The fourth installment of Introducing the Leadership Team

Robin Alario

(Member at Large)


23Where are you from or where did you grow up? Care to share a fun fact about your hometown?

I’m from the Providence, Rhode Island area. Contrary to what people may think, Rhode Island is not an island and not a unit of measurement. 😉 My hometown, Rumford, in East Providence (which is a separate city from Providence) is most famous for being the original location of the Rumford Chemical Works. They made Rumford Baking Powder and associated products. The company was named after Benjamin Thompson, Count Rumford who made a name for himself as a chemical engineer in the 18th century but prior to that was a Tory spy during the Revolutionary War! We’re also notable for being the first place Roger Williams and company stayed after he was kicked out of Salem for his radical beliefs and after  he spent the winter in the wilderness with the Narragansett Indians. Sadly for poor Roger, he was still on land claimed by Massachusetts so he left, rowed across the river and landed back on Narragansett land which became the city of Providence.

Where did you attend school?

I attended the University of Rhode Island’s Graduate School of Library and Information Studies. I did a dua.l Masters’ program with history because yes I am a nerd!

What was the last book that you read or movie you watched that you’d recommend?

Find me on Good Reads under QNPoohBear to find out which books I recommend. I love historical fiction, classics like Jane Austen, Louisa May Alcott, Lucy Maud Montgomery and Laura Ingalls Wilder and traditional Regency romances (Georgette Heyer and copycats).

Best advice to a new student or early professional?

Get as much experience as possible, even if it’s volunteer, learn about digital archives and EAD- especially if your school doesn’t really teach archives. It takes a really long time to find a job and don’t be afraid to think outside the box to use your skills in another job. Chances are other people who work there are also frustrated librarians or archivists.

How/why did you get into this field?

I love history! I found archives kind of by accident. I started volunteering at the Rhode Island Historical Society Library and fell in love with old documents and bringing hidden history to life.



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