F. Gerald Ham and Elsie Ham Scholarship: Katherine Madison

Katherine Madison, who is pursuing a master of library and information science degree at the University of Pittsburgh, is the 2016 recipient of the Society of American Archivists' F. Gerald Ham and Elsie Ham Scholarship. Established in 1998, the $10,000 scholarship supports the graduate archival education of a student who is studying at a United States university program. Scholarship selection criteria include the applicant’s past performance in his or her graduate program in archival studies as well as faculty members’ assessment of the student’s prospects for contributing to the archives profession.

Madison’s historical training combined with technical expertise in archives will position her to play important roles in advocacy, preservation, and education. In addition to her strong academic record, Madison impressed the Awards Committee with her excellent writing skills. Her outstanding research paper, “The Archival Captive Revisited: Native American Archival Materials and Self-Determination in the Archive,” placed the literature of Native American archives in context of the restoration era of Native American sovereignty and later “the complex, interdisciplinary, international debate over the control of Indigenous cultural expressions and traditional knowledge.” Madison hopes to work with museum or university archives and the digital humanities, using her historical knowledge in service of advocacy and outreach.

One recommender commented that Madison is “an exceptional student . . . a leader among students and will have a great career in our profession.”