It’s National Library Week, and Notre Dame Law School is highlighting the wonderful people who support the Law School’s scholarship with their work in the Kresge Law Library.
Get to know the library’s staff members by reading profiles that will be posted here throughout the week.
King, the associate director for patron services, joined the library staff in 1986. He’s in charge of the research-and-teaching team, which teaches legal research classes in addition to supporting the research efforts of students and faculty. He’s also in charge of the library’s patron-support team at the circulation desk.
He earned his bachelor’s degree, juris doctor, and master’s of library science at the University of Michigan. “I’ve worked in libraries since I was in high school,” he said.
Fun facts: King is an accomplished wood carver and has displayed his whimsical creations at the Buchanan Art Center and South Bend Museum of Art.
Wu, a visiting librarian, is at Notre Dame for a two-year residency that includes four rotations in different libraries on campus. He came to the Kresge Law Library in January.
He was born in China but has lived most of his life in Canada. He earned a doctorate in history at the University of British Columbia and a master’s in library science at the University of Alberta.
“Library work connects well with my background as a Ph.D. student,” he said. “I like collaborating with faculty on research and students on their work.”
Fun facts: Wu spends his free time reading, cooking, and creating art. He likes traditional Chinese calligraphy and trying to mimic the styles of famous painters.
Thornton, a collection management assistant, has worked at the Kresge Law Library since 2002. His responsibilities include cataloging monographs and helping patrons at the circulation desk.
“I have a history degree, so I like the research,” he said. “It’s a lot of detail work.”
Fun facts: Thornton enjoys traveling, sports, and reading history books and biographies. He and his wife were married last year at Weko Beach in Michigan and took a road trip out west for their honeymoon. His grandfather, William Thornton, was a member of the Irish Republican Army. “It’s kind of neat to be related to a real fighting Irishman,” he said.
Klein is the acquisition and collection development librarian, which means she’s responsible for purchasing materials and making sure those materials are available on shelves or online. She’s also responsible for Notre Dame Law School’s digital repository.
She joined the Kresge Law Library staff in 1998.
“I enjoy working with the people here and knowing we provide good service to the students and faculty,” she said. “It’s a good group of people and a good group of students.”
Fun facts: In her free time, Klein enjoys walking along the St. Joseph River and Lake Michigan, cycling, cross stitching, and hunting for English bone china at antique shops. Her favorite book is “Jane Eyre” by Charlotte Bronte.
Welty has worked at the University of Notre Dame for 38 years, and about 25 of those years have been at the Kresge Law Library.
As the library’s administrative assistant, she supports the work of the library director, faculty, and staff. Her job includes many other duties related to the library budget, building management, and scheduling meetings and events.
“It’s an interesting place to work,” she said. “I enjoy the people here.”
Fun facts: Outside of work, Welty enjoys tending to her flower beds and walking her family’s German shepherd. “I don’t sit still very much,” she said. When she does sit still, she likes to read suspenseful fiction like murder mysteries. She also loves the “Peanuts” comic.
Rees, a research librarian, has worked in the library since 1997. He teaches courses in legal research and enjoys the interaction with students.
He had a part-time job in the law library at Southern Illinois University while earning his juris doctor there, and the experience ended up influencing his career path.
“You get to be a jack of all trades and research in a variety of subject areas,” he said. “There are many areas of the law that are interesting, so it’s fun.”
Fun facts: Rees is a man of many talents. He’s a long-distance runner and cyclist, a wine collector, and a licensed pilot. “My favorite time to fly is night,” he said. “It’s gorgeous.”
Fox, a resource acquisitions specialist, has worked in the Law Library since 1989.
She’s responsible for cataloging new books and other materials, fielding requests from faculty members, and coordinating interlibrary loans for students and faculty.
“It’s a rewarding job,” she said. “The students and faculty are very appreciative of what you do. And I’m a big Notre Dame fan. My dad was an alum, my daughter graduated from Saint Mary’s, and my granddaughter is enrolling at Notre Dame in the fall.”
Fun facts: Fox has an identical twin sister. She goes to Las Vegas every year for vacation. Anyone who needs a laugh should talk to Fox – she has a great sense of humor!
O’Byrne, a research librarian who joined the Kresge Law Library staff in 2006, teaches courses in legal research to law students.
He earned his juris doctor at the University of Washington and decided to pursue a career in a law library because he was interested in teaching, research, public service, and several different areas of law.
“It was the appeal of combining the various career paths that interested me and constantly learning new things,” he said.
Fun facts: O’Byrne was born at Robinson Barracks, a U.S. military base in Germany. His office houses an impressive menagerie of Notre Dame memorabilia and other collectibles. Check out the poster urging people to “Save the Pacific Northwest Tree Octopus.”
Klein has worked in the Law Library since 1996.
As the research and teaching assistant, she provides academic support and coordinates materials for research librarians when they teach classes. Her creativity is on display around Halloween and Christmas when she decorates her office and the Research Services area for those holidays.
She took a Myers-Briggs personality test recently, and the result said she should work in a library. “Good thing it worked out that way,” she said with a laugh. “It’s rewarding. You help people find what they need.”
Fun facts: Klein probably has the Law School’s most fun office – it’s practically a Disney museum filled with stuffed animals, toys, and posters. She’s also pretty good at Pokémon Go.
Shirk has worked in the Law Library since 1998.
She’s a metadata specialist, which means that she catalogs electronic resources and rare books. She’s also responsible for database maintenance and ensuring that the Notre Dame Law Review and other Law School journals are published and bound.
“I’ve always been a huge fan of libraries and books and bookstores,” she said.
Fun facts: Shirk loves wildlife and traveling. She’s been to Yellowstone National Park for a wolf study and to Newfoundland for a whale study, where she saw humpback whales. She’s also been to Paris, Rome, and London. Next on her list: She wants to go to Costa Rica to watch sea turtles hatch.