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  • 29 Jun 2021 4:54 PM | Megan Kocher (Administrator)

    At their June 25, 2021 meeting, the USAIN Executive Council voted to approve a letter of support  endorsing the White House proposed budget FY2022. This budget provides a significant 18% increase in funding to the National Agricultural Library (NAL). Some of the funds will be dedicated to the improvement of search tools such as AGRICOLA, PubAg and AgData Commons. A significant amount is also targeted for Life Cycle Assessment, an evaluation of all inputs, outputs, and the environmental impact associated with agricultural production, processing, distribution, and consumption and related activities. You can read more explanation about the proposed budget at the USDA website.

    USAIN will send this letter to members of the House and Senate appropriations committees. Please use the text of our letter as follows as a template for your own communications with legislators and government relations offices:

    USAIN Letter of Support for the President’s Proposed Budget for Fiscal Year 2022

    The United States Agricultural Information Network (USAIN) joins with the Association of Research Libraries, in support of President Biden's Proposed Budget FY2022. USAIN is an association of libraries and information professionals, many of whom are employed at agricultural land-grant institutions across the nation.

    We are writing in support of President Biden’s proposed budget FY2022 that includes much needed funding to enhance the programs of the USDA and its agencies. The funding designated to the USDA’s Agricultural Research Service (ARS) research programs and the National Agricultural Library (NAL) are critical for generating the latest quality information that farmers, researchers, policy makers and the public use to solve food production and environmental challenges in an era of rapidly changing climate.  

    We support the funding of USDA ARS priority research areas that include strategies for increasing crop and livestock production, improving the nutritional quality of foods and healthy foods for people, pets and livestock, decreasing food losses, revitalizing rural economies, conserving natural resources, mitigating climate change, promoting environmentally friendly and sustainable farming practices, and developing biofuels for clean energy production.

    The USDA Agricultural Research Service's National Agricultural Library (NAL) fulfills its role, by federal mandate, as the primary agricultural information resource for the United States, in part by working closely with research libraries and information professionals, including members of the United States Agricultural Information Network (USAIN), who amplify NAL’s charge by providing direct information services and resources to faculty, students, farmers, researchers, small businesses, extension personnel, local government officials and policy makers.

    With the designated funds, NAL can begin the important task of enhancing its collections, information products, search tools, and information services to better support innovative agricultural research and knowledge creation at the USDA and at cooperating institutions including land-grant institutions. The funding will give NAL and the nation a competitive advantage in curating and managing agricultural information for research and public consumption. 

    NAL’s areas of focus include: (1) enhancing existing literature and knowledge management search platforms, Ag Data Commons, PubAg, and AGRICultural Online Access (AGRICOLA), into the robust storage, search, and retrieval systems for primary agricultural literature, data, and reports; (2) building the systems, data, and standards for evaluating environmental impacts associated with agricultural food chain operations, systems, and products using Life Cycle Assessment (LCA) measures; and (3) supporting scientists, scholars, and policy makers with in-depth searches and synthesis of the scientific literature and other resources for evidence-based decisions.

    Agriculture is a critical sector that supplies food for the masses in the U.S. and abroad, improves the livelihood of rural communities, and is a source of raw materials that drive many industries, including food and chemical technologies, biofuels (e.g. ethanol), paper and textiles, to name a few.

    The White House proposed budget FY2022 has prioritized programs needed to ensure a secure and safe food supply for the health of our nation. The USDA ARS and NAL play key roles in this sector worthy of a high-level funding. We urge you to join us in supporting the proposed budget. 

    Thank you for your dedicated service to the American people.


    Megan Kocher,

    President, USAIN, 2021-2022


  • 25 Mar 2021 11:49 PM | Patricia Hartman (Administrator)

    The USAIN Professional Development Committee is pleased to announce that we are now accepting applications for the 2021 USAIN Research Fellows Award

    A total of $4,000 in funding will be available to one or more USAIN members for financial support for conducting research on agricultural information. Examples of costs that could be covered by the award include (but are not limited to): transcription, travel to an institution for research, student worker support, etc. The funding is not to be used for professional development activities.

