2018 WLA Election
Division Candidate Statements

 Vice Chair/Chair-Elect, Academic Library Division

Christina Pryor

My name is Christina Pryor and I am the Assistant Director and Community Health Education Coordinator at the University of Washington Health Sciences Library overseeing the HEALWA program. Prior to joining the UW in January 2017, I was the Consulting and Education Services Manager for Amigos Library Services. I also previously worked as the Reference Manager for the St. Louis County Library in Missouri and as a Medical Research Librarian for Covidien. I have a Bachelor’s Degree in Journalism from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale and a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

I am an active member of the American Library Association and the Special Libraries Association, who named me a Rising Star in 2011. For the past ten years, I have been heavily involved in the Missouri Library Association as well as the St. Louis Metro Area Chapter of SLA, filling a variety of roles and leading several initiatives for these organizations. My involvement with the Missouri Library Association included serving on the organization’s Executive Board and multiple terms on the Advisory Board. I also served as the 2013 Missouri Library Association Annual Conference Co-Coordinator. For SLA, I launched the St. Louis Chapter’s first-ever fundraising initiative to fund travel scholarships and later served as the Chapter’s President. I was honored to be the recipient of the Chapter’s Leadership Award in December 2016.

I am excited to be in Washington State and I look forward to being an active member of the Washington Library Association and the Academic Libraries Division.

Member at Large, Academic Library Division

Jenny Muilenburg

I’m excited by the opportunity to be a part of the new Academic Library Division of WLA as a member at large. I have worked at the University of Washington Libraries off and on for 20 years, first as a geographic information systems librarian, then as acting head of the map collection, and now as a data management librarian. I have seen first-hand the changes that have moved academic libraries from paper resources to electronic, with all the pros and cons therein -- and I understand the challenges to patrons, librarians, and other services providers that rapid technological change can bring.

I’m interested in the connection and community that can be made by professional organizations such as WLA, and I’m eager to participate. I know that my involvement in other professional organizations such as ALA, the Western Association of Map Libraries, the International Association for Social Science Information Services and Technology (and others) has strengthened me as a librarian by increasing my knowledge, giving me a sounding board, motivating me to stretch intellectually, and providing me with a diverse, international perspective on librarianship. I know that our WLA members provide the same kind of knowledge and experience within Washington State, and I look forward to the opportunity to help communicate and expand participation in the group.

I am also a certified yoga instructor, and teach regular classes at the UW Libraries as part of the Libraries Wellness Committee, of which I am a founding member. I am interested in the way communities of all kinds can provide support and mentorship, and can spark the intellectual curiosity to make better people and employees.

Chair, Public Library Division

Amber Williams

I am finishing up my eleventh year at Spokane County Library District. I have held various positions including Public Services Specialist, Youth Services Librarian, Community Librarian and Strategic Initiatives Librarian and while the names have changed providing consistent, responsive public service has not.

Historically public libraries have been a way for communities to pool their resources to provide access to information and experiences that a single household could not have afforded. We’re still doing this but knowledge is no longer just books and librarians. We’re spaces, we’re technology, we’re people connectors, and we are an important community partner in the areas we serve and we all have experience overcoming the hurdles of being a great partner.

As Chair for the Public Library Division of WLA I see an opportunity to help shape this position to be responsive to the library profession community. WLA has created opportunities for me throughout my career. I recognize the importance of relevant conferences and workshops, networking with colleagues, and a platform for sharing out. As Chair I will work to enhance our professions community by contributing to the groundwork for a supportive Division. To me this means recognizing that one of the best resources we have is each other and finding ways to share our experiences, wins or fails, and our passions for the field. ‚Äč

Vice Chair/Chair-Elect, Public Library Division

Georgia Reitmire

My name is Georgia Reitmire and I am a Managing Librarian with Yakima Valley Libraries. I have worked in libraries for over 15 years. I was first a Library Media Specialist in a private school. After four years of working in a school library I started working in a military library. I was a Library Technician for the Army where I managed the children’s room. In 2012 (at the fine age of 52) I received my MLIS from San Jose State University. Shortly after this I accepted a position as Director at a Marine Corps library. I also was a Director at a Naval Base. I am proud to say that I worked for every branch of the service during my time as a civilian employee.

You name it I’ve done it…..programming, collection development, cataloging, managing staff and providing direct customer service. I like to think I’m a well-rounded librarian who brings a variety of experiences to the table.

If elected as Vice Chair I will work towards creating an environment of teamwork and collegiality throughout the State. I am also a strong advocate for mentorship to help new librarians be successful in their careers. I would work to connect new librarians with experienced librarians who can help them address challenges and celebrate their successes in a safe environment. I was lucky to have several mentors along the way in my career and attribute my career growth to their help.

Sonia Gustafson

My name is Sonia Gustafson and I am happy to put my name forward to be Vice-Chair of the Public Libraries Division of WLA. I currently work for Sno-Isle Libraries as the Managing Librarian of the Lake Stevens Library and have been with Sno-Isle since 2015. I started my librarian career as a Youth Services Librarian for the Spokane County Library District in 2007.

Being actively involved in WLA has enhanced my professional development since I joined the CAYAS Board in 2008. In addition to coordinating workshops through CAYAS, I was the Program Co-Chair for WLA’s 2015 Conference and Conference Co-Chair in 2016.

I have benefitted from WLA workshops, networking events with library staff across the state, and large-scale project collaboration. I know not everyone can participate on a WLA Board, or attend a workshop or conference; but if elected, I would do my best to bring the energy and collaborative spirit of an in-person gathering to every member of the Public Libraries Division. I am enthusiastic about connecting and communicating with library staff across the state and look forward to the opportunity of serving as your Vice-Chair of the Public Libraries Division.

