Staff

Leadership Team

John BrackenJohn Bracken

Executive Director

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John S. Bracken is the executive director of the Digital Public Library of America.  He joined DPLA in December of 2017 after nearly two decades as a philanthropic investor in digital media, media policy and innovation. He most recently served as Vice President for Technology Innovation at the John S. and James L. Knight Foundation, where he oversaw the Knight News Challenge, Knight’s Prototype Fund, and other efforts to improve the creation, curation, and accessibility of information. He previously managed civic innovation programs at the MacArthur Foundation and the Ford Foundation. He has a master’s degree from the Annenberg School for Communication at the University of Pennsylvania and a BA from Pitzer College in Claremont, California. He serves on the board of the Illinois Humanities Council and resides in Chicago, Illinois.

Michael Della BittaMichael Della Bitta

Director of Technology

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Michael has worked in software development and publications and in the startup, library, and education space for nearly twenty years. Michael most recently worked as a data and analytics developer, architect and engineering manager at the content marketing company ScribbleLive. Prior to that, Michael worked as a developer and architect on the repository and Digital Gallery teams at the New York Public Library, and built content management, online learning, and semantic metadata applications at Columbia University. Michael holds a B.A. in Philosophy from Bates College. Michael’s favorite item in the DPLA is the Willard Orrery, because it reminds him of home.

Michele KimptonMichele Kimpton

Director of Business Development and Senior Strategist

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Michele Kimpton is the Director of Business Development and Senior Strategist for DPLA. Previously, Michele worked as Chief Strategist for LYRASIS and CEO of DuraSpace, where she developed several new cloud-based managed services for the digital library community, and developed new sustainability and governance models for multiple open source projects. Kimpton is a founding member of both the National Digital Strategic Alliance (NDSA) and the IIPC (International Internet Preservation Consortium). In 2013, Kimpton was named Digital Preservation Pioneer by the NDIPP program at Library of Congress. She holds a MBA from Santa Clara University, and a Bachelor of Science in Mechanical Engineering from Lehigh University.

 

Our Team

Amy Slagle

Ebooks Developer

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Amy is a developer working on ebooks at DPLA. Most of her work is on the open source Library Simplified project, which is used for Open Bookshelf, the DPLA Exchange, and Open eBooks. She spent two years working on Library Simplified at the New York Public Library before joining DPLA. Prior to that, she worked on tools for predicting disease outbreaks at EcoHealth Alliance and assessment software for teachers at Wireless Generation. She holds a Master’s in computer science from MIT.

Arielle PerryArielle Perry

Program Assistant

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Arielle has a diverse background in libraries, administration, and special events. Prior to DPLA, Arielle worked with the Friends of the University of Wisconsin—Madison Libraries as the Administrative Program Specialist to create special events and support collaborative educational programs. Before working with the Friends, Arielle held a number of positions with local and university libraries and worked on special event planning and implementation for community groups and educational organizations. Arielle holds a master’s degree in Library and Information Studies from the University of Wisconsin-Madison, and a BA in History from Virginia Wesleyan College.

Audrey AltmanAudrey Altman

Developer

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Audrey Altman is a Developer for DPLA, working to collect, analyze, and report data related to usage patterns and metadata quality. She helps create staff- and partner-facing tools for business intelligence. She holds a Masters of Library and Information Science from the University of Iowa, and a M.A. in American Studies from the University of Alabama. Audrey’s favorite item in DPLA is this photograph of two women working on ENIAC, one of the world’s earliest computers.

Debra Demuele Debra Demeule

Controller

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Debi has been working in the accounting and finance field for over 20 years. She spent the first 5 years of her professional career in the public sector gaining experience in both audit and tax. She then moved to the healthcare industry where she worked for Boston’s St. Elizabeth’s Medical Center of the Caritas Christi Healthcare System. After managing the hospitals accounts payable and payroll departments she accepted the position of Financial Controller of the affiliated Medical group where she was responsible for the accounting staff, and all details of the monthly financial close. Eventually, as a Director of Finance Debi worked with company executives and the Board of Directors on corporate level financial analysis, future planning and special projects. Most recently, Debi has worked for Supporting Strategies, Inc. as a Financial Operations Associate, managing day to day financial outcomes for clients of various size and industry.  Debi graduated from Emmanuel College with a BS in Accounting. She is an active volunteer and marathon runner.

