Ashley Todd-Diaz, Candidate for Council

Ashley Todd-Diaz

Head of Special Collections and University Archives, Towson University

“It is vital to be engaged in the moment and responsive to evolving conversations and ideas. Each one provides information and inspiration for the next, offering insight into how current goals can be reached, while also staying aware of how those goals may evolve.”


  • Head of Special Collections and University Archives, Towson University, 2016–present.
  • National Faculty, School of Library and Information Management, Emporia State University, 2013–present. 
  • Curator of Special Collections and Archives, Emporia State University, 20122016. 
  • Adjunct Cataloger, Fales Library and Special Collections, New York University, 20112012.


  • PhD Candidate, Library and Information Management, Emporia State University.
  • MSIS, Archives and Records Administration, University at Albany, State University of New York.
  • MA, English and American Literature, New York University.
  • BA, British and American Literature, Sarah Lawrence College.


  • Society of American Archivists: Member (2009–present); Manuscripts Repositories Section, Chair (20172018), Vice Chair (20162017), Steering Committee (20142016); Reference, Access, and Outreach Section: Teaching with Primary Sources Committee (2015present)Faculty Advisor to the Emporia State University Student Chapter (20142016); Mentor (2017). 
  • Academy of Certified Archivists (2013–present): Class Pre-approval Task Force (2016). 
  • Midwest Archives Conference: President’s Award Committee (2015). 
  • Kansas City Area Archivists: Education Chair (20132016); Education Co-chair (20122013); Fall Symposium Planning Committee (20122016). 
  • New York Archives Conference: Professional Development Committee (20112012). 
  • University of Maryland and Affiliated Institutions: Special Collections and Archives Subgroup, Chair (20162018).


  • Co-author, “Teaching the Teacher: Primary Source Instruction in North American Archives Graduate Programs,” The American Archivist, 2018.  
  • Co-author, “’Leave Your Legacy’: Student-led Contributions of University Experience to the Special Collections and Archives,” Students Lead the Library: The Importance of Student Contributions to the Academic Library (American Library Assocation, 2017).
  • Co-author, “Collaboration Made it Happen! The Kansas Archive-It Consortium,” Journal of Western Archives, 2017.
  • Co-author, “Make Way for Learning: Using Literary Papers to Engage Elementary School Students,” Educational Programs: Innovative Instruction Practices in Archives and Special Collections (Rowman & Littlefield, 2015).
  • Society of American Archivists Council Exemplary Service Award, Teaching with Primary Sources Committee of the Reference, Access, and Outreach Section, 2017.
  • Towson University, University Diversity and Inclusion Award for an Academic Department (Special Collections and University Archives), 2017.


  • Society of American Archivists: “Watch Your Materials Perform with Augmented Reality,” 2014; “Jump-In Initiative,” 2013. 
  • Co-presenter, “Disparate Digital Designs: Using Virtual Spaces to Build Archival Capacity,” Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference, 2018. 
  • “Archives in Libraries: Exploring Physical and Virtual Organizational Identities,” Archival Education and Research Institute, 2017. 
  • Co-presenter, “Augmented Reality and Learning,” Computers in Libraries, 2017. 
  • Co-presenter, “Don't Recreate the Wheel! Cross-departmental Collaboration and Problem Solving to Promote Archival Resources and University History,” Towson Conference on Academic Libraries, 2017.



Council members’ responsibilities include providing collaborative leadership and direction for the Society and its component groups to ensure achievement of SAA’s goals. Please describe how your leadership experience will help you balance engaging the general SAA membership while being responsive to SAA’s strategic goals, including but not limited to the objectives of diversity, inclusion, and transparency.


A vital responsibility and opportunity for SAA Council members is to provide guidance and direction by masterfully balancing interaction with SAA members and an active awareness of the organization’s strategic plan. As a result of holding varied roles, I am an adaptive leader who is comfortable and successful balancing responsibilities and making progress toward complex goals. As an archival leader, I have found that open communication, collaboration, advocacy, and accountability are invaluable. In my experience, a leader often acts as a catalyst for motivation, inspiration, and discussion, fostering an inclusive environment that encourages the contribution of ideas, collaboration across diverse internal and external communities, transparency of information, and ownership of decisions and actions. As a faculty member and mentor, I know the value of empowerment and support, whereby creative and innovative ideas are developed and all voices are encouraged to join the conversation. The membership of SAA is strengthened by the many component groups it encompasses and the opportunities for sharing and advancing our individual skills, diverse perspectives, unique experiences, and passion for archives. It is vital to be engaged in the moment and responsive to evolving conversations and ideas. Each one provides information and inspiration for the next, offering insight into how current goals can be reached, while staying aware of how those goals may evolve. The Council serves a significant and complex role of communicator, advocate, and guide within our organization. I embrace this challenge and welcome the opportunity to serve as an SAA Council member.


Slate of Candidates

The Nominating Committee has slated the following SAA members as candidates for office in the 2018 election:

Vice President/President-Elect



Nominating Committee