Over the past few months, we’ve welcomed new colleagues to the DePaul University Library. To get to know them a bit better and give them an opportunity to share a little about themselves, I asked them a few questions.
When did you start? What is your job title and responsibilities?
Margaret Grumeretz: I started as the Digital Archivist in Special Collections and Archives on August 29.
Kristin Lansdown: I officially began my role as the Inclusion, Diversity, Equity, and Accessibility Librarian on July 11th but I worked at the Richardson Library as a student worker in Access Services from 2010 – 2017! So I’m new-ish! In my role, I’m helping advance inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility at the DePaul Library with an eye toward our policies, practices, spaces, services, and collections. I also serve as the liaison to the Critical Ethnic Studies department, the Center for Students with Disabilities, the Office of Multicultural Student Success, and the Identity Specific Cultural and Resource Centers.
Astrid Larson: I started on May 25, 2022, after 2 days of orientation. I am the metadata assistant at the John T. Richardson Library in the Lincoln Park campus. I am responsible for helping ensuring library items are accurately catalogued so that they can be accessible to the DePaul community.
Terry McMahon: My first day was July 5th at New Employee Orientation at the Loop campus (selfie). I work part-time as a web support specialist on JTR’s Digital Services team.
Where were you before joining the DePaul University Library?
Margaret Grumeretz: I finished my MS in Information at the University of Michigan School of Information this past May, so I’m very excited to be at DePaul! Before pursing my MSI degree I worked in book publishing and for the teacher’s union in NYC. I have my BA in History from the University of Michigan.
Kristin Lansdown: After my time at DePaul ended, I began working as the Library Associate for Adult Fiction at the Oak Lawn Public Library until I completed my Masters in Library and Information Science. Then I became the Diversity Resident Librarian for Open Educational Resources at the University of Wisconsin-Madison. Diversity Resident Librarians are early-career librarians of color who serve in a two- or three-year residency to gain knowledge and skills in academic librarianship. The goal is to increase diversity in the profession. Now, I’m happy to be home and back at DePaul!
Astrid Larson: I worked at the DeKalb Public Library as an access services specialist. Besides working at the circulation desk, I was responsible for tracking down long overdue items. If you’ve ever watched Seinfeld, there is an episode about Jerry having an unreturned library book, and the person he dealt with went by the name of Bookman — that’s me, I was Bookman! Except in a less menacing manner!
Terry McMahon: I was enjoying early retirement, mostly around my house. COVID put a damper on any major travel plans. My intention in retirement was to find meaningful part-time work – I believe this job “checks all the boxes.” I had completed 32 years at The Joint Commission, a not-for-profit accreditor of hospitals and other healthcare organizations.
What is your favorite hobby or thing to do in Chicago?
Margaret Grumeretz: I just moved to Chicago, so I need recommendations! I live near Horner Park, and spending time there has been my favorite Chicago activity so far.
Kristin Lansdown: I love going to plays and musicals! I can’t wait to finally see Wicked in a few weeks.
Astrid Larson: Reading, writing, and video games are my favorite hobbies. I read to pass the time on my commute, and I game to relax after a long day of work – only after homework is done, of course. I’m trying to get back into photography, and I’m sure I’ll have plenty of things to capture with my camera when I move to Chicago.
Terry McMahon: Chicago is a great city for live music, both in terms of large arenas and concert halls, and smaller more intimate clubs. I have lived in the area for over half my life and have seen clubs come and go, but the music scene remains vibrant. In fact, there are a few outstanding venues within walking distance of the Lincoln Park campus. The city and suburbs also have excellent record and CD stores, retailers selling musical instruments and some top-notch recording studios.
What is a favorite book, film, album, video game, etc. that is available in the Library catalog?
Margaret Grumeretz: There are too many to choose from! I’ll plug the Special Collections and Archives materials—one of the highlights of my first few weeks has been getting to know the collections better.
Kristin Lansdown: Annihilation by Jeff VanderMeer
Astrid Larson: Jane Eyre by Charlotte Bronte. I like to read this book every couple of years, and I love to read books based off this story to compare them to the original story.
Terry McMahon: DVD versions of two of my favorite modern novels are available for check out: No Country for Old Men by Cormac McCarthy and Wonder Boys by Michael Chabon. I am a believer that a well-written book is generally better than a film version, in these two cases, the filmmakers admirably captured the content and atmosphere, if not every scene, of the books.
Any family or pets you wish to brag about?
Margaret Grumeretz: My partner, Andrew, and I have been talking about getting a dog, but no pets (yet!)
Astrid Larson: I live with two cats: 3-year-old Luella “Lulu” Larson, and 8-year-old Snoopy Rhoades. Lulu is a sassy tuxedo kitty and rules the apartment, and Snoopy is a black kitty who is always hungry but loves to cuddle. My partner, Daniel Rhoades, is currently in South Carolina and serves in the U.S. Navy. When he and I have downtime, we play World of Warcraft, Guild Wars 2, or any other co-op video game together.
Terry McMahon: I have a couple of male adult cats. I adopted Zeke as a kitten from a co-worker whose cat had a small litter. He was a tiny brownish tabby who has grown into a large adult who still acts like a playful kitten. My more recent addition, Logan, is an adult rescue cat who I fostered, then adopted. He is a black, shorthair weighing in at 16 lbs. He is a gentle giant of a cat who was not meant to live on the streets – police found him in an alley on the west side. He is so mellow, that on one of his first visits to the vet, he was purring loud enough that the vet could not hear his heart beat! In my experience, cats generally dread visits to the doctor!