Meet Your Officers: Brianna Hoffman, Vice President

Hello fellow Library School-ers! My name is Brianna Hoffman, and I’m your SCALA Vice President. In place of a traditional bio, here’s a list of random facts that will help you get to know me a little better and somehow tie together the last 30 years of my life:

  • • I was born, raised, and currently reside in the Tri-Cities, Washington
  • • My favorite Christmas gift as a child was the Subscription to National Geographic stuffed into my stocking every year
  • • My overactive imagination produced an imaginary friend and countless written stories when I was little
  • • I graduated from Washington State University with a Bachelors in English (English Literature) and a Minor in Anthropology
  • • I love, love, love college football
  • • I met my husband at WSU – he’s from the West Side of Washington, but I somehow convinced him to move to the East Side
  • • We have two children: Riley, almost 6, and Morgan, 2
  • • My children are hilarious… I’ve got some great stories… Just ask!
  • • I work as a Library Page at Richland Public Library
  • • I love my job, and the people I work with are amazing
  • • Libraries are my sanctuaries
  • • I absolutely love Twitter – follow me: @Librarian_Bree
  • • I will read just about anything, but it’s mostly YA these days
  • • I’m a wealth of thoroughly useless pop culture information: music, movies, celebrity gossip, bad reality TV… you name it
  • • The Discovery Channel, The History Channel and The Learning Channel are most often on my TV (when it’s not SpongeBob)
  • • Although I’m mostly terrified to be here, I think I’m in love with Library School… Shhhh! don’t tell anyone!

I’m really excited to be a part of SCALA! Please don’t hesitate to ask me questions, or give me ideas or suggestions on how we can serve you better!

Meet Your Officers: Rachel Arkoosh, Co-President

My entry into the profession of librarianship was inevitable. I’m bibliophile who is passionate about education.  Also, as a child I used to catalog the villains on the 1950s Batman TV show, and then create cross-referencing lists.  That was probably a sign.

Before entering library land, I studied history, French, German, and theology. I bummed around Europe and lived in Japan for two years teaching English. I’ve also supported students with disabilities, and love that libraries are providing information access for all.

I am so excited for the upcoming year; I can hardly keep my big nerdy feet in my Birkenstocks.  Don’t hesitate to contact with feedback or ideas. SCALA is here to serve you.

Meet Your Officers: Kathy Street, Secretary

As a child and teen, libraries were a haven of friendly people, safety and books. They offered escape, adventure and a constant source of information. Years (actually decades) of library use later I accepted a job in my local library and realized the career opportunity that I had been missing all these years. Working at a library I could combine my previous experience in retail and customer service in an environment that I enjoyed and appreciated.

I completed my undergraduate degree at Eastern Oregon University in Liberal Studies with an Anthropology/Sociology minor. I am looking forward to the hybrid program that Emporia offers and getting to know the others in my program. My Home Economics course work from my earlier college days has prepared me for my current position as a Nutritional Education program assistant. For the last year I have been volunteering at the Arlington Public Library offering weekly storytimes for children.  I am passionate about helping parents learn the benefits reading has on early brain development.  I love to create with yarn, textiles and paper and am a 15 year 4-H volunteer leader. Working with youth has been a wonderful experience and I am looking forward to being a youth librarian.

Meeting fellow SLIM OR students and graduates has been great. No matter what cohort they belonged to all have the same high praise of the program. I am looking forward to working with SCALA and helping to provide our cohort with opportunities for fun and networking.

Meet Your Officers: Amanda Meeks, Co-President

“We read to know that we are not alone.” –C.S. Lewis.  Like many of you, I found myself in library school after realizing that I love books and life-long learning.  Everything I am passionate about (community, creativity, compassion, art, reading, helping others) are all integral elements to every library and archives.  That’s why I’m here.

