How and why did you get involved as an AWE Fund Organizer?
I saw the call on the SAA Leaders listserv and was glad someone else was thinking about supporting archival workers through a tough economic period. I wanted to support an effort that I would’ve needed not that long ago.
What is one cultural shift you would like to see come out of this crisis?
That the profession really evaluates our labor structure and we come out on the other side with less precarity. Overall cultural shift, that more people realize that the inequalities magnified by the pandemic will still be issues we need to solve after it has subsided.
What is one public policy shift you would like to see come out of this crisis?
There are so many.
What’s an archival item you’ve worked with that you love to share with people, and why?
I processed the W.R. White Paper at Baylor University and inside the collection was a portrait of Mr. White made of sugar. This sugar portrait was a surprise to us all and felt like a brick inside the manuscript box. The reason why there was a sugar portrait was to commemorate the Sugar Bowl (an important football game).
What’s one thing — archives related or not! — that you’re proud to have created or accomplished?
My program Amp Up Your Archives! I love working with students and helping people archive their stories.
Valencia L. Johnson is the Project Archivist for Student Life at Princeton University. She engages with student organizations on managing and preserving their records, in analog and born-digital formats.