How did you become interested in librarianship?
I stumbled into librarianship on my first day of law school, where I was assigned a work study position in the library. I eventually befriended the librarians and through them realized that I had a passion for empowering others to find information and create knowledge.
Describe the first time you worked in a library.
My first library position was at the circulation desk of the law school where I earned my JD. I worked evenings, and closed the library three nights a week. It was often quiet, and so I would file loose-leaf updates, shelf read, digitize materials in support of an open law project, grab documents from microfiche for faculty, and scan the materials left out on desks.
As a member of LAUC, I serve on the Research and Professional Development Committee. I am also on a LAUC-I team that is organizing the 50th Anniversary LAUC Assembly to be held at Irvine.
What do you like best about being a UC librarian?
I love being a librarian because I get to work with knowledgeable colleagues and diverse students. This is especially true at UC, where the people I work with have a range of talents, and the students come from everywhere and bring all types of ideas.
Describe a recent or current project on which you are working.
I am currently preparing to teach three research classes this spring: first-year legal research, advanced legal research, and intellectual property research. Related, I am working with my colleagues to consider ways we can incorporate research instruction into the larger curriculum. Research is about more than just being able to construct good searches, identify good resources, and evaluate information. It's about being able to do this everyday over a lifetime in a very changing world and without even realizing that this is what you are doing.
Describe your recent professional work outside of work, such as association work, writing, research, or anything else.
I currently serve on the Continuing and Professional Education Committee of the American Association of Law Libraries. In this role, I work with a team of librarians from across the country to develop monthly educational programs. My goal for this winter is to develop an interactive webinar in which we practice improv skills, i.e., always saying yes, to help develop team-building and communication in our libraries.
What would you like the next big thing in libraries to be?
I am not sure about the next big thing. I believe the library's value is best communicated through our personal relationships. I would want librarians to be as present as possible within our universities and communities. Each faculty, student, administrator, staff member, and local community leader should personally know a UC librarian.
Complete this statement: "One surprising fact about me is...”
I love watching sports, especially if it is a playoff or finals game. I will watch anything from lacrosse to squash to swimming to football. When I am not watching sports, I like to be outside. You can often find me with my wife walking around different neighborhoods in Long Beach.
Can you recommend a book or movie or tell us your favorite book or movie and why?
I recently reread Manchild in the Promised Land by Claude Brown. I first read this book in the week before starting college and it had a big impact on my confidence. It helped me realize that growing up poor and being the first person in your family to go to college is neither shameful nor determinative. In fact, it means you might have an interesting story to tell.