Member of the Week: Stephanie Derrick

Stephanie DerrickStephanie Derrick is Housing Specialist at Coburn Place Safe Haven in Indianapolis. Stephanie has been an ACRL member since 2011  and is your ACRL member of the week.

1. Describe yourself in three words:  Driven, Positive, Outgoing.

2. What are you reading right now (or listening to on your mobile device)? I am actually listening to (again) all of the Harry Potter books.  Now that the last movie is out I felt like I needed one more go around to re-live the magic.  I am currently on book four Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire.  It truly is story telling at its best.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Assemble, Connect, Engage

4. Why did you join ACRL? I have an interest in academic librarianship.  Some of my professors expressed that joining ACRL would provide great networking opportunities (which it does).  I wanted to be a part of a community of librarians who have like interests.

5. What do you value about academic or research librarianship? What I value about academic librarianship is the dedication toward student success through engaging information literacy efforts.  Academic librarians truly want to see the students at their institutions be successful at researching, locating resources, and just growing as students.  That’s inspiring!

6. In your own words: After finishing my degree, I decided to apply my librarian skills to the position of Housing Specialist for Coburn Place Safe Haven.  Coburn Place is a not-for-profit that provides two-year transitional housing and supportive services to woman and children who are homeless due to domestic violence.  Very much like an academic institution that wants to educate their students into being successful academically, we, at Coburn Place want to see our woman be successful in life: to no longer live in the tyranny of the moment, but to become empowered and self sufficient.

In this newly created position, I am researching, gathering, and creating a permanent housing resource guidebook that emphasizes and highlights affordable low-income housing and rental subsidies from agencies around the city of Indianapolis.  My goal for the resource guidebook is that it will help the women more easily locate, plan, make choices, and take the necessary steps to move from our two-year transitional program into safe affordable permanent housing.  I work one-on-one with our residents to assist them in navigating within the housing market and advocate on their behalf, if necessary.  I am also in the middle of creating programming that will educate the women on their housing rights and responsibilities. Although I did not end up working directly in an actual library, I feel very connected to the work, mission, and profession of librarianship.

Editor’s Note: Are you an ACRL member? Would you like to be featured as ACRL Member of the Week? Nominate a colleague? Contact Mary Jane Petrowski at for more information.


  1. Congrats on being the featured ACRL Member of the Week. What wonderful work you are doing in your position. Continue to empower others, gain leadership skills and make connections.

  2. Go Stephanie! Your emerging career is a great model for the transferability of academic librarian skills beyond the traditional boundaries of the profession. Congratulations.

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