The Trustee Academy is a series of online courses to help Trustees become exceptionally proficient in their roles on behalf of their libraries. All of the online courses are taught by a professional in the field.

Courses include:

  • Trustee Competencies covers the knowledge, skills, abilities, and attributes of a successful public library Trustee. The course is led by Kevin Tomlinson, area field consultant with the Idaho Commission for Libraries.

  • Working Effectively with the Library Director covers the role of the Board, the role of the library director, and how to communicate effectively with each other. Learn about strategic planning, board meetings, an emergency communication plan, and how to create a sustainable and effective working relationship. This course is led by Deirdre Brennan, Executive Director, of Reaching Across Illinois Library System (RAILS).

  • The Library's Budget for Trustees covers understanding where funding comes from, working with the director to develop the budget, ensuring the budget is in alignment with goals, making the case for the budget to funders, making effective budget presentations, and monitoring the budget at monthly meetings. This course is led by Marcellus Turner, City Librarian, The Seattle Public Library.

  • Everyday Advocacy – Why the Library Matters! covers getting to know your funders and letting them know what the library is doing and importantly – why it matters. Learn how to be a powerful voice at budget time to ensure your library receives the funding it needs. This course is led by Libby Post, Strategist-in-Chief and President of Communication Services.

Included Courses



Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion
What Library Trustees Need to Know
Everyday Advocacy - Why the Library Matters!
Getting to know funders, sharing what the library is doing, and most importantly - why it matters!
The Library's Budget for Trustees
Funding sources, developing the budget, effective presentations, making the case, and more.
Trustee Competencies
The knowledge, skills, abilities, and attributes of a successful public library Trustee.
Vendor Negotiation that Supports Patron Privacy & Intellectual Freedom
Working Effectively with the Library Director
The role of the Board, the role of the library director, and how to communicate effectively with each other.