Association of Hawaiʻi Archivists 2019 Annual Meeting
Preserving Collections, Ensuring Access
February 15 - 16, 2019 (Fri - Sat)
Mākau Moʻomeheu : Cultural Competency’s role in diversity, inclusion, and community engagement Sat, 16 Feb 2019 1:30pm (45m) (global) - Keynote: Helen Wong Smith
Hawai'i Nei is often ranked the most multi-cultural state in the country and those who have grown up here are usually adept at cultural competency living is close proximity of diverse cultures. Kama'aina or not, we've all experienced various levels of microaggressions, exclusion, or misunderstandings thwarting optimal interactions. Cultural competency is a development process utilized by many professions to facilitate communication and connections between disparate groups. In our profession it allows us to expand the archival record and share the importance of archives as essential evidence of society, especially to those traditionally under-represented in our collections. It provides the tools to function with awareness, knowledge, and interpersonal skill when engaging people of different backgrounds, assumptions, beliefs, values, and behaviors to effectively work and communicate with the diversity of cultures including those we work alongside with and those we serve.
Earning a B.A. in Hawaiian Studies and MLIS from the University of Hawai'i Helen has held numerous positions in Hawai'i including Hawaiian Collection Librarian at UH Hilo, lead archivist for the Pacific Island Network of the National Park Service, and Librarian/Archivist at the State Historic Preservation Division.
For over 30 years, she has highlighted Hawaiian collections through research and presentations including some 50 cultural impact assessments. She has presented workshops and talks of Cultural Diversity Competency for the Society of American Archivists across the country including an invitation to Harvard this spring and is the guest editor for a special issue on diversity for the Journal of Western Archives.
Formerly president of the Hawaiian Library Association, the Hawaiian Historical Society, and twice of the Association of Hawai'i Archivists, she has maintained Certified Archivist status since 2001 and was named a Distinguished Fellow of the Society of American Archivists in 2016. She serves on the advisory board of the Archives Leadership Institute at Purdue for the next three years.