How did you get involved in military librarianship?
I was hired as the Chief, Reader Services, Armed Forces Staff College (now Joint Forces Staff College) by Margaret (Maggie) Martin, in 1983. My father, a Navy Civil Engineer officer, was in charge of building some of the houses on the college compound, and he encouraged me to try to get a job in the library there. Up until that point, I had worked almost exclusively in academic libraries. It was very tough to break into US Civil Service in those days, but because I had been a science librarian, there was a waiver or special entry path available, and I was given Civil Service “status,” and eligible for library positions. I came to the Staff College from Old Dominion University, where I was the chief of Collection Access Services.
How did you get involved in DMIL?
I owe it all to Maggie. Although I had been a member of SLA for some years, she was very emphatic about the importance of joining the Military Libraries Division. She told me about the great group of people I would meet if I joined, and she also emphasized the importance of the annual workshop.
What has been your best experience working for the military?
My best experience was, without question, working with the students at JFSC. Especially after the Joint Advanced Warfighting School became a reality, and I was able to work with students who were researching and writing their theses. Another high point was working with General Donn Starry, Commanding General of TRADOC and Commander in Chief, U.S. Readiness Command, on a history of the College.
What has been your best experience being involved in DMIL?
Planning MLW 2011, “Riding the Information Wave,” in Norfolk with Maria Ruckman and a fabulous team of librarians from the College and from the Hampton Roads area. We spent most of a year planning the conference and had a terrific time!
What positions in DMIL have you held?
Membership Chair, MLW Chair, DOD Director.
If someone were to visit your library or your town, what would you be sure to show them or recommend that they see?
For sure the Battleship Wisconsin on the Norfolk Waterfront, the Hampton Roads Naval Museum next to the Wisconsin, the MacArthur Memorial Museum, the Chrysler Museum, and the Norfolk Naval Station.
Please recommend one LIS-specific book or article that you read recently that you found particularly good. What makes it worthwhile?
I’ve changed careers since retiring from JFSC, and am now an adjunct professor in the School of Public Service, Strome College of Business, at Old Dominion University. In this second career I teach two courses that I developed specifically for MPA students. So, two books that I am reading now and recommend highly are in the field of public administration: “Smart Communities,” by Suzanne Morse, and “Tackling Wicked Government Problems,” edited by Jackson Nickerson and Ronald Sanders. The two courses I teach are Community Engagement and Wicked Problems in Public Administration.
If you were to recommend one book, just for fun, what would it be?
Hmm – anything by Janet Evanovich. I’m reading “The Scam” right now.