Meet the RMRT Steering Committee: Beth Cron

Hi, my name is Beth Cron and I have been a member of the RMRT steering committee since September 2011. I am currently heading up the group to develop and complete a functional thesaurus for use by records managers to aid in the classification of records. If you are interested in joining us, let me know!

Cron Headshot

I work at the National Archives and Records Administration on records management policy within the Office of the Chief Records Officer. I am located in Ann Arbor, MI at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library, but I have colleagues all around the country. My team has produced guidance on social media records, cloud computing, and email archiving applications.

I graduated from the School of Information at the University of Michigan in 2008 and I specialized in Archives and Records Management. While in graduate school, I worked at the Gerald R. Ford Presidential Library and served on the board for the SAA Student Chapter.

Unfortunately, I will be unable to attend the annual meeting in New Orleans. I do look forward to getting to know more members virtually!

Beth  @bethcron

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Meet the RMRT Steering Committee: Lorette Weldon

 

Hello, Everyone!  I am Lorette Weldon, and, I have been on the Steering Committee of the Records Management Roundtable, as the Web Master and Newsletter Editor since 2009.  I have spoken at conferences for the Special Libraries Association, Computers in Libraries, and Association of Governing Boards of Universities and Colleges. I have written the following books in relation to library management and SharePoint: SharePoint Without Coding: My Notes for Embedding the Librarian; SharePoint Without Coding, Volume 2: My Notes on the Further Embedment of the Librarian;  Research and Social Networking ; Librarians Using SharePoint 2010.

It is nice to meet all of you.

Meet the RMRT Steering Committee: Alexis Antracoli

aantrcoli

Hi!  I am Alexis Antracoli, and, like Meg, I have been on the Steering Committee of the Records Management Roundtable since the spring of 2012.  I am currently the Records Management Archivist at Drexel University in Philadelphia, PA.

I am leading the development of Drexel University’s records management program.  A lot of my time is spent helping University records creators understand and comply with the University’s records management policy.  As part of this effort I develop educational resources and training, provide individual and group consultations, manage the University Archives’ web archiving efforts, keep our retention schedules up-to-date, and acquire permanent records of historical value for the University Archives.  In addition to my records management work I am also working on establishing policies and procedures for acquiring, processing, and preserving electronic records.

Before arriving at Drexel I worked at the University of Michigan Bentley Historical Library as a Project Archivist, Digital Preservation Intern, and Archives Assistant.  Before entering the Archives profession I taught American history at St. Francis University , and have spent time working in student services in higher education institutions.

I have a B. A. in History from Boston College, a Ph.D. in American History from Brandeis University, and an M. S. in Information, with a specializiation in Archives and Records Management, from the University of Michigan, and since leaving Boston in 2006 have become a bit of a nomad.  Right now I am enjoying the relatively balmy Philadelphia winters!

Beyond my records management and electronic records work, I love cooking, crochet, traveling, and running.

For your consideration: Become an SAA Mentor

Recently, SAA put out a call for participants in its Mentoring Program, which matches new and experienced archivists to help form mentorship and advising relationships between archivists at various levels of professional experience. Jackie Dooley also talked a bit about the mentoring program in a post on Off the Record. I’ll go ahead and provide some additional links back to both sites, because I think this program is very important. As an archivist/records manager who is not that far away from being a new archivist himself, I remember quite vividly how bewildering navigating professional networks, conferences, workshops, etc. can be, and although I myself never had a formal mentorship set up by SAA, I think I would have benefited greatly from having someone to show me the ropes.

In particular, I think it’s really important for members of this roundtable to offer their services as a mentor, because we represent not just a different facet of archives work but potentially an entirely different profession. I know that when I was in graduate school, I didn’t even consider records management as a career until I just happened to take an elective on it, and my guess is that there are many archivists-in-training who are similarly unaware of why records management is important and of what kinds of opportunities it can afford them. If nothing else, being in a position to talk to mentees about the interaction between Archives and Records Management is helpful for opening discussions about records continuum, appraisal from a different perspective, and other aspects of the profession that might not occur to students and young professionals at first glance.

(Note also that the RMRT has a supplementary mentor program, which operates in conjunction with the main SAA one– we maintain a separate database, however, both to help match specifically to records managers and to allow us to create links between potential mentees and records managers who are not necessarily part of SAA. If you are interested in being added to that list, please email me directly: houstobn AT uwm DOT edu.)

Meet the RMRT Steering Committee: Meg Tuomala

Over the next few weeks we will be posting a little bit more about the Records Management Roundtable Steering Committee members who contribute to this blog. First up is me, Meg Tuomala!

Hello! I am Meg Tuomala, and I have been on the RMRT SC since the spring of 2012. I work in University Archives and Records Management Services at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill (UNC), where I am the electronic records archivist.

