National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators

National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators NAGARA is a professional association dedicated to the effective use and management of federal, state, and local government records and information.
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NAGARA is member-supported, member-driven, and member-responsive. NAGARA is governend by a board of directors that represent local, state, and federal governments. Most of its work is carried out through committees, task forces, and other groups which provide for board member input and participation. NAGARA's approaches ensure that it deals with immediate issues in a practical way that produces real solutions that its members can apply and use. Government at all levels is changing and adapting to meet shifting public expectations, service needs, resource levels, and changes in our society and economy. Its records and information resources are essential to the sound management of government. Records represent a major invenstment of time and technology, and the dramatic shift to creation and use of electronic records and information pose records management problems of unprecedented complexity and magnitude. Managing government records and information today is a demanding challenge that requires skill, dedication, and an understanding of management techniques and technology and a capacity to adopt new techniques to meet changing issues and needs. This is why NAGARA is so important to government records managers and archivists. We are the government records and information professionals.

Does your agency/organization already use Microsoft 365 or are you moving towards using this platform? Are you unsure if...
01/13/2021

Does your agency/organization already use Microsoft 365 or are you moving towards using this platform? Are you unsure if the records management functionality is sufficient to meet your statutory, regulatory, and policy requirements?

Then REGISTER TODAY for NAGARA's 2021 Winter Online Forum and learn from two Federal agencies in different stages of implementing Microsoft 365. Our presenters will address what to do in the beginning stage of implementation, how to work with multiple teams inside an organization, and how to work with Microsoft.

CLICK HERE TO LEARN MORE OR REGISTER: https://www.nagara.org/Public/Events/Event_Display.aspx?EventKey=f148f50d-673f-4c81-9836-0e95f3002111&iSearchResult=true&WebsiteKey=f614a8de-d008-443d-ab9e-6682b9a7a96f

Are you interested in serving your profession as part of the leadership of NAGARA? Do you know of other qualified collea...
01/12/2021

Are you interested in serving your profession as part of the leadership of NAGARA? Do you know of other qualified colleagues who might be interested in serving the profession? If you answered yes to either of these questions, then we invite you to consider serving on the NAGARA Board of Directors!

This year, NAGARA will be accepting nominations for eight (8) open positions: Vice-President, Treasurer, Federal Representative, State Representative (two openings), Local Representative (two openings), and At-Large Representative.

NAGARA hopes to receive a broad and diverse group of nominees to present before the membership for a vote, so we strongly encourage you to nominate someone (or yourself) today: https://www.nagara.org/NAGARA-Custom/Board-Nominations

Is your organization/agency managing e-mails using Microsoft 365? Then REGISTER today for NAGARA's "2021 Winter Online F...
01/08/2021

Is your organization/agency managing e-mails using Microsoft 365? Then REGISTER today for NAGARA's "2021 Winter Online Forum: Microsoft 365" and learn from Jennifer Winkler, City Records Manager, City of Seattle (WA) in this session dedicated to this very topic: "Email Management Using Microsoft 365 Resources"

In 2015, the City of Seattle, WA moved to Exchange online for email, thus starting their use of the Microsoft 365 platform. This Forum session will demonstrate to attendees how the City Records Management Program worked in conjunction with Information Technology (IT) to find a solution for managing email in an on-line environment. This session will also include a discussion about the change City employees experienced, and the e-mail training that occurred - both of which were vital aspects of successful implementation to online email management.

LEARN MORE OR REGISTER HERE: https://www.nagara.org/Public/Events/Event_Display.aspx?EventKey=f148f50d-673f-4c81-9836-0e95f3002111&iSearchResult=true&WebsiteKey=f614a8de-d008-443d-ab9e-6682b9a7a96f

Government organizations have been moving to Microsoft 365 in greater numbers over the last few years. This pace may hav...
12/22/2020

Government organizations have been moving to Microsoft 365 in greater numbers over the last few years. This pace may have increased with the move to full-time telework and moving toward 100% digital processes. As this move has accelerated, records managers and archivists have been wondering how to address records management considerations in Microsoft 365.

Is your employer using Microsoft 365? Are you curious what records your organization is creating, how to apply retention schedules to the content, how to manage records in Teams, questions about eDiscovery, or whether or not the records management functionality in Microsoft 365 enough?

