Author Archives: Rebecca

CALL TO ACTION: House Appropriations Committee Hearing Set for State Library & Archives

The next hearing on the Texas State Library and Archive’s Commission’s budget for the 2015-2017 biennium will take place next week on Monday, February 16. This is a hearing of the House Finance Committee. I don’t have an agenda for the meeting yet, so I don’t have any clue what order the agencies will present in.

Budget hearings are an interesting process. Often, advocates find themselves listening through hours of testimony, as there is no guaranteed time for agency presentations or public testimony.  Changes in scheduling are common. That being said, it is incredibly important to have advocates who are committed. Nothing is more powerful than persuasive testimony!

If the hearing is broadcast, the link will be available on the day at Expect hours and HOURS of poor audio and video.

The current TSLAC Legislative Appropriation Request is available at There is a synopsis available from the Texas Library Association at You should note that though many of the requests for new funding (exceptional items) are directed toward the State Archives, the Texas Library Association is focused on two that will benefit libraries statewide. That is why your support for the archival priorities is essential!

TSLAC, like all agencies, was directed to prepare an option for a 10% budget cut. Note that while the library services division would feel the greatest impact in terms of dollars, other divisions will feel the impacts in loss of staff. If a 10% across-the-board cut is made, 7.0 FTEs in archives plus 1 FTE in State and Local Records Management would be eliminated.

If your representative serves on the Appropriations Committee, I urge you to contact him or her to express your support:

Representative Trent Ashby; Trent.Ashby@house.state.tx.; 512-463-0508

Representative Cecil Bell;; 512-463-0650

Representative Greg Bonnen;; 512-463-0729

Representative Cindy Burkett;; 512-463-0464

Representative Giovanni Capriglione;; 512-463-0690

Representative Sarah Davis;; 512-463-0389

Representative Dawnna Dukes;; 512-463-0506

Representative Helen Giddings;; 512-463-0953

Representative Larry Gonzales;; 512-463-0670

Representative Donna Howard;; 512-463-0631

Representative Bryan Hughes;; 512-463-0271

Representative Linda Koop;; 512-463-0454

Representative Oscar Longoria;; 512-463-0645

Representative Marisa Marquez;; 512-463-0638

Representative Ruth Jones McClendon;; 512-463-0708

Representative Borris Miles;; 512-463-0518

Representative Rick Miller;; 512-463-0710

Representative Sergio Munoz;; 512-463-0704

Representative John Otto;; 512-463-0570

Representative Dade Phelan;; 512-463-0706

Representative Four Price;; 512-463-0470

Representative John Raney;; 512-463-0698

Representative Justin Rodriguez;; 512-463-0669

Representative J.D. Sheffield;; 512-463-0628

Representative Sylvester Turner;; 512-463-0554

Representative Gary VanDeaver;; 512-463-0576

Representative Armando Walle;; 512-463-0490

If you don’t know who your representative is, you can go to and enter your address to find out! Even if your representative isn’t on the Appropriations Committee, it is important to communicate with them about the importance of TSLAC, especially as the budget process moves forward.


The equivalent in the Senate is the Senate Finance Committee; their hearing was last week. You can still communicate with them to express your support for archives, though. Here’s the list of members:


District 1: Senator Kevin Eltife; 512-463-0101;

District 3: Senator Robert Nichols; 512-463-0103;

District 5: Senator Charles Schwertner; 512-463-0105;

District 7: Senator Paul Bettencourt; 512-463-0107;

District 9: Senator Kelly Hancock; 512-463-0109;

District 11: Senator Larry Taylor; 512-463-0111;

District 12: Senator Jane Nelson; 512-463-0112;

District 14: Senator Kirk Watson; 512-463-0114;

District 15: Senator John Whitmire; 512-463-0115;

District 17: Senator Joan Huffman; 512-463-0117;

District 18: Senator Lois Kolkhorst; 512-463-0118;

District 19: Senator Carlos Uresti; 512-463-0119;

District 20: Senator Juan “Chuy” Hinojosa; 512-463-0120;

District 23: Senator Royce West; 512-463-0123;

District 31: Senator Kel Seliger ; 512-463-0131;;
Some tips for contacting your senator or representative:


If you are calling the office, ask to speak to the staff person working on Appropriations or Finance. When you get that person, introduce yourself, tell them you are a constituent, and tell them you are calling to ask for the Representative or Senator’s support of funding for the state archives. Mention that the TSLAC Appropriations Committee hearing is set for Monday Feb. 16, and you want to speak to them concerning the importance of funding the agency’s exceptional items requests. Be specific about which exceptional items you support and explain how they will benefit you and other constituents. Ask if s/he has any questions and thank them. It’s that easy!


TLA has an Advocacy Primer available at that provides a lot of useful guidance.

