Welcome to Shortgrass Library System

ReConnecting 2022

We are excited to announce the return of the Shortgrass PD Day: ReConnecting 2022.

Join us at the Brooks Public Library on Monday, October 24th, 2022, for a day of ReConnecting. It's been a long and difficult few years, and we are looking forward to hosting library managers, staff, volunteers, and board members for a day of learning and connecting!

When and where will ReConnecting 2022 take place?

Monday October 24th, 2022, at the Brooks Public Library, 323 First St E, Brooks T1R 1C5.

How do I register?

Registration opens on August 31st, 2022, and closes October 7th, 2022. Each person planning to attend must complete the registration form. They can complete the form virtually, below, or can complete the paper form that was sent to your library.

How much will this cost?

Registration is $20 per person. For board members who are attending the Lunch & Learn only, the fee is $10. Libraries will be invoiced following the event.

What does my registration fee include?
  • Access to all sessions offered.
  • All meals, including breakfast, lunch, and morning and afternoon coffee breaks.
  • Mileage will be reimbursed for one vehicle per library.
Where can I learn more about the sessions?

Scroll to the bottom of this page for full session info!

What COVID-19 precautions are being taken?

Brooks Public Library practices high standards of cleanliness and safety. Hand sanitizer will be readily available with air filtration in effect throughout the day. Mask wearing is optional but welcome. Surgical masks will be available at the event for those who wish to access them.


Registration Form

Session & Speaker Information

How far would you go to chase your dreams? To the ends of the world? In our lives, sometimes our greatest obstacles are our own negative voices. The ones that say “don’t”, “you can’t”, “you’re not good enough.” In this presentation, Linh shares the lessons she learned when she ran at the ends of the world, the North Pole and the South Pole.

Despite achieving great success in her running, she had to fight self-doubt every step of the way. A self-proclaimed, “extreme non-athlete” proudly stating, “I’ve come last in almost every race I've done. How was I last, but not least? How did I silence the negative voice so that I could end up in Antarctica partying with the penguins?”

This presentation is designed for people who are looking for growth even though it might scare them. They want to try something new but their focus is on thoughts that hold them back. Linh will show them how to go from being mildly engaged to full of wonder, from a tad bit complacent to a whole lotta courageous, from vaguely satisfied to overflowing with joy.

Linh Linh is a professional speaker, author, educator, and extreme non-athlete. She has completed the Antarctic Ice Marathon and the North Pole Marathon and 250km ultra-marathons in the 4Deserts series. She’s delivered a TEDx talk called “Rethinking Limits” and is the author of the upcoming book called “However the Fire Burns.”

Linh is a passionately curious and adventurous person. Her first adventure began at the age of 4 when she and her family werepart of the mass exodus of Boat People who fled Vietnam after the war. Arriving in Canada in the 1980s, her journey as a child opened her eyes to what is possible if one lives intently and fearlessly.

Surviving a harrowing journey at such a young age instilled a deep sense of gratitude for the life that was gifted to her. Her driving philosophy is to explore everything that life has to offer. Linh loves exploring (40 countries and counting), running to the ends of the earth, and other outrageous adventures and shenanigans. She is on a mission to inspire people to face challenges and create an extraordinary life full of courage, joy, and wonder.

Finding the Resilience to Waddle Forward

Penguins endure temperatures as low as -50 C with winds up to 200 km an hour during the 24-hours of darkness that happens in Antarctic winters. Though our human problems are not as severe, we do hit our own roadblocks. We hit moments in our lives when we feel we couldn’t possibly take one step further.

In this session, Linh shares some of the strategies for resilience she used to overcome different obstacles that stood in the way of pursuing her dreams. This session will help you to see challenges and hardship through a different lens. You will see that most problems can be solved with a bit of faith, resilience, and imagination!

Linh Linh is a professional speaker, author, educator, and extreme non-athlete. She has completed the Antarctic Ice Marathon and the North Pole Marathon and 250km ultra-marathons in the 4Deserts series. She’s delivered a TEDx talk called “Rethinking Limits” and is the author of the upcoming book called “However the Fire Burns.”