If these question have gone through your mind, then REGISTER TODAY for NAGARA's 2021 Winter Online Forum: Microsoft 365! Click here to learn more and register: https://www.nagara.org/Public/Events/Event_Display.aspx?EventKey=f148f50d-673f-4c81-9836-0e95f3002111&iSearchResult=true&WebsiteKey=f614a8de-d008-443d-ab9e-6682b9a7a96f

Today, the NAGARA Board of Directors announced the formation of a new committee to address equity and social justice. Th...
12/01/2020
NAGARA Forms New Committee to Address Equity and Social Justice

Today, the NAGARA Board of Directors announced the formation of a new committee to address equity and social justice. The Racism, Equity, Accessibility, Diversity, and Inclusion Committee – or the READI Committee for short – seeks to create an equitable, welcoming, inclusive, and culturally-competent organization that represents our members and responds to their unique needs.

We invite you to click the link below to learn more and volunteer to serve on the READI Committee today!

https://nagara.org/Public/News_Room/Articles/NAGARA-Forms-New-Committee-to-Address-Equity-and-Social-Justice

The NAGARA Board of Directors is pleased to announce the formation of a new committee to address...

We conclude our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Lisa Bernhardt, Administr...
10/30/2020

We conclude our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Lisa Bernhardt, Administrator, Maricopa County, AZ.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?"

Lisa replied with some considerations and advice for records management during a National Emergency like COVID:

"1) Don’t print if you don’t have to;
"2) Your ability to receive (or keep) federal funding for your response efforts is directly related to your record keeping;
"3) Be sure you have copies of your Essential Records available electronically;
"4) Outsourcing a task does not outsource the government’s obligation to manage those records;
"5) Don’t forget about creating, maintaining and disposition of records, when we are quickly standing up IT applications to manage things like testing, tracing, etc."

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Leanne Davis, Records and...
10/29/2020

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Leanne Davis, Records and Information Management Specialist, U.S. Department of Energy.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?" Here's Leanne's reply:

"During the pandemic, there have been both negative and positive impacts in my work with records management. One of the negatives is the inability to effectively and efficiently manage hardcopy records. However, on the positive side, it has created an opportunity to demonstrate the benefits of working with digital/electronic records. In my own life, I’ve made an effort to find other ways to connect and stay engaged with friends, family, and co-workers. This has taken effort, creativity, and patience."

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Saundra Passailaigue, Cit...
10/28/2020

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Saundra Passailaigue, City Secretary, City of Leon Valley.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?" Here's Saundra's reply:

"Honestly, I feel like we have been busier than normal. My office hours have increased instead of decreased and that goes for the number of record request we have seen. I suppose it is because people are home and have time watch our meetings online now which has made them curious and want to know more about the functions of the city.

"I am managing the ‘new normal’ only because the city allowed me to bring on additional help so we created an Open Record Request Coordinator position and hired Ana Federico to assist me with the open records duties of this office. I don’t think I could manage without her help."

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Ana Federico, Open Record...
10/27/2020

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Ana Federico, Open Records Request Coordinator, Office of the City Secretary, City of Leon Valley

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?" Here's Ana's reply:

"Due to COVID-19, our offices closed to the public for nearly six (6) months. However, our office was not impacted as we have continued to work on records non-stop. I personally learned how to make better and more durable choices that can help me and my family stay healthy and happy throughout this pandemic."

Happy Monday! We being our final week of celebrating October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Aly...
10/26/2020

Happy Monday! We being our final week of celebrating October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Alyssa Vaughn, Archivist, State Archives/Oklahoma Department of Libraries.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?" Here's Alyssa's reply:

“The pandemic has made providing access to digital content more important than ever, and it has freed up more of my time to focus on uploading state government records to Digital Prairie so a wider audience can access them.” (Visit https://digitalprairieok.net/ to see the Digital Prairie electronic library)

We wrap up this week's celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Gina Risetter, Gov...
10/23/2020

We wrap up this week's celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Gina Risetter, Government Information Specialist, at the U.S. Department of Treasury.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?" Here's Gina's reply:

"I started a new position with the Department of Treasury back in April when the pandemic was still relatively new, and I can honestly say that being onboarded virtually and learning a whole new job virtually changes a lot in how you approach your work. Overall though, I think it's taught me new depths in flexibility and willingness to take on new challenges!"

