New Member Profiles
NEW MEMBER PROFILE: Meg Butler
This issue's newest new member is Margaret (Meg) Butler, recently-crowned FCIL librarian at New York Law School (NYLS). She brings to her work a unique combination of previous employment experiences--theater usher, third-grade teacher, lawyer, and West editor.
Originally hired as Evenings and Weekend Librarian at NYLS, Meg is getting up to FCIL speed by reading--blogs, manuals, guides, listservs--and especially by answering reference questions. "Finding answers to questions is a great way to learn," she notes. Meg also attended as many FCIL programs as possible at AALL in New Orleans, where she also received the FCIL-SIS Senior Caucus's wine prize for the newest member attending the business meeting.
While Meg's least favorite aspect of her job is the feeling that she has "so much to learn to do a good job helping patrons," she also enjoys "knowing that I am going to learn something new every day," which augurs well for her future as an FCIL librarian.
Meg says she reads and speaks French "passably well," though she describes her grammar as "pretty atrocious." She has been reading LeMonde.fr and listening to radiofrance.fr to improve her comprehension.
When not reading LeMonde.fr, Meg is a voracious reader of almost all kinds of fiction (genres or literary), and reads nonfiction selectively.
Like many FCIL librarians, Meg also enjoys travel. She adds, "In my family, people make lists--often as word play, but sometimes about other things. My aunt recently started a list for us sharing the subway/rapid transit systems we have ridden. My notable contributions to the list included the London Underground, and subways in Paris and Lille, France; Prague, Czech Republic; Taipei, Taiwan; and of course, New York City."
With luck, next year she can add Portland's glorious light rail and streetcar system to the list. Welcome, Meg!
NEW MEMBER PROFILE: Trinie Thai-Parker
Many of you have already met one of our FCIL new members, Trinie Thai-Parker. Trinie has worked as a Reference Librarian for Foreign, Comparative and International Law at the Harvard Law Library since January 2006.
Trinie racked up a lot of miles as a child--born in Hong Kong, she grew up "in a number of places, including New Orleans, Singapore, Malaysia, Indonesia and Brunei." She also lived in Beijing for a year before going to the UK for university. She continued that peripatetic pattern as an adult; after getting two degrees in the UK (International Relations, and Law and Chinese Studies) she obtained an LLM at the European Academy of Legal Theory in Brussels. Jobs took her to Taiwan, where she worked as a government editor / translator, and to Atlanta, where she worked on death penalty abolition for Amnesty International.
Trinie received her MLIS at the University of Illinois and worked in the library learning "a great deal" from FCIL librarian Jane Williams. At Harvard, Trinie has continued to learn, including taking foreign language classes. She already reads both full-formed and simplified Chinese, and has a working knowledge of French.
In addition to teaching legal research to LLM students this year, Trinie will also teach workshops on comparative country legal research methodology, and an introduction to international human rights research. Of course, she also has other responsibilities, and this year's main project includes helping to redesign and update the library's FCIL research guides. "I spend most of my time working with students and faculty, both on the reference desk and through individual appointments."
Asked to say what she likes most about her job, Trinie had this enthusiastic response: "What I love best about this job is that there is always something new to learn. This is particularly true with foreign law, which is such a vast area but usually involves very discrete questions. I also love the interaction that I have with our LLM students and my colleagues. We are a large library with over 100 staff and the diversity of personalities here makes it a real pleasure to work here. Another aspect of my job that I love is being encouraged to learn new languages. Because of the language skills of my colleagues, it also means that I always have someone to practice with, too."
Although you wouldn't know it from Trinie's slim figure, she "loves to cook and to eat." She also collects books on cookery and food ethnography. If you haven't yet met Trinie, keep an eye out for her at AALL and other venues.