Corey D. Williams
Lobbyist and Associate Director, Office of Government Relations
American Library Association
1615 New Hampshire Avenue, NW, Washington, DC 20009
Phone: (202) 628-8410 • Fax: (202) 628-8419
Born and Lived: A native Iowan, I moved to the Baltimore/Washington DC metro area seven years ago.
Early Life: I appreciate the perspective growing up in a small town in southern Iowa gave me. In my current work, I can relate to the unique challenges for those in rural America, in particular, in ensuring equitable access to information (e.g., sufficient broadband connections at the local library to meet patrons’ needs).
Professional Career and Activities: After earning a Master’s degree in Library & Information Science from the University of Iowa, I worked in e-commerce knowledge management, was an academic librarian and served as Assistant to the President at the University of Maryland Baltimore County (UMBC). I now lobby on behalf of the American Library Association on federal legislation and policy issues. I also teach a graduate course, Issues in Managing Legal Information, at the University of Maryland’s College of Information.
In My Spare Time: I’m an avid reader (of course), I enjoy running (mostly) and have a couple half-marathons under my belt and a couple more planned, and have recently gotten into road biking. I’m also a big fan of Big 10 football, more specifically the Iowa Hawkeyes!
Favorite Books: If I had to only pick one, my all-time favorite novel is The Fountainhead by Ayn Rand, which I first read at the age of 15. A more recent read to be added to my “favorite books” list is The Last Campaign: Robert F. Kennedy and 82 Days that Inspired America by Thurston Clarke. I find myself recommending it often.
Pet Peeves: My biggest pet peeve in today’s vernacular is the overuse of the word “like.” I think it has become a verbal tick for some.
Philosophy: That which is worth doing is worth doing well.
Most Memorable Career Achievement: I am proud of the article I co-authored with Jean Donham, a colleague and mentor, published in the Journal of Academic Librarianship titled “Perspectives on Developing a Culture of Collaboration: Librarian as Consultant.” Another more recent memorable moment was the first time I was quoted, in print, in The New York Times. There’s still something about seeing it in print that is still pretty cool in this electronic age.
How/Where Do I See the Industry in Five Years: Libraries have been around for hundreds of years and have evolved and adapted to the times. I envision a future where all types of libraries — public, academic, school, etc. — remain as anchors in their communities and continue to provide access to all types of information, evolving to the needs of the public.