Institution: Virginia Tech
Born and Lived: I was born in Pennsylvania, but was transplanted to Virginia at a young age. Since then I’ve been to college in Williamsburg, VA; gradschool in Winston-Salem, VA, and Boston, MA; and lately I’ve been living and working in the beautiful New River Valley, Virginia.
Professional Career and Activities: I’ve worked in libraries since my first job as a Conservation/Preservation Assistant in Swem Library at the College of William and Mary in 1999. Most recently I was an Electronic Resources Management Specialist at Virginia Tech, and upon completing my MLIS, became a Data Science and Informatics Librarian. I spend quite a bit of time trying to develop a sustainable data literacy program, thinking about common ground between data curation and data science, and consulting with faculty on informatics projects.
Family: I’m married to a high school teacher; we currently spend alot of time chasing after our two cats and a dog.
In My Spare Time: I haven’t had much spare time for the past few years while I’ve been in graduate school, but on those rare weekends I like to spend time working on my artisan blacksmithing skills in a local forge, quilting, and hiking.
Goals I Hope to Achieve Five Years from Now: In five years I hope to be five years older, still enjoying my job and finding something fun to do every day!
How/Where Do I See the Industry in Five Years: I love this question because it really challenges me to think of the library and information profession as an industry. The service models that libraries and information vendors have developed together over the past 10 years have certainly been challenged by the development of new open source tools, by the changing roles of libraries in their communities and by the shift in focus that came along with a networked world naturally saturated in information. Personally, I have felt this change in worldview; where once we spoke of ourselves and our industry as providers of a service, now we speak of ourselves as potential partners and collaborators in knowledge generation, research and learning inside our communities. I hope that in five years we will have cultivated as many of these partnerships as we can handle, have generated new and interesting ideas, and be talking about the next five years after that!
Tom Gilson. Test Bio