SAA Archival Innovator Award

Know an archivist or institution who is contributing to the profession in creative or innovative ways? Think they should be recognized for their innovative work? Then nominate them for the SAA Archival Innovator Award!

: February 28, 2020

Purpose and Criteria for Selection: Created in 2011, this award recognizes an individual archivist, a group of archivists, a repository, or an organization that demonstrates significant impact on the archives profession or within their communities. Nominations will be assessed for the following criteria:

·       Creativity or innovation in approaching professional challenges.
·       Demonstrated ability to think outside of professional or institutional norms.
·       Ability to translate creativity, innovation, and new thinking into working solutions.
·       Development of an archives program or outreach activity that has an extraordinary impact on a community.
·       Commitment to the advancement of professional knowledge through traditional or emerging information-sharing media.


Eligibility: Presented to an archivist, group of archivists, repository, or organization for work undertaken within the past three years. The work need not be completed, but it must be sufficiently advanced to demonstrate results. Unsuccessful nominations from previous years are welcome!

To make a nomination, complete the form at:


Harrisonburg Meeting Graduate Student Papers Session

At the Spring 2020 MARAC meeting in Harrisonburg, VA, please considering joining us for the graduate student papers session. Topics include the connection between archiving and dance, popular music collections and the digital humanities, and the integration of civil rights materials into archival literacy. Abstracts are as a follows:

Marissa Ajamian, “European Traditions: Tracing the Connection between Archiving and Dance.”
New York University
The traditional rules for both archival practices and concert dance stem from a European heritage. These rules require rigid structure, confining practices, and unbending rules. With this presentation, I seek to discuss the implications of how European traditions have affected the “appropriate” way to dance, with an upright spine, and the “appropriate” way to archive, through the focus on paper materials. While the art form of dance and archival practices appear to be unrelated entities, the rigid European boundaries that were present at the creation and evolution of these practices bind them together. The way these two practices have evolved from the European heritage offer different solutions on how to navigate incorporating other heritages and ideas into the archive and into the collective memory of the dance tradition. By looking at these current day practices, future best practices can be shared between dance and the art of archiving.

Benjamin Jackson, “Re-examining Collections Through Digital Storytelling”
University of Maryland
Conveying the scope of collections and holdings and engaging the widest range of users has always been a vexing, primary concern for those working in libraries of all disciplines. In this presentation, I consider how open-source platforms have made digital storytelling an effective and increasingly accessible means for those in libraries to connect and contextualize their materials with a broad audience. Being employed as a project archivist hired to work with the Keesing Collection on Popular Music and Culture at Special Collections in Performing Arts, University of Maryland, College Park I have had the fairly unique opportunity to undertake digital humanities projects to encourage research with the collections. My most recent project has been to develop online exhibits exploring our new holdings that focus on the intersections between popular music and the major conflicts in which the United States was a combatant in the twentieth century. While I consider myself engaged in the sphere of digital humanities, my relative lack of experience in most kind of scripting and coding at first discouraged me from attempting anything outside of an article or exhibit-style approach to presenting the collection. With the rapid expansion of open-source projects, elements like flowing timelines and interactive charts and graphs are now far less time-consuming to make and dependent on a deep knowledge of web design. These tools were used in the Keeping project to consider issues like how the vocabulary of American songwriters during the Second World War changed by year or how the relative popularity of songs addressing Vietnam was reflected in the pop charts over the course of the conflict. In presenting this case-study alongside general discussion of digital storytelling for music libraries I hope to highlight some of the opportunities these platforms afford to engage new and expanding populations

Max Thorn, “Civil Rights collections in the classroom: an archives instruction fellowship”
Queens College, City University of New York
This paper will describe and discuss my semester-long graduate fellowship that integrated archival material from the Mississippi Freedom Summer—a landmark 1964 voter-registration drive and free school led by Student Nonviolent Coordinating Committee and other prominent Civil Rights-era organizations—into the curriculum of an undergraduate history seminar on “America in the 1960s.” I collaborated with the head archivist and the seminar’s professor on classroom exercises and student research appointments, with the goal of increasing student awareness of the college’s archives (especially our strong Civil Rights-era collections, rooted in material donated by QC alumni participants), improving their primary source literacy, and supporting their research. The major classroom exercise was a document analysis exercise based on the award-winning philosophy. Research appointments were one-on-one. For faculty, I created a LibGuide on teaching with archives that includes a bibliography and professional guidelines. The 2018 ACRL/SAA Guidelines for Primary Source Literacy were used to create session goals and for assessment, with students reporting increased confidence in critically evaluating primary sources. The paper will also address the nature and benefits of graduate-student fellowships in archival institutions. Through sharing the content and pedagogy that built this unique archives instruction fellowship, I aim to persuade conferees that teaching with archives in classrooms can improve undergraduates’ primary source literacy, initiate meaningful collaboration with faculty, and foster student and faculty engagement with the archives.

