• 13 Feb 2018 2:01 PM | Anonymous

    During CAA’s Steering Committee election, we’d like to hear from Steering Committee members about their work with CAA. Greer Martin serves on the Steering Committee as the Communications Manager.

    When I joined the Steering Committee in 2016, I was new to Chicago and didn't know many archivists in the area. Steering gave me an opportunity to expand my professional network and to learn more about the institutions that house Chicago's history. If you are a "lone arranger" or work at a small institution, Steering will be particularly rewarding - you will feel as though you have more colleagues by your side than before.

    If you are new to CAA or have not served on a subcommittee, I encourage you to run. Steering benefits from new voices and perspectives, and we would be lucky to have yours. Maybe you've been a member of CAA for years, have served on a subcommittees, and have ideas for the organization as a whole. On Steering, you can put these ideas into action, establish programmatic goals and shape new initiatives.

    Whatever your background or history with CAA, serving on the Steering Committee is a personally and professionally rewarding experience, and your contribution will have an impact on this volunteer-run organization. 

    The deadline for volunteering for the Steering Committee is Wednesday, March 21. Feel free to contact Greer or other Steering Committee members with questions.

  • 06 Feb 2018 4:33 PM | Erin Matson (Administrator)

    The CAA Archives & Archivists of Color Interest Group announces a travel grant to the 2018 Midwest Archives Conference. 

    For more information, please visit

  • 05 Feb 2018 3:16 PM | Erin Matson (Administrator)
    Are you interested in becoming more involved in the Chicago archives community? Consider volunteering to serve on the Chicago Area Archivists Steering Committee. Not only will you get to work closely with some of your colleagues in the profession, but CAA service is a great way to gain valuable experience in preparation for service in regional and national archival organizations.

    Wonder what the Steering Committee does? The Steering Committee is tasked with:

    • Establishing programmatic goals for the organization
    • Responding to the needs of CAA members
    • Representing CAA within the larger profession and to the general public
    • Setting standards to ensure the sustainability of CAA
    • New this year, expanding communications efforts for the CAA

    Think you aren’t experienced enough to serve on the Steering Committee? Think again: any organization needs fresh viewpoints to remain vibrant. And CAA is meant to serve the needs of all of its members, including those who are new to the profession.

    Worried about over-committing yourself? Steering Committee members are elected to two-year terms that begin and end at the Members Meeting in March/April. The time commitment is relatively minimal, consisting of monthly in-person meetings with occasional business conducted by email.

    Candidates for the four open seats for the 2018-20 term will be elected by a vote of CAA members cast electronically after the Members Meeting on Wednesday, April 4, 2018.

    Service on the Steering Committee is open to all CAA members in good standing. To volunteer, submit a brief (1-2 paragraphs) Statement of Interest outlining your background and motivation for serving on the Steering Committee to Please include your full name, title, place of work (if applicable), and preferred contact phone and email address.

    Statements of interest will be distributed to CAA members prior to the Members Meeting. Candidates will also have an opportunity to introduce themselves at the meeting on April 4.

    The deadline to submit your Statement is Wednesday, March 21 at 5:00pm.

    Want more information? Contact information for current Steering Committee Members is available on the CAA Website. Please reach out to one of them and ask about his or her service on Steering. 

    Please send general questions or comments to

  • 07 Dec 2017 2:24 PM | Anonymous

    Thank you to everyone who attended the CAA Holiday Party on December 5, 2017. Seventy-two people joined their fellow archivists to eat, drink, and be merry! The party is always a fun way to close out the year. CAA hopes to see everyone again soon in 2018!

  • 14 Nov 2017 10:34 AM | Erin Matson (Administrator)

    Thank you to everyone who attended the Endangered Archives Panel discussion on November 9, 2017. Twenty-five people, from the CAA and CARA communities, joined us to hear about the state of various endangered archives in the US.

