• Scott Carey, REALM Project Director and COO, Institute of Museum and Library Services
  • Jennifer Keohane, Executive Director, Connecticut Library Consortium
  • Will Richter, Principal Research Scientist, Battelle
  • Sharon Streams, REALM Project Director and Webjunction Director, OCLC

After COVID-19 was declared a global pandemic in early 2020, the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) partnered with OCLC and the Battelle scientific research institute to establish the RE-opening Archives, Libraries and Museums (REALM) project, which has provided science-based information to aid local decision making, policies, and operations in cultural institutions across the country. Battelle produced customized laboratory research on the SARS-CoV-2 virus and conducted systematic reviews of the emerging science on COVID-19 transmission and prevention. With input from stakeholders representing archives, libraries, and museums, and member organizations that support those professions, REALM produced a toolkit of curated, summarized, and illustrated research findings for cultural institutions. This panel will share how the partnership and stakeholder groups built a network of trust and rapid communication, captured emergent learning, and adapted in response to the COVID-19 surge. Panelists will also describe current activities to build on our collective strengths to serve and inform diverse communities and support public health outcomes.

Scott Carey was appointed as IMLS Chief Operating Officer in April 2021, following his tenure as the agency’s Chief Information Officer, beginning in September 2019. Mr. Carey previously served as the executive for Technology and Strategy within the FBI’s Office of Chief Information Officer and has broad experience across multiple agencies. His background in federal information technology began in the Department of Defense as a U.S. Navy civilian software engineer working on the Tomahawk missile system. As Program Manager, he then led a variety of complex technical programs to protect the military and civilians against Chemical, Biological, Radiological, and Nuclear (CBRN) hazards. While at the FBI, he led the development and global delivery of the Next Generation Combined DNA Index System (CODIS), led a large portfolio of mission-oriented IT programs, and as an FBI executive he led Innovation, Enterprise Architecture, Supply Chain Risk Management, Prototyping, Cloud Adoption, Network IT modernization, and Technology Assessments.

Mr. Carey holds a B.S. in Computer Science and a M.S. in Systems Engineering, and his professional certifications include Program Management and IT Service Management.

Jennifer Keohane is the Executive Director of the Connecticut Library Consortium, a non-profit serving over 800 Connecticut libraries of all types and sizes. As Jennifer says, “I am connector of people and information. As Executive Director of the Connecticut Library Consortium, I lead a small but dedicated staff who brings savings, efficiency, education, and innovation to our library colleagues across the State. We achieve our goals through ongoing dialog with our members, collaboration with library and non-library organizations, and a lot of creative problem-solving.”

Prior to this position, she was Business Outreach Librarian at the Simsbury Public Library where she launched and managed an award-winning Business Resource Center. Jennifer has over 12 years of non-library business experience including retail management, product development, marketing, brand management, market research and product licensing.

In addition to a Master of Library Science from Southern Connecticut State University, she holds a Bachelor’s of Commerce in Marketing/International Business from McGill University, Montreal, Canada, and a School Library Media Certificate from Southern Connecticut State University. Jennifer is a recipient of the 2011 I Love My Librarian Award from the New York Times/Carnegie Corporation of New York.

Will Richter is a principal research scientist at Battelle’s Biomedical Research Center with over 19 years of experience in microbiology, virology, and BSL-3 high containment laboratory environments. His experience includes the handling, production, purification, persistence and decontamination of numerous biological warfare agents. He has performed testing to detect biological and chemical agents in water, soil, skin, and other indoor and outdoor matrices. His experience also includes the engineering, development, and implementation of automated systems. This includes being the lead inventor and principle investigator for Battelle’s Critical Care Decontamination System (CCDS).

Mr. Richter is an experienced project manager for testing and evaluating the performance and efficacy of newly-developed and commercial products for decontaminating biological and chemical threat agents as well as the natural attenuation of those agents under controlled environmental conditions.

Sharon Streams is the director of WebJunction, a program of OCLC Research that connects library practitioners to a network of learning resources and peer support. WebJunction also designs, tests, and scales innovative projects that bolster library staff skills and confidence to address essential community needs around lifelong learning, health and wellness, economic opportunity, civic engagement, and human connection. Prior to joining OCLC in 2007, Sharon managed the publishing division of an international engineering society. Sharon is a native of Connecticut, a graduate of Indiana University, and a resident of Washington State.