Meet the Candidates

Newsletter Issue: 
Volume 37, Number 1. March 2017

Meet the Candidates

Marcia Barrett


It’s OLAC election season and this year we will be electing a new Vice President/President-Elect and a new Treasurer/Membership Coordinator. Both terms will begin at the end of the 2017 ALA Annual Conference.

The Vice President/President-Elect serves one year before moving into a one-year term as President, then a one-year term as Past-President. As outlined in the OLAC Handbook, the expectation for these positions are:

  • The President, in addition to regular duties, acts as presiding officer of the association, acts as representative of the organization with the Library of Congress, bibliographic utilities, and other organizations.
  • The Vice President/President-Elect substitutes as the presiding officer when necessary and acts as the program coordinator.
  • The Immediate Past President attends the Executive Board meetings to counsel and inform; chairs the Nancy B. Olson Awards Committee.

The Treasurer/Membership Coordinator serves a two-year term. The Treasurer has overall responsibility for the financial concerns of OLAC. Annually, the treasurer reviews the OLAC budget and assesses the financial health of the organization. Written financial statements are presented at the OLAC Executive Board meetings. Quarterly statements are published in the OLAC Newsletter. The Treasurer also routinely handles inquiries including: general information on OLAC, membership rates, and invoices.

All current personal members of OLAC are eligible to vote. An electronic ballot will be delivered to the last email address you provided to the OLAC Treasurer. The election will be held in April 2017. If you require a paper ballot for any reason, you must contact the Elections Committee Chair by April 1, 2017 to make the request. Paper ballots must be postmarked no later than April 30, 2017.



Candidates for Vice President/President Elect


Mary Huismann

Music Catalog Librarian

St. Olaf College


I am currently the Music Catalog Librarian at St. Olaf College, where I am responsible for cataloging music and special collections materials in all formats. Prior to my time at St. Olaf College, I served for sixteen years as Music Original Cataloger at the University of Minnesota. In that position I also cataloged moving image materials, other media materials, and monographs for the general University collections. Over the years I have accumulated a wide variety of experiences—acquisitions and serials work as a

Library Assistant, stints as a cataloging team coordinator and supervisor, managing projects, and of course, cataloging. The constant throughout my career, though, has been my fascination and work with AV and non-print materials.


I, like many others, began my involvement with OLAC by attending OLAC conferences and membership meetings. I’ve had the opportunity to expand my service on several conference planning committees and as a presenter (both at OLAC conferences and on behalf of OLAC for the 2015 ALA ALCTS preconference). Most recently I have served as a CAPC member and CAPC chair (2013-2016). As CAPC chair I was able to incorporate some new administrative strategies to define and track the work of our task forces. While a member of the Executive Board I experienced firsthand how just how hard our officers and appointed representatives work on behalf of OLAC.


As a longtime OLAC member, I believe my experience and leadership skills would provide the necessary foundation for the Vice President/President Elect position. In these ever-changing times, OLAC needs to be prepared to quickly adapt—not just to the latest standards and formats, but also to new ways of delivering documentation, instruction and training. The current work on the new conference model is one step in that direction. The investigation of the synergies to be gained with collaboration with organizations such as the Music OCLC Users Group is another example of how OLAC can capitalize on its reputation for documentation while expanding our reach to the larger library community. It would be a privilege to give back to OLAC a small portion of what OLAC has given to me—thank you for your consideration of my candidacy!



Kate Leigh

Head of Cataloging and Metadata Services

Ball State University


My first interaction with OLAC was at the 2004 conference in Montreal. I instantly felt at home, and knew that I wanted to be an active member in the organization. Since then, I have served in several capacities:


  • Poster Presenter (with Sandy Roe), "Integrating 150 Years of Research@ISU with OpenURLs," at the 11th OLAC Biennial Conference, Montreal, Quebec, Canada, October 2004
  • Program Committee for the 12th OLAC Biennial Conference in Mesa, Arizona, October 2006
  • Poster session proposal reviewer for the 12th OLAC Biennial Conference in Mesa, Arizona, October 2006
  • Conference reporter for "Gathering Audio Metadata for the Monterey Jazz Festival," a workshop held at the 12th OLAC Biennial Conference in Mesa, Arizona, October 2006
  • Awards Committee, 2006-2007
  • Treasurer, 2007-2009
  • Newsletter Editor, 2010-2011


I believe having served in these areas will help me if I am elected OLAC president.


I am currently the Head of Cataloging and Metadata Services at Ball State University in Muncie,

Indiana. Prior to my current position, I was the Special Formats Cataloger/Metadata Librarian at Illinois

State University for over 6 years. I have cataloged many formats, including: video recordings, electronic resources, maps, and theses and dissertations. I received my MLIS from the University of WisconsinMilwaukee in 2001 and an MS in Political Science from Illinois State University in 2005. I have published articles and book chapters on a variety of subjects in library science and political science. I have also been an instructor for the ALCTS Fundamentals of Cataloging online course since 2015.