Job posting: Archivist I (Architectural Archives) – Houston Metropolitan Research Center

The Houston Metropolitan Research Center (HMRC) and the Houston Public Library are seeking a customer service oriented Archivist I to lead and direct HMRC’s efforts in researching, acquiring, cataloging, digitizing, and preserving material for the Architectural Archives. HMRC’s Architectural Archives is comprised of drawings and papers for over 9,000 projects representing over 250 architects, engineers, and related firms. The archive includes drawings executed by architects primarily in the Houston and surrounding areas. The date range for these materials spans from 1893 to 1995 and the types of structures vary from buildings of one story to skyscrapers and modest homes to opulent mansions, as well as parks and landscaping plans, the Astrodome, and the National Aeronautics and Space Administration. Major series of records from architectural firms include those of Maurice J. Sullivan, Alfred C. Finn, Harvin C. Moore, MacKie & Kamrath, and Hare & Hare. Additional responsibilities include:

  • Providing specialized reference services and research assistance to the general public in-person and electronically.
  • Assisting with HMRC’s programming and community outreach by serving as a community liaison, developing programs, attending community meetings, curating exhibits, and representing the library and HMRC at public events related to architecture and Houston and Texas history.
  • Participating with the manager and assistant manager in unit strategic planning to meet changing services and customer needs including the supervision of interns and volunteers assisting with the Architectural Archives.


Please visit to learn more and submit an application.

Documenting the history of The Meridian Highway across Texas, February 18

Individuals and organizations are encouraged to attend a public outreach meeting to share information and visual items related to the Meridian Highway for use in a public project. Texas Historical Commission (THC) staff and representatives of the preservation planning firm Hardy-Heck-Moore, Inc. (HHM) will introduce the project and involve community members through discussion, question-and-answer session, and displays of maps and historical Meridian images. Please bring historical photos, postcards, maps, and other Meridian-related items to the meeting. With your consent, HHM staff will scan or photograph materials to be included in the project. The meeting is open to the public and will be held Wednesday, February 18, 5:30-7:00 p.m. For more information visit:

WHO: Hosted by Preservation Houston, Hardy-Heck-Moore, Inc., and THC staff. The public is invited.

WHAT: Meridian Highway Public Outreach Meeting

WHEN: Wednesday, February 18, 5:30-7:00 p.m.

WHERE: The Parador
2021 Binz Street
Houston, Texas 77004

BACKGROUND: The THC is undertaking a two-year study to document the history of the Meridian Highway. The THC has awarded the contract to complete the study to Hardy-Heck-Moore, Inc., an Austin-based historic preservation planning and management firm. The project will result in a written history of the Texas section of the Meridian Highway, and a survey of the Texas Meridian route, including associated historic resources: auto repair garages, gas stations, diners, tourist camps, auto courts, motels, road markers, paving, and traffic signs. This effort is funded by the Texas Legislature and the Texas Department of Transportation (TxDOT) through the Transportation Enhancement Program. For more information, contact the THC’s History Programs Division at 512.463.5853 or visit

Free Webinar on Project Management

Project Management 101: Planning Your Project

Two-part webinar

February 5 and 19, 2015  (1 hour each afternoon)

11 am PST / 2 pm EST

Produced by the Coalition to Advance Learning in Archives, Libraries, and Museums

Join your colleagues from archives, libraries and museums for a two-part, interactive learning webinar that will introduce the fundamentals of project management: planning a project. All of our fields struggle with unstable budgets and dynamic technology, so learning to think and act in terms of projects is critical—it can be the difference between turning an idea into a successful, resourced initiative or not. Led by representatives from the Institute of Museum and Library Services, the webinars will focus on the key elements of a project plan: the idea, the audiences, funding options, a work plan, an evaluation, and more. We will also discuss how to critically examine your project ideas, asking, Is it fundable? Valuable? Sustainable? And if not, what could you do differently? While learning these fundamentals, you will also benefit from the insights and experiences shared by your fellow participants from across archives, library, and museum institutions.

February 5     Key Elements of a Project Plan (1 hour)

This session will describe how careful planning leads to more successful projects.. We will cover how to develop an idea, define your audience, look at funding options, do an environmental scan, assess your resource capacity and needs, and develop a project scope and schedule for implementation. Attendees will be invited to use the two weeks between webinars to outline a project idea based on these key principles. Submitted project plans will be reviewed by webinar moderators with individual feedback provided for each submission.

February 19   Evaluating Your Project Plan (1 hour)

In this highly interactive second session, we will use sample project ideas and case studies to look at how we can assess the strength of a project plan before it is implemented. We will also discuss other project management resources and where to learn more about the topic.

How Will I Benefit?

After participating in this two-part webinar, attendees will be better able to:

  • Why project management is a critical skill
  • What it takes to turn an idea into a fundable project
  • Where to learn more about project management
  • How to evaluate staff and institutional capacities to manage a project

Who Should Attend

This topic is relevant to all organizational roles: you may be currently managing or soon will be managing a project, or you may be a contributor to a current or future project.

