Current IRDW Diversity Scholars

2013–2015 Diversity Scholars

Image: Joanna ChenJoanna Chen
Photo by Faith West

Joanna Chen 
University of California, Los Angeles

Joanna Chen is pursuing her MLIS at the University of California, Los Angeles. She is a proud alumna of the University of California, Berkeley, where she earned high honors in her BA in history. As the content design researcher for archive, exhibits, and historical curatorship the Los Angeles Museum of the Holocaust, Joanna was inspired to further explore a career in information science through her work in researching for exhibitions and processing archival collections brought in by Holocaust survivors and their families. In addition to being an ARL IRDW Scholar, she is also an ALA Spectrum Scholar. She is interested in archives, special collections librarianship, typography, paper conservation, and increasing diversity in the information field

2011-13-diversity-scholar-amber-dambrosios600x600James Cheng
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James Cheng
University of Texas at Austin

James Cheng is pursuing an MS in information studies at the University of Texas at Austin. He previously studied neuroscience at Colorado College, where he worked for the college’s Tutt Library and Office of the Dean. His interests include science and mental health librarianship, information architecture, and informatics.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-carlos-duartes600x600Andrea Devlin
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Andrea Devlin
Simmons College

Andrea Devlin is in her first year of the GSLIS program at Simmons College in Boston, Massachusetts. She holds a BA in history and political science from Whitworth College, an MPP with a focus on environment and energy from the Kennedy School of Government at Harvard University, and an MA and CAGS from Rhode Island College in school psychology. In addition to being an IRDW Diversity Scholar, Andrea is also an ALA Spectrum Scholar. Her interests include digital recordkeeping and data management (particularly in the area of Native American tribal records), archives and records preservation, systems analysis, and library outreach.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-jennifer-garretts600x600Rhonda Evans
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Rhonda Evans
Pratt Institute

Rhonda Evans is currently earning her MLIS at Pratt Institute. Rhonda graduated with honors from New York University with a degree in media, culture, and communication. She earned an MFA from Columbia University, and a law degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill, where she was an editor of the North Carolina Journal of Law and Technology. She was also the Nathan R. Sobel Fellow at the Brooklyn Supreme Court Law Library. Her interests include open access to legal research materials and legal research in foreign and international affairs.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-jennifer-gibsons600x600Pia Hunter
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Pia Hunter
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Pia Hunter is pursuing a MSLIS at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She is currently the head of reserve, media, and microforms at the University of Illinois at Chicago’s (UIC) Richard J. Daley Library, where she successfully led the development, implementation, and improvement of UIC Library reserve and media services. An advocate of fair use and intellectual freedom, she provides copyright information for UIC faculty and students. Pia’s research interests are fair use for instruction and open access in academic libraries.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-jennifer-gibsons600x600Rhonda Jones
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Rhonda Jones
University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill

Rhonda Jones is an assistant professor and director of public history at North Carolina Central University. Specializing in 20th-century United States history, the civil rights movement, and African American philanthropy, she is currently pursing an MLS, concentrating on archives and records management at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. She earned an MA in public history and a PhD in US history from Howard University.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-jennifer-gibsons600x600Melissa Kahili
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Melissa Kahili
University of Washington

Melissa Kahili is a second-year graduate student at the University of Washington Information School and a supervisor at the University of Hawaii at Manoa’s Sinclair Library for an academic support program known as the Student Success Center. At the Student Success Center, Melissa works closely with students, faculty, and librarians towards the common goal of helping students succeed academically. Her research interests are in digital and information literacy as well as finding new and innovative ways to market and integrate academic library resources and services within the university community.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-don-jasons600x600Rebecca Nieto
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Rebecca Nieto
McGill University

Rebecca Nieto is pursuing her MLIS with an archival studies stream at McGill University in Montreal. Originally from Albuquerque, New Mexico, she earned her BA with honors in English from Oberlin College, where she was an Oberlin College Research Fellow and library assistant at Mudd and Clarence Ward Art Libraries, and has since worked as a library assistant at Albuquerque Academy. She is interested in accessibility in different race-, socioeconomic-, and ability-based communities, and is eager to learn about archival processes for physical information like the manuscript or art object, and digitization technologies that curate and house these unique collections.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-nabil-kashyaps600x600Paula Pascual
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Paula Pascual
University of Michigan

