Candidates for Nominating Committee

Cynthia Ghering

Letha Johnson

William Modrow 

Matthew Strandmark 

 

Cynthia Ghering

Cynthia Ghering

EMPLOYMENT

Director, University Archives & Historical Collections, Michigan State University, 2008-present; Assistant Director, Curatorial and Collections Services, Ohio Historical Society, 2004-2008. Head, Manuscripts and Audiovisuals Department, Ohio Historical Society, 1999 to 2004.

EDUCATION

MS: Information, Archives and Records Management, University of Michigan, 1999.

BA: English, Minors: History and Practical Writing, Western Michigan University, 1991. 

PROFESSIONAL SERVICE

MAC: Program Committee, 2012 Annual Meeting; Editorial Board, Archival Issues, 2009-2011.

SAA: College and University Section: Vice Chair/Chair, 2014-2016 and Steering Committee, 2010-2013; Electronic Records Section: Steering Committee, 2011-2013; Manuscripts Repositories Section: Steering Committee, 2001-2003. Digital Archives Specialist Instructor, 2011-present. Digital Archives Specialist Curriculum Committee, 2014-2016 and 2018-present.

Other:

  • Michigan State Historical Records Advisory Board (MSHRAB), State of Michigan, 2014-present.
  • ArchivesSpace Governing Board, Large Institution Member Representative, 2018-present.
  • National Digital Stewardship Alliance (NDSA): Program Committee, 2017 Annual Conference; Staffing Survey Working Group, 2016-2017.
  • Board of Directors, Mid-Michigan Chapter, Association of Records Managers and Administrations (ARMA) International, 2010-2012.
  • Board of Directors, Michigan Women’s Studies Association and Michigan Women’s Historical Center, 2009-2011.

Question for Candidate: MAC’s strategic plan emphasizes the importance of diversifying the organization and its leadership. What qualities are necessary for leadership in MAC? How could the nominating committee put together a diverse slate of potential leaders with those qualities?

Response from Nominating Committee Member Candidate Cynthia Ghering: If elected to the MAC Nominating Committee, I would take inspiration from MAC’s Mission, Statement of Values, and the 2016-2020 Strategic Plan to identify qualities necessary for potential MAC leaders. MAC has a long heritage of commitment to the archival profession, advocacy for the archival community, and leadership within a framework of social responsibility. The MAC membership seeks leaders who embody the core values of our profession and bring accountability, transparency and fairness to the support and advancement of MAC’s mission.

There is much evidence that diverse teams produce more creative, innovative and effective results – but as many of us know from our workplace recruitment, achieving diverse teams takes effort and dedication. Borrowing from the Human Resources Management profession for inspiration, some ideas for the MAC Nominating Committee to pull together diverse candidate slates include:

  • Build on MAC’s efforts to conduct a census and better understand the makeup and needs of our membership.
  • Internally identify our diversity goals and target communications to these underrepresented communities.
  • Leverage new communication tools and professional networks to reach new audiences.
  • Seek nominations and recommendations from MAC membership, especially those who make diversity a priority in their professional work
  • Build in a longer recruitment period for the nominating process to develop relationships and encourage peer recommendations.
  • Partner with existing groups, communities, professional organizations, and graduate schools to nurture and facilitate candidate pipelines.

Like all worthwhile goals, increasing the number, diversity, and retention of MAC’s membership and leadership will take time. It’s a gradual process that we can continue to improve every year. I would be honored to serve the MAC Nominating Committee and support these important efforts.

Letha Johnson

Letha Johnson

Employment

Associate Archivist and Records Manager, University Archives, University of Kansas Libraries, 2008-present; Government Records Archivist, State Archives, Kansas Historical Society, 199-2008.

Education

M.LS., Emporia State University, 2001; M.A., American History, Emporia State University, 2007.

Professional Activities

MAC:  Local Arrangement Committee, 2014

Kansas City Area Archivists (KCAA):  Minority Internship Committee Chair, 2004-present; Secretary, 1999-2003; Membership Committee Chair, 1996-1997. 

Other:  Kansas Electronic Records Committee, 2018-present; Kansas Archive-It Consortium, 2015-present; Kansas History Day Affiliate Co-coordinator, 2009-present. 

Question for Candidate: MAC’s strategic plan emphasizes the importance of diversifying the organization and its leadership. What qualities are necessary for leadership in MAC? How could the nominating committee put together a diverse slate of potential leaders with those qualities? 

Response from Nominating Committee Member Candidate Letha Johnson: To achieve the goals of increasing the diversity of MAC, I believe its leadership should have demonstrated experience with cultural competency and advocating for the benefits of diversity.  These leadership qualities serve as an engine for growth within the profession, help foster the creation of more inclusive collections, and lay the foundation for a dynamic outreach programs.