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Megan Jackson, Records an...
10/22/2020

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Megan Jackson, Records and Disclosure Officer, at the Washington State Department of Licensing.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?" Here's Megan reply:

"We rely on Record Coordinators across our agency to assist in our record management. With the pandemic and most of our agency teleworking, we had to work on a plan to rotate our record coordinators in to the office when needed. We also have some manual paper processes with our State Records Center, and we are working to make the process electronic. We are constantly learning new ways to be virtual! Such as finding ways to connect with our co-workers, and employees, and using electronic signature systems. Navigating and managing this new normal life, has been challenging to say the least. My husband and I both started teleworking in March, and we have two young kiddos who are attending school from home. I have a demanding work schedule and often in back to back meetings. And all the while, doing our best to help our agency understand and manage our records. With all of this said, I try to find the positive. This new opportunity has allowed us to learn more efficient, and electronic ways of doing things. I appreciate and value the extra time with my family. I love that I can go work in my garden at lunch time. And, I definitely do not miss the commute."

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Lauren Signorino, Corpora...
10/21/2020

We continue our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Lauren Signorino, Corporate Records Analyst, Office of the City Clerk, Austin, TX.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?" Here's Lauren's reply:

“Normally it is usually difficult to get departments/divisions excited or engaged about Information Management; now during the pandemic, Records and Information Management has taken a complete back seat. Their focus is primarily on maintaining or restarting basic business function and not on Records and Information Management. I have tried to manage this ‘new normal’ by reaching out on a more frequent basis if not just to ‘check-in’ to let them know I’m here and willing to help if I can. It’s challenging but also in a way exciting. Trying to find new ways to help my departments cope & remain compliant through these uncertain times.”

Our celebration of October's American Archives Month continues by highlighting NAGARA member Shawna Atkinson, City Secre...
10/20/2020

Our celebration of October's American Archives Month continues by highlighting NAGARA member Shawna Atkinson, City Secretary, City of Abilene, TX.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?" Here's Shawna's reply:

"The pandemic has definitely made things interesting in the world of records management! With people working from home more now, it's been more of a challenge to ensure everything is saved properly, and that things are not lost in the shuffle from office to home and back to office. We are constantly adapting!"

Happy Monday! We pick up our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Diane Caimi,...
10/19/2020

Happy Monday! We pick up our celebration of October's American Archives Month by highlighting NAGARA member Diane Caimi, Records and Information Management Specialist at the United States Attorney's Office – Eastern District of PA.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?" Here's Diane's reply:

"As the records manager for the U.S. Attorney’s Office – Eastern District of PA, one of the first items I had to address was our training and educational methods, we went from in-person to on-line in the matter of 48 hours. We had an immediate need remind the office on what a record is and how to securely transport records. Another hurdle was updating our forms so they would be e-signature ready for those who were working from home, enabling us to fulfill our business requirements."

Happy Friday! We wrap up this week's American Archives Month member spotlight by highlighting Mariessa Dobrick, Referenc...
10/16/2020

Happy Friday! We wrap up this week's American Archives Month member spotlight by highlighting Mariessa Dobrick, Reference Archivist at the Vermont State Archives & Records Administration.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?"

Here's what Mariessa said:

“I’m a passionate reference archivist and the pandemic means our reference room is only open by appointment. Travel has been curtailed and we miss seeing researchers from all over the country. It is still important to provide access to public records and queries and copy requests remain high. The new normal has meant being flexible and being ready for anything.”

NAGARA was saddened to hear of the loss of a tireless champion for archives, Dr. David B Gracy, who passed away Septembe...
10/15/2020

NAGARA was saddened to hear of the loss of a tireless champion for archives, Dr. David B Gracy, who passed away September 26, 2020. Dr. Gracy was known as a mentor for new archivists, a superstar in the classroom and professional organizations, and an archivist who inspired all other archivists. He worked in both the university and government environment as both a teacher and an archivist, serving as director of the Texas State Archives from 1977 to 1986. His enthusiasm, kindness and tireless energy will be missed by the archival world. Dr. Gracy never failed to convince others of the value, relevance, and significance of archives and archivists to all members of society. His colloquial charm and unbridled enthusiasm inspired students and established professionals to push the boundaries of the traditional definition of an archivist. Fearless and outspoken, the legacy of Dr. David B. Gracy cannot be understated.

