I’m fairly certain I was born to be a librarian without a library. I grew up in a small town of 700 people with no public library (or traffic lights!). I did, however, make my way through the entirety of the school library card catalog and was a heavy user of the Bookmobile that would stop by each summer. I loved to learn and would read anything I could get my hands on.
While attending the University of North Dakota, in addition to becoming a rabid Fighting Hawks hockey fan, I completed a degree in sociology with a minor in political science. Those fields helped me recognize and understand the broader world beyond the tiny farming town I grew up in, and after doing billing for a regional trucking company for a year, I applied to the Master’s of Library and Information Science program at the University of Denver. My roommate at the time had told me that I should become a librarian, but not an ordinary librarian—a special kind of librarian. After some research, I realized that I had found my path.
After the boyfriend (now husband!) and I moved from Fargo to Denver, I was fortunate enough to interview for and be offered two jobs. One was a part-time library assistant position with Access/Information, which I turned down for a Data Specialist position with DU, so I could benefit from the tuition waiver. I found that in the LIS program I was learning how to learn—quickly, robustly, and cross-disciplinary. I was not only interested in research at various levels—industry, company, individual and product–but in how information is structured and stored, which allowed me to grow my career at DU as I completed the program.
At the same time, I re-connected with Wanda McDavid, President of Access/Information, through the Rocky Mountain Chapter of the Special Libraries Association, as she was chapter President at the time I entered library school. I was lucky enough to keep in contact with her and benefit from her mentorship over the next ten years, as I took on the RMSLA President role in 2013 as well and became active in SLA at the national level. Library and information professionals are the consummate networkers. While we may work in different fields or areas of specialization, we share a passion for information and connecting others with it and each other.
During my time working for DU’s Advancement office, I focused on identifying people capable and interested in making major and planned gifts to DU based on internal and external data and information. I found that what motivates me is connecting people with information for decision-making and seeing the ensuing results. Relationships are essential to providing clients with meaningful intelligence to support their goals, and I’m delighted for the opportunity to bring the competitive intelligence, information management and relationship development skills I learned to Access/Information.
Networking got me my dream job—being client-focused and turning data and information into decision-supporting intelligence. I’m absolutely thrilled to join this group of skilled information professionals to create meaning for our clients from the vast resources of knowledge available, exceeding expectations by focusing on insights critical to their organizational missions.