Mary Whisner, 1956 –

Hall of Fame Induction: 2021

Significant AALL Service

Mary Whisner

  • Member, Special Committee on Public Relations, 1990–92
  • Co-Director, AALL Institute on Introduction to American Law: Law for the Non-J.D., July 1997
  • Author, Law Library Journal “Practicing Reference” Quarterly Column, 1999–2019
  • Member, Special Committee on Benefits for AALL Members, 2001–02

Professional Honors & Awards

  • Joseph L. Andrews Bibliographical Award, 1997
  • Law Librarians of Puget Sound President’s Excellence Award, 1997
  • University of Washington Distinguished Librarian Award, 2009
  • Roy M. Mersky Spirit of Law Librarianship Award, 2014 (for work with Youth Tutoring Program)
  • Marian Gould Gallagher Distinguished Service Award, 2021
  • AALL Hall of Fame, Inductee, 2021

Selected Publications by the Inductee

NOTE: Mary Whisner wrote 75 articles, of varying lengths, as the author of the “Practicing Reference Column” in Law Library Journal from 1999 to 2019. Though too numerous to list individually in this Hall of Fame Brief Vitae, the articles may be found in each quarterly issue of LLJ from the Spring 1999 issue (“Golf Buddy Reference Questions”) to the Fall 2019 issue (“Looking for Waldo”).

  • “Gender-Specific Clothing Regulation: A Study in Patriarchy,” Harvard Women’s Law Journal 5 (1982): 73–119.
  • “Basic Legal Research in Washington.” In Martin Cerjan et al., Washington Legal Researcher’s Deskbook, 45–91. Seattle: Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, 1994.
  • “Administrative Materials: Regulations.” In Martin Cerjan et al., Washington Legal Researcher’s Deskbook, 93–108. Seattle: Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, 1994.
  • “Glossary of Legal Research Terms.” In Martin Cerjan et al., Washington Legal Researcher’s Deskbook, 299–306. Seattle: Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, 1994.
  • “Computer-Assisted Legal Research.” In Martin Cerjan et al., Washington Legal Researcher’s Deskbook, 227–62. Seattle: Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, 1994 (with Penny A. Hazelton and Peggy Roebuck Jarrett).
  • “Fundamentals of Legal Research in Washington.” In Penny A. Hazelton et al., Washington Legal Researcher’s Deskbook 2d, 69–132. Seattle: Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, 1996.
  • “Nonlegal Research.” In Penny A. Hazelton et al., Washington Legal Researcher’s Deskbook 2d, 207–15. Seattle: Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, 1996 (with Peggy Roebuck Jarrett).
  • “Computer-Assisted Legal Research.” In Penny A. Hazelton et al., Washington Legal Researcher’s Deskbook 2d, 217–38. Seattle: Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, 1996 (with Peggy Roebuck Jarrett and Nancy McMurrer).
  • “Develop the Habit: Note-Taking in Legal Research,” Perspectives: Teaching Legal Research and Writing 4 (1996): 48–52 (with Penny A. Hazelton, Peggy Roebuck Jarrett, and Nancy McMurrer).
  • “Teaching Legal Research and Writing in Upper-Division Courses: A Retrospective from Two Perspectives,” Perspectives: Teaching Legal Research and Writing 4 (1996): 72–77 (with Lea Vaughn).
  • “‘Here There Be Dragons’: How to Do Research in an Area You Know Nothing About,” Perspectives: Teaching Legal Research and Writing 6 (1998): 74–76.
  • “Good Happens,” AALL Spectrum 3 (February 1999): 20–21.
  • “Choosing Law Librarianship: Thoughts for People Contemplating a Career Move,” LLRX.com, August 2, 1999.
  • “Managing a Research Assignment,” Perspectives: Teaching Legal Research and Writing 9 (2001): 9–13.
  • “Fundamentals of Legal Research in Washington.” In Penny A. Hazelton et al., Washington Legal Researcher’s Deskbook 3d, 45–91. Seattle: Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, 2002.
  • “Dictionaries Make Strange Bedfellows.” In Language and the Law: Proceedings of a Conference, edited by Marlyn Robinson, 93–108. Buffalo, NY: William S. Hein & Co., 2003.
  • “Law for the Non-J.D.,” AALL Spectrum (December 2003): 4–5, 27 (with Mary Hotchkiss).
  • Practicing Reference: Thoughts for Librarians and Legal Researchers. AALL Publications Series, No. 73. Buffalo, NY: William S. Hein & Co., 2006.
  • “Update to Choosing Law Librarianship: thoughts for People Contemplating a Career Move,” LLRX.com, April 4, 2008.
  • “Communicating Research Results Through Writing.” In Steven M. Barkan, Roy M. Mersky, and Donald J. Dunn, Fundamentals of Legal Research, 9th ed., 21–31. New York: Foundation Press, 2009 (with Mary A. Hotchkiss).
  • “Harvesting Relevant Cases on Lexis and Westlaw: Comparing Results,” Perspectives: Teaching Legal Research and Writing 20 (2011): 31.
  • “Bluebook Technologies,” LLRX.com, September 18, 2012.
  • “Louis Brandeis—Lawyer, Reformer, Justice,” Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era 13 (2014): 128–31.
  • “Women Who Left Their Separate Spheres to Become Lawyers,” Journal of the Gilded Age and Progressive Era 13 (2014): 451–54.
  • Fundamentals of Legal Research. 10th ed. St. Paul, MN: Foundation Press, 2015 (with Steven M. Barkan and Barbara A. Bintliff).
  • Legal Research Illustrated. 10th ed. St. Paul, MN: Foundation Press, 2015 (with Steven M. Barkan and Barbara A. Bintliff).
  • “Douglas Hires a Woman to Clerk,” Green Bag Almanac and Reader (2020): 297–310.