The Nominating Committee can put together a diverse slate of candidates by seeking out members who actively engage in this work, represent a variety of backgrounds and institutions, and appreciate the wide spectrum of subjects and issues that encompass the work of diversity.  These individuals must be committed to taking the time and effort necessary to advance these aspirations.  By assembling such a slate of candidates, the Nominating Committee can ensure that those elected can develop and move strategic initiatives forward in a timelier manner.  As a result of having diverse leadership, MAC can become an organization known for elevating the awareness of groups that are underrepresented, or not represented at all within collections and the profession.  By advocating for inclusion, they will take the initiative to craft programs, forums, and trainings that will enhance the work of MAC and thereby reinforcing the value MAC places on being an organization committed to social responsibility, accountability, stewardship, transparency, and fairness.

William Modrow

William Modrow

Employment

Head, Special Collections, Preservation and the University Archives, Miami University 2015 – present; University Librarian, Reference & Special Collections and University Archives, Florida State University 1999 – 2015.

Education

M.L.I.S. , Florida State University 1999; M.A., History, Florida State University, 1998; B.S. Political Economy, B.A History, University of Nevada – Reno, 1989

Professional Activities

MAC: Assistant Editor Newsletter: Preservation Essentials, 2018- present

ALA – Conference Programing Committee, 2016- present

ACRL – RBMS – Membership & Professional Development Committee, 2018 - present

SOA – Education Programming Committee, 2015 – present

SAA – Member, 2007 - present

LLAMA – Chair, Program Committee, 2016 - present

ALAO – Member, 2015 - present

Question for Candidate:  MAC’s strategic plan emphasizes the importance of diversifying the organization and its leadership. What qualities are necessary for leadership in MAC? How could the nominating committee put together a diverse slate of potential leaders with those qualities?

Response from Nominating Committee Member Candidate William Modrow: I believe MAC will continue to see many important and challenging issues over the following years, and one of these will be diversity. Diversity is included in MAC’s 2016-2020 Strategic Plan and I see this as a critical function for serving on the Nominating Committee. I believe advocacy is a quality all leaders should have and I would bring enthusiasm for diversifying the organization.

Leaders should advocate for diversity. This will allow Librarians and Archivists to remain proactive representing the valuable work that is being done preserving diverse histories. My focus serving on the Nominating Committee would be increasing awareness for diversity; this should include both people and materials.

To increase the opportunity and awareness for diversity, as a member of the Nominating Committee, I would work to expand outreach to all archival related areas by means of surveys, mentor programs, fellowships & scholarships, and networking library/archival programs. There has to be a serious effort for recruiting these members into internships, mentor positions, and onto MAC committees into leadership positions.

Diversity in leadership is an important quality, I would work to recommend programs for leadership training for current members, perhaps as a condition of completion these members could serve on a (newly formed) MAC Diversity Committee to help recruit members and discuss diversity issues. This would utilize their skills and assist in leading important themes for workshops, training/learning sessions, or online discussion forums. Thus, increasing involvement in MAC from a professional level to a student level ensures greater diversity and longevity for leadership.

I welcome the opportunity to put my energy and efforts by serving on the Nominating Committee while increasing the awareness for diversity, and meeting those needs for archivists, librarians, and institutions – this is what makes MAC leadership a vital and important part of the archival world.  

Matthew Strandmark

Matthew Strandmark

Employment

Education Archivist, Academic Liaison for Appalachian Studies, Special Collections Research Center, University of Kentucky, 2015-Present; Outreach Archivist, Stuart A. Rose Manuscript, Archives, and Rare Book Library, Emory University, 2014-2015.

Education

M.L.S., Indiana University, Bloomington, 2014; M.A., History, Indiana University, Bloomington, 2014; B.A., History/Political Science, Hanover College, 2012.

Professional Activities

MAC: Member, 2015-Present

SAA: Committee on Education: Committee Member, 2016-Present; Teaching with Primary Sources Subcommittee, 2016-2018.

ACRL/RBMS: Member, 2018-Present

Other: Kentucky Council on Archives, 2015-Present; Society of Georgia Archivists, 2014-2015.

Question for Candidate: MAC’s strategic plan emphasizes the importance of diversifying the organization and its leadership. What qualities are necessary for leadership in MAC? How could the nominating committee put together a diverse slate of potential leaders with those qualities?

Response from Nominating Committee Member Candidate Matthew Strandmark: In step with MAC’s emphasis on building a more diverse leadership and organization, I see the nominating committee playing an essential role in recruiting and facilitating a diverse pool of professionals in order to insure the strong direction of the organization. It is simply a fact that dedicated, multi-faceted, and inspiring leadership stems from a diverse pool of applicants. If elected to the MAC Nominating Committee, I will work with all professionals in our field to create organizational leadership that speaks to all of our members. Through wide-ranging publicity and a dependence on cultivating diverse candidates from my own professional relationships, I believe that I can contribute meaningfully to an open, transparent, and thorough nominating process. As an early career archivist, I also regularly see the need for new ideas and inspiration, and the need to give professionals new to the field a voice in professional direction and decision-making. We need to rededicate our organization to opening the gates for egalitarian leadership by and for professionals who are committed, innovative, open-minded, and diverse. If elected, I would be honored to work to bring these values to the forefront of future MAC leadership by offering a clear message to possible candidates: MAC can only thrive with the views, ideas, and work of many professionals from many backgrounds. There is no shortcut to achieving these goals. This will depend on the willingness of Nominating Committee members to reach all members of the profession. I hope to do just that.

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