I moved to Portland a little over a year ago from Chicago, IL because I have always wanted to live near the mountains and have more access to nature and outdoor activities.  My dog agrees that this was the best idea in the world and my cat is pretty ambivalent about the whole ordeal.  I went to Illinois State University for my BS in Art Education, spent a year in AmeriCorps teaching and mentoring in a Chicago public school, finished one year of a MFA program in Book and Paper Art at Columbia College Chicago before deciding it wasn’t for me, then spent another year teaching Art and decided I’d be happier as a librarian as much as I adored my students and the school I worked at.  I’ve worked in three libraries since my undergraduate years (currently at the UofO Portland Library and Learning Commons) and have loved every second of these three drastically different jobs.  In my free time, I sew, make books, craft, draw and read.  You can also find me out and about, sampling delicious Portland food, or riding my bicycle to and fro.

Meet your Officers: Amy Frazier, Events Coordinator

I spent much of my life moving around – Texas, Tennessee, Vermont, Mississippi, the UK – before coming to Portland to settle down for a while.  My professional background is rooted in media production and education. I worked for a couple of years as the workshop coordinator for a digital arts co-op in Memphis, I’ve run print traffic for film festivals, I’ve taught classes on video production for the general public, and I’ve crewed on more films than I can remember.  During my time working with new filmmakers, I came to realize that media literacy – understanding how media works and how it can be used to enlighten, to entertain, or to manipulate — is of paramount importance in a culture so saturated with video images.

With the encouragement of a close friend and recent Emporia MLS, I began to reconsider my preconceptions about what it means to be a librarian, and realized that it was a field that suited me well and which could encompass all the work I had already done, plus a lot of things that I still wanted to do. While I’m still looking for my ultimate professional focus, I have particular interests in special collections, open access issues, the many forms of literacy, and the intersection between librarianship and emerging technologies.

Meet your Officers: Paul Naxer, Web Presence & Social Networking Coordinator

I grew up in northeast Ohio and graduated from the University of Akron in 2007 with a degree in music history and literature. Being involved with all the music programs in high school made this seem like the prefect fit for me. I was rather burned out after my degree and decided to pursue information technology, one of my other personal interests. After studying and working in information technology for several years, I found it was not the correct field for me and spent some time thinking about what to do next. My wife Meghan suggested I study library science and I was rather surprised, but felt it suited my personality and preferences in work style well enough that I ought to give it a chance. I was relieved to find an ALA accredited program in Oregon and signed up with Emporia. I look forward to learning and growing into a person and library professional. My long-term idea is to continue studies in music history and work as a music librarian at an academic library.

Meet your Officers: Maggie Chamberlin, Treasurer

In an attempt to unify my personal and professional lives, I have chosen to study library and information management with, an emphasis in archives.  Since graduating from the Tacoma School of the Arts in Tacoma, WA in 2004, I have gone from prospective artist, to student who studies art and history, and now to student who (will hopefully someday) manage said art and artifacts.  Over the past seven years I have moved and studied and worked in order to get where I am today, and am looking forward to the years to come.

As an undergraduate at the University of Montana, I studied Visual Art, History, and Art History.  I began my career in libraries and archives at the Maureen and Mike Mansfield Library as a Circulation Assistant.  After graduating in 2010, I moved back to Washington with my boyfriend (soon to be husband this coming December!) and began working for Seattle Public Schools as a Library Assistant.  Due to budget cuts I lost this position last June, but have been happily volunteering at the National Archives in Seattle for the past 4 months (if you know of/or have a library job available send it my way! No joke.)  In my position as genealogical aid at the N.A.R.A I assist genealogical researchers, providing them with information about records and about genealogy search processes, and help them use equipment, and perform research projects.

I love the work I do at N.A.R.A!  Genealogy is one of my passions, and using my knowledge and experience to help others is very rewarding.  Aside from doing genealogy, I spend my free time with family (which includes my fiancé David, and our two cats Noah, and Olive).  Some of my favorite past times are bread baking, doing yoga, playing board games, listening to music (which has, since iTunes came into being, gotten completely out of control) drinking earl grey, and reading novels (when I can squeeze them in between text books).

I am so looking forward to working with SCALA this year, and hope to use this opportunity to connect with my cohorts and community.

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