What librarian mentor, if any, has played a role in your professional life? How?
James Allen! I had been staying home with my kids finishing my MSLS and was not involved in education or library matters here in Kentucky. I just happened to land at Eminence Independent Schools, a K-12 library, where he works. You can’t be around James without getting a front row seat to the amazing leadership and networking he consistently models.
What is the best conference you’ve ever attended that helped you in your role as a library media specialist? What made it so amazing?
I loved my first KASL Summer Refresher. The sessions were great (I specifically remember Katie Newton’s and Heidi Neltner’s), but my favorite part was meeting so many friendly librarians that keep popping back on my radar because they are so good at promoting and advocating for their programs.
What do you wish you would’ve learned in your training as a Library Media Specialist? Why?
I loved my training and found it very relevant. In my program, we operated under the assumption that we collaborated and co-taught with classroom teachers regularly, which is best practice. That isn’t always the reality, however, and I would have loved to have been equipped with more strategies for weaving myself into the classroom.
How do you establish and maintain a positive professional working relationship with your principal so that he/she stays informed of your role, accomplishments and needs?
I have the privilege of working with two great principals. This school year, James and I started our version of a quarterly report called EDhub Happenings. Though we promoted it to teachers and the community as well, one of the foundational purposes of the project was to make sure our administration sees all the exciting things we’re doing in the library. We were pleased with the feedback we received, and plan to continue this practice.
Describe how you stay passionate about your job in the library.
This one’s easy–I love learning, and that’s what I get to do all the time while I work. I love to share what I’m learning with kids, and I love to learn from them.
Fifth District President
Eminence Independent Schools