresented and disenfranchised on their own terms, by decentering colonial narratives, by providing sanctuary and resisting surveillance. Warning us that “If we get this wrong, people will die.”

Finally, Mark asks Where can we go from here? and suggests that we work towards creating a broader, more accessible, more inclusive, and more respectful body of knowledge. That we bring new people and new ways of thinking into our communities. That we create systems and standards that lower barriers to reuse and movement of data across contexts.

Mark also made the interesting point that leadership is not the same as management; it is the trust that allows you to set the direction for a project or initiative.


Xiaoli Li shared her extensive experience implementing Linked Data

Xiaoli Li, the head of content support services at UC Davis, opened by relating how she first learned about Linked Data at NCTPG’s 2012 Annual Meeting on Linked Data at UC Berkeley. Subsequently a Linked Data project come up at work, so she was able to really dig in and learn a lot about it.

Xiaoli broke down and simplified Linked Data to make it understandable and less intimidating for the audience.  She explained that Linked Data is simply a set of best practices for publishing data on the web.  That Linked Data 1) uses URI’s (Uniform Resource Identifiers) as names for things; 2) The URI’s use HTTP so people can look up the names on the Web;  3) When someone looks up a URI, useful information is provided using the RDF (Resource Description Framework) and SPARQL (SPARQL Protocol and RDF Query Language) standards. And 4) Links to other URIs are included so users can discover more things.

Xiaoli explained that URI and RDF are core concepts for Linked Data. She mapped out RDF Triples (the creation of metadata based on subject-predicate-object expressions) for us.

Xiaoli explained that MARC, which has been used for over 40 years, has a flat structure that doesn’t work well in a web environment.  To solve this problem, in 2011 the Library of Congress started BIBFrame to replace MARC and to serve as the encoding standard for RDA and other content standards. BIBFrame leverages current web technology (semantic web/linked data) and uses RDF modeling practices.

UC Davis worked on BibFlow (BIBFRAME + workflow) a 2-year project with Zepheira funded by IMLS to create a roadmap to convert MARC-based catalog to a Linked Data environment. The project addressed questions like “What impact will adoption of BIBFRAME have on technical services workflows in an academic library? The primary purpose of the BibFlow project was to understand the ecosystem, test solutions, and provide a roadmap of how libraries can iteratively migrate to linked data without disrupting patron or business services.

Xiaoli outlined the roadmap in two phases and explained the six steps one by one. She discussed how to make computers do more work than ourselves by using LOC’s BIBFRAME Editor. And she outlined the skills needed for the near future. She assured us that metadata practitioners already have the knowledge needed to create Linked Data using good tools (such as the BIBFRAME Editor), and they need only acquire a basic understanding of Linked Data and RDF. Metadata policy makers, on the other hand, need to understand library applications of the Linked Data technology.


Luis Herrera, City Librarian of the San Francisco Public Library, provided an overview of library technology over the years and highlighted ways SFPL is understanding the current and future needs of their users. Luis informed us that SFPL has entered the “Age of Analytics and Data-Influenced Decision Making” and is harnessing as many tools as possible to know who their users are and what they expect from library collections.

SFPL is using GIS tools to accurately map the communities around San Francisco’s branch libraries. Combining the tools with actual walking tours of selected neighborhoods, SFPL has a created a clear picture of branch library usage patterns, which enables them to better distribute holdings and provide targeted programming. Additionally, SFPL uses the Baker and Taylor product ESP (Evidence-Based Selection Planning) to provide detailed circulation reports and predict branch preferences for new titles ordered.

According to Luis, SFPL strives to be a premier urban library and wants the public to continue seeing it as relevant to their lives and community. To this end, Luis has convened a Future of the Library forum, an ad hoc group of influencers within the library who gather to share ideas.

They’ve partnered with recent MBA graduates from the Harvard Business Association of Northern California to identify five areas of focus to prepare for change. 1) User focus: SFPL is making sure it meets the needs of specific user groups, including children, immigrant communities, job seekers, homeless people, and millennials.

Luis highlighted SFPL’s “All Are Welcome” campaign, workforce development and literacy services at the Bridge at Main, and Digital Inclusion Week (8-12 May 2017). 2) Invest in the community of the future: SFPL engages with the community to ensure innovation and adaptation, including going on listening tours and digitizing local culture and history. 3) Partner with other organizations: Their partnership with the San Francisco Department of Public Health has become famous for placing a social worker onsite and addressing drug use and housing issues. SFPL also hosts a monthly pop-up village that provides haircuts, showers, and clothing. 4) Collect and analyze data: Herrera stresses that every staff member should be involved in this effort to understand users. They will be forming an analytics unit soon. 5) Align staff around goals.

For all organizations, Herrera emphasized four elements of change: understanding the theory of change, especially a change’s impact and how to be intentional; gauging the user experience; aiming for optimum public service; and expecting continuous learning.


Panel Discussion Q &A

Q: Can MARC records implement Linked Data practice with open source or proprietary ILS?

