Meet the Candidates for the MLA 2020 Election

We are pleased to announce the candidates for the MLA 2020 Board of Directors Election. MLA will hold elections for the Board of Directors April 6 - April 19.

One of the benefits of membership is the right to vote for the leaders that will help chart MLA's course into the future. MLA members will vote for the next President-elect and three member-at-large board members, who will serve three-year terms beginning July 1, 2020 and ending June 30, 2023.

President-elect

Kelly Richards

Library Director
Muskegon District Library


 

 

 

 

 

 

 


 

Member-at-Large

Amber Alexander

Library Director
Presque Isle District Library

Teri Belcher

Executive Secretary
Michigan Association for Media in Education - MAME

Tim Gleisner

Head of Special Collections
Library of Michigan

Loretta Hunter

LRC Coordinator
Wayne County Community College District

Jasmine Parker

Youth Services/Teen Librarian
Ferndale Area District Library

Kate Van Auken

Director
White Pine Library Cooperative

 

 


Kelly Richards

Kelly Richards
Library Director
Muskegon District Library

Kelly Richards joined the Muskegon Area District Library as the Director in 2014. Prior to his position at MADL, Richards worked 12 years at the Genesee District Library where he served as Assistant Executive Director and Branch Operations Manager overseeing 19 branches. Kelly worked 12 years for the Las Vegas Clark County Library District spending most of that time as a Branch Administrator.  He trained for a year at the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh and has been working in public libraries for almost 30 years. Prior to his work in libraries, he served as a police officer in the Flint area.

Richards holds a Master of Library and Information Science Degree from the University of Pittsburgh. He has also earned a Bachelor of Science - Criminal Justice Degree from Ferris State University. He received certificates for completing the Snowbird Library Institute, MLA Leadership Academy and the UCLA Anderson School of Business Executive Education program. He currently serves on the MLA Board. He has been a member of the MLA Legislative Committee since 2016 and served on the Professional Development and Networking Committee in 2011. In addition, he serves on the Lakeland Library Cooperative Board, and as President of the Lakeshore Ethnic Diversity Alliance Board, on the Diversity and Inclusion Committee of Muskegon Rotary, and the Literacy Committee Muskegon Rotary. He has served as a Trial Board Member for City of Flint Police Department, past member on the Michigan Notable Book Committee, ALA member and past Board member/Local Arraignments Chair of the BCALA.

Kelly is published in two books, In our own voices: The Changing Face of Librarianship (Scarecrow Press) 1996 and Pioneer African American Librarians in the West (Scarecrow Press) 2006.

Kelly is married, has three children, and is an avid angler.


Amber Alexander

Amber Alexander
Library Director
Presque Isle District Library

Amber Alexander currently serves as the Library Director of Presque Isle District Library in Rogers City, MI. She has worked as Library Director since 2015. Before that, she worked as a Reference Librarian for ten years at the Bayliss Public Library in Sault Ste. Marie, MI.

Alexander has a Master of Library and Information Science with an archival concentration and emphasis on public libraries from the University of Wisconsin, Milwaukee, WI, and a Bachelor of Arts in English Language and Literature and History with an emphasis on early American and British Literature from Lake Superior State University, MI.

Alexander is currently a member of the MLA 2020 Annual Conference work group. She was a member of the 2019 Conference Work Group and has moderated sessions at prior MLA conferences and participated as a mentee in the MLA Mentor Program. She currently serves as Advisory Board Chair for the Northland Library Cooperative. She has prior board experience as a member of the Chippewa County Historical Society Board and the Sault Co-Op Nursery School Board.

In her nomination materials, Alexander states that she would like to offer assistance with MLA to improve library connections throughout the whole state and wishes to represent the broader Northern and Northeast Michigan libraries. She notes her expertise is working in public libraries representing class sizes IV and V, with a focus on preserving historical resources in special collections.


Teri BelcherTeri Belcher
Executive Secretary
Michigan Association for Media in Education - MAME

Teri Belcher currently serves as the Executive Secretary for the Michigan Association for Media in Education (MAME) and is an independent consultant with Follett School Solutions. She is a retired School Librarian and has been involved with libraries since 1979. She worked as Middle School Media Specialist at Charlotte Public Schools, Charlotte, MI; High School Media Specialist at Pinckney Community Schools, Pinckney, MI; Middle and High School Media Specialist, Haslett Public Schools, Haslett, MI; and Middle and High School Media Specialist, Howell Public Schools, Howell, MI.

Belcher holds a Master of Arts in Library Science from the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, with a double masters focused on both public and school libraries and a Bachelor of Science in Education with a double major in Physical Education and Recreation, from Central Michigan University, Mt. Pleasant, MI. Belcher is a current member of MLA. She has staffed the MAME exhibit table at MLA Annual Conference for the past five years. Teri served as past president of MAME in 2000 and currently serves as Executive Secretary of the MAME Board.

In her nomination, Belcher states her goals are to assist members of the Michigan Library Association in providing excellent service, resources, programs, advocacy, and future planning opportunities through collaborative research in effective and visionary library management. As MLA and MAME begin their collaborative future, MAME presence on the MLA board would share information regarding future projects and offer a transparent and seamless communication path.


