Meet our newest ERS steering committee members!

All this week we’ll be featuring introductions to our newest ERS steering committee members! Today, meet Elizabeth Carron, one of our our new steering committee members.

Tell us a little bit about yourself.

“I graduated from the University of Massachusetts Amherst with a background in Early Modern Literature and French Studies and finished my master’s at Simmons College in 2014. I didn’t take the archives track – rather, I was more focused on subject librarianship and digital scholarship. I made amazing connections in the Five College area as a student and as a librarian; in 2014, shortly after graduating, I was offered a project at the Smith College Archives – and I’ve been in archives and archives management ever since! After my project at Smith ended, I moved to Ann Arbor to be a project archivist in collections development at the Bentley Historical Library. Eventually, the position of Archivist for Records Management was created and I transitioned into that role. It’s been my responsibility to develop the program by establishing and communicating best RIM practices to the University community and to push forward acquisition procedures that will support description, arrangement, and access further down the road.” 

What made you decide you wanted to become an archivist?

“Honestly, no one thing. I studied Early Modern language and literature and got involved with several digital humanities projects, which in turn led to a deeper exposure to libraries and archives. From there, I explored graduate programs while working for a cultural heritage org on the admin side and just felt a click with archival programs. Being an archivist means I get to learn about a variety of topics, to meet new people and communities. It also means I get a hand in history-making. Whether I’m collecting or advocating for resources and partnerships, preservation is a profound responsibility.”

What is one thing you’d like to see the Electronic Records Section accomplish during your time as vice-chair?

“I do a lot of acquiring of electronic/digital records and not so much processing; I’d like to explore this process of acquisition and perhaps work on perspectives to assist with understanding e-records/e-record concerns in this process. “

What three people, alive or dead, would you invite to dinner?

“George Sand and Dolly Parton to keep things lively; and my grampa, who was an amazing cook with a never-ending cache of dad jokes.”

Meet our newest ERS steering committee members!

All this week we’ll be featuring introductions to our newest ERS steering committee members! Today, meet Andrea Belair, one of our our new steering committee members.

“My name is Andrea Belair. I am from rural western Massachusetts, and I earned my BA from Marlboro College in Vermont where my focus was Literature and Creative Writing. After taking time off to travel and work in various jobs, and decided to pursue librarianship and went on to earn my MLIS from Rutgers University in 2012. I am currently the Librarian for Archives and Special Collections at Union College in Schenectady, NY, where I started in July, 2018. Before this current role, I was the Archivist for the Office of the President at Yale University for 5.5 years. I have a broad set of duties here at Union College, since we have numerous collections that include rare books and archival collections, but I have been actively involved in records policy and retention for the campus.”

What made you decide you wanted to become an archivist?

“After a part-time job shelving in the stacks of a large university, I decided to pursue a graduate degree to try for a career as an academic librarian. An archivist was always an ideal position that seemed fascinating but perhaps too much of a dream job, so I acquired many broad skills with archival experience “just in case.” I did ultimately land a job as an assistant archivist, and now I am living the dream.”

What is one thing you’d like to see the Electronic Records Section accomplish during your time as vice-chair?

“I always like to bring the importance of records management to light in the profession, since this subject can be an excellent basis to streamline the rest of the workflows and processes within an archive. Records management is often undervalued and under-rated, or it just seems pretty uninteresting, and archivists do not always take time to understand it fully, which can lead to issues down the road. Perhaps some emphasis on records management and records retention would be interesting to explore.”

What three people, alive or dead, would you invite to dinner?

“The Ghost of Christmas Past, the Ghost of Christmas Present, and the Ghost of Christmas Future.”

Meet our newest ERS steering committee members!

All this week we’ll be featuring introductions to our newest ERS steering committee members! Today, meet Annalise Berdini, our new vice-chair and chair-elect.

Annalise Berdini is the Digital Archivist for University Archives at Princeton University. She is responsible for leading the ongoing development of the University Archives digital curation program. As part of this role, she accessions and processes born-digital collections, offers digital preservation consultation and education to students and staff, and collaborates with Public Services to improve born-digital access practices. She also manages the web archives program, processes analog collections, and provides reference services. She was previously the Digital Archivist for Special Collections and Archives at UC San Diego, where she instituted a brand new digital curation program and co-authored the UC Guidelines for Born-Digital Archival Description.

What made you decide you wanted to become an archivist?

“Honestly, I sort of fell into it. I had just started looking into library school and started researching my options after about 6 years of post-undergrad job hopping, and the program I was most interested in had an archives concentration. I remembered a really great archivist that I encountered during some research I did during undergrad, and started asking questions of archivists about the field and what they did. Mostly, the response I got was that there weren’t many jobs! But the archivists I spoke to were also so passionate about the work they did, and talked about all the ways they felt it was important — and they were so happy to answer my questions and offer help and advice — to connect me with more people in the field. That may actually be the main reason I chose it. Up to that point, my experience in my other career(s) had been that people were generally reluctant to offer help or support. That was never my experience with archivists. Once I started classes and some initial processing work, I knew it was where I wanted to be. Constantly changing work, lively academic discourse, exciting new opportunities in applying technology and leveraging data — it’s exactly the kind of job I hoped I’d find. I’m doing work I never thought I would do, and I get to work with such incredible people who challenge me to do more and better every day.”

What is one thing you’d like to see the Electronic Records Section accomplish during your time as vice-chair?

“I’m really excited about the ongoing work the section is already doing to centralize and make easily discoverable favorite resources for practitioners. I’d also like to see the membership get involved in partnering with other sections to talk about the ways/offer guidance on how electronic records can make more discoverable resources/voices traditionally left out of the archives.”

What three people, alive or dead, would you invite to dinner?

“Janelle Monae, Neil Gaiman, and Carrie Fisher.”