Northwest Archivists, Inc.

News & announcements

  • 27 Jan 2014 1:24 PM | Emily Dominick

    A new statewide network of 33 volunteer mentors trained in collections care and emergency management will work directly with Oregon museums, libraries and archives starting today. Mentors will voluntarily work directly with Oregon archives, libraries and museums to improve the care of cultural artifacts, and prepare for emergencies.

                “People who care for these collections of historic objects and paper are seeking more skills and knowledge to address issues of preservation and disasters,” said Kyle Jansson, coordinator of the Oregon Heritage Commission and the project director of the new Oregon Heritage MentorCorps. “MentorCorps members will provide consulting, mentoring and training on these topics in ways that meet the needs of the 1,000 cultural heritage organizations in Oregon.”

                Mentors’ experience ranges from graduate students to retired heritage executives with decades of experience. Mentors will work with organizations in their region of the state. All nonprofit and government archives, libraries and museums will be able to access the free service.

                “We appreciate the mentors giving these organizations directly skills and knowledge,” said Jansson. “In the process of helping organizations, the mentors are also indirectly supporting the heritage of their own communities and regions.”

                The MentorCorps takeoff is funded by a grant from the federal Institute of Museum and Library Services, and funds from the Oregon Heritage Commission and the Oregon Cultural Trust. Project partners include the Oregon Heritage Commission, Oregon Library Association, Northwest Archivists, Oregon Museums Association, Oregon State Archives, Oregon State Library, Oregon Historical Society, Tamástslikt Cultural Institute, and other organizations.

                The MentorCorps website is located at

    Mentors, by region, include:

    Portland Metro Region Mentors: Angela Arena, Hillsboro; Sarah Cantor, Lake Oswego; Kathleen Daly, Clackamas; Todd Mayberry, Portland; Lloyd Musser, Happy Valley; Quinn Robinson, Portland; Alex Toth, Portland; and George Vogt, Portland.

    Willamette Valley Region Mentors: Dave Hegeman, Newberg; Dannie Helm, Springfield; Heather Kliever, Eugene; Marie Longfellow, Cottage Grove; Jennifer O’Neal, Eugene; Lindsey Stafford, Eugene; Sara Swanborn, Salem; Ashley Toutain, Salem; Heather Woodward, Salem; and Rachael Woody, McMinnville.

    Coast Region Mentors: Tom Chandler, Toledo; Jerry Ostermiller, Astoria; Jeff Smith, Astoria; Vicki Wiese, Coos Bay.

    Central and Eastern Region Mentors: Patricia Dawson, Pendleton; Shannon Maslach, Joseph; Randall Melton, Pendleton; Carolyn Purcell, The Dalles; Christie Sweet, John Day; and Terri Washburn, Cove.

    Southern Region Mentors:  Wanda Chin, Ashland; Dorothy Cotton, Phoenix; Terry Dickey, Ashland; Amy Drake, Medford; Debra Griffith, Ashland; and Dru Ellen Smith, Ashland. 

  • 08 Nov 2013 1:31 PM | Emily Dominick
    The Awards section of the Policies and Procedures Manual for NWA has been published. Updates to the various sections of the manual will continue over the coming months. Check back for more updates. 
  • 09 Sep 2013 10:19 AM | Emily Dominick

    Protecting Cultural Collections:

    Disaster Prevention, Preparedness, Response & Recovery

    Part 1: Prevention & Preparedness

    Seattle: Friday, October 4, 2013, – 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

    Location: Odegaard Undergraduate Library Room 220, University of Washington, Seattle, WA

    Part 2: Response & Recovery

    Seattle: Thursday, November 7, 2013, – 9:00 a.m. – 4:00 p.m.

    Location: Odegaard Undergraduate Library Room 220, University of Washington, Seattle, WA

    Sponsored by Western States & Territories Preservation Assistance Service (WESTPAS).

    Co-sponosred by the Seattle Heritage Emergency Response Network (SHERN).


    Gary Menges is retired Preservation Administrator at the University of Washington Libraries, Seattle. He is amember of the American Institute for Conservation of Historic and Artistic Works Collections Emergency Response Team (AIC CERT).


