SNAP 2019 Elections Candidate Statements

2019 Election: Candidate Statements

Thank you to all of our excellent candidates for standing in the 2019 Students and New Archival Professionals 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 (one-year term)
  • Three Steering Committee members (one-year terms).

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 candidate(s) are running for the Vice Chair/Chair-Elect position:

Brenna Edwards

Project Archivist, Emory University

Hello! My name is Brenna Edwards, and I am interested in serving as Vice Chair/Chair-Elect for the Students and New Professionals (SNAP) Section. As a new professional myself, I see issues raised by other new professionals which they feel need attention, from unpaid labor to contract positions, to wider archival concerns. The Vice Chair/Chair-Elect position is appealing to me as I see it as an opportunity to represent all students and new professionals in the field and have our voices be heard, as well as advocate for changes within SAA as needed. For the past 2 and a half years, I have served SNAP as Student Blog Editor in an ex-officio position, as well as Secretary for the past year. I feel this position would help me continue to grow as an archivist, and to work with other SNAP members to shape our profession as we (and the wider archival community) want it to be.

Secretary Candidates

The following candidate(s) are running for the Secretary position:

Kayla M. Heslin

Graduate Student of Public History at James Madison University and Head of Archival Management at the Rockingham County Circuit Court

My names is Kayla Heslin and I am currently a graduate student pursuing archival studies at James Madison University. While the program does not offer an “archive track” I hope to gear my courses and research towards archival practice and theory. Currently, I serve as head of archival management for the Circuit Court of Rockingham County. This position has given me invaluable hands on experience, where I work daily to identify, preserve, organize, and make accessible documents relating to the history of Rockingham County.

I am interested in serving as secretary for SNAP for several reasons. First, as one of the only archivist students within my program, I would like to find ways to connect with other archivists and become more involved with SNAP and SAA. Additionally, I believe serving SNAP will help me to refine my skills of communication, organization, and collaboration, which are all key in the career of an archivist.

Over the last year, I have worked as secretary and project assistant for three individuals writing a history manuscript for the National Science Foundation. During this time, I have refined my skills of note taking, organization, communication (written and verbal), time management, and attention to detail. I believe this experience would enable me to excel in the SNAP secretary position.

Steering Committee Member Candidates

The following candidates are running for the section steering committee:

Sarah Fry

Archives Clerk - Special Collections; Montgomery County Archives (Tennessee)

I graduated from Middle Tennessee State University with my M.A. in History in 2016 and have been working full time at the Montgomery County Archives in Tennessee since 2017. Over the past two years I have tried to gain as much experience as possible through the programs that the SAA offers to those just starting out in the field, including the mentoring program. As I seek to continue my growth in the field I would like the opportunity to contribute to those programs in any way that I can.

London Stever

Consulting Archivist - SAE International

London is a recent graduate of the University of Pittsburgh's MLIS - Archives program. She participated in an unpaid internship with the State of Pennsylvania and a paid internship with the University of Pittsburgh. Currently, she holds a position as a consulting archivist for an international publisher. She believes in self-advocating within the archives profession, and promoting new archivists through industry transparency.

Alexandra (Lexy) deGraffenreid

Processing Archivist, Pennsylvania State University

I am looking forward to hopefully joining the SNAP Steering Committee this year and helping to serve its fellow members. I graduated from University of Michigan with an MSI in 2015 and worked in a corporate archives until joining the Pennsylvania State University as its Processing Archivist in February 2019. As an early-career professional with experience in both academic and corporate archives, I am hoping to use the experience of moving between different types of archives and recently negotiating the job market into helping other students and early-career professionals understand the different range of archival opportunities in the marketplace and into advocating for developing solutions to issues negatively impacting early-career professionals (such as mandatory unpaid internships, short-term project positions, and exclusionary early career low pay). As a member of the Steering Committee, I want to help develop programming to ensure that all members’ concerns are being heard and addressed, and to make sure that our professional community is better encouraging, developing, and mentoring our future industry leaders.

Ann Abney

Special Projects Archivist, University of South Carolina

My name is Ann Abney, CA and I’m running to become a SNAP Steering Committee member for the 2019-2020 year. I started as the Special Projects Archivist at the University of South Carolina’s South Carolina Political Collections (SCPC) in March. Prior to that I was an Archivist with the National Archives at College Park and a MA (History) and MLS (Archives) student at the University of Maryland, College Park. I’m a member of a few professional organizations including the Academy of Certified Archivists, the National Council on Public History and the National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators (NAGARA), but I’m looking to give back to the SAA Section that has been the most help to me in my archival career so far. The SNAP roundtables on Twitter have helped me gain some great connections within the archival and archival adjacent fields. It has been an awesome place to not only vent about frustrations in unpaid labor or job descriptions asking for the sky, but also a place to share goals and accomplishments. It is through my connections with SNAP that I have been encouraged to continue to ask questions about how to be the best archivist possible, and it is one I truly value. Because of that, I want to serve as a Steering Committee Member to help all of us, be us students, newbies, or long-time professionals, be the best we can be through that communication and facilitation of knowledge.