Meg Tuomala, electronic records archivist at UNC
Meg Tuomala, electronic records archivist at UNC

As electronic records archivist I lead efforts within University Archives a to acquire, manage, and preserve born-digital materials. I also assist the other special collections at UNC acquire, manage, and preserve the born-digital materials that they collect. Additionally, I support UNC faculty, students, and staff in depositing digital materials into the Carolina Digital Repository (CDR), and  work with other library staff to define and implement repository policies, workflows, and capabilities. And last but not least, I’m also responsible for ensuring that the electronic records created and used by everyone here at UNC are being properly managed and preserved.

Before I came (back) to UNC, I was the Digital Archivist at the University Archives of Washington University in St. Louis. And before that I worked at at UNC as the Records Services Archivist. I have a M.S.L.S. and a B.A., you guessed it, from UNC. As you can probably gather I’m a Tar Heel born, I’m a Tar Heel bred, and when I die I’ll be a Tar Heel dead!

“[Lyrics from ‘Hark the Sound’]” in North Carolina Postcard Collection (P052), North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives, Wilson Library, UNC-Chapel Hill
“[Lyrics from ‘Hark the Sound’]” in North Carolina Postcard Collection (P052), North Carolina Collection Photographic Archives, Wilson Library, UNC-Chapel Hill
Although I’m an archivist and not a records manager I really love records management work, and one of my favorite parts of my current job is getting to help my fellow UNC colleagues better manage their electronic records. It’s really gratifying, plus I just love going to different offices on campus and meeting new people.

Other things I love are Tar Heel basketball, Carolina BBQ (both Eastern and Lexington-styles), cooking and eating good food, and spending time with dear friends and family.

Welcome, for real this time

On behalf of the Steering Committee of SAA’s Records Management Roundtable, welcome to The Schedule. Our hope is to make this your one-stop shop (sort of, see below) for learning about what the RMRT is doing for you (and hopefully getting you all to contribute to the conversation). This blog has been a long time in the making, and I am very excited that we are getting it off the ground.

Now, we are about a decade behind on the blogosphere movement, but it’s New To Us (TM), so there are still probably a lot of questions that you all have about this. I’ll try to answer the obvious ones below; if you have others, please leave them in the comments.

Why a blog? Why now?

The Steering Committee has been trying to improve communications with the RMRT general membership for a while now, with varying levels of success. The survey we sent out in the wake of SAA 2012 in San Diego was one attempt at this, as is our new policy of posting the minutes of our monthly steering committee teleconferences. The newsletter and the listserv are also, of course, key elements in our communication strategy. Ultimately, though, all of those communication channels are not quite… right. The listserv seems a bit impersonal and inactive; the survey and meeting minutes are extremely one-sided; the newsletter is, by its very nature, non-timely.

What we want to do with the blog is open up a more organic conversation about what we’re up to and what we can share from the world of Records Management. We are planning to update this regularly and actively solicit guest posts or topics that our readers would like to see us write about. We’re encouraging commenting if you have something to add, or think we’re off base, or whatever. The point is to have a regular communications channel where the barrier to participation is relaxed, at least somewhat.

Does this mean the newsletter is going away? The microsite? The listserv?

In order: No, no, and we couldn’t even if we wanted to. Each of these existing communications tools is going to be sticking around, but the purpose of each will change somewhat:

  • The Microsite is going to be our document/information repository for the foreseeable future. Here you will be able to find our annual reports, our bylaws, information on our steering committee members, meeting minutes, and any publications we are putting out for review or use.
  • The Newsletter will be for our longform pieces, such as the chair’s year-in-review report or in-depth interviews or case studies. As implied by Lorette Weldon’s most recent call for submissions, we want people to think of this as a place to talk at length about their innovations in archives and records management– not quite the cachet of a scholarly journal, obviously, but works in progress and preliminary results, perhaps. Think Archival Outlook levels of discussion of theory and practice.
  • The Listserv will be for the day-to-day stuff that isn’t worth a whole blog post to write about– job ads, records management in the news, calls for endorsements, etc. Of course, if you just have a question for the membership or that you want to get a number of perspectives for, you’re welcome to keep using it that way– this is just referring to how the steering committee is going to use it going forward.

What is the schedule of The Schedule?

I see what you did there. Our current plan is to update at least once a week, with different members of the steering committee in a rotation to write about something in their particular bailiwick. You can find a preliminary schedule for the next month or so in our February meeting minutes. Of course, if something strikes our fancy when it’s not our turn to write, we won’t let our schedule stop us– this is just to keep us honest and avoid content deserts.

I’m doing something really cool with records management (or read a cool new records book, attended an interesting conference, etc.), but I don’t want to wait until the newsletter comes out. Can I write a guest post for the blog?

Of course! Please send us an email with your post idea– we’d love to hear from you!

Anything else I should know about this blog?

If you’re new to blogs, there are a couple of ways to follow it so you don’t have to keep refreshing the site for updates. Way #1 is to click the “Follow” button on the right there– you’ll get an email notification when there’s a new post. Way #2 is to input this URL into your Feed Reader of choice (I like Google Reader), and most readers will automatically extract the RSS feed from WordPress sites for you (which is good, since there’s no Feed URL in sight on this template).

Happy reading! I must now scurry off and complete my presentation for next Friday (see below for details).