The organisation of the Stichting IFLA Global Libraries has a board of five members: Glòria Pérez-Salmerón (Chair), Deborah Jacobs (Member), Inga Lundén (Member), Christine Mackenzie (Member), and Victoria Okojie (Member). The Secretary General of Stichting IFLA Global Libraries is Gerald Leitner.
Glòria Pérez-Salmerón served as IFLA President from 2017 to 2019. She is also Past-President of FESABID, Federación Española de Sociedades de Archivística, Biblioteconomía, Documentación y Museística (Spanish Federation of Archivist, Librarianship, Documentation and Museum Associations). She works at Diputació de Barcelona and has held many leadership roles in her distinguished career including Director of the National Library of Spain (2010-2013) where she also was member of its Governing Board and Executive Committee (2008-2013). Under her management, the Library developed many innovative projects including the systematic digitisation of holdings, thanks to a partnership agreement with Telefónica, which foresaw the digitisation of 200,000 book titles. Glòria's involvement with IFLA is long-standing, being a former member of IFLA’s Public Libraries Standing Committee (2005-2012) and member of the Executive Committee and Vice-President of EBLIDA, European Bureau of Library Information and Documentation Associations (2008-2015). Gloria is an experienced public speaker and regularly gives professional lectures.
Deborah Jacobs has served as the director of the Global Libraries initiative at the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation since 2008. Through this work she oversees the foundation’s work to improve the lives of one billion “information-poor” people by 2030 while positioning the world’s 320,000 public libraries as critical community assets and providers of information through relevant technologies. Jacobs began her career as a children’s librarian forty years ago, and has worked in rural and urban settings in the United States. Prior to joining the Foundation she served as Seattle Public Library City Librarian for 11 years. In addition to directing the Seattle Public Library system, Jacobs led a $291 million capital-improvement program called “Libraries for All” that funded the construction of a new Central Library and renovated, built, or expanded 26 branch libraries.
Deborah’s focus is building collaboration among the leading library support organizations globally, assisting them in long term financial sustainability, as well as focusing on the future leadership for public libraries. She believes, in keeping with IFLA’s Global Vision, that for libraries to be known and recognized as engines of development and funded as key community assets, there first must be a strong, united, aligned and connected library field. Because she believes libraries, regardless of location or demographics, have much more in common than differences, she will champion IFLA’s commitment to bringing alive the strategy that comes from the work of the Global Vision. As she looks to her future work, Jacobs knows that her most satisfying moments are working to engage, build and strengthen communities. She believes that through working together, anything can be achieved.
Inga Lundén is an international library advisor. In 2015, after serving fifteen years as City Librarian of Stockholm, Sweden, she spent her last year before retirement as Director of Culture in the same city. Prior to this, she served nine years as library director and director of arts and sports in the city of Gävle.
Inga holds university degrees in both journalism and library and information science. Developing different aspects of democracy, through newspaper journalism and public librarianship, has been the focus of Inga’s professional life.
Besides her leadership role for Stockholm Public Library, developing both a digital and innovative physical libraries within the programme “Libraries on the move”, she served five years as president of the Swedish Library Association and was also a member of IFLA Governing Board for four years, the last two of which she spent on its Executive Committee. She has served on the Board of Stockholm University Library, as well as on the Development Board of the National Library of Sweden.
The Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation and Global Libraries has been a source of inspiration for her, where she served on the advisory committee for the Access to Learning Award and as mentor and advisor for International Network of Emerging Innovators (INELI), working with both INELI Global and INELI Balkans since 2010. Throughout her career as a library leader in diverse communities—locally, nationally and globally—the common experience is that emerging innovative leaders grow and sustainable change happens when both work together, combining strengths. IFLA Global Vision is a platform for this.
Christine’s career has spanned 40 years in public libraries in Australia, managing three library systems recognised for their innovation and best practice. She has been very active in both IFLA and ALIA and was a member of the Bertelsmann Foundation's Public Library Network in the early 2000s. She was a co-founder of INELI-Oceania, a program funded by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation that provided leadership training for librarians in Australia, New Zealand and the South Pacific and which sponsored the formation of the Pacific Libraries Network. As President of IFLA 2019-2021 she led the governance review involving the Governing Board, members and volunteers, that developed a new governance structure for a more inclusive, transparent and effective IFLA. She was President of ALIA (Australian Library and Information Association) in 2003 – 2004 and has served on state and national government advisory boards relating to libraries and contributed to international organisations promoting technology and the internet.
Dr. Victoria Okojie has been working in the Library and Information Science sector for over 30years, with experience in both teaching and practice and has held many leadership positions. She currently lectures at the University of Abuja, Nigeria and is a Member of the prestigious International Advisory Committee of UNESCO Memory of the World Programme. She has worked at the University of Ibadan Library; The Birtish Council; as an independent consultant and as the pioneer Registrar/CEO, Librarians’Registration Council of Nigeria, where she initiated innovative projects that focused on using donor funding from partnership with the ICT sector to train librarians in the use of ICTs in service delivery. Adapting the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation Global Libraries Program International Network of Emerging Library Innovators (INELI) model, she successfully advocated for funding from the US Consulate, Lagos and Goethe-Institut, Nigeria to train young librarians in Nigeria from 2019 to 2021.
Dr. Okojie was President, Nigerian Library Association from 2005 to 2010, during which period she grew the assets of the association from about USD $35000 to about USD $400,000. She was also Chair, IFLA Africa Section and IFLA Division V (Africa, Asia and Oceania, Latin America and the Carebbean). She was a member of IFLA Governing Board where she was actively involved in crafting and implementing the International Advocacy Programme as well as the Global Vision project that seeks to develop a strong, united and connected global library field. She was also a member of the Governing Board of the National Library of Nigeria and Adviser, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation Global Libraries Programme. She is a Fellow of the US State Department, International Visitor Leadership Program; Fellow, Nigerian Library Association and Associate, IFLA International Leaders Programme. Dr. Okojie has published over 30 peer-reviewed papers and has received over 15 awards.
She has a strong passion in advocating for Library and Information Services issues, mentoring young librarians and promoting universal access to information.
Gerald Leitner took on the role of IFLA Secretary General in June 2016. He is responsible for the strategic and operational direction and financial management of IFLA and SIGL. Gerald Leitner has worked in senior positions at international organisations and in Austria’s cultural, scientific and educational sectors. Prior to becoming IFLA Secretary General, he was the Secretary General of the Austrian Library Association. Gerald studied literature and history at the University of Vienna, and after his studies worked as journalist, chief editor of the Austrian Library magazine and head of training for public librarians in Austria. He is a past president of the European Bureau of Library Information and Documentation Associations (EBLIDA) and a member of national and international advisory bodies in cultural, education and scientific sectors. He is highly experienced in negotiating with politicians, authorities, lobby groups, publishers, artists, businesses and strategic partners. In 2017, Gerald Leitner initiated the Global Vision project.
The board of the Stichting SIGL does not receive any remuneration for their services as board member of the board. A reimbursement of expenses is possible.
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