Interview with Information Specialist Kevin Adams about the Value of SLA

Lauren Hays

Lauren Hays

May 21, 2024

Recently, I had the pleasure of speaking with Kevin Adams, the information specialist at the Institute of Environmental Science and Research in Christchurch, New Zealand, and a long-time member of the Special Libraries Association.

Lauren Hays: Would you please introduce yourself to our readers?

Kevin Adams: My name is Kevin Adams. I am the information specialist at the Institute of Environmental Science and Research in Christchurch, New Zealand.

Lauren: Will you please share information about your experience with SLA?

Kevin: I have been a member of SLA for approximately 30 years, and my experiences with the association have been excellent. Over the years, I have made an amazing number of connections, both professional and personal, and the amount of knowledge I have gained through being a member of SLA has proven invaluable.

In SLA, I have been able to serve at various levels including on the board and give back to the association in various capacities.

Lauren: Why did you originally decide to join SLA?

Kevin: I had heard of SLA before I joined it. I was working in the UK and heard about it from one of the staff at the temporary staffing agency I was working for. Then, when I was back in New Zealand, I joined an e-mail group called buslib-l. Many of the special librarians in that group were members of SLA. They gave me an insight into what SLA was about, and I realized there were many benefits to joining a group with so many niche subject areas. At the time, I joined a particular division related to the job I was doing, but have since joined a number of others. It was, and is, very beneficial to have a group of librarians who work in the same fields. It created a specialized network for me.

Lauren: What is SLA now doing that you are excited about?

Kevin: Some of the same things that drew me in the beginning. While SLA has changed, there are still communities relevant to the job I do. There is a network of people I can tap into if I have a problem, or a question. SLA has definitely progressed to remain relevant to the special library profession as it has evolved.

Lauren: How do you stay connected to the communities you are involved with?

Kevin: With the explosion of technology, it is easy to connect via Zoom or other media conferencing tools. I also see people at the annual conference and connect over email.

Lauren: Is there anything else you would like to share?

Kevin: Just to repeat that SLA has been my personal and professional home for many years. It has provided me with a great deal of benefits and value; the networks I have established, both professional and personal have been incredibly helpful to my work and I would not belong to any other organization.

Lauren Hays

Lauren Hays

Dr. Lauren Hays is an Assistant Professor of Instructional Technology at the University of Central Missouri, and a frequent presenter and interviewer on topics related to libraries and librarianship. Please read Lauren’s other posts relevant to special librarians. Take a look at Lucidea’s powerful integrated library systems, SydneyEnterprise, and GeniePlus, used daily by innovative special librarians in libraries of all types, sizes and budgets.

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