    To apply, please complete the attached application to:

    • ·       outline your proposed research or project 
    • ·       describe what support is needed 
    • ·       provide a research support justification demonstrating how this award will benefit your research objectives (and possibly USAIN and the profession)
    • ·       give preliminary ideas of where you plan to disseminate the outcome or results of your project

    Applications will be judged on the applicability of research to the USAIN mission, and adherence to application guidelines (see the rubric that is also attached).

    Deadline is Friday, April 30, 2021. Award recipients will be notified in June.

    Send the completed application via email to:

    USAIN_Fellows_Application_2021.docx  Research_Fellows_Rubric_for_Award_2021.docx

    Questions can be directed to, and

    Thank you for your interest in the USAIN Research Fellows Award. We look forward to hearing from you!

  • 16 Mar 2021 11:28 PM | Claudine Jenda

    The Nominations and Elections Committee is most pleased to present the slate of the 2021 USAIN Executive Council candidates for President-Elect, Treasurer, and Directors. Please take some time to review the candidates biographies and personal statements, prior to receiving your personal link to the electronic election ballot.   We thank all who are standing for election, and those who considered running.  We applaud your spirit of service.

    Review candidate biographies and statements in the file below:



    Lorrie Pellack, Luti Salisbury, and Claudine Jenda

    2021 Nominations & Elections Committee

  • 9 Jul 2020 2:20 PM | Patricia Hartman (Administrator)

    Click here to learn more about the July 20-23 conference. Register here. Deadline to apply is July 17!

  • 19 Jun 2020 1:48 PM | Kristen Mastel (Administrator)

    The USAIN Bylaws Committee is moving forward on a handful of changes to the USAIN Bylaws (  The Bylaws were last revised in 2016.  This year we need to make some grammatical changes and modifications to officer and nominations and elections to align our Bylaws with the USAIN Procedures and Rules ( and with current practice.

    There are 8 proposed amendments:

    • Article I. Section 2. The amendment is proposed to correct punctuation.

    • Article II. Section 3. – The amendment is to add a date for the establishment of Land Grant Universities.
    • Article III. Section 1. The amendment is proposed to simply punctuation.
    • Article IV. Section 1. – Removal of “disability or withdrawal” as the conditions in which the President is unable to serve. This will allow for more flexibility if transfer of duties to the President-Elect is ever needed.
    • Article IV. Section 5. The amendment is proposed to correct punctuation.
    • Article VII. Section 1. The amendment is proposed to correct punctuation.
    • Article IX. Section 1 and 2. Clarifies language around nominations and elections. We are recommending the removal of geographic and membership category distribution, as this has limited the committee in the past, although we recognize that it is a good practice to follow. In addition, we are not always able to recruit a full slate for each open position, so we have added “strive to” to Section  

    These proposed amendments have been approved by the voting members of the USAIN Executive Council, so we are now sharing the proposed amendments with the entire USAIN membership.  The amendments will be discussed and voted on during the Business Meeting at the upcoming USAIN Virtual Conference, so please review the amendments before then.  If the amendments are approved by a majority vote during the Business Meeting, they will be submitted to the entire voting membership for a final decision via electronic ballot.

    If you have any questions, feel free to contact either member of the USAIN Bylaws Committee. The document with proposed changes was shared on the USAIN-L listserv. 


    USAIN Bylaws Committee

    Kristen Mastel, Chair

    Noel Kopriva 

  • 14 Apr 2020 5:22 PM | Kristen Cooper (Administrator)


    We hope that everyone is safe and healthy. Here is the Spring 2020 newsletter. We hope you enjoy it and if you have any suggestions for future newsletters please let us know!

    Kristen C

    On behalf of the communications committee

    USAIN newsletter 4_13_20.pdf

  • 14 Apr 2020 1:57 PM | Kristen Cooper (Administrator)

    Congratulations to the winners of the election! Additionally, thank you to everyone who ran and the USAIN Nominations and Elections Committee (Kristen Mastel (Chair), Melody Royster and Sarah Williams).