We hope to see you there!
Liz Novara and Vin Novara
Program Committee, Co-Chairs

Congratulations to Graduate Scholarship Winners!

MARAC is fortunate to be able to give 2 Graduate School Archival Education Scholarship for students who live or attend a school in the MARAC region and plan to enter the archival profession.  The Scholarship Committee is happy to announce the Spring 2020 semester recipients:


Nicholas Caldwell has been accepted as a graduate student at Long Island University. He presently is an Archives intern with the New York University Libraries Archival Collections Management and a library page at The Schomburg Center for Research in Black Culture in New York.


Emily Ahlin is a “Pitt Partner Intern” at Chatham University and pursuing a Library and Information degree from the University of Pittsburgh, concentrating on Archives.

Congratulations to Nicholas and Emily!


MARAC Scholarship Committee

Nicole Topich
Colleen McFarland Rademaker
Elizabeth Wilkinson
Sheridan Sayles, Junior Co-Chair
Cindy Bendroth, Senior Co-Chair

Cambridge Scholarship Winners

The Scholarship Committee is excited to announce the following recipients of travel awards for the Fall 2019 conference in Cambridge, MD:

Karen A. Stuart Local History Collection Workshop & Conference Attendance Award.

Gabriella Messinger

Gabriella Messinger has worked at the Baltimore Museum of Industry as a Museum Educator, Archives Technician and Front Desk Supervisor.  She has a degree in English Literature from Goucher College and is considering an advance degree in archives.

Marsha A. Trimble Meeting and Travel Award Scholarship ($400):

Jesse Brody

Jesse Brody is an archives technician with Drexel University and had worked in Special Collections at Westchester University.  He has a degree in classical studies from Bryn Mawr and is a member of the Delaware Valley Archivists Group and MARAC.

Joan Echtenkamp Klein Meeting and Travel Award ($250)

Kayla Heslin

Kayla Heslin is pursuing a masters degree in Public History from James Madison University.  Kayla is active with SAA and is on the Students and New Archives Professionals (SNAP) section steering committee and is on the MARAC program committee for the Harrisonburg, VA meeting.  


Congratulations to the winners!


MARAC Scholarship Committee

Nicole Topich
Colleen McFarland Rademaker
Elizabeth Wilkinson
Christy Fic
Sheridan Sayles, Junior Co-Chair
Cindy Bendroth, Senior Co-Chair

MARMIA Workshop

When?: Saturday, October 26, 2019, 1:30-5:00PM

Where?:Impact HUB, 10 E North Ave, Suite 5 (MARMIA’s OFFICE) Baltimore, MD 21202

Who may attend?: Staff or volunteers of your organization

NOTE: Participants limited to 24; only one attendee from each organization please.
The Mid-Atlantic Regional Moving Image Archive (MARMIA) will teach the basics of how to build and support a simple, no-frills audiovisual digitization station at your organization. The workshop will include information on equipment and workflows for analog-to-digital conversion of audio cassettes and VHS videotapes, as well as recommendations for troubleshooting, maintenance, and keeping a digitization station running smoothly. The first part of the program will be a lecture to set up the technology and context of audiovisual analog to digital conversion. The majority of the workshop, however, will be breaking out into groups to learn through doing: how to set up digitization stations, repair analog technology, and cleaning the playback decks.
Key takeaways of the day?
  • How to budget and advocate for a simple AV digitization station for your collections;
  • How to purchase, hook up, run, clean, and troubleshoot a VHS and audio cassette digitization station
Parking?: Street parking is available for free or at meters in the surrounding neighborhood. We recommend St. Paul, Charles, North Ave, and 20th Street. The parking lot adjacent to the space charges $6 cash and can be paid at the cash box located on the old bank teller building. Since early 2019, we have not heard any accounts of people being towed from the lot. Please do pay nevertheless. The lot is not owned or operated by Impact Hub.
This event is made possible through the generous financial support of the National Historical Records and Publications Commission (NHPRC) under the auspices of the Maryland Historical Records Advisory Board. 
Contact Rob Schoeberlein with questions at (410) 396-3884 or

