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2017 Election Bios

2017 is an election year for IASSIST. Positions up for election are:

President (2 year term)
Vice President (2 year term)
Treasurer (4 year term)
Regional Secretaries (2 year term)
- Africa
- Asia Pacific
- Canada
- Europe
Administrative Committee Members At Large (4 year term)
- Canada (1 seat)
- Europe (1 seat)
- USA (3 seats)


Tuomas J. Alaterä

I have worked at the Finnish Social Science Data Archive in various capacities for almost 17 years, currently as an IT Services Specialist. My duties range from digital preservation planning to managing archive's web resources and services. My first IASSIST was in 2002, and I have attended most conferences since. I have for many years been involved in IASSIST administration, and currently I'm serving as the President.

Iassisters have been involved in research data management, teaching with data, developing and supporting digital data technology and Open Science for years - longer than most people believe! I would like to build on that tradition, advance sharing of expertise within and across organisations and disciplines, strengthen IASSIST's role in connecting and supporting data professionals, and develop our annual conference as a top networking event for professionals working mostly with social science data. I would like to support our continued efforts on building liaisons and partnerships with other organisations. I see it is also important to invest in making our own administrative work as open, effective and accommodating as possible.

Vice President

Jennifer Green

Jennifer Green is the new Dean of the Barnard College Library. Previously, she was the Director of Research Data Services (RDS) and Head of Science, Engineering, and the Clark Library for Maps, Government Information and Data at the University of Michigan. In addition to creating and implementing numerous services and spaces at Michigan (including the Clark Library), she provided strategic and adaptive leadership for 17 librarians across 4 units, and managed and supported day to day operations. Through RDS, she directed a library-wide initiative to knit data knowledge, training and service into the fabric of the University Library to create and support a network of services for data from all disciplines at the university and throughout the research lifecycle including the creation of the digital data repository Deep Blue Data.

As a data librarian her contributions to local, national and international data efforts are reflected through her leadership and participation in IASSIST, the International Association for Social Science Information Services and Technology, serving as Treasurer from 2005 to 2013, and currently serving as Vice President. Her research has focused on the social side of data; how to best assess community needs for services to create sustainable and valuable services. Most recently, she has focused on assisting the nascent Data Refuge effort to create a preservation-worthy platform for fragile digital data and documents.


Thomas Lindsay

Thomas Lindsay is the current IASSIST treasurer, and has served in this role since 2013. Tom has been a member of IASSIST for ten years, and has served in a variety of capacities within the Association. He has been a member of both conference committees, including co-chairing the Program Committee in 2010 and serving on local arrangements for 2015. He was Membership Chair for two years before being elected treasurer in 2013. He enjoys working with the rest of the Executive Committee and appreciates the opportunity to serve as treasurer for a second term. Outside IASSIST, he is the Coordinator of Research Support Services for Liberal Arts Technologies and Innovation Services at the University of Minnesota.

Regional Secretaries


Lynn Woolfrey

I am a data specialist with more than 20 years' experience curating and sharing African research data and promoting Open Data in Africa. I am Manager of DataFirst, a Research Data Service based at the University of Cape Town, South Africa. Our data service promotes high quality research by providing the essential research infrastructure for discovering, downloading, and using African research data. I am also involved in projects to improve the quality of African data by training data managers in government and research institutions in South Africa and other African countries. I teach Research Data Management skills to information professionals and postgraduates. I have an MPhil degree in Information Studies from the University of Cape Town. My thesis examined best practice for data curation to support fact-based policymaking in African countries


Samuel Spencer

I have been the Asia Pacific representative for the IASSIST committee since 2011. In that time I have attended local social science conferences and promoted IASSIST as a platform for presenting research for researchers in the Asia/Pacific region. Recently I have been mentoring new graduates in the Australian Library community promoting the importance of data librarianship.

I have been vocal in developer communities on the fringe of the IASSIST community and have inadvertently spend late nights demonstrating the issues of teleconferencing across time-zones.

In 2015 I was one of the co-chairs for the IASSIST conference which gave me an in-depth understanding and appreciation of the challenges in coordinating IASSISTers.


Carol Perry

I am currently an Associate Librarian of Research and Scholarship at the University of Guelph Library in Ontario, Canada. I have been actively involved in IASSIST since the 1998 conference held at Yale University. Over the years, I have engaged in a number of IASSIST initiatives including the Web Development Team, the Data Management & Curation Interest Group (SIGDMAC) and more recently as the Regional Secretary for Canada.