Tim Gleisner

Tim Gleisner
Head of Special Collections
Library of Michigan

Tim Gleisner has served as the Head of Special Collections at the Library of Michigan since 2017. He has worked in libraries in various roles for more than twenty years. Prior to his role at the Library of Michigan, Gleisner served as Assistant Director of the Herrick District Library in Holland, MI. He worked at the Grand Rapids Public Library in Grand Rapids, MI for more than ten years, first as Head of Public Services, Reference and Adult Services and later as Head of Grand Rapids History and Special Collections Department. He has also worked as Reference Librarian at the Herrick District Library in Holland, and as Adult Services Librarian at the New York Public Library, New York City, NY.

Gleisner holds a Master of Library and Information Science degree from the University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee, WI and a Bachelor of Arts, Major in History, Minor in Philosophy from University of Wisconsin-Milwaukee, Milwaukee, WI. He has been an MLA member since 2000 and is actively involved, currently serving on the MLA 2020 Annual Conference work group. He served on the Professional Development and Networking Committee from 2016-2018. Prior to that, he has served as member of the MLA Library as Platform workgroup, MLA Committee on Philanthropy, and the MLA Continuing Education Committee. He is also a graduate of MLA’s 2008 Leadership Academy. Gleisner is the recipient of the 2015 PLA Leadership Academy Fellowship and Scholarship. He currently serves on the Michigan Oral History Association Board and is a former board member of Grand Rapids Historical Society and Kutsche Center for Local History Advisory Board and is a former Chair of Grand Rapids Poet Laureate Committee.

In his nomination materials, Gleisner states his long affiliation and participation with MLA and his broad experience working at all levels and in different types of libraries would be of benefit to the profession of librarianship and help to lead libraries and librarians and MLA into the future.


Loretta HunterLoretta Hunter
LRC Coordinator
Wayne County Community College District

Loretta Hunter has more than 15 years as a professional librarian and has served as the Learning and Resources Coordinator for the Wayne County Community College District (WCCCD), Detroit, MI for 11 years. Before her work at WCCC, she served as librarian at Redford Township District Library in Redford Charter Twp., MI, and as Reference & Instructional Services Librarian at Marygrove College Library and Library Clerk at Wayne State University, Science & Engineering Library in Detroit, MI.

Hunter holds a Master of Library & Information Science from Wayne State University, Detroit, MI and a Bachelor of Science, Psychology from Wayne State University, Detroit, MI. She has been an individual member of MLA since 2006. Her board experience includes service on the American Federation of Teachers (AFT) Executive Board.

Her nominator, Stephanie Coffer, WCCCD, states in her nomination materials that Hunter is a valued asset to WCCCD, possessing a strong sense of integrity in the work that she performs daily and that she is a leader among her colleagues and is an advocate to promote the values that led her to the library profession.


Jasmine Parker

Jasmine Parker
Youth Services/Teen Librarian
Ferndale Area District Library

Jasmine Parker currently works as a Youth Services/Teen Librarian at the Ferndale Public Library in Ferndale, MI. She has served in several libraries where her role has ranged from Substitute to Youth Librarian.

Parker holds an MLIS Degree from Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, and a BFA Theatre Degree, Wayne State University, Detroit, MI. Parker is currently a member of the MLA Community Collaborations 2020 work group and has presented on the importance of music and movement programs at Spring Institute 2019.

In her nomination materials, she states her long-term goals in the library profession are to develop methods that help revolutionize outreach practices that are designed to provide literacy and program engagement services to underrepresented communities. Parker was nominated by MLA 2020 Past President Steven Bowers. On why she should be considered, he states that she is an innovative library professional, who is continuously working to establish deeper outreach relationships within the library community and that her trustworthiness as a library professional strongly indicates that she’s a dependable ally and that she is a skilled presenter, collaborator, and leader, with time management and budgeting skills.


Kate Van AukenKate Van Auken
Director
White Pine Library Cooperative

Catherine (Kate) M. Van Auken has served as the Director of the White Pine Library Cooperative in Saginaw, MI since August 2019. Prior to her role as Cooperative Director, she served as Library Director of the Rawson Memorial District Library in Cass City, MI from 2002-July 2019 and as a Trustee from 1999-2002.

Van Auken holds a Master of Library and Information Science degree from Wayne State University, Detroit, MI and a Bachelor of Science-Administrative Management degree from Clemson University, Clemson, SC. She has been a member of MLA for more than 15 years and in that time has attended numerous MLA annual and Spring Institute Conferences and presented at MLA’s annual conference. Van Auken has served as a member of numerous boards and committees, including Rawson Memorial District Library Board of Trustees, White Pine Library Cooperative Board where she had served as Board President and Vice President, Baker College Business and Technology Advisory Board, Tuscola County Brownfield Redevelopment Authority Board, Tuscola County Community Foundation Board, Tuscola County Economic Development Corporation Board, Hills and Dales Hospital Foundation Board, Cass City Arts Council Board, Cass City Schools Technology Board, as well as QSAC (Quality Services Audit Checklist) for Cooperatives Committee. 

The majority of the libraries in the White Pine Cooperative are Class 3 or smaller.  Van Auken wants to show all libraries, big and small, how the investment in MLA membership pays off, from educational programs for staff to advocacy initiatives which assist with funding and professional development. 

 


Uniting the Michigan Library Community

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