Paths Not Often Taken Lead Dority to ‘Rosie’

“Select the person with the best possible qualifications and experience,” wrote Rose Vormelker in 1952. She was writing about establishing a special librarianship function within a public library, but she could just as easily have been describing the selection of Kim Dority as this year’s recipient of the Rose L. Vormelker Award.

The “Rosie,” as the award is often called, is presented to a mid-career member of SLA who actively teaches and/or mentors students or working professionals. If Kim had done nothing more to guide students and young professionals than write Rethinking Information Work: A Career Guide for Librarians and Other Information Professionals, her popular 2006 book on career planning and career resiliency, she would still be a fitting choice for the award.

But the book was just one of many ways that Kim has devoted her time and expertise to helping librarians—especially LIS students and young professionals—expand their career options and use their skills and knowledge in unconventional ways. She is a longtime adjunct faculty member in the University of Denver’s graduate program in library and information science, where she teaches a course on alternative career paths for librarians. She is also a much-in-demand consultant to colleges and universities on strategies for using career-focused content to help recruit and retain students and place them in jobs.

Within SLA, Kim has demonstrated her commitment to early-career librarians by chairing the Students and New Professionals Advisory Council. Under her leadership in 2014–2016, the council developed a set of recommendations to improve the retention and stem the attrition of student and new-professional members. Kim has also presented webinars and conference sessions on topics such as career improvisation, core competencies, alternative uses of a library degree, and researching companies and industries as potential employers.

Kim will receive the Vormelker Award on Sunday, June 18, at the Opening General Session of the SLA 2017 Annual Conference in Phoenix.

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