    President-elect: Megan Kocher

    Secretary: Suzie Teghtmeyer

    Directors:  Kristen Cooper, Kyrille (Kiri) DeBose, Jodee Kuden, and Lorrie Pellack (will fill Megan Kocher's term for one year)

    Once again, congratulations!

  • 26 Mar 2020 7:36 AM | Kristen Mastel (Administrator)

    Thanks to all who considered the call to serve on the planning committee of the USAIN2020 Virtual Conference.  Several of you offered to serve and I am sure we will use you in some capacity as the planning progresses.  At this time, the USAIN2020 Virtual Conference Planning Committee is being formed and will be announced shortly.

    For all those who registered for the USAIN2020 Conference at Texas Tech, a decision has been made to give a full refund of the conference registration.

    Registrants and all others are then invited to submit a separate registration to the USAIN2020 Virtual Conference, that includes a bonus pre-conference on systematic reviews, at a total price of $150.00 for USAIN members and $185.00 for non-USAIN members.

    After full consultations with our speakers and presenters, I am pleased to announce that the USAIN2020 Virtual Conference will be held the week of July 20, 2020.  The Ohio State University Libraries and the University of Minnesota Libraries have stepped forward to serve as co-facilitators of the USAIN2020 Virtual Conference. We also fully intend to recognize Texas Tech as the designated host of this year’s conference.

    On behalf of the USAIN Executive Council and USAIN members, I want to acknowledge the incredible amount of hard work by the conference planning teams and committees at Texas Tech, and from within USAIN, together with all the speakers, vendors, exhibitors, friends, partners, and colleagues who have done so much behind the scenes in preparation for this year’s conference, and are lending their expertise and support to this new virtual format

    Stay tuned!  We are so close!  Thanks for your patience, we expect to begin refunds next week and at the same time start registrations to the USAIN2020 Virtual Conference.



  • 5 Mar 2020 12:09 PM | Kristen Mastel (Administrator)

    The Nominations and Elections Committee presents the slate of candidates for President-Elect, Secretary, and three Directors to serve on the USAIN Executive Council. Please take some time to review the candidates’ biographies and personal statements prior to receiving your personal link to the electronic election ballot next week. We thank all who are standing for election, as well as those who considered it.


    Kristen Mastel
    Sarah Williams
    Melody Royster
    USAIN Nominations & Elections Committee

  • 3 Mar 2020 12:38 PM | Kristen Mastel (Administrator)

    Dear USAIN members and conference attendees,

    Today the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) in Atlanta issued a statement about the likelihood that the coronavirus will spread in the United States.  They are not currently able to say how far the disease will spread, and it is unclear how federal, state and local authorities will react in the weeks to come.

    The USAIN Executive Council and our conference hosts at Texas Tech University are monitoring the situation with regard to our April conference in Lubbock.  As of this writing, we are continuing with our plans for the conference from April 26-29, which will feature pre-conferences, invited speakers, breakout sessions, posters, cornhole, learning the two-step, and much more.  

    While our biennial conference is the highlight of our year and a wonderful opportunity for all of us to meet and exchange ideas, it is also important that we act in the best interests of everyone’s health, well-being and safety.  We will continue to monitor the situation in conjunction with the leadership at Texas Tech and any relevant local officials, and we will keep you updated periodically on our plans if anything changes as the April conference date draws near.

    The CDC is the definitive authority on disease monitoring and on guidance regarding domestic and international travel.  So far it is international travel that is being contained at higher education institutions with advisories to limit participation in study abroad programs to and from specific countries.  We are watching for any advisories that apply to domestic travel in the United States beyond the standard precautions for preventing the spread of coronavirus that are similar to those used for colds and flu.  So far, the USAIN2020 Conference is a go!

    If you have questions, you may direct them to the Texas Tech conference co-chairs, Innocent Awasum and Jack Becker or the USAIN Conference co-chairs, Kristen Mastel and Melody Royster.


    Claudine Jenda & 

    USAIN Executive Committee 

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