Made in Canada Solutions for Public Library Leadership Development

In 2018 we have seen enormous change at the CEO level of Ontario’s public libraries through job moves, retirements, etc.  The pressure is on!

Preparing the next cohort of leaders in our field for public libraries is a challenge.  However the team (SOLS, OLS-North, OLA and FOPL) have been working on this issue.

Here is a list of Made in Canada and Ontario programs for learners and leaders to consider to build their c.v.’s, prepare for leadership and develop themselves for promotion.  Summaries of each are listed below and check them out by following the links.


APLL logo

The Advancing Public Library Leadership (APLL) Institute is a two year certificate program designed to expand and advance the leadership capacity of public library CEOs and managers.



EXCEL is a practical, flexible, distance education program that provides an opportunity to upgrade library skills and management techniques. Students can complete individual courses based on interest or can choose to pursue the EXCEL Certificate Program.



Training and resources for Ontario public library staff & board members.

CULC Public Library Leadership Fellows Program

Public Library Leaders

n the 21st Century, public libraries face unique issues that warrant focussed thought, research, discussion, and visioning. The Public Library Leaders (PLLeaders) program, a partnership of the iSchool at the University of Toronto and the Canadian Urban Libraries Council / Conseil des Bibliothèques Urbaines du Canada (CULC/CBUC), is about the future of public libraries and the changing communities they serve.

This 18-month program is designed to engage seasoned library managers who have the desire and potential for the highest levels of leadership in public libraries. It exposes them to to themes, case studies, experiences, and relationships with outstanding current leaders to augment their preparedness. The Program includes frank and confidential sessions (in-depth “site visits”) with senior library executive teams, an instructional program with key learning outcomes, individual mentorship opportunities, and personal and online networking within a close 20-member cohort of colleagues.

For more information on the PLLeaders program visit:

NELI: Northern Exposure to Leadership

Northern Exposure To Leadership

The Vision

Contribute to the vitality, growth and success of the library profession well into the 21st century, by positioning professionals to be proactive, confident and consequential voices in a dynamic and sophisticated information environment.

The Mission

Enhance professional efficacy in order to assist librarians in developing, strengthening and exercising their individual leadership abilities so that they are more confident and better prepared to create, articulate and achieve organizational visions for the benefit of society.

The Institute

Provides a unique opportunity for professional librarians to share with peers and library leaders a seven day experiential and theoretical learning situation in Canada. Participants will explore and experiment with such leadership concepts as vision, risk taking, creativity, communications, change, power, and styles of leadership-all to be done within a context of self-exploration, evaluation and development. The Institute will also provide an opportunity for those attending to develop integrated professional networks.

The Goals

To instill progressive and effective leadership strategies, attitudes and skills by providing participants with an individual and personal learning experience in order to build a foundation upon which they can develop leadership skills.

EI: Education Institute (The Partnership)

The Education Institute is a professional development & continuing education program for the library community developed by The Partnership of Provincial and Territorial Library Associations of Canada. TThe Education Institute (EI) offers a wide variety of webinars and online courses, hosted by experts across all sectors of the library & information profession. The typical fee is $45 for members and $55 for non-members, unless otherwise indicated. After each webinar, registrants will receive a recording of the session, which can be accessed for one year after the session date.

To browse what’s on & book an upcoming session, you can:

Learning as a team? We highly encourage participants to use these webinars as collective professional development opportunities! Register, project the webinar in your meeting room, and enjoy a group learning experience with your team. If you would like to showcase one of our webinars to various groups or individuals repeatedly as part of a training program, please contact EI to inquire about institutional rates.

Occasionally, the Education Institute offers 3- to 6-week online courses for varying fees.