    Three panelists discussed their work with various archives of religious communities and the effort that is being put in to preserve the history of these groups; an urgent body of work considering the religious community is rapidly decreasing in size. We also heard from a consortium archivist who works closely with a number of institutions in the Chicagoland area to share resources and process collections while providing opportunities to emerging minority archivists. The presentations were followed by a Q&A session.  

    Don’t miss CAA’s upcoming events, including our annual holiday party on December 5!

  • 07 Nov 2017 4:43 PM | Erin Matson (Administrator)

    Do you follow CAA on Twitter? How about Facebook? CAA is on both as @ChicagoArchvsts (Twitter) and @chicagoarchivists (Facebook), and we have a new team tweeting and posting our content!

    Lisa Geiger works with the Exhibits Registration department at the Field Museum and has a background in cultural resource collection management and archival processing. She is currently enrolled in the UIUC iSchool MLIS LEEP program with an expected spring 2018 graduation date.

    Derek Potts is an Archives Assistant at DePaul Special Collections and Archives. His work includes processing community collections and managing zine reproductions for incarcerated people. 

    If you have news that you want CAA to post on our social media channels, you can contact Lisa ( and Derek ( directly, or email with the subject line "Social Media." When submitting content, its helpful to include any or all of the following: 

    • Suggested caption
    • Links to any associated online content
    • Any associated hashtags or images
    • Recommended date of posting initial post as well as future reminders.
    • Any additional information or “talking points” that might be useful for the social media team to know in responding to any comments or questions that may arise, if applicable.
    We also ask that you encourage your institutions and employers to follow us! We want to build our networks so that we can know when there is relevant news to share with our community. 

    Last but not least, welcome and thanks to Derek and Lisa!

  • 03 Nov 2017 2:35 PM | Erin Matson (Administrator)

    Thanks to everyone that came out for CAA's first installment of CAA Reacts! Six people joined us at Red Lion Pub where we talked with Derek Potts about his work providing copies of zines from the DePaul University archives to people who are incarcerated. Derek passed around copies of the zines, which are part of the Anthony Rayson Zine Collection. It was a small group but everyone came with lots of enthusiasm and there was much to discuss over drinks and pub cheese. Everyone is excited about the next installment, so stay tuned!

    CAA Reacts is a discussion group geared toward discussing with a local lens the social, political, and cultural factors that affect our profession. Read the full description of the event here. 

    If you have an idea for a topic or speaker for another CAA Reacts event please email it to, with the subject line "CAA Reacts."  

  • 31 Aug 2017 9:41 AM | Anonymous
    We are excited to announce a new pilot program sponsored by the Chicago Area Archivists: Interest Groups! The mission of the interests groups is to give CAA members an opportunity to gather informally around common archival subjects in the Chicago area. During the pilot program, we are hosting three Interest Groups: Archives and Archivists of Color Group, AV Materials Group, and Membership and Association Group. We welcome interested members to learn more: 

    Archives and Archivists of Color Group Led by: Jennifer Ho

    A forum for discussion related to issues and current events facing archivists of color, as well as archival collections concerning people of color.

    Topics at discussion group may include but are not limited to:
    • Ethnic diversity in the archives field
    • Publications relating to archives and people of color
    • Collections acquisitions, management and outreach of archives of color

    Audio-Visual Materials Group Led by: Amy Belotti and Kristin MacDonough
    In effort to promote communication amongst archivists that handle audio-visual materials, Audio-Visual Materials group facilitates discussions around the care, management, and use of a/v collections.

    Topics at discussion group may include but are not limited to:
    • Material standards
    • Metadata
    • Digitization
    • Materials care

    Membership and Association Group (working name)  Led by: Amber Dushman
    A gathering for association archivists to meet and discuss their collections, and challenges presented by their unique organizations

    Topics at discussion group may include but are not limited to:
    • Records Management
    • Oral Histories
    • Public Digital Libraries
    • Collection Policies
    • Intern programs

    Look for event registration in the coming days. Events will include discussion groups, happy hours, online discussions, and much more!