This statement can also be found on the NAGARA website here: https://nagara.org/Public/News_Room/Articles/David-B-Gracy

Our celebration of October's American Archives Month continues by highlighting NAGARA member Camilla G. Pitman, City Cle...
10/15/2020

Our celebration of October's American Archives Month continues by highlighting NAGARA member Camilla G. Pitman, City Clerk, City of Greenville (SC).

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?"
Here's Camilla's reply:

“Changes in staffing during the pandemic has impacted my workload. In March, I managed only my records for the City Clerk’s Office and City Council and a few months later I was given responsibility for records and retention for the entire organization. Help wanted! (LOL)”

Our celebration of October's American Archives Month continues by highlighting NAGARA member Laney Chavez, Manager at th...
10/14/2020

Our celebration of October's American Archives Month continues by highlighting NAGARA member Laney Chavez, Manager at the Houston Metropolitan Research Center Houston Public Library.

We recently asked many of our newer members to respond to one of two questions: "How has the COVID-19 Pandemic affected your work" and "How have you managed life in the 'new normal'?"
Here's Laney's reply:

"Working in a local public library archives means that our main focus is helping our customers. But with the pandemic, we have shifted away from in-person reference and outreach. This has allowed us to reprioritize our work and accomplish more administrative/back-end tasks including cleaning up databases, finding-aids, and other reference resources as well as improving our websites and other online platforms. It has also encouraged us to explore more virtual programming opportunities and ways of engaging with our customers remotely. I think this has been the push we've needed to really enhance our web presence and expand what we can offer to our archives users remotely.

"For me, managing life in the 'new normal' has been about managing expectations and taking a step back and saying, "what can I do right now that would still be positive step forward?" I think that applies to personal as well as professional life. The 'new normal' has, more than anything, forced me to assess my priorities and decide what is most important. It's definitely been a struggle, but I believe things like this are a catalyst for growth. So I'm hopeful that the future will bring positive change and forward progress."

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Your website is currently down. Not sure if you were aware.
Was a great conference! Thank you!
Looking forward to seeing everyone in DC this week! #NAGARA18 Post here if you’ll be there and feel free to include our tag in any posts or pictures.
Hello NAGARA! SAA's Reference, Access and Outreach Section has established a new committee, the Public Services Assessment Committee (PSAC), and we are recruiting potential members through November 3rd. See https://goo.gl/forms/ScdviBlV5hrSmDuE2 to volunteer. Would love to have representation from government archives! By way of background, during the work of the SAA-ACRL/RBMS Joint Task Force on the Development of Standardized Statistical Measures for Public Services in Archival Repositories and Special Collections Libraries (2014-August 2017) a number of related initiatives were raised by archivists and librarians. While related, these initiatives were outside the scope of the task force’s charge and so were not taken up by the group. The RAO Public Services Assessment Committee will work with standards and best practices (including the proposed standard submitted by the joint task force) to explore and promote measures archives and special collections can use to assess public services functions along with associated resources necessary for implementing an assessment program. The committee will: Promote implementation of the Standardized Statistical Measures for Public Services in Archival Repositories and Special Collections Libraries. Pursue establishment of a national survey of archives and special collections shared data repository (to include public services data). Gather, create, and share resources useful to archives implementing and managing existing assessment programs including, but not limited to: case studies on implementing assessment programs and using specific tools, example survey instruments, example reports, example impact stories, and examples of archives using and customizing the READ Scale and similar tools. Advocate for and develop continuing education opportunities for assessment work in public services. Provide an annual report to RAO and all interested parties. Collaborate with groups from SAA, ACRL-RBMS, and other organizations working on similar issues or wishing to use data and assessment of public services in their work. This committee will serve in an advisory role and collaborate with related committees both inside and outside SAA. The committee’s products are intended to benefit the archives profession and users of archival repositories. Committee members will be solicited primarily, but not exclusively, from the RAO Section membership. Committee chairs/co-chairs will be appointed by the RAO Chair. If you have any questions, feel free to contact me, Amy Schindler, at [email protected], 402-554-6046. Please feel free to share this announcement with folks who are not members of RAO. We look forward to hearing from you by November 3rd. See https://goo.gl/forms/ScdviBlV5hrSmDuE2 to volunteer. Best, Amy Schindler
Awesome annual meeting in Boise! Thanks to the local arrangements and program committees for all their hard work. And of course to Executive Director Johnny Hadlock for his attention to detail and creativity!