Several years ago, my children and I began keeping a “Gratitude Journal.” Most evenings we write down the things and people and moments from our day for which we give thanks. As I enter my eighteenth month as the executive director of the Presbyterian Church (U.S.A.)’s national archives, I’m taking a moment to note some of the many reasons I am grateful for PHS.
For the past six months, people have asked me, “Are you settled yet?” What a seemingly simple question that is, yet I never quite know how to answer it. What counts as settled?
As far as my home life is concerned, my children are making friends and doing well at school, there are more places I can travel to without relying on Google maps, and my attention is turning from unpacking and painting to repairs around the house. Does that count as settled?
Several years ago, I sat in the office of Executive Director Fred Heuser conversing about alternatives to elusive tenure-track academic positions for history PhDs. As the recipient of a PHS Research Fellowship, I was spending several weeks at the Society taking photos of thousands of documents related to my dissertation research on WWII Japanese-American incarceration camps. Judy Austin—a mutual friend, scholar, and former PHS Board member—had introduced me to...