Giving Thanks and Re-networking

One thing I have tried to do in the past year is re-connect with librarians that I have grown to know as a patron.

I like to think of this as a way to not only network (or re-network) but also a way to quietly say thanks to those who helped shape what I know and how I think about accessing information.  Too often as young adults and children we see the teachers and librarians we encounter and assume or expect that they are here for us.  We do not realize just how much our success as information professionals hinges on how we were trained from the start.  We simply didn’t know how much we had to thank them for until we were much older.

This past year I was able to visit the Cierpke Memorial Library at Tennessee Temple University that my Mom worked at while my Dad was in college.  The current librarian had been a student when my Dad attended and much of the physical space looked the same.  I was home schooled for several years in early elementary grades and my Mom would bring us to work with her.  We would go upstairs and do our school work and read the fabulous kids books.   I am most grateful to Mr. Kevin Woodruff for giving us such a thorough tour.

I also recently heard from my high school librarian, Kim Donius, and I was delighted to reconnect.  It was this encounter that made me realize that I needed to go back and examine just who helped shape my library career be it school librarians, public librarians or my professors and thank them.  This belated thanks would also help me network with professionals I had lost touch with.  By reconnecting I now better understand just how I came to be who I am within the field.

Naomi House

Naomi House, MLIS, is the founder and publisher of the popular LIS jobs resource INALJ.com (formerly I Need a Library Job). Founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard, INALJ’s social media presence has grown to include Facebook (retired in 2016), Twitter and a LinkedIn group, in addition to the interviews, articles and jobs found on INALJ.com. INALJ has had over 20 Million page views and helped thousands of librarians and LIS folk find employment! Through grassroots marketing, word of mouth and a real focus on exploring unconventional resources for job leads, INALJ grew from a subscription base of 20 friends to a website with over 500,000 visits in a month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this many new jobs published daily. She was a 2013 Library Journal Mover & Shaker and has served on the University of Maryland iSchool Board from 2014-2017. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and now lives part time in Western NY and Budapest, Hungary. She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay.