Champion Spotlight: Chris Kyauk

InnnovChrisTo be a Spectrum scholar is to always have a home in the library community. I consider it to be a great honor to be a part of Spectrum because I know that I will always be welcomed: whether it be at a conference, a meetup, or at a chance coming together. That is why I am supporting the Spectrum Scholarship as a Spectrum Champion. I want to ensure that other future scholars have the opportunities that I was able to enjoy through the Spectrum scholarship.

Being part of Spectrum opened doors for me. I still remember my first conference as a Spectrum Scholar at ALA Annual in New Orleans. It was so scary to be there: thousands of people I didn’t know, talking about things I knew nothing about. Spectrum was something I could connect with others about - anyone from a library student like I was to a director of a major metropolitan library system. I was able to build a network that I would not have been able to build otherwise.

The Spectrum scholarship was a significant financial help when I was in library school, and that was one of the main reasons I applied for it when I was a library school student. But Spectrum has come to mean something far more to me. Spectrum is the future of librarianship as a whole. We need to represent the communities we serve, and we need to have people to understand the issues that face our communities. We need diverse librarians, with diverse points of view. Spectrum is a pathway for us to achieve that goal; it is the lifeline we need to recruit and retain diverse librarians. That is why I am supporting Spectrum as a Spectrum champion. Please join me with your support.

Chris Kyauk currently serves as an Information Systems Specialist for the Alameda County Library. Chris administers library technology for the Alameda County Library. His goal and mission is to build the Library’s capacity to be a technologically cutting-edge, community- focused library. At the Alameda County Library, he has worked to bring new services to the organization - services such as an automated laptop lending kiosk, gigabit-enabled broadcasting, and improving operational workflows through technology. Chris is a 2010-2011 ALA Spectrum Scholar and a 2011-2012 ALA Emerging Leader, and is very interested in helping anyone who is interested in working in technology to improve how public libraries serve their communities.

Chris is a Spectrum Champion! He has graciously volunteered to serve as a Cohort Champion working on outreach to the 2010-2011 Class of Spectrum Scholars. If you are a Scholar from this year please consider emailing Chris to learn more about how you can help support Spectrum’s 20th Anniversary: A Celebration of Community. Cohort Champions have also committed to organizing a networking event in their region, activism, and fundraising efforts.