Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners’ Preservation Specialist Gregor Trinkaus-Randall is retiring after over 30 years of work for Massachusetts libraries and cultural institutions. Mr. Trinkaus-Randall came to the Board in 1988 and became nationally and internationally recognized for his work in preservation and disaster preparedness.
“Gregor has brought national relevance to the MBLC and the Commonwealth through his commitment to advancing the field of preservation” said MBLC Chairman Roland Ochsenbein. “His legacy will be felt for years not only within the library community but extending to cultural institutions across Massachusetts and the United States.”
Gregor’s latest project was “Finding Common Ground: Collaborative Training for the Cultural Heritage and Emergency Response Communities” and was funded through a prestigious $196,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities (NEH). This project builds on the quarter century of the MBLC’s statewide preservation activities and the work of its partners–the statewide cultural heritage emergency network, COSTEP MA, the Massachusetts Archives, the New England Museum Association, the Massachusetts Cultural Council, Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency, and the Massachusetts Department of Fire Services — to ensure that the cultural heritage community is included in a municipality’s Comprehensive Emergency Management Plan (CEMP) and that emergency responders play a formal role in the protection of local humanities collections.
In 2009, he led the effort to make libraries in Massachusetts disaster recovery centers (DRC) in collaboration with the Massachusetts Emergency Management Agency (MEMA), and the Federal Emergency Management Agency (FEMA). In the wake of the massive flooding in eastern Massachusetts, and subsequently, the devastating tornadoes that tore through the western part of the state in 2010, several libraries including Lakeville, Billerica, Middleton, Lancaster, and Quincy opened their doors as DRCs, and librarians there were trained to being the work of recovery as soon as possible.
He was served as president of the New England Archivists from 1995-1996. He was elected a fellow of the Society of American Archivists in 2006 and served as president of the Society from 2011 to 2012. He was instrumental in coordinating the organization’s response to Hurricane Katrina, Hurricane Rita, and Hurricane Wilma in 2005 as chair of the Society’s Preservation Section. He was awarded the 2006 Society of American Archivists, Council Resolution for Service to the Society and its members Regarding Response to Hurricanes Katrina, Rita, and Wilma. In 2008 he was awarded the Heritage Preservation and American Institute for Conservation Award for Outstanding Commitment to the Preservation and Care of Collections. He also received the 2012 George Cunha and Susan Swartzburg Preservation Award (ALCT/PARS), and in 2013 he was presented with the New England Archivists’ (NEA) Distinguished Service Award, honoring his dedication and service to promoting the NEA’s mission and goals. Most recently he was awarded the Distinguished Service Award by the Academy of Certified Archivists.
Gregor graduated from the University of Wisconsin, Madison with Master of Arts degrees in History and Library Science/ Archives Administration. He is also a graduate of the Preservation/Conservation Internship at Yale University. His work for the Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners includes implementing the statewide preservation program, the MBLC’s Emergency Assistance Program, and its Environmental Monitoring Program, and for maintaining the Massachusetts Special Collections Directory on the MBLC Web site.