Elizabeth Trudell

Elizabeth Trudell

Why did you become an info pro?

My mother was reference librarian at our public library (an original Carnegie library), which was certainly an influence. I began my MLIS planning to be a music librarian, but happened to get an internship as a serials cataloger using OCLC. After seeing the transformation that going online brought to libraries, I spent the next 30 years in the world of digital information services.

What is your current role?

I am part of the faculty at Columbia University’s MS program in Information & Knowledge Strategy, for a course called “Findability and Innovation.” The course focuses on how content structure and metadata contribute to product design. It’s a great way to share knowledge about content and user needs, gleaned from my prior work with the Dialog online service.

What inspired you to become involved with LMD?

My first SLA affiliation was the Information Technology Division, which is great for digital trends. After I became a member of the executive team at Dialog, I also joined LMD, to tune my management skills and share experiences with other leaders. LMD members and resources also provided lots of inspiration for the content of the Dialog Quantum2 leadership development program for information professionals.

Tell us about your history and current role with LMD

I’ve been an LMD member for more than 15 years and was honored to receive LMD’s Karen J. Switt Leadership award in 2010. In addition to my experience leading marketing for Dialog, I was the 2014-15 Chair of the SLA PR Advisory Council. It’s fun to continue a focus on communications with my new LMD role.

Are there any upcoming events or initiatives you’d like to tell us about?

We’ve now completed doing profiles of LMD’s Executive Board, and will be moving on to cover the entire Advisory Board, with the goal of connecting members to the leadership team. We hope this will encourage you to be in touch and share your ideas, thus helping the Board make LMD membership meaningful and relevant for you.

What do you think is a key challenge for SLA (or for our profession) at present?

One of the key challenges is communicating effectively about how we, as information professionals, contribute to the success of  our clients and organizations. Keeping proactive communication at the top of our agenda, as individuals, SLA members, and members of our profession, is crucial.

How can LMD members get more involved with the division or with SLA?

We really want to feature member write-ups of the Division’s webinars and Conference events, and other topics. You are invited to write up the key takeaways from an LMD event you attended, or offer comments about a book or website on leadership, or your personal views about leadership. Sharing our stories is one of the best ways to share our knowledge!

And, finally, a little-known fact about you – this could be a hobby, favorite book, or just whatever you’d like to share.

One of my beloved books as a child was Tolkien’s The Hobbit, and I read it to my own son multiple times from the time he was 5.  Now my grandson is ready, and I am reading to him from the same battered copy. I feel so lucky to have this opportunity to share my love of reading, and my favorite books, with another generation.