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Lisa Gensel is the Archives Coordinator at the University of Delaware Archives and Records Management. She received her BA from Gettysburg College and her MA in History and Museum Studies from the University of Delaware.

ABA: In a few sentences, tell us what you’ll be presenting at ABA.

LG: I’ll be presenting about the Emergency Response Working Group for University Collections and Records (ERWG) that was created at the University of Delaware by several units, including University Archives, as an intra-institutional disaster response network. The mission of the ERWG is to coordinate emergency preparedness planning, response operations, and recovery activities among administrative and academic units that manage collections of objects and records of importance and value to the University of Delaware. The ERWG has provided opportunities for large and small campus units to work together on all aspects of emergency planning and preparedness, sharing expertise and providing response training opportunities for University staff and faculty. This approach has created partnership across campus for otherwise isolated staff members with common interests and concerns and has acted as a collective representation to the University administration of the emergency preparedness needs of its constituents.

ABA: What do you hope audiences will get from your talk?

LG: I hope that audience members from larger institutions will consider whether such an intra-institutional approach will work for them. All audience members can be reminded of the usefulness of a consortial response to issues surrounding emergency planning and disaster preparedness.

ABA: On a scale from 1 – 10, (10 being hardest) how easy would it be for other archivists to implement the project you’re presenting here?

LG: Depending upon the institution, that could vary from a 2-7. There has to be buy in from units across the institution and a willingness to share expertise from varying fields.

ABA: Describe your favorite collection or project in 3 words.

LG: Women’s College Scrapbooks

ABA: BONUS: If the city of Philadelphia was an archival collection, what would its series names be? [I. Sass and cynicism; II. Miscellaneous grime; III. Cheesesteaks; etc.]

LG: I. Historical Awareness
II. Crazed Sports Fans
III. Great Restaurants
IV. Mummers

ABA: Ha! Love it! Thanks Lisa!

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