CARL Inclusion Perspectives Webinar Series: First Panel Featuring Black Librarians

Date and Time: April 28, 3-4 pm ET
Registration open until April 26:
Please note that this event is open to all (not just CARL institutions).

The Canadian Association of Research Libraries’ (CARL) Equity, Diversity, and Inclusion Working Group is pleased to announce the first in a series of planned webinars on inclusion perspectives, which will feature a panel of Black librarians discussing their perspectives on the state of Canadian librarianship and how we can affect change.

This one hour moderated panel discussion will focus on progress on EDI initiatives to date and goals to strive for in the future. This will be a collaborative future-forward conversation, so please bring your own questions and/or proposed solutions.

In addition to being subject to the CARL Code of Conduct, CARL asks all participants, panelists and organizers to be respectful of what is being shared and in how they ask questions.

In the interest of accessibility, captions will be available throughout the session and supporting material will be circulated in advance in French and English. Additional accommodation requests can also be emailed to Julie Morin, Program Officer at CARL (

Although speakers will be presenting in English co-moderators will be on hand to ensure participants are able to contribute to the conversation in English or French.

If you have any questions, please contact Julie Morin, Program Officer at CARL (

Speakers Bios

Dominic Silvio

The moderator for this event will be Dominic Silvio, Librarian, Killam Memorial Library, Dalhousie University Libraries

Mandissa Arlain

Mandissa Arlain has worked in libraries since 1996. She started as a Page and a Library Assistant at the Toronto Public Library, and worked as a Library Technician at Seneca College, Centennial College, The Toronto District School Board and as of 2003, at Ryerson University. While working as a Library Technician, she completed an undergraduate degree from Athabasca University in Professional Arts majoring in Communication Studies and a graduate degree from the University of Toronto in Information Science. During her time at the Ryerson Library she has also served in various technician, supervisory and librarian roles, some of which included AV/ILL, eReserves and Copyright, Reference and Web Support Technician roles, Leadhand and Circulation Supervisory roles, and interim Systems, Part-Time Staff Coordinator, and Communications and Liaison librarian roles. She currently serves as a Library Technician in the cataloguing department at the Ryerson Library.

Mandissa is also involved in EDI related activities. She served as a stewart in her local union, and as an active member of OPSEU’s Workers of Colour Caucus. She’s also served on Ryerson’s Anti-Racism Task Force, was an active member of Ryerson’s Black Faculty and Staff Community Network, served as a member and Chair of the Ontario Library Association’s (OLA) EDI Committee, and currently sits on both OLA’s and CARL’s EDI Committees. She was awarded Ryerson’s Viola Desmond Staff Award in 2016, and was also a Black Canadian Role Model Inductee in 2016. She currently provides technical support for the annual 100 ABC (Accomplished Black Women) book and gala project which features the accomplishments of notable Black Canadian women, and has also partnered with Dr. Anne-Marie Singh on the Criminal Justice First project website, which documents Indigenous and racialized individuals who were among the first to enter policing, corrections, legal practice and the judiciary in Canada.

Norda Bell

Norda Bell is an Associate Librarian at York University Libraries. She has worked at York for over 16 years in a number of roles. She currently holds the position of Teaching and Learning Librarian, but Norda has also held positions as Scholarly Publishing Librarian, Department Chair, and Research and Instruction Librarian.

She is a Founding Member of the Visible Minority Librarians of Canada Network (ViMLoC), where she served as co-Moderator and developed the first mentorship program for visible minority librarians across Canada. She is also the founding Book Review Editor for the International Journal of Information, Diversity, and Inclusion (IJIDI). In this role, she aims to have a more diverse representation of book reviewers, from various backgrounds and geographic locations. Her research interest centers around  equity, diversity, and inclusion (EDI) in various aspects of libraries and librarianship. Her latest publication was a chapter in the 2020 Humanizing LIS Education and Practice (edited by Keren Dali and Nadia Caidi) about the different models of EDI professional development events for librarians. Her current research study explores the experiences of American and Canadian academic librarians at EDI professional development events and their effects on participants’ attitudes, perceptions, and work-related practices.

Norda is also a part-time professor in the Library and Information Technician program at Seneca College where she has taught the Searching I, Searching II and Searching III courses.

Yemisi Dina

Yemisi Dina is the Chief Law Librarian at the Osgoode Hall Law School Library, York University. Prior to this position, she joined Osgoode in 2006 as Associate Librarian and Head of Public Services. She has worked in academic law libraries since 1995 in Nigeria, The Bahamas and Canada.

As a law librarian, Yemisi has participated in numerous professional development initiatives and programs. She is an active member many professional associations and has recently been elected to the position of Vice-President Two on the Executive Board of the Canadian Association of Law Libraries/ Association Canadienne des Bibliothèques de Droit.

She is the current Chair of the African Interest Group of the Foreign, Comparative and International Special Interest Section of the American Association of Law Libraries.

Yemisi is involved in many EDI initiatives serving on Committees, Boards and Working Groups to reflect institutional guidelines and policies.

Yemisi is widely published and is the author of the book Law Librarianship in Academic Libraries.