    The “Protecting Cultural Collections” workshops are presented in a 2-part sequence to produce the following outcomes for disaster preparedness


      *  Complete a disaster response & collection salvage plan by the end of Part 2

      *  Learn how to train staff to implement your plan effectively

      *  Set pre- and post-disaster action priorities for your collections

      *  Understand practical decision-making skills needed during an emergency

      *  Experience salvage procedures for a wide variety of material including books, documents, photos & objects


    The workshop days are scheduled 5 weeks apart. Participants will prepare short assignments prior to the first session; between sessions, they will undertake additional assignments resulting in a completed disaster plan at the end of Part 2.

    Who should attend:    Administrators and staff responsible for emergency preparedness, response and decision-making, in all types of cultural institutions.  By registering for the workshop, the institution commits to supporting the attendee(s) to achieve the workshop's disaster preparedness goals. When possible, please send two attendees so they can work together on the disaster preparedness activities.

    Cost:    No charge to the institution.  Funding provided by the National Endowment for the Humanities.

    Registration:     Pre-registration required. Register online at: WESTPAS workshops (Go to October 4th and click on the date.)

    For registration assistance contact: Alexandra Gingerich

    For general & content information contact: Gary Menges

    Additional iInformation about the workshops will be sent to the registrants before each workshop.

  • 04 Sep 2013 1:12 PM | Emily Dominick

    CFP: MAC Annual Meeting 2014

    The Syncopations of History: MAC at Kansas City

    Whether you prefer a 4/4 beat, elaborate riffing, or playing by memory (all signatures of the Kansas City jazz style), the 2014 Midwest Archives Conference Program Committee (PC) looks forward to receiving session proposals fitting the theme: “The Syncopations of History.” The full Call for Proposals for the meeting, scheduled for April 24-26 in Kansas City, Missouri, is available via the MAC website.

    Tell us how you are composing and improvising in your repository. How do you keep your archival rhythms going and still hold the beat?  Don’t have money for an expensive electronic record keeping system? How are you putting something together with a limited budget? Use the session proposal form (PDF) or the web-based form to submit your proposal. The deadline for proposals is September 20, 2013.

    If you have questions, or wish to submit session proposals in another way, please contact 2014 Program Committee co-chairs Jeremy Brett, Texas A&M University Processing Archivist (979-845-1951), or Michelle Sweetser, Marquette University Archivist (414-288-5905).

  • 05 Feb 2013 10:15 AM | Emily Dominick

    SAA is coming to Washington! Register at least 30 days prior to the offering and receive a $50 early bird discount.

    Digital Repositories [DAS]

    March 7 in Cheney

    Digital Repositories [DAS]

    March 8 in Seattle

    Arrangement and Description of Electronic Records Part I and II [DAS]

    April 8-9 in Cheney 

  • 16 Jan 2013 3:12 PM | Emily Dominick

    The 27th annual Western Archives Institute will be held at the University of California, Riverside from July 7 – 19, 2013.  The Western Archives Institute is an intensive, two-week program that provides integrated instruction in basic archival practices to individuals with a variety of backgrounds, including those whose jobs require a fundamental understanding of archival skills, but who have little or no previous archives education; those who have expanding responsibility for archival materials; those who are practicing archivists but have not received formal instruction; and those who demonstrate a commitment to an archival career.


    The Institute also features site visits to historical records repositories and a diverse curriculum that includes history and development of the profession, theory and terminology, records management, appraisal, arrangement, description, manuscripts acquisition, archives and the law, photographs, preservation administration, reference and access, outreach programs, and managing archival programs and institutions.


    Gregory S. Hunter, Ph.D., CA, CRM, has graciously agreed to serve as Principle Faculty Member for the 2013 Institute. He is a Professor at the Palmer School of Library and Information Science, Long Island University, and is Editor of The American Archivist.  He holds a Ph.D. in American History from New York University.  Prior to joining the Palmer School in 1990, Dr. Hunter was Director of Archival Programs for the United Negro College Fund and Manager of Corporate Records for ITT Corporation.  He is a Distinguished Fellow of the Society of American Archivists, and two of his books have received awards from the Society of American Archivists.  He also served as Principal Archivist and Records Manager on the team that designed and built the Electronic Records Archives for the National Archives and Records Administration.  Dr. Hunter was the founding President of the Academy of Certified Archivists and he also is a Certified Records Manager.


    Tuition for the Institute is $700 and includes a selection of archival publications. Other non-negotiable fees including program transportation, facility fees, opening dinner, and luncheon at the closing program will be available in early February.  Housing and meal plans are available at additional cost.

