SLA to Honor Four Who Are Making Early Mark

Four young librarians whose career paths are heading in markedly different directions will be honored by their equally distinct peers when the Special Libraries Association hosts its awards presentation ceremony on Tuesday, October 6.

Dana Eckstein Berkowitz, JonLuc Christensen, Thérèse Mainville-Celso, and Kelly Durkin Ruth will receive SLA’s James M. Matarazzo Rising Star Award. The award is named for the late Jim Matarazzo, a longtime SLA member and champion of special libraries who taught and mentored hundreds of aspiring librarians while serving on the faculty at Simmons University for more than four decades.

The Rising Star Award is bestowed annually to recognize outstanding new SLA members who show exceptional promise of leadership and contribution to the association and profession. Nominees must have one to five years of professional experience as an information professional and have been an SLA member for five years or less.

Dana got involved with SLA while earning her library degree, serving as president of the SLA student group at Rutgers University and as webmaster for the Princeton-Trenton Chapter. After graduating from Rutgers, she accepted a job at Yale University and became the webmaster and, later, communications director for the SLA New England Chapter.

Dana’s accomplishments with SLA include receiving the 2019 Career Development Award from the Leadership and Management Community and presenting the winning poster at the 2019 Annual Conference. This year she started her own consulting business, Dana Berkowitz Digital Services. She credits her SLA colleagues with giving her the confidence and insights to take the leap from paid employment to self-employment.

JonLuc served as president of the SLA student group at San Jose State University while earning his library science degree. He also founded and served as president of the iSchool’s First Gen Students’ Group, a network of graduate students interested in “working together to navigate the world of graduate school and entrance to the professional world.” He currently serves as president-elect of the SLA Southern California Community.

JonLuc is a records management specialist, Freedom of Information Act liaison, and information/configuration management engineer for the Jet Propulsion Laboratory, serving on behalf of NASA and the California Institute of Technology. He specializes in digitization, digital asset management, knowledge capture and management, and user experience design. He also serves in leadership roles on committees related to records and archives integration, diversity and inclusion, and enterprise content management.

Therese’s SLA journey began when she volunteered as vice president of the SLA student group at McGill University. Her positive experience encouraged her to become more involved, and she has since served as a professional development chair for the Knowledge Management Community, the 2019 conference planner for the Leadership & Management Community, and a student representative on the Students and New Professionals Advisory Council. She is the 2020 conference planner for the KM Community and the Toronto programming director for SLA Canada.

During a knowledge management internship at Genentech, a subsidiary of Roche, Thérèse worked on taxonomy development and expertise location projects. Her internship led to a knowledge operations manager role at Roche, where she continues building on the work she had started as an intern. This year, using the experience gained from planning SLA programs, she will be planning virtual programs for a knowledge management campaign aimed at raising awareness of KM across her organization.

Kelly is the research and instruction librarian for engineering at the U.S. Naval Academy, where she collaborates with midshipmen, faculty and staff in four engineering departments. An SLA member since her student days at the University of Toronto, she currently serves as secretary of SLA’s Physics-Astronomy-Math Community and has filled various roles in that community during her SLA career.

In 2017, Kelly was named to the inaugural class of “Up and Comers” by Against the Grain Media in recognition of her passion for the future of libraries and her ability to innovate, inspire and collaborate. Her research interests include sustainability in instruction programs, the information-seeking behaviors of engineering students, and the concept of the 21st century library.

The awards ceremony is open to all at no charge, but registration is required. Create a registration record, then select the option to register only for the awards ceremony.

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