New Member Profile: Shirleanne Ackerman Gahan
My name is Shirleanne (“like Shirley + Ann”), and I currently work as the Serials Technical Assistant at the University of Portland Clark Library. I manage all of our electronic and print journals — ordering, renewals, online access issues, weeding, and more. I’ve just moved over to this position after working for a year as the Acquisitions Technical Assistant. In that role I ordered books, ebooks, and physical media; I invoiced, claimed, received, and copy-catalogued incoming materials for the Clark Library. Before joining the University of Portland team, I worked at the Catlin Gabel Upper School Library and at Portland State University.
My “first” career was as a professional baker. I went to culinary arts school and worked in several bakeries in the Atlanta, GA area (hometown) and here in Portland, OR. I baked artisan breads, wedding cakes, cookies, pies, pastries, you name it. I worked long hours and often overnight. After starting a family, I no longer saw that as a sustainable career. I went to Portland State University to get a bachelor’s degree in Art History (my other love besides food and libraries). I was hired at the campus ILL department as a student assistant, and I discovered that I had a lot of relatable experience. I loved the people I worked with and the academic library environment, especially technical services.
I am about halfway through my MLIS at the University of Washington iSchool. With a full-time job and family, I am always busy!! I have a seven-year-old son, a dog, and a cat. My husband and I just bought our first house in Portland. He works for Central City Concern, a non-profit organization serving homeless families. We love living in Oregon, where we enjoy growing and eating an abundance of good food. We like visiting Sauvie Island, bicycle commuting, camping and hiking. My favorite books to read are fantasy novels: medieval-style battles, dragons, magick, psychic powers, grit, a bit of romance, political intrigue, or anything that is worlds away from “reality” and academic articles, hah!
I joined OLA because I want to be part of the tight network the library community has formed in the Northwest. I want to know what is happening all over the state, learn from others, and be poised to help where I can. Like I said before, I am becoming immersed in technical services as I gain academic and professional skills in that area. I still have a heartfelt interest in working with art-related materials. I’m finding that the library world is always changing and offering something new, so I’m open to the possibilities!
Shirleanne Ackerman Gahan