Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion

Committee Members

  • Elli Cucksey, Trinity Lutheran Seminary at Capital University
  • David Kriegh, Saint Mary’s College of California
  • Kenneth Litwak, Gateway Seminary
  • Daniel Smith
  • Jennifer Ulrich, Eastern Mennonite University
  • Alexis Weiss, Atla Staff Liaison

Year in Review

The DEI Committee welcomed new members Daniel Smith and Elli Cucksey in 2022. Alexis Weiss, a member of this committee last year, joined the Atla staff and became the committee’s new liaison. David Kriegh remained on the committee for an additional and final year to continue serving as chair and manage the transition. The committee held its first in-person meeting since 2019, a day-long event at the Hotel June in Los Angeles on February 28, which included a visit to the library at Loyola Marymount University to learn more about how their staff prioritizes DEI matters. Kenneth Litwak retired from Gateway in May 2023 and completed his term on the committee.

Here are the highlights of the DEI Committee’s work this past year:

DEI Series blog posts - Although there were no blog posts tagged as DEI this year, the Committee developed a schedule to prepare and release quarterly posts authored by Committee members and invited guest bloggers.

DEI LibGuide - The Committee continued to research and update the various tabs of the DEI LibGuide, recommending the addition of a tab for neurodiversity and placing a greater emphasis on open access resources in the hopes of attracting more traffic to the site.

Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Scholarship - There were 20 total applicants, although one submission arrived after the deadline. The Committee identified six outstanding candidates and from among them selected Adam Howard, an LIS graduate student at Kent State University as the 2023 recipient of the Atla Diversity, Equity, and Inclusion Scholarship. The Committee requested that the Director award a second scholarship to Shirley Delorme Russell, an Indigenous Librarian intern for the University of Manitoba earning her library degree from the University of Alberta, and was pleased to learn the request was granted.

Atla Annual 2023 - DEI committee members Elli Cucksey, David Kriegh, Daniel Smith, and Jennifer Ulrich hosted the conversational group “Serving Our Neurodiverse Communities: Reflections from Theological Librarians.” Elli Cucksey also participated in the panel presentation “Best Practices for Virtual Library Services for Small Libraries,” and Daniel Smith was a panelist for “What About the Aqueduct? Or, Does Decolonizing the Library Mean Deaccessioning Augustine?” Both plenary speakers emphasized DEI issues in the field as well.