Joe Noel …Success Story

This interview is over 1 year old and may no longer be up to date or reflect the interviewee/interviewees’ positions

My interview with success story, Joe

Naomi: How did you find your current job?
Joe: I found my current job listed on the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL) website. Most jobs for law librarians end up there sooner or later, but a few fall between the cracks, so I also regularly checked my school’s job board, a number of random job sites and listservs, and of course INALJ.

Naomi: Favorite library you have been to?
Joe: It’s hard to pick just one because I have never been to one I didn’t like. If I was pressed I guess I’d have to go with the Pritzker Legal Research Center at the Northwestern University School of Law. You just can’t beat the view of Lake Michigan and the beautiful environment in the middle of all the chaos downtown Chicago.

Naomi: Favorite book?
Joe: I can’t pick just one so I’ll narrow it down to two: Michel de Montaigne’s Essays and Marcus Aurelius’s Meditations. My reading skews toward non-fiction, which I suppose isn’t that surprising since I’m a law librarian.

Naomi: Favorite thing about libraries/ library technology?
Joe: I love that libraries open the world to people. As for library technologies, I don’t think the spaces themselves can be replaced, but anything that provides more and easier access to our great resources makes me happy as well.

Naomi: Any websites or feeds or blogs we should be following?
Joe: If you’re a law librarian, you should definitely be following King & Spalding librarian Greg Lambert on Twitter (@glambert) and the Three Geeks and a Law blog ( I also follow AALL on Twitter (@AALLNET), because they do a pretty good job re-tweeting other interesting tidbits and sending out job listings as they are posted.

Naomi: Best piece of job hunting advice?
Joe: I certainly don’t consider myself an expert, and am actually inclined to think that much of it has to do with timing and circumstances – two things you just can’t control. But the one piece of advice I would suggest is simply to put yourself out there and talk to people who do the type of job you might be interested in. As librarians, we might all be a bit shy at times, but we are also some of the most helpful people around. If you reach out to people you will likely be pleasantly surprised how helpful they will be.

Two weeks from now I start my first full-time professional job as a reference librarian at the Tarlton Law Library at The University of Texas School of Law. I will also receive my MLIS next month from the University of Illinois LEEP online program. I hold a BS in Economics from the University of Evansville and a JD from the University of Michigan Law School. I worked for one year doing economic development as an Americorps VISTA after college, and for almost five years as a corporate lawyer at Skadden, Arps in Chicago following law school. While in library school I interned and worked as an evening reference associate at two law school libraries. Outside of the library I spend a lot of time biking, reading, watching sports – mostly mixed martial arts and basketball, watching documentaries, and traveling.


Republished from 9/2/12 and formerly titled Joe Noel …In Six

Naomi House

Naomi House, MLIS, is the founder and publisher of the popular webzine and jobs list (formerly I Need a Library Job) and former CMO (Chief Marketing Officer) of, a crowdfunding platform focused on African patrimony, heritage and cultural projects. INALJ was founded in October 2010 with the assistance of her fellow Rutgers classmate, Elizabeth Leonard. Its 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. INALJ has had over 20.5 Million page hits and helped many, many thousands of librarians 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 one month. Naomi believes that well-sourced quantity is quality in this narrow job market and INALJ reflects this with many new jobs published daily. She has also written for the 2011, 2012 and 2013 LexisNexis Government Info Pro and many other publications in the past decade. She presents whenever she can, including serving on three panels at the American Library Association's Annual Conference in Las Vegas; as breakout presenter at OCLC EMEA in Cape Town, South Africa; as a keynote speaker at the Virginia Library Association annual meeting; at the National Press Club in Washington DC; McGill University in Montreal, Canada; the University of the Emirates, Dubai, MLIS program and the University of Hawaii at Manoa. Naomi was a Reference, Marketing and Acquisitions Librarian for a contractor at a federal library outside Washington, DC, and has been living and working in Budapest, Hungary and Western New York State. She spent years running her husband’s moving labor website, fixed and sold old houses and assisted her husband cooking delicious Pakistani food. She is preparing to re-enter the workforce and is job hunting. Her husband is now the co-editor of INALJ, a true support!  She has heard of spare time but hasn’t encountered it lately. She pronounces INALJ as eye-na-elle-jay.