Candidate for Division Cabinet Chair-Elect – Kneale

Ruth Kneale

Ruth Kneale
National Solar Observatory
Tucson, Arizona
Twitter: @desertlibrarian

Question 1: When did you first join SLA? What made you decide to join then, and why do you still belong today?

Question 2: What changes, if any, do we need to make to keep annual conference as a vibrant, well attended event?

Question 3: How has involvement with SLA over the years helped you grow professionally and personally?

Question 4: SLA is an international organization. How can SLA involve and reach out more to members outside North America?

Candidate Webinar Recording


Ruth Kneale is the Systems Librarian for the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope (formerly the Advanced Technology Solar Telescope) in Tucson, Arizona. As Systems Librarian, she is responsible for documentation, database development, electronic resource management, web and FTP site administration, research requests, technical support, and whatever else is needed by the DKIST staff. As the NSO webmaster, she handles web design, development, and administrative needs for the various NSO projects.

Prior to that, she was the Librarian and Webmaster for the Gemini Observatory in Hilo, Hawaii, as well as for its design and construction project in Tucson, the Gemini 8m Telescopes Project.

Ruth holds a Master’s degree in Information Resources and Library Science from the University of Arizona and a Bachelors of Science in Astronomy and Physics, also from the University of Arizona. An Air Force brat, she grew up all over the world before settling in the desert and becoming a cold-weather wimp.

Ruth has been a member of the Special Libraries Association since 1997, when she joined as a student. She is active in the Physics-Astronomy-Mathematics (PAM) Division, the Information Technology (IT) Division, and the Arizona Chapter. She served on the Innovations in Technology Committee in 2008-2009, the 2013 Annual Conference Advisory Committee, and the 2012-2013 Online Content Advisory Committee. In 2012, Ruth was named a Fellow of the Association. She has served as President of the Arizona Chapter, and is currently acting as the Secretary/Treasurer and Student Liaison. For PAM, Ruth has been the Chair of the Networking Committee, the Treasurer, and the Division Chair and Conference Planner, and is currently involved with the Strategic Planning Committee. In the IT division, Ruth started as the chair of the Information Systems Section and, after serving as Division Secretary, has been the Professional Development and Continuing Education chair since 2011.

She is a member of the Arizona Library Association as chair of the Special Libraries Division, and also serves as a mentor and adviser for The University of Arizona’s School of Information Resources and Library Sciences (SIRLS).

Ruth has written on computer topics for Information Outlook and Computers in Libraries, and publishes a regular column about librarians in Marketing Library Services called “Spectacles: How Pop Culture Views Librarians.” She has presented several times at the Special Libraries Association annual meetings, and at Internet Librarian. She started the website “You Don’t Look Like a Librarian!” in 2002, and a companion blog called “Random Musings from the Desert” in 2006; this was followed by the publication of her book You Don’t Look Like a Librarian: Shattering Stereotypes and Building Positive New Images in the Internet Age in 2009. She gives talks on embedded librarianship and things you can do with a library degree outside of a library.

Ruth’s favorite color is purple, her favorite airplane is the A-10 Warthog (properly called the Thunderbolt II), and she has a secret collection of 1980s Euro-pop in her iPod.

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