Cambridge Meeting Travel Scholarships

Meeting Scholarships and Travel Awards

There are three awards available for the Cambridge Maryland meeting:

1) Marsha Trimble Meeting and Travel Award ($400)

2) Joan Echtenkamp Klein Meeting and Travel Award ($250)

3) Karen A. Stuart Local History Collection Workshop & Conference Attendance Award

APPLICATION: Applicants for either award should submit the following:

1) Cover letter that includes:

  1. a) Award for which you are applying (name and amount)
  2. b) Statement of financial need
  3. c) Expected benefits of attending the conference (citing specific sessions or workshops of interest)

2) Resume

3) Letter of reference from a person with knowledge of the applicant’s work (sent directly to the MARAC Scholarship Committee Chair, Christy Fic, via email at

DEADLINE: October 4, 2019 for the Fall 2019 Cambridge, MD meeting

TO APPLY: Send a single PDF of the cover letter and resume to Christy Fic , MARAC Scholarship Committee Chair, at Letter of recommendation should be sent by the reference as a PDF directly to Christy Fic, MARAC Scholarship Committee Chair, at Please include MARAC Scholarship Application in the subject line. All applicants will receive an email confirming their application has been received.

MARAC Meeting & Travel Awards

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) offers travel awards of $400 (Marsha Trimble Meeting and Travel Award) and $250 (Joan Echtenkamp Klein Meeting and Travel Award)

Scholarship funds may be used for conference registration, workshops, lodging, conference meals, and other travel expenses. Persons meeting the criteria outlined below are encouraged to apply.

QUALIFICATIONS: For this award, an individual must currently:

  • Be employed in the MARAC region in an archival or archives-related position, OR
  • Be enrolled as a graduate student in a program that includes courses in archival administration OR
  • Be a MARAC member in good standing

Karen A. Stuart Local History Collection Workshop & Conference Attendance Award

The Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (MARAC) offers awards for one full or half-day workshop, and conference registration, including the Friday Luncheon and Saturday Breakfast. Please note this award does not cover any travel expenses, but only the registration costs outlined above.

Named in memory of Karen A. Stuart, a Library of Congress archivist who had been head librarian at the Maryland Historical Society, this award is expressly aimed at those associated with Local History Collections. Active with MARAC on the Publications Committee and also as Maryland Caucus Chair, Karen maintained a life-long interest in local history and genealogy, respecting and encouraging the scholarly practice of each. In her career, she assisted thousands of researchers investigating Maryland local history, and through her guidance she also impacted the careers of local history practitioners throughout the state. Karen loved local history so it is fitting that this award bears her name as MARAC supports the professional growth of others dedicated to the field.

QUALIFICATIONS: Individuals must currently be associated with a local history collection that is open to the public on a regular basis in the MARAC region. Volunteers as well as paid staff are eligible. Priority is given to local history collections located in the meeting’s host city for the purpose of networking opportunities, but will not exclude other applicants.

MARAC’s Graduate School Archival Education Scholarship

Applications are now being accepted for MARAC’s Graduate School Archival Education Scholarship (2019-2020). Deadline for submissions is October 31, 2019

Purpose:  To provide financial assistance to a student in the MARAC region and to promote the study of archival administration.

Award: One-time $1000 award for the 2019-2020 school year (to be awarded for the spring 2020 semester). The award will be paid directly to the educational institution. The Graduate awards also come with a $20 student-level MARAC membership, for a total award value of $1,020.

Two awards are available for the 2019-2020 cycle.

Eligibility: In order to be eligible for the scholarship, an applicant must be:

  • a resident or full-time student residing in one of the following states: Delaware, Maryland, New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Virginia and West Virginia, and in the District of Columbia.
  • currently enrolled or accepted into a graduate program in archival studies or archives related program such as history or information studies.

Application: Applications are to be sent to and due October 31, 2019 and must include the following documents:

  • Current resume including:
    • Current Address
    • Education (undergraduate and graduate); anticipated graduation date
    • Relevant (archives related) employment/volunteer/internship experience
    • Honors, scholarships, or awards received
    • Memberships in professional organizations
  • Essay of no more than 500 words outlining the applicant’s interests and future goals in archival administration and how the scholarship would help you meet them.
  • One letter of recommendation (sent directly to
  • Documentation of “good standing” with the educational institution (may be a letter or official transcript)

The scholarship recipient is required to submit a brief article to be included in the next issue of the Mid-Atlantic Archivist Newsletter following the award.

The above information is also available for download here.