Joyce Manna Janto, Director of Public and Instructional Services at the Muse Law Library, received a small, inconspicuous envelope last week. In it was a tiny silver lapel pin from the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL). That little pin represents 40 years of service to law librarianship’s most important professional organization. Her bulletin board is in fact covered end to end with AALL ribbons, buttons, service pins, and conference badges collected over four decades of dedication to the profession of law librarianship.
Joyce has been active in AALL since she joined as a student member in 1982. At the time, she was working toward her Master of Library Science degree at the University of Pittsburgh. She had always wanted to be a librarian, but her discovery of law librarianship was “a revelation.”
Joyce served on a variety of AALL committees for years and was elected to the office as Treasurer in 2004. In 2009, she was elected Vice-President/President Elect of AALL, serving as President from July 2010 till July 2011. While President, Joyce is most proud of her accomplishments developing the Legal Research Competencies that guide research instruction at law schools across the United States. She remains an active member of AALL to this day, especially in the Academic Law Libraries and Research Instruction & Patron Services Special Interest Sections.
For Joyce, the best part of her membership with AALL has been the people — meeting librarians from all over the country and getting to learn about the profession from so many perspectives. When asked what advice she would give her law students about professional organizations, Joyce was emphatic: joining a professional organization is the best way to learn about your profession, and the best way to give back. You will make great network connections, and maybe even experience a few serendipitous moments from those connections. As she put it, “It will add so much more to your life.”
Please join the University of Richmond’s Muse Law Library in congratulating Joyce on 40 years of service with AALL!