    The pilot program is running between September 2017 through February 2018 for members only with the hopes of broadening the scope of groups beginning at the 2018 CAA Members Meeting. We welcome ideas for the interest groups above, as well as ideas for an interest group that you’d be interested in leading! Please send us your suggestions!

    Please send questions or comments to
  • 25 Aug 2017 12:45 PM | Hathaway Hester

    Thank you to everyone who attended CAA All-Ages Archives on August 22 at Oak Park Public Library. Eight people joined us to hear Chicago-area colleagues share their experiences of welcoming students of all ages into the archives.

    Leigh A. Tarullo and Emily Reiher of Oak Park Public Library presented on Hacking Hemingway, a digitization and outreach project targeting middle school aged students through a partnership with the Oak Park Elementary School District. The grant-funded project not only digitized a portion of the Hemingway family collection, but it also engaged students in creative ways - introducing them to the world of archives through idea boxes, Minecraft, and 6 word stories.

    Kellee Warren, Instructor and Special Collections Librarian at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC), spoke on UIC’s partnership with Chicago Metro History Fair (CMHF), an initiative to spark students’ interest in history. New to the 2016 collaboration were a change in research rules that helped ease students into working with the unfamiliar world of special collections and the introduction of a staff planning timeline to assist in better managing UIC Special Collections staff resources during the time-consuming, but fulfilling, CMHF research cycle.

    Following the presentations, attendees engaged in a lively Q & A and brainstorming session.

    Didn't make it to this event? Don't worry - Chicago Open Archives is just around the corner!

  • 16 Aug 2017 9:54 AM | Erin Matson (Administrator)

    Thank you to everyone who attended the Chicago Open Archives (COA) Spotlight Event Workshop on Tuesday, August 8 at DePaul University. Eight joined us to hear more about COA 2017: Hidden Stories and the changes to this year's format. Working Group chair, Morgen MacIntosh-Hodgetts welcomed the group and introduced the new format:

    • A month-long celebration
    • Spotlight Events

    Working Group committee members Amber Dushman and Meg Hall were on hand to demonstrate examples of Spotlight events:


    The gathered participates had an opportunity to brainstorm ideas and ask questions:

    COA Working Group member, Meg Hall and participant, Virginia Jung, OSB discuss potential COA ideas

    Q: Are students allowed to events?

    A: Yes! COA is intended for audiences of all ages. Host sites decide the appropriate audience for their program.


    Q: Can I have an event in the evening?

    A: Based on feedback we received last year, the working group opened up COA to the whole month, including weekends and evenings. When filling out the registration form, host sites pick the day and time most convenient for them!


    Q: Will CAA promote my event?

    A: Yes, all events will be included on the CAA calendar, and Spotlight events will be featured on the Facebook and Twitter pages.


    Q: My collections are difficult to get to, can I hold the event  somewhere else?

    A: Yes, consider holding an event in an nearby meeting space.


    Q: My institute is thinking of doing a general tour and a spotlight event, is that okay? And should I fill out two registration forms?

    A: Yes! We invite host sites to hold multiple events if they are willing.


    Q: I want to hold a spotlight event, but I won’t know the specifics by the August 22 deadline, can I still register?

    A: Yes, Absolutely!


    Leo Belleville and Laura Berfield, Working Group members, also announced other changes for COA 2017: Hidden Stories:

    • An Online Trivia Game: visitors will use clues gathered from the COA sites to answer trivia and win a prize! (details to follow)
    • All promotional materials will be digital and distributed to host sites via email this year. This will give participating sites the opportunity to customize the material using images from their collections. Host sites will receive customizable promotional materials as PDF files in early September.

    COA Working Group Chair Morgen MacIntosh-Hodgetts discuss promotional materials with CAA Steering member Kara Jefts


    All events must be submitted by August 22, 2017. Submit your event for Chicago Open Archives 2017. Have questions? Please email


    For more information and to register, visit the Workshop events page.

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