Introducing…Janet Kearney as the August FCIL Librarian of the Month (and Winner of the Newest FCIL Librarian Award)

  1. Where did you grow up?

Although I was born in Texas, I’ve lived in the New Orleans area since I could talk. Even though I’ve traveled around a bit, I feel very lucky that I’ve been able to settle in New Orleans for the long term.

  1. Why did you select law librarianship as a career?
In Paris

In Paris, while studying abroad with Tulane Law School

I like to think that law librarianship selected me. In my last year of law school, I was an extern for the U.S. Court of Appeals for the Fifth Circuit Library. I chose this placement, honestly, because it sounded like a nice break in my schedule, but I discovered that I actually enjoyed it. I never liked the idea of working for a firm (policy nut here!), and I found this career that focused on my favorite part of work: research.

  1. When did you develop an interest in foreign, comparative, and international law?

I’ve always enjoyed traveling, so I think an interest in FCIL issues is a natural extension of that. My undergraduate degree is in International Studies, and I studied abroad in undergrad and law school. I spent a summer as an intern for the U.S. Consulate in Belfast, UK and was able to do some fascinating legal/policy research on issues specific to Northern Ireland.

  1. Who is your current employer?  How long have you worked there?

I am at Loyola University New Orleans Law Library as the Cataloging & Reference Librarian. It’s a small ship with an “all hands on deck” attitude – because of my background and interests, I’m lucky enough to serve as a de-facto FCIL librarian. I’ve been here since September 2015, originally as a reference staffer and now as an Assistant Professor.

  1. Do you speak any foreign languages?

    with RBG

    Meeting Ruth Bader Ginsburg in Paris

I have only elementary proficiency in French – enough to order food and get around on trips. My reading skills are a bit stronger, but I have a copy of the first Harry Potter in French that I use to stretch those muscles.

  1. What is your most significant professional achievement?

Finishing law school and passing the Louisiana bar exam. So much hard work and pain (and money) goes into both accomplishments. Working in a law school and talking to students prepping for the same bar, I consistently tell them it’s a horrible thing, but when you pass, the sense of accomplishment is off the charts.

  1. What is your biggest food weakness?

Ice cream or dessert in general. I believe there is an extra stomach just for dessert.

  1. What song makes you want to get up and sing/dance?

It’s so cheesy I’m almost afraid to admit it, but the song Nobody’s Perfect from Hannah Montana. I used to listen to it over and over to pump myself up for exams in law school.

  1. What ability or skill do you most wish you had (that you don’t have already)?

Number 1 – stronger language skills. Way down the list is the ability to read my cat’s mind.

  1. Aside from the basic necessities, what is one thing you cannot go a day without?

Coffee! Or is it considered a basic necessity? I think this comes up frequently in these surveys!

cat with bluebook

Ruth Bader, Janet’s cat, with the Bluebook

  1. Anything else you would like to share with us?

I have two cats, Ruth Bader and Drew Brees – named after the Justice and the Saints football player, respectively. At AALL in Chicago, I noticed that a lot of librarians also have cats, so perhaps people will find that interesting or at least cute.

 

#AALL2016 Recap: The FCIL-SIS Newest Member and Spirit of the FCIL-SIS Awards

By Lucie Olejnikova

janetEach year the FCIL-SIS is proud to recognize its colleagues for their contributions to our profession. First, during our annual business meeting, one of our all-stars – Dan Wade – bestows the Newest FCIL Librarian Award on the ‘newest’ FCIL librarian member among us. This year, we are happy to recognize and welcome Janet Kearny, Cataloging and Reference Librarian and Assistant Professor at Loyola University College of Law in New Orleans, Louisiana. Janet is a graduate of Tulane University Law School and is admitted to the Louisiana Bar. She focuses on legal research and technology, teaching research skills and ensuring access to electronic resources. Her research interests are in foreign and comparative law with a focus in civil law systems, the UK, and the EU. Janet is active in the New Orleans Association of Law Librarians and a Masters student in Library and Information Science.

Next, the current FCIL-SIS Chair recognizes colleagues – whose work furthers the FCIL-SIS mission, serves the entire membership, and inspires others to act – with the Spirit of the FCIL-SIS Award. This year we were happy to recognize three wonderful colleagues in this category: Sherry Leysen, Evelyn Ma, and Alyson Drake.

SherrySherry Leysen is the Research and Instruction Librarian for Faculty at Chapman University Fowler School of Law in California. Prior to coming to Fowler School of Law, she was a reference librarian at the Gallagher Law Library at the University of Washington Law School and the Rains Law Library at Loyola Law School in Los Angeles. At Chapman, Sherry offers reference services to all patrons and participates in teaching legal research. She has published in Legal Reference Quarterly, Law Library Journal, and in AALL Spectrum. Sherry has been an active member of many of the FCIL interest groups and most recently she served on and chaired the FCIL Schaffer Grant for Foreign Law Librarian Selection Committee. She has made sure our recipients have a steady liaison when they arrive in the United States. Her commitment to the spirit of this grant is evident and will be a great inspiration as she joins the FCIL Schaffer Grant Fundraising Committee. We thank her for her excellent service and continuous commitment to the overall mission of the FCIL-SIS.

evelynEvelyn Ma is the Reference Librarian for Foreign and International Law and Lecturer in Legal Research at the Lillian Goldman Law Library, Yale Law School. She has spoken domestically and internationally (i.e. 2009 Beijing Conference) and published in Law Library Journal on the Issues and Trends of Collection Development of East Asian Law in the US in 2013. Evelyn has been a long time leader of the FCIL Asian Law Interest Group ensuring continuous education opportunities for the group. She herself also presented on issues of access to Asia related resources, East Asian databases and open access materials, and ASEAN Integration on number of occasions. She embodies the FCIL spirit and we are pleased to thank her for her continuous service and never-ending enthusiasm.

alysonAlyson Drake is the Reference and Student Services Librarian at the Texas Tech University School of Law, where she also serves as the default FCIL librarian. Prior to joining Texas Tech, she worked at the University of South Carolina where she taught a variety of legal research classes. Alyson currently chairs the European Law Interest Group and she is stepping up to become co-chair of the Publicity Committee with Susan. Alyson is an active member of CARLIG (Customary and Religious Law Interest Group) and a frequent contributor to DipLawMatic Dialogues blog. She is an example of FCIL librarian without having the official title who fully embodies the spirit of the FCIL as evidenced by her dedicated service.