Achievement in Library Diversity Research
Montiel-Overall has had a full career focused on education, early literacy and cultural competence. Her teaching includes courses on school library administration, children and young adult literature in a multicultural society, equity of access for diverse populations and information environments from Hispanic and Native American perspectives. She joined the School of Information Resources and Library Science in 2003 and taught in the College of Education from 1992 to 2003. Previously she served as the grants coordinator at the City of Tucson City Manager’s Office and as the director of programs for the Community Foundation for Southern Arizona. Her early professional experience included teaching elementary, middle and high school students. She also provided a teacher preparation course for teachers in Sonora and Sinaloa, Mexico in conjunction with the Secreatría de Educación y Cultura de Sonora and the United States Information Agency (USIA). Recently, she conducted professional development seminars on librarianship at La Universidad National Autónoma de México (UNAM) and Tecnológico de Monterrey-Querétaro Campus. Montiel-Overall received a 2010 “Progressive Teacher of the Year Award” from the Progressive Library Association Student Organization.
Her research interests include teacher and librarian collaboration and equity of access issues involving Latino children. These two interests came together through a research grant from the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS). The IMLS grant provided funding for a study on “The Effect of Teacher and Librarian Collaboration on Science Information Literacy of Latino Students.” Findings from different aspects of the study are found in numerous professional peer reviewed professional journals. Her article on cultural competence “Cultural Competence: A Conceptual Framework for Library and Information Science Professionals,” appeared in Library Quarterly in 2009, and she is currently writing a book with several colleagues for library and information science professionals on Latinos and cultural competence.
Montiel-Overall is the organizer and chair of the Latino Literacy Roundtable (LLR). The mission of the LRR is to provide an opportunity for scholars and community to meet, discuss and share information about the development of literacy of Latinos in English and in Spanish. The Latino Literacy Roundtable is sponsored by the School of Information Resources and Library Science and has had a growing number of partners. REFORMA National and the Mexican Cónsul in Tucson have recently joined as partners. She notes, “It is my hope that every community in the U.S. will initiate a Latino Literacy Roundtable to discuss issues related to literacy of Latinos. This could have a significant positive effect on Latino literacy if this happened across the country.”
Montiel-Overall received her Ph.D. from Stanford University and a postdoctoral degree in library and information science from the University of Arizona. She has a Master's degree in bilingual education and a Master's degree in library and information science.