Natalie Worsham

Graduate Student, Louisiana State University

I am a current graduate student at LSU working on a dual degree of a MLIS and a Graduate Certificate in Archival Studies. My anticipated graduation date is December 2019. My previous studies include a BA in History from Nicholls State University and a MA also in History from Southeastern Louisiana University. I have been involved with the SAA chapter at LSU. I am currently working as an intern for the Archival History Section (until August 2019).

I believe I would be a good candidate for the SNAP Steering Committee as I am a student and will soon be an emerging new professional in the field and would love to continue to be involved in SAA. I think it is important to stay connected to others in the field. New professionals bring new ideas to consider and veterans of the field continue to educate and share their wisdom. I hope to continue to learn from other archivists after I graduate. Involvement with the SNAP Section would enrich my archival career with more experience and interactions with my peers.

Sarah Lerner

Processing Archivist for Western Americana, Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library

Hello, my name is Sarah Lerner, and I am currently the Processing Archivist for Western Americana at the Beinecke Rare Book & Manuscript Library in New Haven, Connecticut. Prior to this position, I interned at the Nantucket Historical Association—and, just prior to that, I received my MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh (2018), while also interning at the Carnegie Museum of Art and volunteering at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh.

Now, having settled into my first professional job after internships in art museums, historical societies, and special collections, I am prepared to expand into a leadership role that can support, encourage, and advocate for students and new archives professionals. Desiring to become more involved in our field (and remain abreast of present issues), I recognize membership on the SNAP Section Steering Committee as an opportunity for ardent participation and collaboration with colleagues.

Thank you for your consideration.

Emily Mathay

Project Archivist - University of Michigan Bentley Historical Library

I’m excited to run for a position on the SNAP Steering Committee!

This May I earned dual masters degrees from Simmons University in history and library science with a concentration in archival management. I, along with my friends and peers, have spent the last few months neck-deep in job applications. We experienced the same frustrations over unclear job descriptions, the failure to post salary information, and the uncertainty and instability that come with the proliferation of project/term positions. Early career archivists face different issues than mid-career archivists do, which makes it all the more important for SNAP to have leadership comprised of students and early professionals.

I recently secured a two year term position as a project archivist at the University of Michigan’s Bentley library. Having experienced the struggles of job hunting firsthand, I’d now like to direct my time and energy towards advocating for my under/unemployed peers.

Ronald Rozzell

Archivist/Librarian & Assistant to the Director, Butler Community College

I am new to the archivist profession and am eager to be involved with SAA. I think my being apart of this steering committee would be a wonderful opportunity to get my foot in the door. I work at a community college and am the only archivist on staff. I am responsible for building the college's archives and records. I have a MLIS and a concentration in archives. Last year, I passed the certification test. I am currently trying to get my DAS and A&D certification. I enjoy history, reading, and am sad that GoT is over (though the last two seasons weren't the best). Thanks.

Ashelee Gerald Hill

Processing Archivist, Visiting Librarian; Wake Forest University

My name is Ashelee Gerald Hill and I am currently a Processing Archivist and Visiting Librarian at Wake Forest University in Winston-Salem, North Carolina. In addition to the Society of American Archivists, I am a member of several professional organizations including the Society of North Carolina Archivists, the American Library Association, and the North Carolina Library Association. In May 2019, I earned my MLIS with a focus on archives from the University of North Carolina Greensboro and was a Summer Fellow at Wake Forest University in 2018. Prior to that, I completed a BA in Anthropology from Howard University in 2012. Between completing my undergraduate studies and starting my professional degree, I spent time working at a child development center and volunteering in local museums and archives.

I would like to nominate myself for a Steering Committee position in the Students and New Archival Professionals section. My interest in serving as a representative for students and new professionals has much to do with my current experience as a recent graduate and my academic experience in a distance learning program.

As a Steering Committee member, I will continue to contribute to conversations regarding barriers to access and advocating for transparent hiring practices. I will also provide insight into the profession by addressing developing trends - such as those surrounding management practices, job expectations, and intern and volunteer practices - that can impact the experiences of students and new professionals. Since becoming a member in 2017, I have found the SNAP section to be a welcoming and friendly community and I will maintain this supportive environment while holding office by continuing to address topics that will help students and recent graduates establish and navigate their careers. I will also promote the archival profession and enhance the profile of the SNAP section by sharing information with those interested in archival careers such as providing insight on selecting a graduate program or exploring specialized areas of archival work.

I have had past experience as an elected member of an organization as the secretary of the Mordecai Wyatt Johnson Anthropological Society. Also, my summer Fellowship culminated in a well-received presentation that focused on the need of a born-digital workstation and enhanced workflow for managing born-digital materials. Lastly, my background as an online student has helped me realize the importance of establishing a network, having access to professional resources beyond school, and the importance of effective communication for collaboration when participants are often located at great distance from each other.