Paula Pascual is a first-year graduate student at the University of Michigan School of Information. She received her undergraduate degree from Scripps College in Claremont, California, with a dual major in English and humanities. Both before and after college, she was an assistant in academic libraries at Scripps, Loyola Marymount University, and the University of California, Irvine. She has worked primarily in acquisitions, and over the last few years has focused on electronic resources. Paula would like to specialize in evaluating and improving student use of electronic and digital resources in academic libraries, including instructional technology and the use of metadata to facilitate discovery.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-arthur-lius600x600Conrad Pegues
Photo by Faith West

Conrad Pegues
Kent State University

Conrad Pegues is a graduate from the University of Memphis with both a MA and BA in English. He is currently working at Miami University’s King Library in the circulation department. He has worked at the University of Memphis Music Library and the Memphis Public Library. He is a contributing author to several anthologies encompassing cultural criticism, sexuality, gender, and race. He is currently enrolled at Kent State University where he is pursuing the MLIS degree.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-yumi-ohiras600x600Sarah Pham
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Sarah Pham
University of California, Los Angeles

Sarah Pham holds a BA in psychology, with a double minor in film, television, and digital media and LGBT studies from the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA). Sarah is pursuing an MLIS at UCLA, where she was awarded the James Sherman Williams Fellowship. Currently, Sarah works for the UCLA Film & Television Archive as a public outreach assistant. She will also be working as a college academic mentor this upcoming school year, where she continues to enjoy helping and counseling students. Sarah is highly interested in art librarianship, moving image preservation, and outreach.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-megan-threatss600x600Saira Raza
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Saira Raza 
University of North Texas

Saira Raza is pursuing her MSLS at University of North Texas. She holds a BA in international studies from Wells College and an MPS in Africana studies from Cornell University. In addition to being an ARL Diversity Scholar, she is also an ALA Spectrum Scholar (2012) and received the AALL George A. Strait Minority Scholarship (2013) and John R. Johnson Scholarship (2013). Currently, she is a library research specialist at King & Spalding LLP. She also is working with artist Amos Kennedy Jr. to create a library as part of his recently established printmaking studio in Detroit.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-sarah-e--velasquezs600x600Joel Sanders
Photo by Faith West

Joel Sanders
University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign

Joel Sanders is currently the head of the Circulation and Stacks Department at the Library of the Health Sciences at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). He also works for DePaul University as a part-time Circulation supervisor. He earned a BA in architecture from Southern University in Baton Rouge, Louisiana. He is now pursuing an MLIS at the Graduate School of Library and Information Science in Urbana-Champaign. Joel has a keen interest in library buildings and design and would like to combine his knowledge of architecture and the operational side of libraries to develop expertise in project management and collection development. In addition to communication of research information in architecture, Joel’s interests include issues related to outreach programs and resources that enhance knowledge and encourage understanding of diversity in libraries.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-kimberly-yangs600x600Nelson Santana
Photo by Faith West

Nelson Santana
Drexel University

Nelson Santana is a first-year student in Drexel University’s iSchool College of Information Science and Technology, pursing an MSLIS with a concentration in archival studies. Born in the Dominican Republic, Nelson is a first-generation college student. He holds a BA in English literature from Baruch College (CUNY) and most recently completed an MA in the study of the Americas from the Center for Worker Education, the City College of New York’s (CCNY) Division of Interdisciplinary Studies. Nelson works as assistant archivist/assistant librarian at the CUNY Dominican Studies Institute.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-kimberly-yangs600x600Madeline Sheldon
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Madeline Sheldon
University of Michigan

Madeline Sheldon, originally from Dallas, Texas, graduated from Southern Methodist University with a BA in English literature in 2010. In 2013, the American Library Association awarded her with the ALA Spectrum Scholarship, and the Library of Congress selected Madeline to participate in a prestigious internship opportunity, under the Office of Strategic Initiatives, where she researched digital preservation policy planning within cultural heritage organizations. She is currently pursing a master’s degree at the University of Michigan School of Information, and also holds officer positions with the student ALA and SLA chapters at her university. Her professional interests include digital preservation, digitization, and multi-cultural outreach.

