2021-2022 PLASC Steering Committee Candidates

2021 Election: Candidate Statements

Thank you to our excellent candidates for standing in the 2021 Public Library Archives and Special Collections (PLASC) Section election. Please take some time to review their candidate statements and get to know them so you can make an informed choice.

You will be voting for:

  • One Vice Chair/Chair-Elect, for a two-year term; and
  • One Secretary, for a one-year term

Ballots will be managed by SAA staff through Survey Monkey; keep an eye on your inbox for when the ballot opens! 

Vice Chair/Chair-Elect Candidates

The following candidates are running for the Vice Chair/Chair-Elect position:

Laura Carroll
Archivist, Ohio County Public Library (West Virginia)

Biography

Laura L. Carroll is the archivist at the Ohio County Public Library in Wheeling, WV. She received her Master of Arts in Public History from Loyola University and her M.L.I.S. from Dominican University. She has worked in a variety of archives and libraries including The Newberry Library, Women and Leadership Archives at Loyola, The American Medical Association Archives, and the Manuscript, Archives and Rare Book Library at Emory University in Atlanta. Carroll has been a member of the Society of American Archivists since 2002, and also has been a member of the Midwest Archives Conference, the Society of Georgia Archivists and currently, the Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference. She currently serves on the West Virginia Archives and History Commission. In addition, Carroll has presented at several regional and national conferences, as well as designed and conducted workshops on archival description and general archives topics.

Candidate Statement

I am interested in serving as the Vice-Chair / Chair on the PLASC Section Steering Committee because I believe in advocating for the special role that public library archivists play in the archives professional community. Public library archivists serve an extremely diverse community, consisting of history buffs, historic preservationists, genealogists, local elementary and high school students, and so on. Also, many of us are not connected to larger institutions for IT support or communications promotion, so we rely on this community of peers for solutions to many of our professional challenges. I have worked in a variety of archives and libraries throughout my career, and I can honestly say that working in a public library has been the most rewarding. I enjoy engaging with my local community and educating patrons on the importance of collecting and preserving local history. As we continue to live in our "new normal" thrust upon us due to the COVID19 pandemic, public library archivists are in a unique position to engage their constituents even more as we attempt to document this event and its repercussions in our communities. We will need to rely upon each other even more to share successful strategies and tools. I hope to be a part of the leadership of this committee as we embark on this endeavor. Thank you for your consideration.

Treasurer

Dylan Gaffney
Information Services Associate for Local History & Special CollectionsForbes Library (Massachusetts)

Biography

Dylan has been working in public libraries for over two decades, was awarded the Massachusetts Library Association’s Paralibrarian of the Year award in 2018, and has served on numerous committees and organizations in his community, including the Northampton Historical Commission, the Northampton Charter Review Committee, the Calvin Coolidge Presidential Library Standing Committee, and the Strategic Planning Committees for Forbes Library and Historic Northampton. He has written and received numerous grants for his work at the library including the IMLS/Internet Archive Community Webs grant, the IMLS Moving Memories Lab grant, LSTA Outside Voices grant, and the Mass Humanities Beyond Our Walls grant. He is a co-founder of the Northampton Film Festival, Cinema Northampton, and the Bay State Hotel Music History Project. Whether documenting the indie music scene, building programming around the history of local abolitionists and formerly enslaved peoples, or helping to spearhead an oral history project about the early LGBTQ+ movement in the area, he has been hard at work with his colleagues trying to fill in gaps or silences in the library's collection, and to make the archives better reflect the community which it serves. He has presented at SAA, ALA, OHA, BPE and Internet Archive meetings on these topics and looks forward to building upon the continued outreach, growth, and advocacy of PLASC.

Candidate Statement

I believe that public library archives and special collections are uniquely positioned to offer accessible historical resources to the public, and involve community members directly in the documentation, interpretation, and preservation of their own history. I feel strongly that the archival field at large is being deprived of valuable input, perspective, and ideas by our relative lack of representation in archival professional organizations. I would love to continue spotlighting the work of public library archives, and amplifying the voices of our colleagues in the profession.