Franky Abbott

Curation and Education Strategist

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Franky Abbott works as the Curation and Education Strategist for the Digital Public Library of America. In this capacity, she leads DPLA’s curation work including primary source sets for teachers and students in K-12 and higher education, online exhibitions, topic browse, and related outreach projects. Franky came to DPLA as an American Council of Learned Societies Public Fellow in 2013 with experience in digital humanities at the University of Alabama and Emory University and in digital publishing as managing editor of the open access journal, Southern Spaces. She has also worked in education research and as a high school English teacher. Franky has a PhD in American Studies from Emory University.

Gretchen GueguenGretchen Gueguen

Data Services Coordinator

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Gretchen Gueguen is DPLA’s Data Services Coordinator, working to bring on new partners, conduct data mapping and ingest, perform quality assurance, and support several other critical projects. Prior to DPLA, Gretchen worked as Digital Archivist at the University of Virginia where she helped establish the first born-digital archives program. Gretchen has also worked at East Carolina University and the University of Maryland where she received her MLS in 2005. Gretchen has been involved several collaborative digital library and digital humanities projects throughout Maryland, Virginia, and North Carolina. Gretchen’s current favorite DPLA item is “Roller Derby at Atlanta Municipal Auditorium,” showing the early days of her favorite sport.

Mark BreedloveMark Breedlove

Senior Developer

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Mark Breedlove is a Senior Developer at DPLA, and contributes to the design and implementation of the organization’s infrastructure, ingestion system, API, and front-end website. His work has been concentrated in the development of the ingestion system, which moves data from providers to the DPLA datastore, and the development of the organization’s new DevOps systems. He works closely with the Director of Technology and the Content team. Before coming to DPLA, Mark was the Technical Director at See.me, a social discovery website for artists, and the American Museum of Natural History, building scientific web applications and content management systems for its Science Division. Mark’s current favorite DPLA item is Gunn’s Domestic Medicine, or Poor Man’s Friend.

Mauricio Giraldo Arteaga

Principal Interaction Designer

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Mauricio enjoys playing with code, objects and all things interactive. Prior to joining the DPLA, he spent six years at The New York Public Library’s NYPL Labs innovation unit dedicated to finding new ways of bringing the library’s collections to the public using digital technology. Prior to NYPL, Mauricio spent twelve years designing and developing interaction design projects for a wide range of commercial, academic, private and public institutions throughout Latin America. Mauricio holds a Master’s degree in Human-Computer Interaction from Carnegie Mellon University. He is also an Industrial Designer from Universidad de los Andes in his native city of Bogotá, Colombia where he lectured for six years. Mauricio’s favorite item is the Original Skateboard Maneuver Chart from 1987.

 

Michelle BickertMichelle Bickert

Ebook Program Manager

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Michelle Bickert is the Ebook Program Manager at DPLA, investigating opportunities for DPLA to help build a healthier ebook ecosystem for libraries. She manages DPLA programs (including Open eBooks and Open Bookshelf) that maximize access to one content type: ebooks. Prior to DPLA Michelle was the Digital Content Coordinator for the Arizona State Library, managing Reading Arizona Ebooks and the Arizona Memory Project. Michelle attended Arizona State University where she received her MA in Public History and BAs in History and Political Science. Her favorite ebook available through DPLA is A Natural Sequence: A Story of Phoenix, Arizona.

 

Samantha GibsonSamantha Gibson

Engagement and Use Coordinator

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Samantha Gibson is the Engagement and Use Coordinator at DPLA, where she works to connect diverse public audiences with DPLA’s rich collections through social media, outreach initiatives, and the development of curated resources and education materials for teachers and students. Prior to DPLA, Samantha worked in museum education at the Museum of African American History, Boston and Nantucket, Brooklyn Historical Society, and the Museum of the City of New York. Samantha holds a M.A. in Public History from New York University and a B.A. in History from American University in Washington, D.C.

Scott WilliamsScott Williams

Developer

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Scott Williams is a Developer for the DPLA, where he works to create streamlined experiences for partner institutions who want to make their content available to a larger audience by including it in the DPLA.Before coming to the DPLA, Scott worked with museum data at the Yale University Art Gallery and University of Pennsylvania Museum of Archaeology and Anthropology. He holds a degree in history and computer science from Miami University of Ohio. Scott lives in Western Massachusetts with his partner and their two cats, Archimedes and Antigone. Scott’s favorite item in the DPLA is the print Tugboat by Fred Carlo because it’s beautiful, and because it reminds him of Greg Albers’ MCN Ignite Talk.