2012–2014 Diversity Scholars

Image: Lisa HardmanChristina Chan-Park
Photo by Molly Magee

Christina Chan-Park
University of North Texas

Christina Chan-Park is currently the science librarian at Baylor University. She previously held teaching and administrative positions at the University of Houston. She received her PhD in geophysics from the University of British Columbia, an MA in public administration from the University of Houston, an MS in geophysics from Stanford University, and AB in Geology from Princeton University. Dr. Chan-Park is currently working on an MS in information science from the University of North Texas and plans to earn a graduate academic certificate in data curation. More than anything else she enjoys seeing other people succeed and helping them achieve their goals.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-amber-dambrosios600x600Sabrina Dyck
Photo by Molly Magee

Sabrina Dyck
University of Alabama

Sabrina Dyck is a first generation college student from Ozark, Alabama. She earned a BA in history and an MEd in secondary education from the University of Montevallo. She was a Gates Millennium Scholar and the 2011 ACRL Spectrum Scholar. Currently, she is pursuing a master’s degree in library and information studies at the University of Alabama, while working as a graduate research assistant and teaching history in southeast Alabama. She aspires to work in an academic or research library as a user instruction librarian. In addition to instruction, Sabrina’s interests include issues related to diversity in libraries, information technology, and outreach.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-carlos-duartes600x600Lisa Hardman
Photo by Molly Magee

Lisa Hardman
University of Michigan

Lisa Hardman is a second year graduate student at the University of Michigan School of Information, where she is studying information policy. Originally from Detroit, MI, she holds a bachelor of science in information assurance from Eastern Michigan University. She has previously worked on the HathiTrust OrphanWorks project, and currently works for the University of Michigan Law Library in Acquisitions. She has done research for the American Library Association on the e-book policies of the Big Six publishers, and has interests in privacy, security, and intellectual property concerns in digital information learning environments.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-jennifer-garretts600x600Mario Macías
Photo by Molly Magee

Mario Macías
University of Washington

Mario Macías is pursuing a master’s program at the Information School of the University of Washington. He graduated from Grinnell College as a Posse Foundation Scholar from Los Angeles. At Grinnell, he served as the library manager for the Stonewall Resource Center on campus and served as the editor of The Grinnell Review.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-jennifer-gibsons600x600Ebony Magnus
Photo by Molly Magee

Ebony Magnus
University of British Columbia

Ebony Magnus is pursuing her MLIS at the School of Library, Archival, and Information Studies (SLAIS) at the University of British Columbia in Vancouver, Canada. She has a BA in English literature and language from the University of Victoria, and an MA in English literature from Carleton University with a focus on Caribbean-Canadian Literature. During the upcoming academic year, she will be working as a student librarian at the Humanities and Social Sciences Library at UBC where she looks forward to further exploring the instructional role of the librarian. Ebony is particularly interested in faculty-librarian collaboration and enhancing user experience.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-don-jasons600x600Christian Minter
Photo by Molly Magee

Christian Minter
Catholic University of America

Christian Minter holds a BA in biblical studies from Washington Bible College. She is pursuing a master's degree at the Catholic University of America's School of Library and Information Science. In addition to being an ARL Diversity Scholar, she is also an ALA Spectrum Scholar. Christian currently works as a library associate for the Prince George's County Memorial Library System in Maryland. In spring 2012, she completed an internship with the Health Sciences and Human Services Library at the University of Maryland, Baltimore. Her professional interests include health sciences librarianship, instruction, outreach, disaster preparedness, and consumer health information.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-nabil-kashyaps600x600Thomas Padilla
Photo by Molly Magee

Thomas Padilla
University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign

Thomas Padilla holds a BA in history and an MA in world history from San Francisco State University. Currently, Thomas is pursuing a master’s degree in library and information science at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign (UIUC) with a specialization in data curation. In addition to his coursework Thomas works at the Center for Informatics Research in Science and Scholarship. Prior to beginning studies at UIUC, Thomas worked at the Library of Congress where he helped launch and grow the Digital Preservation Outreach and Education program. Thomas is deeply interested in digital preservation, data curation, and advancing the interdisciplinary potential of data.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-arthur-lius600x600Na Qin
Photo by Molly Magee

