October Member of the Month

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Kimberly M. Gay
Reference and Instruction Librarian,
John B. Coleman Library

Prairie View A&M University


Professional Experience 
Toting more than ten years of academic library experience and five years of professional librarianship, Ms. Gay has worked as a student library assistant, library research assistant, a library assistant II, an online Texas Woman’s University School of Library Science and Information Studies graduate assistant, and now an academic reference and instruction librarian for the John B. Coleman Library of Prairie View A&M University, which is a part of the Texas A&M University System.

She spent 18 years working in retail at the management level. She obtained her Master’s Degree in Library Science from Texas Woman’s University and is a lifetime inductee in the Beta Lambda Chapter of Beta Phi Mu International LIS Honor Society. She is featured in Who’s Who Among African American Librarians 2007 and the Cambridge Who’s Who Among Executives and Professionals 2007. She has a Bachelor’s Degree in Mass Communication (Print Journalism),also from TWU. Ms. Gay has been chair of TLA's Genealogy Round Table and currently participates in these TLA groups: Black Caucus Round Table; TSLAC: TexShare Education Services Working Group (by appointment); Reference Instruction Round Table; Library Instruction Round Table; and District 8- Houston Texas Regional Library System- Harris County.

Innovative Library Practices 
PBworks – http://pbworks.com/. As an academic reference and instruction librarian, I give students many handouts that end up misplaced or not looked at again. PBworks is an online collaboration tool that allows me to create a website of library research information tailored to a particular professor's research assignments. Students with access to the Internet are able to view all of these tailor-made library webpages of resources 24/7 without the need to find those print library handouts, library study guides, and library pathfinders. Comments and feedback can enhance the PBworks webpages for more student engagement. I am able to track how many students visit these pages and at what times. PBworks is an excellent collaboration tool that allows me to create and edit specialized library research webpages of materials for students that can include videos, slideshows, images, and documents to help engage, enlighten, and excite learning and teaching library resources.

Favorite Literary Character or Book
My grandfather was a dairy farmer for more than 40 years in Sulphur Springs, East Texas. I enjoyed the summer trips to the dairy farm and having the opportunity to see nature in all its finest hues and animals. I read Silent Spring by Rachel Carson in an undergraduate environmental biology class. It is still, today, my favorite book. I realized from Carson's account that when nature’s voices go silent, the world becomes silent because all that breathes needs those voices from nature.

Most Memorable TLA Experience
My first TLA conference was in San Antonio; Eva Poole was president that year. I remember going to the second floor of the famous exhibit hall areas and seeing the bird’s eye-view of the 500 plus vendors on the first floor. I stated to myself that I want to always have this wow feeling for libraries and librarians. I was mesmerized at the many booths of computer software companies, book publishing firms, and database vendors; plus TLA’s host of booths that included the Internet Café, TLA round table and TLA district booths, and even a mini TLA store. I want to be able to give library patrons a wow feeling about libraries and librarians as well. I have been involved with TLA for more than seven years, and I still get that wow feeling when I am at conferences, annual assemblies, and district meetings – all of these like minds and can do spirits coming together for collaborations and changes to the world of libraries and librarians.

Created on Sep 30, 2010 | Last updated July 16, 2012