Fellow: Kate Theimer

Kate Theimer, author, educator, and creator of the blog ArchivesNext, will be inducted as a Fellow of the Society of American Archivists (SAA) during a ceremony at the Joint Annual Meeting of CoSA, the National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators, and SAA in Washington, DC, August 12–18. The distinction of Fellow is the highest honor bestowed on individuals by SAA and is awarded for outstanding contributions to the archives profession.

At the heart of Theimer’s work is her passion for connecting people and creating inclusive spaces for the open sharing of ideas. With a master of science in information from the University of Michigan and a master of arts in art history and archaeology from the University of Maryland, Theimer worked at the Smithsonian Institution and then at the National Archives and Records Administration. In 2007, Theimer left to start ArchivesNext, where she explored innovative uses of web technology in archives and discussed the applicability of existing archival business models in the current and emerging information environment—all while proposing modifications for a new model and engaging readers in an ongoing conversation on archives issues. ArchivesNext has served as a general outreach tool for the profession, informing readers of disaster relief resources, public awareness initiatives, and career advice. In addition to her numerous publications and presentations, she authored the book Web 2.0 Tools and Strategies for Archives and Local History Collections and created the Spontaneous Scholarships program in 2011 to assist archivists with funding for attending SAA’s Annual Meeting.

Theimer’s activities have consistently demonstrated her creativity, initiative, commitment, and resourcefulness. Within SAA, she’s served on the steering committee for the Electronic Records Section, co-chaired the Issues and Advocacy Roundtable as well as the “23 Things for Archivists” Working Group, and was a member of both the Nominating Committee and Appointments Committee. She also was elected to the SAA Council, where she was an ardent advocate for transparency and inclusivity within the profession.

As one supporter stated, Theimer has the “rare ability to incorporate complex visions for alternative futures with a commanding understanding of existing archival theory and practice.” Never afraid to “roll up her sleeves and grind out support research,” she continually challenges existing ideas and work, making her an invaluable member of the profession.