I’m proud to be a third-generation librarian, carrying on a family tradition of sharing books and connecting people to information. I was born in Stillwater, Oklahoma, and raised in Kansas City. I graduated from Vassar College with a BA in history and women’s studies and from the University of Iowa with master’s degrees in history and library science. While in graduate school I primarily studied and taught African American and women’s history. I worked in Washington, D.C., as a librarian and archivist at ProQuest, the American Folklife Center at the Library of Congress (Civil Rights History Project), the office of U.S. Senator Barbara Mikulski (D-MD), and at the Arizona Historical Society in Tucson. I am now a Project Archivist at the Arizona State Museum at the University of Arizona, working on the Doris Duke Native Oral History Revitalization Project until the end of 2022.
In 2011, I was invited by my coworker at the Library of Congress, Peter Bartis, to an estate sale of a librarian named Ruth Rappaport, another longtime LC employee who had retired in 1993. Intrigued by the stories that Ruth (and her friends and coworkers) told about her incredible life, I set out on my own adventure to uncover how this woman healed herself with books in times of trauma and renewed her life through librarianship.