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Meet our Board Member: Susan Kendrick

As part of UNYSLA’s Board Member profile series, we take a look at Susan Kendrick…

Susan Kendrick, is the current UNYSLA chapter president. She is a business librarian at the Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management at Cornell University. A typical workday involves assisting students, faculty, and staff with finding information sources and creating research strategies. In addition, Susan oversees collection development for the graduate business program works collaboratively with other librarians across campus to maximize access to business resources across campus.

How did you get to where you are?

My undergraduate degree is in studio art. College was a blast and I’ve had some great art related jobs, but I realized it wasn’t going to work for me long term. I always loved working in libraries and getting people in touch with the information they need so getting a MLS made sense. The business subject area was a bit of a change for me, however I like that businesses tend to be on the cutting edge of what is happening and the more I learned about business information the more I liked it. The students are great as they all want to make a positive difference in the world. My library colleagues and the faculty are wonderful to work with and very intelligent and driven.

How long have you been a member of UNYSLA?

About 8 years.

What roles have you been involved in with UNYSLA?

My first active role in UNYSLA was as a co-editor for the bulletin (We still made a PDF bulletin at that time.) After a few years, the board wanted to move away from a PDF/print bulletin and to a blog format. SLA had just started up an organization-wide Typepad account for chapters and divisions and I managed the move from our old website and bulletin to the blog. I became the “Communications Chair” which is sort of a combination of webmaster and bulletin editor, responsible for working with the Communications Committee members to keep content on the site up-to-date and creating registration pages for events. The Communications Committee has had some great volunteers over the years and one of them, Heidi Webb, is now the Communications Chair. About a year and a half ago, I decided I wanted to try one of the leadership roles in UNYSLA so I ran for President-Elect.

What do you do in your current UNYSLA role?

I’m just rotating off of President-Elect, where I was responsible for organizing the spring and fall conferences. We did one on competitive intelligence and one on open access. Both were tons of fun and we had fantastic speakers. Now, Stephanie McReynolds is President-Elect and she has already started the planning for the spring program. I’ve rotated into UNYSLA’s president role which is more about communication between SLA HQ and the chapter, presiding over UNYSLA board meetings and working with the board to make any decisions, and assisting other board members in their roles. Unlike the President-Elect position, I won’t be focusing all my energy into the two conferences, but rather spreading it out over the entire chapter over the year.

What is your favorite part of being a board member?

Working with the rest of the board and members. We have such a fantastic board. Everyone on it is so great to work with–friendly, funny, and motivated. It’s a great mix.
It’s also great to meet the student shadows. I love seeing the energy and enthusiasm they bring to the meetings.

What advice do you have for those who may want to get involved?

Come to one of our board meetings the day before our conferences. All members are welcome and you don’t have to do anything. You can just watch and see what happens. This may give you a good idea of how you can contribute gradually so you don’t overextend yourself and you can find a role that plays to your strengths. Often these may be volunteering for the Communications Committee or helping out with local events.

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