    The application deadline for the
    2013Western Archives Institute is March 1, 2013. For additional program information, see, or contact:

    For additional information, contact:


    Western Archives Institute

    1020 O Street

    Sacramento, CA 95814


    Telephone: (916) 653–7715

    Fax: (916) 653–7134E-mail:


    The Western Archives Institute is co-sponsored by the Society of California Archivists and the California State Archives.


    The application package is available on the California State Archives web site at, and on the Society of California Archivists web site at

  • 17 Sep 2012 11:27 AM | Emily Dominick

    Please save the dates for our 2013 joint  Northwest Archivists (NWA) and Archives Association of British Columbia (AABC)  conference. If you are considering attending the conference, be sure to check that your passport is up to date. If not (or if you do not have a passport), start the process soon. Look in the coming weeks for a call for proposals.

    Title: Turning Points and Connecting Archival Spaces

    Dates: May 2-4, 2013

    Location: Irving Barber Learning Centre, University of British Columbia, Vancouver BC


    Trevor James Bond, Head

    Manuscripts, Archives, and Special Collections

    Washington State University Libraries

    Phone: 509 335-6693

  • 06 Sep 2012 3:25 PM | Emily Dominick

    The University of Oregon Libraries is pleased to announce a one-day workshop in basic film preservation in Portland, Oregon, on Sat., Oct. 27, 2012. The workshop is designed for people in the Northwest working in archives, historical societies, libraries, and other institutions that have film collections but no one with expertise to handle it properly. The workshop will cover how to handle, assess, document, and store archival film, as well as how to set up a low-cost film preservation program. Attendance will be limited to 15 participants. The workshop is free, but registration is required.


    For more information and to register:


  • 12 Jun 2012 8:28 AM | Emily Dominick

    The rebellion of the archivist against his normal role is not, as so many scholars fear, the politicizing of a neutral craft, but the humanizing of an inevitably political craft."
    -- Howard Zinn "
    Secrecy, Archives, and the Public Interest," Vol. II, No. 2 (1977) of Midwestern Archivist.

    The boundaries between "archivist" and "activist" have become increasingly porous, rendering ready distinctions between archivists (traditionally restricted to the preservation of records, maintaining accountability, and making critical information available to the communities they serve) and activists (who, with greater frequency, look to archives or adopt elements of archival practice as a means of documenting their struggles) virtually unsustainable. In the past year, archivists and citizen activists collaborated to document the Occupy Wall Street movement, and archivists committed to open government worked with the New York City Council to advocate for keeping the Municipal Archives as an independent city agency. While the apparent convergence of archival and activist worlds may appear a timely and relevant topic, these distinct communities often deliberate their roles separately with little dialogue.

    The Archivists Round Table of Metropolitan New York and the New School Archives and Special Collections are sponsoring a symposium to bring together a diverse group of archivists, activists, students, and theorists with the aim of facilitating discussion of their respective concerns. Among its proposed topics, the symposium will address potential roles that archivists may engage in as activists, as well as how archivists can assume a greater role in documenting and contributing toward social and political change.

    Possible areas of interest include, but are not limited to, the following:

    -Archivists documenting the work of activists and activist movements
    -Activists confronting traditional archival practice
    -Possible models for an emergent “activist archives”
    -Methodologies for more comprehensively documenting activism
    -Archivist and activist collaborations
    -Community-led archives and repositories operating outside of the archival establishment
    -Archives as sites of knowledge (re)production and in(ter)vention
    -Relational paradigms for mapping the interplay of power, justice, and archives

    -Critical pedagogy in the reference encounter
    -Interrogating preconceptions and misunderstandings that obscure common goals

    Date: Friday, October 12, 2012

    Location: Theresa Lang Community and Student Center, The New School

    All individual presentations will be 20 minutes long (10 page paper).
    Submissions must include a title, name of author and institutional affiliation (if applicable), abstract (250 words max), and indication of technological requirements.
    Individual papers or entire panel proposals accepted.

    Deadline for Proposals: Proposals should be emailed to by August 1, 2012.

  • 05 Apr 2012 3:32 PM | Tony Kurtz
    Time to vote for your NWA leadership!

    2012 NWA Elections Guide: NWA2012ElectionGuide.pdf
    2012 NWA online ballot:

    Online voting will close at end-of-day April 23.

    Questions?  Contact Tony Kurtz

    Your 2012 NWA Nominations Commitee:
    Tony Kurtz
    Sara Piasecki
    Geoff Wexler
Please contact Colleen Needham (Communications Chair) with any questions. 

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