OLAC is a very active organization, which provides crucial leadership in the cataloging world. None of this would be possible without volunteers who give of their time and expertise. OLAC faces challenges, such as trying to increase memberships, but its commitment to the cataloging community remains strong. I want to be part of the OLAC's tradition of service and to continue to move the organization forward in the 21st century.



Candidates for Treasurer/Membership Coordinator


Cyrus Ford

Special Formats Catalog Librarian

University of Nevada, Las Vegas


I am the Special Formats Catalog Librarian at UNLV, University of Nevada, Las Vegas Libraries and have worked in cataloging, media, and technical services since 2003. I perform original, descriptive, and subject cataloging for all special formats materials. As lead special formats cataloger in the Department, I provide training and mentoring to junior catalogers and provide assistance in resolving difficult special formats cataloging or cataloging workflow problems. As lead special formats librarian, I assume leadership role and work with the Collections, Acquisitions, and Discovery (CAD) Division staff in establishing the policies and procedures that ensure effective and efficient workflows that encourage timely discovery, access, and use of resources in support of the Libraries Mission and Strategic Plan. I am responsible for the Department authority control cleanup projects and assist other catalogers as needed with original cataloging of non-special format items, i.e., serials, print or electronic, and foreign language materials. I received a B.A. in Spanish language and literature, a B.A. in Film, and an M.L.I.S from Texas Woman’s University in 2003.


I am interested in serving as the treasurer and contribute to OLAC's success. OLAC is an organization that assists catalogers in their profession and I am excited to step forward as a candidate for this position and look forward to fulfill the role of OLAC treasurer.


I have been a member of various OLAC committees and subcommittees including: Cataloging Policy

Committee, 2009-2013; Intern, Cataloging Policy Committee, 2008-09; Web Administrative Assistant, 2011-2014; Web Steering Committee, 2014-present; Subcommittee for the Maintenance of CAPC Resources, 2012-2016.


I have also served as a member in ALA Video Round Table (VRT) Program Committee for the ALA Annual

Conference in San Francisco, 2014-2015; Nevada Library Association (NLA), Collections, Automation, Preservation, Technical Services and Acquisitions in Nevada (CAPTAIN) interest group, 2009, chair, 2010present; and Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), ACRL Guidelines for Media Resources in Academic Libraries Committee, 2010-2012.




Neil Robinson

Cataloging Librarian

University of Michigan


I have been a catalog librarian since 2001. I spent my first year in the profession cataloging videorecordings for Follett Audiovisual Resources and have been at the University of Michigan since 2002. I catalog tangible resources in all formats except music, with special focus on video games, sound recordings, artists’ books, and comic books. I am also Technical Services liaison to the Art, Architecture, and Engineering Library and serve as the subject specialist for Scandinavian Studies.


I have been a member of OLAC since 2014, when I began work on the Video Game Best Practices Task Force, and I currently serve on the Working Group for Genre Headings for Video Games. I have regularly attended OLAC and CAPC meetings, and I would welcome this opportunity to become more involved in the organization.


Debra Spidal

Cataloging Librarian

Washington State University


I have been a librarian since 1997. My first professional position was as Electronic Resources Librarian. I then moved on to a Cataloging position and became responsible for cataloging in all formats. OLAC was always my go to place for nonprint formats and I eagerly looked forward to receiving the OLAC Newsletter in my mailbox. This continues in my current position as Cataloging Librarian at Washington State University where I am a resource person for staff catalogers and perform original cataloging in all formats.


Prior to becoming a librarian, I served in the United States Army for nine years on active duty and several years in the Army National Guard and the Army Reserves. I also worked in Accounting at a wholesale pharmaceutical company. I was responsible for approximately $15 million in accounts receivable and assisted in credit management for the firm. I find accounting and cataloging to require a similar attention to detail. To this day, I still enjoy balancing my own accounts to the penny every month.


As a member of ALA ALCTS I have served on the Continuing Education Committee, on the Publications

Committee, and am currently serving as chair of the ALCTS Continuing Resources Section First Step

Award Jury. Previously I have served twice as the secretary of the Pacific Northwest chapter of the American Society for Indexing. As secretary, I was responsible for maintaining the chapter membership files and coordinating communications with our national offices, our chapter board, and our members. At Washington State University, I currently represent my library on the faculty senate.


I have been a member of OLAC for many years although I did not attend a conference until 2014. I learned so much that I was able to implement immediately. While I appreciate cataloging theory and research, the hands-on aspect of OLAC is very important. I have been eagerly anticipating the next OLAC Conference and am already planning to attend.


If elected to serve as your treasurer/membership coordinator, I bring my ability to work collaboratively and cooperatively within a team environment. I have a track record at my institution for planning, implementing, and bringing both short and long term projects to completion. I believe my previous work and my volunteer experience are a good match for this position. I would welcome the opportunity to serve OLAC in this capacity. Thank you for considering my candidacy.