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This is a blog entry in a series introducing LVA employees and exploring what they do day-to-day. If you are interested in what goes on behind the scenes entries in this series are collected under the tag 7 Questions. Other entries discussing the internal work of the Library of Virginia are filed under our category “The Stacks”.

Faith Harris

Faith Harris

Stack Technician, Public Services and Outreach

What is your background?

My father was in the Air Force so my family and I moved around quite a bit during my childhood. Once my father retired in 2013, my family moved to Richmond, Virginia while I went to Mary Baldwin College. I graduated in 2017 with a Bachelors of Arts in English Literature. I returned to Richmond to begin my professional career.

How do you explain what you do to others?

A lot of what I do at the library is behind the scenes. My daily duties include making sure that material is put away in its proper location, and that material on the shelves are in correct order. When a patron requests an item from the closed off section of the library then I retrieve that material and send it down to the circulation desk. I also send down requested archival material to the archivists. While I work in the closed off section, when I do appear on the second floor I am always happy to assist patrons with their questions and concerns.

Have you held other positions at the Library? If so, what?

I started working at the Library of Virginia in January of 2020, so I have only been a Stacks Technician. However, I plan to pursue my Masters of Library Science so that I can become eligible for other positions in the future.

How has technology affected your current job?

Technology has definitely had a positive impact on my work by helping me keep track of material throughout the stacks. If something is not in its proper location, I am able to pull up the library catalog and see the materials status from anywhere in the building. Also, technology assisted me in replacing and relabeling very old microfilm boxes, which was a project I did during the months the library was closed to the public due to the pandemic.

Describe your best day at the Library of Virginia.

My best day at the library would have to be around Christmas when we had our crazy sweater day. Despite the pandemic cancelling our usual Christmas events, the staff got to still have fun showing off crazy sweaters to one another.

What was your first paid job?

My first paid job was a library assistant at Mary Baldwin College. I worked part-time and became a Team Leader where I trained other library assistants and supervised them on the weekends and evening hours. I also worked in Inter-Library Loan. My first job was where I found my passion towards the library field.

What would people be surprised to find out about you?

Despite being on the quiet side, I enjoy group interaction and am a very active person through my running community. I also have one pet: a betta fish named Luna who has kept me sane during this pandemic.

Vince Brooks

Local Records Program Manager

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