In the Canadian context, I continue to be active on local, regional and national initiatives related to RDM, such as PORTAGE. Much of what I have to offer is directly attributable to the knowledge and experiences I have gained through my membership in IASSSIST and all it has to offer.

I greatly value the collegiality and generosity I have experienced as a member of IASSIST. I welcome the opportunity to continue giving back to our community as the regional representative for Canada.


David Schiller

David Schiller is an educated wholesaler and holds a master's degree in sociology and history. He is interested in developing visions, investigating social changes and in project management.

During his scientific career, he worked for the German National Educational Panels Study (University of Bamberg) and the German Institute for Employment Research. His main topics are the development of national and international infrastructures for the social sciences. Thereby he focuses on networks usability and security. David currently works as research associate at GESIS (Leibniz-Institute for the Social Sciences) and is one of the managing directors of the TBA21 Group.


Stephanie Tulley

Stephanie Tulley has Economics and International Studies degrees from Kansas State University, and an MLIS and MBA from Kent State University. She previously worked at the University of California, Santa Barbara as the Economics, Business, and Social Sciences Data librarian where she launched the Social Sciences Data Lab and the Interdisciplinary Research Collaboratory in the Library. She is now the Data Librarian for the Federal Reserve Bank of Cleveland, working closely with Economists and researchers to support their data needs. Stephanie has been a member of IASSIST since 2012, serving as the Jobs Repository Editor since she joined. She was a session chair at the 2015 IASSIST meeting in Minnesota, and presented with Tim Dennis on social media data in Bergen last year.

Members at Large


Amber Leahey

Amber Leahey is the Data and GIS Librarian at Scholars Portal, the digital library infrastructure of the Ontario Council of University Libraries (OCUL). Working with university libraries across Ontario, Amber fosters collaboration around digital projects and technical infrastructure development for digital data, GIS, and research data management.

Amber is familiar with major metadata standards for the description of research data, she is currently the Scholars Portal/OCUL representative on the DDI Alliance (, chairs the DDI Training Working Group, and is a founding member of the CARL Portage Network Data Discovery Expert Group, which is now working collaboratively with Compute Canada to release a national data discovery service for research data in Canada. Amber has a strong interest in data standards development, data preservation, and open access to research data.


Laurence Horton

I have been involved in digital preservation, data dissemination, and research data management for the last fifteen years working in two of Europe's social science data archives: the UK Data Archive and GESIS Leibniz-Institute and at one of the world's leading social science research universities, the London School of Economics and Political Science where I am currently Data Librarian.

In my first term as European Member At Large I've contributed to IASSIST as twitter/facebook editor, and working on sponsorship liaison activities with other organisations and conferences.

I am of the persuasion that good research data exploited to the fullest extent possible provides a scientific and public good. I know the value IASSIST brings to realising these goods through creating and sharing resources as well as in the accumulated knowledge it possesses, because I have benefited directly from being part of this organization. For this reason I would like to help continuing providing a European voice to the running of IASSIST and to promoting our organization to a wider data audience.


Harrison Dekker

I'm currently an Associate Professor and Data Services Librarian at the University of Rhode Island where I'm helping to launch a variety of library-based data initiatives, the most significant being an undergraduate data science program. I've worked for over 25 years as a data professional, as both a librarian and programmer, and have been an active IASSIST member since 2003. My primary motivation for seeking reelection to the administrative committee is to help the organization take an expanded role in promoting ethical and transparent practices in the social sciences and to explore new roles in data science education.

Lynda Kellam

I am the Data Services and Government Information Librarian at the University of North Carolina at Greensboro's University Libraries and Assistant Director of the International & Global Studies program. In addition to providing research assistance and instruction on data and government sources, I am the library instruction liaison to the Political Science and History Departments.

I have been a member of IASSIST since 2007 and have served in many capacities with the organization. I would bring strong planning and organizational skills to the IASSIST leadership. Although data is not my primary duty, I thoroughly enjoy working with the members and attending the annual conference, and I would welcome the possibility of helping to lead IASSIST.

Amy Pienta

Amy Mehraban Pienta is Acquisitions Director at ICPSR and current Member at Large, USA, of IASSIST. She is also a research affiliate of the University of Michigan Center on the Demography of Aging and the Population Studies Center at the University of Michigan. At ICPSR, she oversees new data acquisitions. Major responsibilities include identifying new data collections in the social sciences, negotiating with potential data depositors, strategic planning for new data acquisitions, and developing appraisal standards for data. Pienta's primary research interests are retirement and health in later life. She has studied women's retirement behavior, labor force exits of African-American and white men, the joint retirement behavior of married couples, and the relationship between various social statuses and health.

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