Appointed as a Commissioner to the American Council of Learned Society’s Commission on Fostering and Sustaining Diverse Digital Scholarship (2021-2023), convened to investigate the current and desired state of the development, dissemination, use, and sustainability of digital resources in humanistic fields that are exploring racial and social justice. The goal of the commission’s recommendations is to foster more equitable structures for supporting the creation of these resources and to enable them to be widely and continuously accessible for research, teaching, and public knowledge.

Appointed as the Society of American Archivists’ Publications Editor and Chair over its publications program for a three-year term (2020-2023, recently re-appointed to a second term, 2023-2026). Set vision and philosophical direction for a nearly 25-year-old program that has published more than 90 books on technical and scholarly issues along with dozens of case studies and other electronic content; direct the work of the twelve-member Publications Board; acquire and review manuscripts, while maintaining a blind review process.

Named as Co-Investigator on an IMLS-funded project, Collective Responsibility: National Forum on Labor Practices for Grant-Funded Digital Positions, which will occur in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, in April 2019 and Tampa, Florida, in October 2019.

Served on the Advisory Board of A People’s Archive of Police Violence in Cleveland, a community activist-driven oral history project, primarily researching legal issues and corresponding with community members on web development, storage, workflow and other issues related to digital projects from 2015-2018.

Appointed to the Documenting the Now advisory board in 2016, a two-year project funded by the Andrew Mellon Foundation to develop an open source Web application that will preserve social media  messages for archivists, researchers, journalists, and educators.

Selected to participate in the Archives Leadership Institute 2015 cohort. The Archives Leadership Institute (ALI) is a program funded by the National Historical Publications and Records Commission (NHPRC), that provides advanced training for 25 archival leaders each year, giving them the knowledge and tools to transform the profession in practice, theory and attitude.

Presented at South by Southwest in 2013 with scholars Mark Anthony Neal and Meredith Clark on grassroots social media activism as it pertains to archivists, librarians, teachers and journalists.


Co-authored chapter (“Moving Toward Transformative Librarianship: Naming and Identifying Epistemic Supremacy”) with Myrna Morales in Knowledge Justice: Disrupting Library and Information Science through Critical Race Theory, published by MIT Press (2021).

Invited by Librarian of Congress Carla Hayden to join the Digital Strategy Roundtable of the Library of Congress (2019-2021), which is a group comprised of library and information management professionals, media, and the nonprofit and government sectors to advise the on developing the LoC’s plans to increase access to and use of digital collections by creating more machine-readable content or content that is prepared for computational analysis.

Appointed to the advisory committee for the Digital Library Federation (2018-2020), which will provide guidance, recommendations and feedback on the creative design and application of digital library technologies.

Invited to present the opening keynote at the 2017 Digital Frontiers conference at the University of North Texas at Denton.

Invited to present the opening keynote at the 2016 Digital Library Federation Forum in Milwaukee, Wis.

Chosen as a 2010-2011 American Library Association Spectrum Scholar.


Researched and designed multimedia and archival content for publication throughout The Nation’s 150th anniversary (2014-2016).

Won a Herman G. Kogan Media Award in from the Chicago Bar Association in 2007 for this article, which was part of a Chicago Reporter series on immigration.

Received Gold and Bronze awards, respectively, for Overall Headline Writing (as part of Modern Healthcare’s copy desk) from the American Society of Business Publication Editors2007, 2008, 2009, and 2010 National Editorial Awards.

 Selected Writings

American Writers Museum conversation with Jonathan Lethem

The Future of Chicago is the Future of Us All

Spike Lee’s Speech Was a Lesson in Black History

‘Office Space’ is Low-Key a Masterpiece About Unionizing Your Workplace 

Interview: Susan Orlean, The Library Book

Bizarro Worlds (BOOK)

Make You Disappear 

The Shape of Her Mouth

A Portrait of the Author

Shopping is Still Segregated

Intergenerational Trauma: “Black Museum” and the Toll Activism Takes on Black Women

8 Dystopian TV Shows and Movies that Explore Race and Racism

Librarians in the 21st Century: It Is Becoming Impossible to Remain Neutral

Nights a DJ Changed My Life

On Pain

If Harrison Ford Were Your Boyfriend

The Last Book I Loved: Brown Girl, Brownstones