A: (Xiaoli Li) Both will be available, although open source has been more responsive.

Q: Regarding SFPL statistics reporting ebook usage increasing 21% as of March 2017 while print circulation has gone down since its peak in 2012: Isn’t part of the popularity of digital sources stemming from them being forced on patrons by decreasing print book availability?

A: (Luis Herrera) SFPL’s user statistics show that different groups of people are using ebooks and that users are still able to obtain the resources in print they desire.

Q: How can we integrate research data into library catalogs?

A: (Mark Matienzo) Good question. Get researchers interested in metadata? There is currently a lack of incentive so it behooves librarians to develop relationships with researchers.

Q: What advice do you have for smaller institutions that might find open source daunting?

A: (Mark Matienzo) Open source should be daunting to ALL institutions. In the famous analogy, open source is free like free kittens, not like free beer. It takes time and staffing for configuration, migration, and maintenance. It’s important to do research, determine the level of support an institution expects and needs, and optimize that against outlays. Also, although open source is not proprietary software, many vendors are now offering open source solutions.

Q: What recommendations do you have for someone who wants to implement a new tool or project but may not have the full resources or authority to make it happen in their workplace?

A: (Luis Herrera) Foster an environment of innovation and create a forum for ideas. For example, at a staff meeting, ask what people want to achieve without focusing on technology right away. Keep communication coming from the bottom up.

Q: How do you all think we can best open ourselves to find out what our users are asking for?

A: (Mark Matienzo) Watch users verbalize as they complete a task. Don’t make assumptions. Balance data and observation and beware data gathering that becomes surveillance. User terms should be very clear about retention guidelines and use of data.

Q: How can we apply the user-and-community-driven data gathering and decision making to digital library projects and technology developments?

A:  (Luis Herrera) Follow the basic guideline that if something is not digitized, it is not accessible. SFPL sends its mobile scanning equipment to the branches so that community members can digitize their own memory objects. Analyze rights statements to see how they can be more clear and consistent. Partner with the Digital Public Library of America.

Q: What will UC Davis use to present Linked Data records to users?

A: (Xiaoli Li) The Linked Data For Libraries (LD4L) project is looking at how to serve data for public use. Casalini in Italy is gathering records from the United States and transforming them for display as an experiment.

An example of what a discovery using Linked data/BIBFRAME data looks like:


Libraries in Motion: Managing Change and the Evolution of our Work – NCTPG 80th Annual Meeting


San Francisco Public Library • Koret Auditorium

Friday April 28th, 2017 • 9:00 am to 1:00 pm



This year we celebrate NCTPG’s 80th year. To mark the occasion we invited speakers with expansive perspectives of the past, present, and future of technical services. Technology changes but the need to manage change does not. Join us in examining what it takes to navigate the evolution of our work. How do we keep calm and carry on amidst the continuous motion of today’s libraries? Managing a city library system through years of great change — cross-institutional collaborations — translating past formats for future preservation — transitioning from MARC to Linked Data — our speakers will share their expertise, experience, and advice for how to embrace change in today’s libraries.

This year’s speakers:

Luis Herrera City Librarian, San Francisco Public Library

Xiaoli Li Head of Content Support services, UC Davis

Mark Matienzo Collaboration & Interoperability Architect, Stanford University

Register online to start or renew your membership and attend the Annual Meeting.  $35 in advance, $40 at the door.

Optional Tours:  

After lunch, you are invited to join your colleagues on one of three tours of local collections.

  • San Francisco History Center at SF Public Library
  • Tenderloin Museum and Walking Tour
  • C. Laan Chun Library at Asian Art Museum

Please click here for more information and to sign up in advance.

If you have any questions about the event, please contact Justine Withers at (415) 422-5633 or Renata Ewing at (510) 987-0809 or you can email us here.

This is not a San Francisco Public Library Sponsored Program. Please use public contact information provided above.

Note: Refreshments are not allowed in the Auditorium.

The San Francisco Public Library
100 Larkin St., (at Grove).
Koret Auditorium, located on the Library’s lower level
Enter 30 Grove St., proceed down stairs


About the Presenters:


Luis Herrera


Luis Herrera is the City Librarian of the San Francisco Public Library, where he is responsible for the administration of the city’s 28 libraries including a main library and 27 neighborhood branches. Previously, Mr. Herrera served as the Director of Information Services for Pasadena Public Library and the Deputy Director of the San Diego and Long Beach Library systems in California.  He has served as President of both the Public Library Association and the California Library Association.  In January 2012, Mr. Herrera was named the Library Journal’s Librarian of the Year.  Mr. Herrera is the immediate past Chair of Cal Humanities and serves on the Board of the Digital Public Library of America.  Mr. Herrera was nominated by President Barack Obama to serve on the Board of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS).  Mr. Herrera earned his B.S. from the University of Texas at El Paso, a M.P.A. from California State University, and a M.L.S. from the University of Arizona.

