Steering Shares are an opportunity to find out more about the I&A Steering Committee. This post is from Steering Committee member Stephanie Bennett, Collections Archivist at Wake Forest University.
Since it’s already been almost 6 months since the annual meeting, the Steering Committee members will be checking in about work we’re doing with the Issues & Advocacy Section and in our daily work. I’m gearing up for a very active year at work, but I’ve been kicking off the year thinking more about my contributions to the I&A Steering Committee and specifically this here blog.
Blogging is a really useful exercise for me personally and professionally. I am a lifelong journaller and blogged through college and beyond, and though I drift away from dedicated writing at times, I always come back. Putting my thoughts down and then editing to organize more coherently and concisely is a great way to make sense of issues, myself, and the wider world’s many dynamics.
I value providing the information and also am grateful for colleagues who are involved in the labor of blogging: research, writing, editing, choosing photos, double-checking links, etc. I hope y’all enjoy and employ the information shared here, and I hope the writers get value from the exercise of writing and publishing through more connections, more conversations and views on vital issues, and other opportunities that enrich their work and our profession.
Many other sections (formerly known as roundtables) have blogs, plus individual archivists too. How can we as a profession bound together through the Society of American Archivists make use of this work and not duplicate our efforts? I don’t have any true solutions except improved communication and open doors. Personally and through my work with I&A and the Collections Management Tools Section, I aim to boost the work of colleagues so that we’re all operating with as much information as our brains can stand.
A reminder – I&A has an open blogging policy: if there is an issue you are passionate about and want to write about, we are here. If you’ve attended a conference and you’d like to encourage more opportunities like it, we are here. If you have another idea entirely related to archivists and archives, email us – we are here to support archivists and our work. Many issues intersect in and with archives, which means many roads lead to and through professional conversations.
Our Research Teams are currently getting off the ground, so I look forward to reading the fruits of their labor on issues that we all wish we had more time to dig deep and research. Steering Shares will continue our committee’s reflections on a variety of issues and tasks. I would love to hear more about useful conferences and themes in ICYMI (In Case You Missed It) posts. And the Steering Committee is stirring up some great Archivists on the Issues posts about things we’ve heard about and fielding posts sent in to us.
Maybe one of you is currently pondering how to connect all these Section and SAA blogs (I have counted 12?) so that we see and talk to each other more often, not just at each other. When lightning strikes, I am ready and waiting to hear about the epiphany! In the meantime, I am optimistic about the work we can do together and separately in 2017.