Karen Russ is the Ark-AHEAD Teresa Haven Distinguished Professional Award Winner 2016.
Karen, the Research and Community Engagement Librarian, has been a member of the UA Little Rock Ottenheimer Library/Collections and Archives faculty for 20 years. As the government information specialist, Karen has been dedicated to people with disabilities.
Over the past 20 year she has stood up for the need for assistive technology and services in the library, such as working on a grant proposal for adaptive furniture for the library classroom. She has also stood up for accessibility when software products and databases were up for renewal and were not fully accessible. In that time, she has also served as the library’s liaison to the Disability Resource Center- providing both groups with a person willing to reach out between the two departments and work out cooperative means of assisting patrons.
Karen has been a member of Ark-AHEAD since 2002, serving as secretary from 2013-14. Karen has given numerous presentations at Ark-AHEAD conferences. For as many years as Ark-AHEAD has had a listserv, Karen has regularly provided lists of disability related books and summaries, helping other institutions in the state add to their library or disability office collections and assist people with research.
Ark-AHEAD Teresa Haven Distinguished Professional Award:
The award will be given to an Ark-AHEAD member or board member who has been a member of Ark-AHEAD for more than five years, has presented at past conferences and has experience working with students with disabilities in higher education for more than three years. Dr. Teresa Lynn Wells Haven had an outstanding professional career in disability services which included several years at the University of Arkansas. During this time, she was an active member of Ark-AHEAD. Teresa repeatedly demonstrated her strong knowledge of accessibility in the technology environment as she continually worked towards creating a more accessible digital world. After her passing in September 2016, Ark-AHEAD renamed the annual Distinguished Service Award in her honor.