Thank You David WilliamsPosted: October 28, 2015
On October 27, 2015, David Williams was honored with the State Historical Records Advisory Board’s (SHRAB) Certificate of Merit for Notable Service to and Advocacy for Archives in Kentucky by a private citizen in a celebration with friends and colleagues outside Rare Books, in the Ekstrom Library.
David Williams began collecting the history of the LGTBQ community in the early 1970s and in 2001 established the Williams-Nichols collection at the University of Louisville. The Williams-Nichols collection was Kentucky’s first institutional archives designated to support LGBTQ research and study. David continues as donor, researcher, and passionate advocate for LGTBQ history.
Chad Owen, Archivist for Records Management nominated David for the award and served as MC for the presentation.
Dean Bob Fox praised David as donor and friend of the University Libraries. He provides a link between the University and the community. Dean Fox thanked David for his support of LGBTQ resources in the Libraries’ circulating collections even beyond Archives and Special Collections, helping us be sensitive and effective in making resources available for students. David is a consciousness raiser for us all.
Fairness Campaign Director Chris Hartman emphasized David’s connections to the community and the importance of preserving its history.
David outlined the history of collection, dating back to 1982, and thanked many people who had donated materials over the years and otherwise supported the collection. He acknowledged his husband Aaron Bingham, and thanked him for patience.
Mary Margaret Bell, JCPS Coordinator, Archives and Retrieval Systems and member of the SHRAB Board, spoke of the importance of community collaborations and collecting underrepresented communities in archival collections. She and fellow SHRAB Board member Jim Cundy presented the award to David Williams.
A small exhibit for the event contained items from the Williams-Nichols Collection and included the first edition of Oscar Wilde’s Portrait of Dorian Gray; court papers of the Sam Dorr discrimination case (Louisville’s Stonewall) which helped raise awareness of gay rights issues; photos and buttons from of New England Lesbian community activists; and first issues of The Ladder and Mattachine Review.
And we had cake!