Selected Publications about the Inductee

  • Mary Whisner, “It’s the Variety,” in Frank G. Houdek, “‘A Day in My Library Life,’ Circa 1997,” Law Library Journal 89 (1997): 231–34.
  • Mary Whisner Interview. In An Oral History of Law Librarianship, interviewed by Patrick Kehoe, May 7, 2013, video recording. Spinelli’s Law Library Reference Shelf, HeinOnline.
  • Mary Whisner, “Another Day in My Law Library Life,” in Scott Frey, “‘A Day in My Law Library Life,’ Circa 2018,” Law Library Journal 111 (2019): 101–03.
  • Kristina J. Alayan, “Gallagher Award Celebrates Outstanding Achievement: Catherine Lemann, Daniel L. Wade & Mary Whisner Recognized for Service to the Profession,” AALL Spectrum 25 (July/August 2021): 38–40.

Professional Positions

  • Law Clerk, Judge Stephanie K. Seymour, United States Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit, 1982–83
  • Attorney, National Labor Relations Board, Appellate Court Branch, Division of Enforcement Litigation, 1983–84
  • Attorney/Fellow, Women’s Law and Public Policy Fellowship Program, Washington, DC, 1984–85
  • Reference Librarian, Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, University of Washington School of Law, 1988–90
  • Head of Reference, Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, University of Washington School of Law, 1991–99
  • Assistant Librarian for Reference Services, Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, University of Washington School of Law, 1999–2006
  • Reference Librarian, Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, University of Washington School of Law, 2006–15
  • Head of Reference, Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, University of Washington School of Law, 2015–16
  • Research Services Librarian, Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, University of Washington School of Law, 2016–19
  • Public Services Librarian, Marian Gould Gallagher Law Library, University of Washington School of Law, 2019–present

Education

  • B.A., University of Washington, 1977
  • J.D., Harvard Law School, 1982
  • M.L.I.S., Louisiana State University School of Library and Information Science, 1987

Selected Professional Activities & Achievements (outside AALL)

  • Admitted to practice, Washington, 1983
  • Board Member, American Civil Liberties Union of Louisiana, 1986–87
  • Co-Editor, Current Index to Legal Periodicals, May 1990–June 1992
  • Member, Panel of Academic Contributors, Black’s Law Dictionary (8th ed., 2004; 9th ed., 2009)
  • Member, Board of Advisers, The Green Bag Almanac and Reader, 2006–14