iSchool Alumnus Named 2023 Mover and Shaker
Library Journal Selects 2010 MLIS Graduate Keith Kesler as a Community Builder
Keith Kesler, a graduate from the San José State University School of Information, has been named a 2023 Mover and Shaker Community Builder by Library Journal. Kesler was nominated for the award by his manager. He considers it a “great honor…since there are only around 40 librarians selected for the honor each year, and it’s for all of the libraries in the United States.”
The 2023 Movers and Shakers were considered by the challenges they face and “engaging in those issues head on: challenges to intellectual freedom, racism, antisemitism, homophobia, transphobia, ableism, food and resource insecurity, and a systemic lack of opportunity for those who are underserved,” according to Lisa Peet, the executive editor of Library Journal.
Kesler graduated from the SJSU School of Information with his Master’s degree in Library and Information Science in 2010. “It’s crazy to think about how much librarianship has changed in the 13 years since I graduated. My current job of managing social media didn’t even really exist back when I was in school,” Kesler states.
The “Community Builder” currently serves as the social media librarian at the Central Library, part of the Los Angeles Public Library system. Kesler told Library Journal that he remembers his first social media post “where he created a book list for fans of the television show Breaking Bad. It gained attention from major news outlets, including the LA Times.”
Another post that stands out in his career is a viral video featuring The Linda Lindas, a “teen punk” all-girl rock band, that caught the attention of millions of viewers. “I remember when I got the initial message about recording a teenage punk band. I hadn’t done any videos of bands but the opportunity sounded interesting and rather low stakes. Little did I know that a few months later The Linda Lindas video would get over 20 million views and win us two Webby awards,” Kesler recalls.
Kesler adds that being open to opportunities is the advice he would give to current students studying library and information science at the SJSU School of Information. “Be willing to say yes even though you may be nervous about taking on a new role. There are so many fascinating library jobs, and you may not know exactly what avenue you want to pursue when entering the program but getting that degree will open up so many opportunities.”
Congratulations to Kesler on this noteworthy recognition. He joins more than 35 SJSU School of Information alumni to be honored as one of Library Journal’s Movers and Shakers!