As an information professional, I live by the professional values of service and stewardship; literacy and learning; intellectual freedom; privacy; equity of access; and democracy. My philosophy is that each of these values is like a navigational star, guiding me through difficulties and uncertainties such as budget cuts and the transition from analog to digital.
The values of service and stewardship invite reflection on the library as a sacred place where it is a privilege to serve. Some of the earliest librarians were priests, but I believe this is equally relevant in a secular library. The task of stewardship for a portion of the world’s knowledge is profoundly meaningful.
Literacy and learning are inseparable. When teaching information literacy, I will strive always to embed the relevant literacy skills in the context of learning the subject matter at hand.
Intellectual freedom calls me to contextualize and engage with controversial ideas that may be distasteful to me, rather than to ignore them or try to suppress them.
Privacy is too easily invaded in the technological age. I will stay ahead of the curve in understanding and teaching others how mobile, social, and other new technologies can be configured to preserve privacy.
Equity of access evokes a goal of a more just world in which information resources are more widely shared. To overcome the digital divide’s deep roots in longstanding societal problems of inequality and alienation, I will reach out to underserved populations and try to understand and accommodate their information needs.
Democracy is the value that speaks loudest to me as a law librarian. In the law library, I am focused on providing the reliable information and the neutral space for discussion that allow library users to be active participants in democracy.