Amy Cooper Cary Is Next Editor of American Archivist

The Society of American Archivists is pleased to introduce Amy Cooper Cary as the next Editor of American Archivist. Cary is head of Special Collections and University Archives in the Raynor Memorial Libraries at Marquette University in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. She will serve a three-year term beginning January 1, 2021. American Archivist, established in 1938 and published semi-annually, is the premier professional journal in the archives field.

Cary, a Fellow of SAA, has earned distinction as an educator, mentor, editor, and author of numerous articles, book chapters, and conference presentations. She currently is co-editor of the new Archival Futures book series, published jointly by SAA and the American Library Association, which critically engages issues related to archives as and for the public good. She holds a master of science degree in information with an archives specialization from the University of Michigan and a master of arts degree in comparative literature with a specialization in translation from the State University of New York at Binghamton. She is an alumna of the Archives Leadership Institute.

 “It is the Editor’s responsibility to stay engaged in the conversation about the archival literature with as many diverse groups as possible, coming from all areas of the profession, coming with as many interests as possible, to bring fresh perspectives from our professional cohort and from those whom we serve,” Cary noted in her application materials.

Cary brings with her extensive experience and leadership in SAA and in archival publications. While serving on the SAA Council (2015–2018), she was the liaison to the Publications Board, and later was appointed a member of the Board. She also has served on the American Archivist Editorial Board and as the journal’s Reviews Editor. In addition, she was the Editor of Archival Issues, the journal of the Midwest Archives Conference; Reviews Editor for RBM: A Journal of Rare Books, Manuscripts, and Cultural Heritage; and an editorial board member of the Journal of Archival Organization, for which she co-authored a column on trends in archival management.

Shepherding new voices is at the heart of Cary’s editorial experience. “The process of working with new authors is always more than one of critical feedback; it relies on the editor’s generosity of spirit, willingness to listen to the concerns of a new author, the ability to translate intent and meaning, and the willingness to let go and allow an author’s work to exist on its own terms,” she added.

Cary believes that the Editor must fill distinct roles of leader, collaborator, and coach when working with the Editorial Board and she welcomes the opportunity to engage with them. “I am interested in working with the Board to consider a variety of changes in the review process, including exploring the feasibility and desirability of open peer review to bring more transparency to our work,” she said.

Cary’s selection as Editor of American Archivist by the SAA Council completes a six-month process that included broad distribution of a call for applicants and an extension of the deadline due to the COVID-19 pandemic. The Journal Editor Search Committee was chaired by Heather Soyka (Editorial Board representative) and included Meredith Evans (president of SAA), Mario Ramirez (Council liaison), Stacie Williams (Publications Editor), Anna Robinson-Sweet (early career member and recipient of the 2017 Theodore Calvin Pease Award for best student paper), Nancy Beaumont (SAA executive director), and Teresa Brinati (SAA director of publishing). Cary will succeed Christopher “Cal” Lee, professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill School of Information and Library Science, who is completing his three-year term as editor.

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A question from merge

A question from merge fruits: What is the American Archivist journal about?