Meet the Wiregrass Archives Staff!

Tina Bernath, archival reference assistant, is often the first person a Wiregrass Archives patron meets.  She helps patrons with in-person, telephone, and email reference requests.  In addition, Tina accessions and processes collections, refines processed collections, and prepares extensive inventories, builds finding aids, and maintains user and donor files.  She is in charge of the quick reference (vertical) files.  In addition to her work in the Archives, Tina maintains the Dothan Campus Library’s in-house budget and is the point of contact for all Dothan Library purchases.

Tina’s been with the library since January 1989 when she began at the downtown Dothan campus of then-Troy State University Dothan.  She began maintaining the Wiregrass Archives in 1999 before a full-time Director was hired.

Tina attended the Georgia Archives Institute in 2001 and has taken workshops in photograph preservation and managing oversized collections.

Diane Sowell has been with the Troy University Dothan Campus Library and the Wiregrass Archives since she began as a student worker in the library’s periodicals section.  After graduating in 2011 with a B.S. in English Literature, she began full-time work with the library then became the processing assistant in the Wiregrass Archives.

Diane’s responsibilities include accessioning and managing incoming collections, processing, arranging, and describing new collections.  Diane ensures the tracking files are complete and writes finding aids per collection.

Besides on-the-job training, Diane has taken workshops in preserving photographs, caring for originals during digitization projects, caring for scrapbooks, managing oversized materials, and a number of others.

She actively participated in the most recent move of the Wiregrass Archives and assisted in creating the important Everett Collection Finding Aid.

Dr. Marty Olliff joined the Wiregrass Archives in January 2002.  He had served as the Assistant Archivist at Auburn University from 1996 to 2002 during which time he received his PhD in US History from Auburn (where he offered a breadth field in archival management).

Marty established all the founding policies and procedures for the Wiregrass Archives, and is the lead collections developer and promoter of the facility.  His academic appointment is two-thirds in the archives and one-third in the History Department where he is an associate professor teaching US History surveys, public history, archival management, and historical methods classes.  He edited The Great War in the Heart of Dixie: Alabama during World War 1 published by the University of Alabama Press in 2008.  His January 2015 article in The Alabama Review won the Alabama Historical Association’s Milo B. Howard Award for best article published in the Review for 2014-2015.

As for managing the Wiregrass Archives, he is wise enough to know to set policies and occasionally monitor implementation but to avoid closely supervising Tina and Diane.

Image of Wriegrass Archives staff, by Jonah Enfinger, 7/11/2013
Wiregrass Archives staff. L-to-R: Diane Sowell, Tina Bernath, Marty Olliff. Photo by Jonah Enfinger, 7/11/2013

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