Secretary/Communications, Public Library Division

Elizabeth Koenig

Hello! I am excited for the chance to become involved in WLA by serving as Secretary for the Public Library Division. I have been working in public libraries since 2007, when I accepted a page job at a small, but bustling branch. I quickly realized I’d found my new career, one in which I could feel that I was making a difference. In library school, public libraries were my entire focus, and since 2014 I have had my dream job as a librarian with the Everett Public Library where I truly love helping fellow citizens in my own city.
Years of experience, both voluntary and professional, have prepared me for this role. I’ve served as secretary for school, sport, and club organizations, and this year I became secretary of my neighborhood association. For this group I create and email monthly newsletters to neighbors in our large, diverse neighborhood, which include meeting minutes, articles, events, and photos. At the Everett Library I am the head of our library’s newsletter team, and design and send out our newsletter every 6 weeks to around 31,000 patrons. These experiences have helped me develop clear, accurate, and prompt communication practices.
For the Public Libraries Division of WLA, I envision a focus on educating staff around the state on trends and issues; promoting sharing of new ideas for programs, collection development, and customer service; informing members of continuing education opportunities, and increasing involvement and input from the diverse group of wonderful people who keep our libraries going strong.
Thank you!

Vice Chair/Chair-Elect, School Library Division

Ann Hayes-Bell

I am thrilled and honored to be nominated to serve as your Chairperson for the School Library Division of Washington Library Association.

We all know the role of the school librarian is one of the best, yet most demanding jobs, in the school serving our staff, students, and school community. I served 11 years as an elementary librarian in the Bellevue School District and 5 years as an elementary librarian in the Edmonds School District. I now serve as a Digital Learning Specialist for the Shoreline School District where I support teachers, librarians, and students using the most effective resources to meet needs of Future Ready learners. I earned my School Library Media Specialist certificate from University of Washington in 2000, National Board Certification in Library Media in 2004, and a MEd in Digital Education Leadership from Seattle Pacific University in 2017.

As a long-time member of WLMA, now WLA, presenting at annual library conferences, and currently serving as Secretary for the School Library Division of WLA, I will ensure that we continue to meet our goals of providing networking opportunities and professional support for teacher-librarians and library paraprofessionals, administrators, teachers and parents. Our work as an association is more relevant than ever. Together we can continue to grow in membership and mentorship, collaboration, and advocacy. I look forward to working with the dynamic community of library educators throughout Washington State.

 Chair, Special Library Division

Danielle Miller

It has been a privilege to serve as the interim chair of the newly established Special Libraries Division (SpLD) and to begin the important work of developing our division’s priorities and framework. However, the work has just begun. We need to establish a strong mission, charter, and clear vision for the future. One of my first priorities in this process will be growing our membership. Collaborating with the Special Library Association Pacific Northwest Chapter and the University of Washington iSchool will help us to connect with information professionals who haven’t previously considered membership in WLA or the SpLD.

I often find it hard to define a special library, rather find it easier to say when something “isn’t” – it isn’t a public library, it isn’t an academic library, it isn’t a school library… I have been the director of the Washington Talking Book & Braille Library (WTBBL) for almost 10 years, and WTBBL encompasses elements of many types of libraries, including public, academic, and school libraries. What makes WTBBL a special library is that it serves special populations in special ways by offering specialized materials. Everything we do is a little bit different. Just as all of you have something that sets your work or your specialized setting (perhaps not a library at all) apart from the other divisions. Regardless of what your title may be or your workplace may be called, we all want to connect people with information.

Through my leadership, I will work to unite and strengthen the SpLD membership through promoting and developing opportunities for learning, sharing resources, building partnerships, and leveraging our common skills and expertise. Together, we can bring greater library and information professional diversity and strength to the membership of WLA. It would be a great honor to continue developing the foundation of the Special Libraries Division as the 2018 chair.

Vice Chair/Chair-Elect, Special Library Division

Rob Mead

I moved to Olympia last year to become the State Law Librarian at the Washington Supreme Court. I’ve been a law librarian, legal research instructor, and library school adjunct professor in New Mexico and Kansas for most of the past 20 years, with a recent two year break as a public defense administrator. As a librarian-lawyer, I’m frequently translating information needs from lawyers and judges to librarians and vice versa. The ability to remain 100% librarian in professional outlook while still learning and accommodating to another profession’s worldview at work each day is at the heart of special librarianship.

I’m particularly interested in building bridges between public and special libraries. I believe that both divisions have much to teach one each other. The complex needs of patrons who have medical, business, legal, and technological questions are hard to identify and meet. Patrons often see libraries as more or less interchangeable. Bridges between types of libraries allow us to better meet the needs of these patrons. This is most important reason for special libraries to exist within broader library organizations rather than just meeting with each other.

Additionally, in these challenging times, special librarians need to be vocally supportive of the broader advocacy needs for funding for public and school libraries. We need open libraries now more than ever. Although government and corporate special librarians operate within certain restrictions, advocacy through professional support of organizations like the Washington Library Association give us the opportunity to help.

Secretary/Communications, Special Library Division

Cadi Russell-Sauve

Cadi Russell-Sauve is a Browse Developer & Taxonomist at Amazon.com, having previously worked as a researcher for U.S. IMPACT study at the UW and Faculty Librarian at Bellevue College. She co-chaired the 2013 OLA/WLA conference program planning committee, and loved it so much did it again in 2014. She also served a term on the ALKI editorial committee. For 5 years she was on the InfoCamp Seattle planning board, helping to create a learning community for all types of information professionals.

Cadi is running for Special Libraries secretary and looks forward to exploring opportunities in building community for librarians working in non-traditional spaces within WLA, and she has some nontraditional ideas about how to go about that…