Xiaoli Li

imagesXiaoli Li received her MLS from the Southern Connecticut State University. She worked at Yale University Library and University of Washington Libraries before moving to University of California Davis in 2004. As the Head of Content Support Services Department, Xiaoli oversees four technical services units that are responsible for acquisitions, licensing, cataloging, database maintenance, preservation and conservation. She is a PCC Policy Committee member and has actively involved in linked data projects and committee work.

Mark A. Matienzo

Mark-Matienzo-sqMark A. Matienzo is the Collaboration & Interoperability Architect in Digital Library Systems and Services at the Stanford University Libraries, serving as a technologist, advocate, and facilitator for cross-institutional projects. Prior to joining Stanford, Mark worked as an archivist, technologist, and strategist specializing in born-digital materials and metadata management, at institutions including the Digital Public Library of America, Yale University Library, The New York Public Library, and the American Institute of Physics. Mark received a MSI from the University of Michigan School of Information and a BA in Philosophy from the College of Wooster, and was a recipient of the Emerging Leader Award from the Society of American Archivists in 2012.

Save the Date! NCTPG 80th Annual Meeting


Please join us for the NCTPG 80th Annual Meeting:
Friday • April 28, 2017 • 9:00am – 1:00pm
San Francisco Public Library • Koret Auditorium

The Northern California Technical Processes Group (NCTPG) is pleased to announce the date of its 80th Annual Meeting. Please join us.
Presenters include:
• Xiaoli Li, Head of Content Support services, UC Davis
• Luis Herrera, City Librarian, San Francisco Public Library
• Mark Matienzo, Collaboration & Interoperability Architect, Stanford University

More details will be coming soon. Follow us! @nctpg1 • •

Tour Stanford’s David Rumsey Map Center and Digital Production Group Lab

The Rumsey Mmapap Center opened in April 2016 to great acclaim, including this article in National Geographic magazine. On our private tour, you can overlay historic maps with current data on their 16 x 9-foot display, “flip” through the digital archives, and see all the ways Stanford University Libraries are combining technological innovation and age-old navigation tools. But first, near and dear to our technical processing hearts, we will visit the Digital Production Lab for a backstage look at how delicate and unwieldy maps and books are made accessible to a larger audience.

When: Friday, February 24, 2017

Where: Stanford University’s Green Library

Who: Up to 13 NCTPG members or affiliates (first to email us: )

Time: 9:40 am – 1:00 pm (+ optional additional time at DRMC or other Stanford Library)


  • 9:40 – 10 am: Registration. Meet at front desk of Green Library. Short registration is required by Stanford libraries. Bring valid government issued ID. Address: Cecil H. Green Library, 557 Escondido Mall, Stanford, CA 
  • 10:00 – 11:00 am: Tour of Stanford Digital Production Group Lab
  • 11:00  – 12:00 pm: Tour of David Ramsey Map Center (DRMC)
  • 12:00 – 1:00 pm: Lunch with NCTPG at Stanford Business Center (lunch is self-pay)
  • 1:00 pm +: Optional individual visits to DRMC (open to the public 1-5 p.m.) or other campus libraries

Fees: Tours are free; Lunch is self-pay

Note: All personal belongings, with the exception of laptops, cell phones, and small hand-held cameras, must be stored in an assigned locker while in the Map Center.

Related Links: 

We look forward to seeing on on the tour!
NCTPG Officers:
Justine Withers
Renata Ewing
Robert Rohrbacher
Shelley Bodamer
Erin Lybrand
Diane Cowen
Michelle Paquette

Call for Presentations

We are pleased to announce that the next Annual Meeting of the Northern California Technical Processes Group (NCTPG) will take place in San Francisco late April/early May 2017.

This year will be our past-present-future80th and NCTPG wants to mark the past, present, and future of technical services by examining what it takes to navigate the evolution of our work. Technology changes but the need to manage change does not.

What changes have you experienced? How did you manage the technological and interpersonal challenges? If you have a topic that you believe fits our 2017 theme of managing change, we’d love to hear about it. Presentations are usually 20-30 minutes with additional participation in a panel discussion.

Please submit your proposal to the NCTPG steering committee with the subject “2017 Call for Presentations” at

Possible topics include:

  • the hard and soft skills necessary to manage change and expectations
  • the changing roles of librarians and technical services
  • systems migrations
  • preparing LIS students, employees, and systems for future changes, like Linked Data
  • outsourcing

Deadline for submission: Wednesday 16 November.

NCTPG Officers 2016-2017

Justine Withers, University of San Francisco (Co-Chair)

Renata Ewing, California Digital Library (Co-Chair)

Robert Rohrbacher, Stanford University (Past Chair)

Shelley Bodamer, Santa Cruz Public Libraries (Vice Chair, Chair Elect)

Erin Lybrand, University of San Francisco (Secretary)

Michelle Paquette, Stanford University (Treasurer)

Diane Cowen, Santa Cruz Public Libraries (Webmaster/Social Media)