Member Spotlight - Gail Kennedy

November 2013

Gail Kennedy
Arts and Outreach Librarian, Special Collections
University of Kentucky
LLAMA member since: 1998


Gail Kennedy

Professional experience, particularly LLAMA activities

Chair of the Resources Section RTSD (now ALCTS); member and chair of various committees in LLAMA particularly in the Buildings and Equipment Section from 1999-2005 and Chair of BES in 2006/07; President of LLAMA in 2010/11.  The most exciting part of my LLAMA presidential term was the opportunity to be involved in the ongoing movement to reshape LLAMA for the 21st century.  The part of this change that I focused upon was building relationships with the next generation of librarians who will lead LLAMA as well as our profession.

What is the best benefit of LLAMA experience?

The best benefit of LLAMA membership for me has been the connections I have made with incredible librarians and other professionals who are committed to libraries and taking leadership roles in moving libraries forward.  I have been mentored and advised and have made great friendships with a bevy of talented people who continue to inspire me.  In my opinion, LLAMA is the best place in ALA to network with leaders representing an array of types of libraries and other professions that support libraries.

What was the first job you ever had? 

My first job was in a public library at the age of 12 as a volunteer page.  I fell in love with the atmosphere in the old Carnegie building as well as the smell and feel of well-worn and well-loved books. 

If you had not chosen your present career, what would you be doing? 

I have always loved art, music and theatre and, if I wasn’t a librarian I would be working in some role supporting the arts.  I do actually get a foot in the arts through my current job as an arts librarian involved with outreach in Special Collections.  After I fully retire from UK Libraries, I hope I will be able to continue to be involved in the arts community.