User Advisory Group

The User Advisory Group ensures that the PD Bank supports the needs of library administrators and that the collection supports queries into the ways the work of libraries is defined, organized, and evolving. Membership includes representatives from institutions from the collective membership of ARL, ASERL, CARL and RLUK. Selection of up to 2 representatives is up for each association. Terms are for 3 years based on staggering rotation. The chair of the User Advisory Group rotates among the associations composing the Advisory Group every year, but should be from a different association than the chair of the Steering Committee.

Research Libraries Position Description Bank User Advisory Group Charge

Background and Role:

As a trusted record keeper, the Research Libraries Position Description Bank (PD Bank) is managed by professionals that have the knowledge necessary to implement procedures that ensure the integrity and accuracy of the records. The Position Description Bank User Advisory Group (User Advisory Group) advises the PD Bank Management Team (Management Team) and the PD Bank Steering Committee (Steering Committee) and recommends activities in support of ongoing sustainability and growth, including reviewing policies, functionality and usability, the digital preservation plan, and user training and education. It ensures that the PD Bank supports the needs of library administrators and that the collection supports queries into the ways the work of libraries is defined, organized, and evolving. The User Advisory Group also leads in engaging with the current and potential community to encourage widespread usage.

The system relies on appropriate use and maintenance of data and documents, and the submission of consistent and useful descriptive metadata. This data is submitted to the PD Bank by authorized users at member institutions and also ingested from the ARL Job List. These activities rely upon the geographically distributed users at the numerous participating institutions. The User Advisory Group coordinates and, as necessary, assumes responsibility for conducting orientations and demonstrations, building from the existing collection of guides and tutorial videos. 

In delivering upon the above roles, the User Advisory Group may develop recommendations and reports to the Steering Committee and the Position Description Bank Management Team (Management Team).


The User Advisory Group is composed of representatives of member institutions from all participating associations. User Advisory Group membership should include digital preservation expertise and a library human resources management professional.

Members are appointed by participating associations and serve for three-year terms, which may renew, with staggered terms. One member will represent the Management Team.


The group meets at least quarterly. Meeting activities include: 

  • Planning training, guide and documentation creation, and other activities to support an engaged community of users;
  • Reviewing IT supports to confirm effective support for ongoing sustainability;
  • Assessing the digital preservation plan at least once per year; 
  • Reporting any substantive issues or recommended changes for the digital preservation plan, system needs, and other needs to the Steering Committee, including a rationale, and
  • Communicating to the user community, once changes are approved by the Steering Committee. 
RL PD Bank, infographic of 3 governance groups

Prior (-2022) Advisory Group Membership

Julie Brewer (, Associate University Librarian for Human Resources and Organizational Development, University of Delaware Library, Museums and Press
Julie facilitates talent management, employee relations, and equity, diversity and inclusion efforts. She administers the peer-review Rank and Promotion System and coordinates organizational development initiatives that strengthen individual, team and organizational effectiveness.

Kathleen De Long (, Chair (Interim), School of Library and Information Studies; Executive Director (Library and Museums) and Deputy Chief Librarian
Kathleen is currently the Interim Chair of the School of Library and Information Studies at the University of Alberta, as well as the Executive Director (Library and Museums) and Deputy Chief Librarian. She has a PhD in Library and Information Studies from Simmons College, Boston MA, as well as a Master’s in Library Science and a Master’s in Public Management, both from the University of Alberta. Her research has focused primarily upon human resource capacity and issues in Canadian libraries.

Matt Greenhall, RLUK

Chelsea Johnston (, Scholarly Publishing and Repository Librarian, University of Florida, George A. Smathers Libraries
Chelsea is the Scholarly Publishing and Repository Librarian at UF. In this role, she supports the projects of the LibraryPress@UF, including open-access journals, conference proceedings, monographs, and digital scholarship. She also works with scholars at UF to explore appropriate repository options for their work. Chelsea joined the Advisory Group in October 2019. Her role is to provide insights from her work with digital repositories, digital preservation, and socio-technical support for digital collections. She is also a member of the UF project team, liaising with supports for the technical system.

Joseph Salem (, Dean of Libraries, Michigan State University
Joseph A. Salem, Jr. is the Dean of Libraries at Michigan State University. Prior to this appointment,  he served as Associate Dean for Learning, Undergraduate Services and Commonwealth Campus Libraries at Penn State University. He has published and presented widely on open educational resources, student engagement, teaching and learning, library assessment, and library management. Dr. Salem earned his PhD in Evaluation and Measurement and MLS from Kent State University. He has served as psychometrician on two national information literacy initiatives, Project SAILS (Standardized Assessment of Information Literacy Skills) and the K-12 TRAILS (Tool for Real-Time Assessment of Information Literacy Skills). He also served as an ARL Leadership Fellow from 2016 to 2017 and was recognized as the 2017 Kent State School of Library and Information Science Alumnus of the Year.  

Bonnie J. Smith (, Human Resources Director, University of Florida, George A. Smathers Libraries
Bonnie manages recruitment, employee relations, training, and faculty affairs among other duties for the Smathers Libraries and has been active in service and scholarship as a faculty member at UF since 2008. Throughout her 25 years of work in human resources and project management, she has been personally and professionally committed to action-oriented engagement in diversity, equity and inclusion. As an integral part of the RL PD Bank project and project team from inception in 2013 to present, Bonnie is the main point of contact for communicating with users, approving registrations, training, and onboarding new Consortia. 

Eileen Theodore-Shusta (, Director of Planning, Assessment & Organizational Effectiveness, Ohio University Libraries
Eileen provides support to the University Libraries in areas such as staff development, talent management, planning and assessment.  She serves as HR generalist, liaising with central HR, the Division for Diversity & Inclusion, and any university unit related to the work of this position. Eileen is a Board Certified Coach with several years of experience in transitional, leadership and executive coaching, and has 25 years of experience in human resources management. Eileen has served as the RL Position Description Bank Institutional Lead for Ohio University since 2014, is a member of the PD Bank Advisory Group, and has served as Chair since 2018.