Big Talk From Small Libraries 2024
Jennifer Chess, Communications & Marketing Librarian, U.S. Military Academy Library, West Point, NY (FTE: 4,400)
Jennifer Chess is the Communications and Marketing Librarian at the U.S. Military Academy Library. She’s worked at the USMA Library for 19 years and has worked on the library’s marketing efforts for the past 4 years. She earned a B.A. in Marketing and Finance and a M.S.I.S. in Library Science. She’s passionate about helping cadets and faculty at USMA as well as telling the story of West Point and the USMA Library.
Seairah Combest, Children’s Coordinator, Page Public Library, Page, AZ (Population served: 7,549)
Seairah has been the Children’s Coordinator at Page Public Library for almost three years. With a degree in elementary education and prior preschool teaching experience, Seairah says, “I have the pleasure of working alongside young Patrons and Guardians and providing resources to fit their needs.” We have successfully included CPR, parenting classes, STEAM and STEM programs, science fairs, classroom reading challenges, individual reading challenges, sensory programs, low-key programs, baby playtimes, after-school programming, family nights, city events, and more. We have formed a bond with local schools, provided programming, and attended school family nights and other events. “For even the Son of Man came not to be served, but to serve others and to give His life as a ransom for many.” – Mark 10:45 This motivates me.
Erin Crockett, Library Director, Carroll County Library, Huntingdon, TN (Population served: 4,433)
Erin Crockett is the Library Director for the Carroll County Library in Tennessee. She has been in the library world for almost 2 years and had many years in management and customer service leading up to her time at the library. She is a wife to a loving husband and mother to two wonderfully creative children. In her free time she likes to be outdoors, cook, spend time with family, sing, craft, and serve in her community.
Lisa Gomez, Exhibition Librarian, U.S. Military Academy Library, West Point, NY (FTE: 4,400)
Lisa Gomez is the Exhibition Librarian at the United States Military Academy Library. She has worked in various positions in library, archival, and cultural heritage settings since 2016. Lisa earned her MLIS at Rutgers University and her BA in English and Women’s Studies from Quinnipiac University.
Baylee Hughes, Community Engagement Librarian, James L. Hamner Public Library, Amelia Court House, VA (Population served: 13,400)
I’m currently the Community Engagement Librarian at the James L. Hamner Public Library in Amelia, VA. I worked in an archive, then an academic library before receiving my MLIS from the University of South Carolina in 2021 and moving to public libraries. I’m passionate about providing quality programs for our community.
Meghan Kowalski, Outreach and Reference Librarian, The University of the District of Columbia, Washington D.C. (FTE: 2,800)
Meghan Kowalski is the Outreach and Reference Librarian at the University of the District of Columbia. Previously, she worked at The Catholic University of America’s Mullen Library where she held positions in both public and technical services. You can reach her on X (@meghan1943) or Instagram (meghan1943). She is the author of the newsletters “Content Prompt” (https://contentprompt.substack.com) and “The Weekly Wrap” (https://meghankowalski.substack.com/). You can also visit her website (www.meghankowalski.com) to see a portfolio of her work and read her blog.
Karen Mier, Library Director, Plattsmouth Public Library, Plattsmouth, NE (Population served: 6,620)
Karen Mier has been the Library Director at the Plattsmouth Public Library for nearly 13 years. In her 40+ years of library work, she’s worked in public and medical libraries in Texas and Nebraska. She has also managed several city, library, and non-profit websites over the past 20 years. She’s always open to providing new programs and services to the community.
Lori Mullooly, Events and Programming Librarian, U.S. Military Academy Library, West Point, NY (FTE: 4,400)
Lori Mullooly (she/her/hers) is the Events and Programming Librarian at the United States Military Academy Library at West Point. She has over 15 years of public and academic library experience. Lori earned her MLIS at Syracuse University and her BA from the University of Connecticut. In addition to serving as an Academic Liaison and Instruction Librarian, she works directly with cadets to bring meaningful events to the Library.
Chelsea Price, Director, Meservey Public Library, Meservey, IA (Population served: 216)
Chelsea Price has been the director at the Meservey Public Library in Meservey, Iowa for 9 years. Chelsea has presented for Programming Librarian, PCI Webinars, Niche Academy, Florida Library Webinars, ARSL, and Pop YS Con, and she has also contributed to the Programming Librarian blog. Chelsea’s book, “209 Big Programming Ideas for Small Budgets,” was published in October 2020.
Raymond Pun, Academic and Research Librarian, Alder Graduate School of Education, Redwood City, CA (FTE: 450)
Raymond Pun (he/him) is the academic and research librarian at the Alder Graduate School of Education, a teacher residency program in California, where he supports library services by engaging with residents and teacher educators. Pun holds a Doctorate in Education from Fresno State, a Master of Library Science from the City University of New York – Queens College, a Master of Arts in East Asian Studies, and a Bachelor of Arts in History from St. John’s University. Pun is also the Past President of the Asian/Pacific American Librarians Association and the Chinese American Librarians Association.
Katarina Spears, Library Director, James L. Hamner Public Library, Amelia Court House, VA (Population served: 13,400)
Katarina Spears holds an MLIS from UNC and an M.A. in Public Anthropology from American University. Her museum and library career spans 30+ years with organizations ranging from the National Gallery of Art Library to the Edgar Allan Poe Museum. She is the author of four novels for young adults published by St. Martin’s Press/Wednesday Books. Her current position is library director for the Hamner Public Library in Amelia County, Virginia.
Alec Staley, Branch Manager, Worcester County Library – Ocean City Branch, Ocean City, MD (Population served: 6,900)
Alec Staley is currently the Branch Manager of the Ocean City Branch of Worcester County Library. Alec graduated with his MLS from Clarion University of Pennsylvania in 2019, and has a decade of experience in the library world ranging from archives to public librarianship. He has a passion for organization and making libraries accessible and fun for everyone.
Abbie Steuhm, Research & Scholarship Librarian, Karl E. Mundt Library, Dakota State University, Madison, SD (FTE: 2,000)
Abbie Steuhm is the Research & Scholarship Librarian for Dakota State University and has a master’s in Library & Information Sciences and a bachelor’s in English & World Literature. They have previously worked as a student specialist at the Iowa Women’s Archives and as a research assistant for the Jumpstarting Tomorrow and William E. Riley grants. Steuhm’s primary fields of study are literature, archival studies, disability advocacy, queer studies, and information behavior.
Amber Sweetland, Director, Kimball Public Library, Kimball, NE (Population served: 2,500)
I have lived in Nebraska since 2016 when I moved to Kimball. I am an Arizona native. I am a widowed mother of two. I began volunteering in libraries when I was 13 as a page. I am an avid reader. I believe that libraries are the lifeblood of a community. My philosophy as director is that libraries must continuously move forward, we have to be as many things, to as many people, as possible to remain the example of what our communities can be.
Debbie Winlock, Library Manager, Page Public Library, Page, AZ (Population served: 7,549)
Debbie Winlock is the library Manager at Page Public Library in Page, Arizona. She has been at the Page Library for 18 years. Her title has changed a few times due to city reorganization. She was director of the library for the first seven years, then promoted to Community Service Director for six years, during which she managed a few more city departments. Then, in 2018, she asked to return to her first love, the library. Before working at Page, Debbie was the Director of the Ignacio Community Library in Colorado for five years. Debbie’s passion is serving and volunteering in her community. She has been on the First Things First council for 14 years. First Things First is an essential leader and partner in creating a family-centered, equitable, high-quality early childhood system that supports the development, well-being, health, and education of all Arizona’s children, from birth to age 5.