Business Law

Author Bruce Rosenstein Speaks to Joint SLA-NY and METRO program

Rita Ormsby, Co-chair SLA-NY Business & Finance Group |

METRO Executive Director Dottie Hiebing;
Tom Nielsen, METRO membership;
Leigh Hallingby¸ SLA-NY President;
and author/librarian Bruce Rosenstein

Author and librarian Bruce Rosenstein spoke November 10, 2010, to members of SLA-NY and the New York Metropolitan Library Council (METRO), about applying Peter Drucker’s advice to one’s own life.

Rosenstein, author of Living in More Than One World: How Peter Drucker’s Wisdom Can Inspire and Transform Your Life (Berrett-Koehler, 2009), was introduced to the writings of the “father of modern management” through an assigned reading for a library management class while a student in The Catholic University of America School of Library and Information Science program.

After graduation, Rosenstein, (SLA-DC) joined USA Today’s information Center, where he worked for more than 20 years. After a few years, he also started writing about business and management books and interviewing business leaders, including, on several occasions, Drucker, for their Money section. He videotaped an interview with Drucker in 2005, seven months before Drucker died at age 95. An edited version was shown to meeting attendees. He also began writing a book incorporating Drucker’s thoughts about personal development. Drucker had a wide range of interests and throughout his life took on new interests to study.

Like many, in late 2008, Rosenstein learned that his position was being eliminated. Describing his book as the “self-help” book Drucker never wrote, Rosenstein suggested that by following Drucker’s advice of “living in more than one world,” to develop interests and pursue roles in volunteer and other activities, can be rewarding and also can cushion the impact of setbacks in other areas of one’s life. In Rosenstein’s case, the deadline for his book was in early 2009. He also suggested teaching or guest lecturing as other possibilities.

While Rosenstein’s presentation at METRO was not recorded, one that he gave earlier the same day at Baruch College is available online: Bruce Rosenstein Talks on Peter Drucker. On Rosenstein’s web site,, there’s an excerpt of his videotaped interview with Drucker.

I planned this program after meeting Rosenstein at the SLA annual conference last year, after being introduced to him by e-mail by SLA-NY member Donna Slawsky, a Baruch colleague. I hope it was, and will be helpful to members who are in transitions, and also to those who are new graduates. It was timed in part to be among the events in two-year span celebrating the centennial of Drucker’s birth, which was November 19, 2009. It’s good to be reminded, by no less than Peter Drucker, that there’s more to life than work. At the same time, it was an opportunity to show a librarian in transition, Rosenstein, who followed an interest and continues to develop it. Rosenstein said it is not easy and takes time. He has thanked me for arranging the New York programs as he found the attendees to be interested and supportive.

It’s also good to be reminded we can help each other. Connections made through SLA can be valuable --as Rosenstein had once interviewed Slawsky while she was an MLS student, who prepared book exhibits at Harper Collins. That’s how I met her, as she wrote descriptions of the exhibits for Chapter News, which I, then new to the chapter, edited, in part to get to know more members. Rosenstein now teaches the special libraries course at The Catholic University of America, previously taught by SLA-NY member Guy St. Clair. At earlier moments in our careers, Tom Nielsen, from METRO, and I did part-time evening reference work at Polytechnical University’s library. We hope to do more joint programs in the future.

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