Linh is a passionately curious and adventurous person. Her first adventure began at the age of 4 when she and her family were part of the mass exodus of Boat People who fled Vietnam after the war. Arriving in Canada in the 1980s, her journey as a child opened her eyes to what is possible if one lives intently and fearlessly.

Surviving a harrowing journey at such a young age instilled a deep sense of gratitude for the life that was gifted to her. Her driving philosophy is to explore everything that life has to offer. Linh loves exploring (40 countries and counting), running to the ends of the earth, and other outrageous adventures and shenanigans. She is on a mission to inspire people to face challenges and create an extraordinary life full of courage, joy, and wonder.


Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion are essential values of community and public library services in general, and Shortgrass Library System in particular. What does it mean to incorporate EDI into how your organization serves its population? How to you engage with people who see our  world from a completely different perspective than you do? Is "service for all" truly possible? Dr. Jurkova will explore these issues to provide insights into a complex concept with practical examples.

Sinela Jurkova holds a PhD in Adult Learning from University of Calgary. Her areas of specialization include transcultural transformative learning, intercultural communication and competence, strategies for diversity, theories and practices for inclusive education. Sinela has published in academic journals and presented numerous sessions about cultural competency, ethnic diversity and integration, and has participated in international academic conferences related to the topics above.

As a member of national and international academic associations related to educational research, international comparative education, adult learning, international migration and ethnic studies, Sinela has been involved in many non-profit organizations, advisory committees, local and international community initiatives and research projects. Her current position is Diversity Services Coordinator at Calgary Catholic Immigration Society (CCIS), developing and facilitating learning sessions on the topics listed above. Sinela also serves as a consultant for developing diversity strategies and educational programs for many organizations in Calgary and Southern Alberta.


Join library advisors Jordan and Ken for lunch with a side of learning. They’ll present the basics of library board governance, roles and responsibilities, answer your questions, and facilitate some engaging lunchtime discussion. Participants are encouraged to bring their questions, challenges, and experiences so we can all share and learn from each other.

Jordan DeSousa is a Library Legislative Advisor at Public Library Services Branch, Alberta Municipal Affairs, where he helps library boards understand their legislative responsibilities and excel in their governance role. Jordan has been working with public libraries in Alberta since 2013 and enjoys learning about what makes every community unique.

Ken Allan is a Library Legislative Advisor at Public Library Services Branch, Alberta Municipal Affairs.  He supports library boards as they grow in their legislative and governance roles, and reviews local library board policies. Prior to this position, Ken was a public library manager in rural Alberta for over seven years.

Note: this session is for Trustees only. No staff-focused session is taking place during the lunch hour.

So, you think you know the ins-and-outs of public library legislation and governance? Test your knowledge in a fun way with our library quiz game! Your quizmasters Jordan and Ken will present a series of questions relating to the Libraries Act and Libraries Regulation as well as the roles and responsibilities of library boards, library staff, and municipal councils. Right or wrong, and no matter your role or experience level, there’s something to learn for everyone.

Jordan DeSousa is a Library Legislative Advisor at Public Library Services Branch, Alberta Municipal Affairs, where he helps library boards understand their legislative responsibilities and excel in their governance role. Jordan has been working with public libraries in Alberta since 2013 and enjoys learning about what makes every community unique.

Ken Allan is a Library Legislative Advisor at Public Library Services Branch, Alberta Municipal Affairs.  He supports library boards as they grow in their legislative and governance roles, and reviews local library board policies. Prior to this position, Ken was a public library manager in rural Alberta for over seven years.

St. John Ambulance Canada brings a live, condensed version of our comprehensive training classes in Opioid Poisoning Response and Nasal Naloxone training. From this session, attendees will learn how to recognize an opioid poisoning, how to manage the scene and rescue event, and how to administer nasal naloxone devices in the course of the rescue. Following the session, each library will receive a free nasal naloxone kit, containing two doses of nasal naloxone.

This session is presented by St. John Ambulance Canada staff, who are previous or current frontline workers with personal experience supporting shelter-insecure populations and people who use drugs.