Presenters and Moderators

  • Robert Horton, Associate deputy director, IMLS
  • Sarah Fuller, Program specialist, IMLS

Register Now

Registration Info

About the Coalition to Advance Learning in Archives, Libraries and Museums

This is the inaugural project from the Coalition to Advance Learning in Archives, Libraries and Museums, which is supported by grants from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and the Institute of Museum and Library Services. The purpose of the Coalition is to work in deliberate coordination across organizational boundaries to devise and strengthen sustainable continuing education and professional development (CE/PD) programs that will transform the library, archives, and museum workforce in ways that lead to measurable impact on our nation’s communities. Look online for a complete list of Coalition members.

SAA Call for award nominations due February 28!

The Society of American Archivists is in search of excellence! 

Do you know of an individual or organization that has made an outstanding contribution to the archives profession? Or promoted greater public awareness of archives? Have you published a groundbreaking book, written an outstanding article, or developed an innovative finding aid? Do you need financial assistance to attend graduate school or a professional conference?

SAA offers a variety of opportunities for professional recognition and financial assistance through the naming of Fellows, an awards competition, and scholarships. To learn more about these recognitions, click on the links below. Nominate* a deserving colleague — or yourself!

More information on all fellows, awards, and scholarship and how to submit to nominations/applications can be found online:

The deadline for nominations/applications is February 28. In the most recent Archival Outlook, Steven D. Booth provides “6 steps for crafting an awards nomination” to help the process!

AHA! Holiday party and Elections, December 11

This year the University of St. Thomas will be hosting the annual holiday party and meeting. Please plan to attend Thursday, December 11th at 6 pm in the Crooker Center – Ahern Room, 1st Floor. Guest speakers are Margaret Culbertson and Michelle Johnson from the William J. Hill Texas Artisans & Artists Archive.

•Elections – A new board for 2015 will be elected. You must be a member of AHA! to vote. Candidates to be announced shortly.
•Food – It will be potluck, so please bring something to share. AHA! Board is providing a ham and rolls for the party.

University of St. Thomas

Crooker Center – Ahern Room
3909 Graustark
Houston, Texas

Street parking is available or there is also a parking garage. The Moran Center Parking Garage, located at the corner of West Alabama and Graustark (enter on Graustark) is available to all students, employees and visitors. Rate: $2/day. More information on parking and location of Crooker Center can be found:

Job posting: Archivist I, African American Library at the Gregory School

The African American Library at the Gregory School is seeking an Archivist I. This is a great opportunity to define and manage the oral history collections in a way that creates optimal value for the library and its customers and assist with the archival development for the African American Library at the Gregory School. This archival library is an Archeological landmark in Texas that is dedicated to documenting the community traditions and history of African Americans in Houston through special collections, archives, exhibits, oral histories, programs and a variety of media. The Library is located in historic Freedman’s Town and housed in the Gregory School building, the first African American public school in Houston..

This position is responsible for the development of the oral history collection and will manage the project to include building partnerships with outside agencies and businesses with historical collections of interest. The focus of the work is to positively impact library visits, program attendance and archival use. The Archivist I reports to the Archivist III (and Manager) and works as a contributing team member of the unit, and may lead the work of volunteers and staff on oral history projects. Performs advanced-level reference work to assist researchers in identifying and using archival collections and other library materials; interprets and enforces library policies for the security and administration of the collections; as appropriate, collaborates with the team to mount exhibitions that highlight archival collections. Provides excellent customer service demonstrating the ability to communicate effectively with people.

Other responsibilities include reference duties answering research questions pertaining to archival materials and programs, retrieval of requested archival collections, and assisting the Archivist team in inventorying, processing, and inputting data into Archivists Toolkit, newly acquired materials. The Archivist I is also expected to conduct tours, help with planning special programs, and assist, as required, with the editing, publishing and distribution of library publications. Requires some evening shift and weekend (Saturday and Sunday) work.

For more information please visit:

SSA Call for Session Proposals for 2015 Annual Meeting

Annual Conference Theme:  Game On: the Challenge of Change

Submission Deadline: Wednesday, November 27, 2014

SSA’s Program Committee invites you to submit a proposal for an educational session at the 2015 annual meeting in Arlington, Texas. The meeting theme relates to sports, games, and change.  Change is all around us, especially in the world of archives. We welcome session proposals on any aspect of change in the archival enterprise. That is a mighty broad topic, and we imagine that lots of folks will have something to say on the subject. Arlington is a sports and games town—home to the Texas Rangers, Dallas Cowboys, and Six Flags over Texas, so we also welcome sessions related to sports and games.

Committee members are dedicated to putting together a great program in Arlington and would be happy to work with you to meet that goal. So take a swing at it and see what you can come up with for 2015! Visit for more information about submitting a proposal and proposal forms.