Na Qin
Indiana University

Na Qin is a graduate student in the School of Library and Information Science (SLIS) at Indiana University in Bloomington, specializing in chemical information. She is currently working at HPER library as a library assistant and a research assistant in the Association of the Practical and Professional Ethics (APPE) as well. She holds a BS of chemical engineering from Dalian University of Technology in China and an MS in paper and chemical engineering from Miami University. Prior to library school, she used to work at Blommer Library of Georgetown University where she was inspired to pursue a professional career in academic libraries with interests in chemical informatics, engineering and science librarianship.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-yumi-ohiras600x600Eva Rios-Alvarado
Photo by Molly Magee

Eva Rios-Alvarado
Simmons College

Eva Rios-Alvarado, an information professional from Los Angeles, California, is at Simmons College in Boston, Massachusetts at the GSLIS program. She has a BA in geography, and a minor in political science from California State University, Los Angeles. Her active professional memberships prior to moving to Boston included: REFORMA- Los Angeles Chapter, and MALCS- Cal State LA Chapter. Eva’s community activism, home-based in Los Angeles, prompted her to explore interests at the public library sector. There, she developed passions that will lead her to librarianship abroad or in the United States. She aspires to work in an academic or research library. Her interests include: De-colonial/Feminist/Urban Geography, Xicanisma, sustainable planning, and library and information science.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-megan-threatss600x600Bredny Rodgriguez
Photo by Molly Magee

Bredny Rodriguez 
University at Buffalo

Bredny Rodriguez is a first-generation college student from New York City. He is a graduate student at the University at Buffalo, The State University of New York’s Department of Library and Information Studies where he was awarded an Arthur A. Schomburg Fellowship. He holds a BA in Spanish language and literature from the College at Buffalo, The State University of New York. Bredny works as a student coordinator in the University at Buffalo’s Health Sciences Library and has worked in both public and academic libraries since the age of 15. He is interested in library administration and outreach.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-sarah-e--velasquezs600x600Camille Salas
Photo by Molly Magee

Camille Salas
University of Maryland

An MLS student at the University of Maryland's iSchool focusing on Information and Diverse Populations, Camille Salas will graduate in May 2013. She is originally from El Paso, Texas, and holds a B.A. from Smith College and a masters in public affairs from the University of Wisconsin at Madison. She has worked as a paralegal for the federal government, as a business analyst, and as a rapporteur for a series of debates co-hosted by the World Bank and USAID on emerging issues in HIV/AIDS prevention. Currently, she is an intern with the Office of Strategic Initiatives at the Library of Congress.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-kimberly-yangs600x600Amber Saundry
Photo by Molly Magee

Amber Saundry
University of British Columbia

Amber Saundry holds a B.Sc. from Simon Fraser University, where she studied ecology & evolution, and is pursuing her master’s in library and information studies at the University of British Columbia (UBC). Her future career interests are in academic and research collections, and she hopes to apply her background to the scientific research community. Building on her experience as collections and database managers at the UBC Herbarium in the Beaty Biodiversity Museum, she hopes to gain further knowledge and skills to contribute in the preservation and accessibility of digital collections and data management.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-kimberly-yangs600x600Curtis Small
Photo by Molly Magee

Curtis Small
Simmons College

Curtis Small is in the LIS program at Simmons College GSLIS West in South Hadley Massachusetts. He plans to work as an academic reference and instruction librarian, with an additional interest in international librarianship focusing on the African Diaspora. Most recently Curtis has been a digital collections intern at Mount Holyoke College in South Hadley. Before starting library school Curtis completed a Ph.D. in French at New York University, and taught French language and francophone Caribbean and African literatures at the college level.

2011-13-diversity-scholar-kimberly-yangs600x600Peace Williamson
Photo by Molly Magee

Peace Williamson
Texas Woman's University

Peace Williamson is a Dallas resident originally from Oklahoma. She is obtaining a master of library science degree and a master of science degree in health studies in Texas Woman’s University’s dual degree program. She is currently a member of the Medical Library Association (MLA) and American Library Association (ALA). She serves as secretary and treasurer of the Graduate Library and Information Studies Association (GLISA) and is a member of the Governmental Relations Committee for the South Central Chapter of MLA. Peace works as an interlibrary loan library associate for the Baylor Health Sciences Library and is interested in health sciences librarianship and e-resource management.



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