Staff Highlight: Patrick Lloyd, TSLAC’s Community Resilience Consultant

As part of our effort to make sure you know who the staff here at the Texas State Library are, we would like to periodically highlight staff members that you may at some point come in contact with! For our next staff highlight, I interviewed Patrick Lloyd, Library Development and Networking (LDN)’s new Community Resilience Consultant and part of the Continuing Education and Consulting (CEC) team)!

Portrait of Patrick Lloyd
Patrick Lloyd, Community Resilience Consultant

What projects are you excited to get started with?
I hope to build a cohort of libraries interested in ongoing, regular training around issues of trauma, antiracism, and community partnerships. I envision this cohort working and learning together for a period of time—perhaps a year. I think this pilot could help us understand what is possible when an entire library staff invests deeply in this work and how such training can positively affect the community the library serves.

What was the last book you read/movie you watched/podcast or song you listened to that you enjoyed?
The last great book that I read was The Devil’s Highway by Luis Alberto Urrea. It’s not exactly an enjoyable read but an extremely informative and important one. This book helped me understand the realities of immigrants who cross the southern border with a clarity I had not encountered before. It is a sad, beautiful, and nuanced book on the issue of immigration.

I also very much enjoyed Lawrence Wright’s God Save Texas. I’ve lived in Texas my entire life, but I still learned many things about our state from politics to nature (Rio Grande Cichlids mate for life!) to culture. I’ve read several of Wright’s books and I always appreciate his ability to insert humor and surreality into serious topics. It also helps that he himself is as Texan as Saturday morning brisket.

What is something about you that people don’t know?
I love bubble baths, massages, facials, and related spa services. When I’m not providing training, I tend to present as something of a tattooed grump; a former supervisor once asked if I was into motorcycles (I have never ridden a motorcycle). My love of bubble baths tends to surprise folks.

What drew you to this position?
Over the last several years, I’ve been privileged to have presented in front of many audiences. As an introvert, it’s been something of a surprise to find that I enjoy it! I’m excited to offer training to folks around the state and to help push the conversation within the library field towards whole-person services.

I also collaborated with TSLAC and my new coworkers several times in the past; I knew that I liked and respected them. The opportunity to work with the rest of the Continuing Education and Consulting team everyday was also a big draw.

Staff Highlight: Adriana Cavitt Cavazos

As part of our effort to make sure you know who the staff here at the Texas State Library are, we would like to periodically highlight staff members that you may at some point come in contact with! For our next staff highlight of 2021, I interviewed Adriana Cavitt Cavazos, Library Development and Networking (LDN)’s new Office Assistant!

Photo of Adriana Cavitt Cavazos
Adriana Cavitt Cavazos, Office Assistant

What are your job responsibilities at TSLAC?

I am the friendly and smiling person you will first see when you visit our office. I provide administrative support for the LDN Division; I assist the Resource Sharing workgroup with TexShare and TexQuest programs; I also assist in the maintenance of accurate workshop participant records, with the preparation of workshop materials; and LDN travel arrangements and reimbursements.

What projects are you excited to get started with?

Working with TexQuest and TexShare and assist managing, updating and cleaning up CRM Database.

What was the last book your read/movie you watched/podcast or song you listened to that you enjoyed?

The last book I read was The Shadow of the Wind by Carlos Ruiz Zafon. This book is one of those you can’t put down. The story begins in 1945 when the main character Daniel is conducted by his father to a mysterious place in the heart of Barcelona: The Cemetery of The Forgotten Books where Daniel finds “The Shadow of The Wind”, a cursed book that will transform his life…..

What is something about you that people don’t know?

I retired with the Great State of Texas in 2018 after 21 years working with Texas Workforce Commission/Department of Vocational Rehabilitation Services.

What drew you to this position?

I always wanted to work in a library environment and get to know their structure; when I found this job opening, I felt it was exactly what I was looking for. I am very happy to be here and to have a second run as a State Employee.

Staff Highlight: Christina Taylor, TSLAC’s Youth Services Consultant

As part of our effort to make sure you know who the staff here at the Texas State Library are, we would like to periodically highlight staff members that you may at some point come in contact with! For our next staff highlight of 2021, I interviewed Christina Taylor, Library Development and Networking (LDN)’s new Youth Services Consultant on the Continuing Education and Consulting (CEC) team)!

Portrait of Christina Taylor, Woman smiling
Christina Taylor, Youth Services Consultant

What are your job responsibilities at TSLAC?
As the Youth Services Consultant, I will work towards ensuring Texas libraries are knowledgeable about and have the resources to implement youth services that meet the needs of their communities. To that end, I will lead projects for internal, statewide, and national initiatives relating to youth services.

What projects are you excited to get started with?
As a fervent advocate for comics and graphic novels, I am extremely excited to help Texas libraries enhance the robustness of those collections and leverage their impact on empowerment, learning, and lifelong joy as they serve their communities. Furthermore, I am eager to amplify libraries’ community engagement, advocacy, and outreach efforts via social media.

What was the last book you read/movie you watched/podcast or song you listened to that you enjoyed?
This past year I’ve read so many books that were balm for my soul in the face of recent social unrest. My newest love is The Magic Fish by Trung Le Nguyen. This graphic novel is an intensely gentle story of a mother and son who must navigate the shifting landscape of their relationship as they struggle with language barriers and a lack context for fully understanding each other. Outside of the luscious visuals and the backmatter expounding upon the writer’s craft, what I love most about this story is that it is rooted in a very personal tale of unconditional love that refuses to be unseated by anything. The mother’s love is and will always be a safe haven for her son even when she doesn’t have the words to express it or the ability to fully understand who he is. Every person deserves to be loved like that.

Some other gems that I’ve discovered are Gail Carriger’s Parasol Protectorate series and its copious spin-offs, Shanna Swendson’s Rebel series, and H.E. Edgmon’s The Witch King series. I’m finding that speculative fiction is a wonderful means of helping me contextualize topical concerns while providing just enough abstraction to mitigate being overwhelmed by them.

What is something about you that people don’t know?
My passion for vintage glamour is a critical part of what defines me. It is rooted in beloved childhood memories of my grandmother, echoed in the person of my mother, and exhibited by so many fierce women that I’ve had the honor of knowing personally or admiring from afar. It is—without a doubt—a physical manifestation of my better self and who I continually strive to be!

What drew you to this position?
I was drawn to this position because of the opportunities it affords me to promote learning and library work throughout the state and beyond. As a lifelong educator, I am thrilled that I can build upon my prior work and use it as a foundation for enhancing the service capacity of libraries and the library community.

Staff Highlight: Karen McElfresh

woman smiling
Karen McElfresh

As part of our effort to make sure you know the staff here at the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, we periodically interview those with whom you may at some point come into contact! For this staff highlight, I interviewed Karen McElfesh, our new Resource Sharing Projects Coordinator.

What are your job responsibilities at TSLAC? 

I am the Resource Sharing Projects Coordinator, which is part of the Library Development and Networking division. My primary responsibilities are with the E-Read Texas project, which provides e-books to small and rural public libraries across the state. The program is fairly new, so I will be doing promotion and training to get more libraries involved with the program.  

What projects are you excited to get started with? 

I’m excited to get started working with libraries across the state and learn more about their needs when it comes to e-books and other electronic materials.  

What was the last book your read/movie you watched/podcast or song you listened to that you enjoyed? 

I just finished the book My Sister, the Serial Killer by Oyinkan Braithwaite for my book club. It’s a dark comedy about a woman whose sister keeps killing her boyfriends. It’s a really quick read and worth checking out. 

What is something about you that people don’t know? 

I used to work in a hospital blood bank before I was a librarian. I worked in the Texas Medical Center for about five years, doing compatibility testing and preparing blood for transfusion. I decided it wasn’t the career for me long-term and went back to school to become a librarian. 

What drew you to this position? 

I was interested in this position because it offers opportunities to collaborate with lots of different people, including libraries of all types, vendors and publishers, and my colleagues at TSLAC. I’m really enjoying getting to know everyone at TSLAC and learning more about all of the work we do across the state – it’s a great group of people!  


Staff Highlight: Tomas Mendez

As part of our effort to make sure you know the staff here at the Texas State Library and Archives Commission, we periodically feature those whom you may at some point come into contact! This month, I interviewed Tomas Mendez, Library Development and Networking (LDN)’s CE Support Specialist.

Man fixing his tie
Tomas Mendez

What are your job responsibilities at TSLAC?

I provide technical support and maintenance for the distance learning website. I maintain the LDN YouTube account and upload webinars and captioning files. I assist with the Continuing Education and Consulting (CEC) statistics gathering of online learning courses, webinars, workshops, and YouTube data. I create and help create CEC newsletters and blog posts and help maintain and update LDN webpages.

What projects are you excited to get started with?

Getting the FY 2020 statistics ready for reporting to the Legislative Budget Board (LBB).

What was the last book your read/movie you watched/podcast or song you listened to that you enjoyed?

The last book I read was The Name of the Wind by Patrick Rothfuss. It’s a great story of magic, archives, and adventure.

What is something about you that people don’t know?

I am a second generation Austinite.

What drew you to this position?

Two things; one, the awesome CEC team; two, the opportunity to work on the new online learning website at the ground level.

Staff Highlight: Laura Tadena

Woman smiling, Laura Tadena

As part of our effort to make sure you know who the staff here at the Texas State Library are, we would like to periodically highlight staff members that you may at some point come in contact with! For our first staff highlight of 2020, I interviewed Laura Tadena, Library Development and Networking (LDN)’s new Inclusive Services Consultant on the Continuing Education and Consulting (CEC) team)!


What are your job responsibilities at TSLAC?

As the Inclusive Services Consultant, I will work towards ensuring Texas librarians are knowledgeable about and have the resources to engage their community in implementing inclusive, equitable services to all members of their diverse communities. I will also be working on statewide and national initiatives and other projects relating to inclusive services.

What projects are you excited to get started with?

I am really looking forward to visiting our libraries and highlighting some of the great work that our public libraries are doing for their communities across the state. I am also looking forward to developing and sharing training and tools around inclusive services, so keep an eye out for things to come!

What was the last book your read/movie you watched/podcast or song you listened to that you enjoyed?

I am an avid reader, so this past year my favorite book from 2019 was Born a Crime by Trevor Noah. It was informative and hilarious and gave me a deeper understanding of what it must have been like to have grown up during apartheid in South Africa. I am currently reading With the Fire on High by Elizabeth Acevedo, which is a beautiful story about a young mother, who is a high school senior that loves to cook. It reminds me of Like Water for Chocolate by Laura Esquivel, which is also one of my favorite books because of the magical realism.

What is something about you that people don’t know?

I am really into plants and would turn my home and office space into a jungle if I was able to.

What drew you to this position?

I was excited about what this position could do for libraries in Texas and had also heard great things about working for the Texas State Library and Archives Commission. I knew that this position would provide me the opportunity to do the work that I love to do while working alongside and learning from such amazing colleagues.