MLA Featured Library Employee — Kelli Hansen

Meet this issue’s Featured Library Employee for the Missouri Library Association, Kelli Hansen!

What is your name, your library, and your role at the library?

My name is Kelli Hansen, and I am in Special Collections at the University of Missouri Libraries

What originally got you interested in working at a library?

As an M.A. student in art history, I worked on an exhibition collaboration between the Libraries and the Museum of Art and Archaeology at MU. I was fascinated with Special Collections and decided to change my career track from museums to libraries after I finished my first master’s degree. I went to UT Austin to get my MSIS, and am happy that I got to come back to Columbia to work in the Libraries here.

What’s challenging about your work?

A large part of my work is instruction, and I teach across a wide range of subject areas. One morning I might lead a class on graphic novels, only to turn around and teach medieval manuscripts in the afternoon. I sometimes get to help put together course sessions on topics I know very little about, so research plays a big role as well. I learn new things at work all the time.

Has your work made you either curious, or passionate, or awestruck about something?

I’m constantly awestruck by the materials we hold in Special Collections, and connecting those materials with students and researchers is my passion. I love those moments when students say, “I can actually touch this?” and I get to say “Yes! This is yours to use and appreciate! Make the most of it!”


Would you like to nominate someone to be our next Featured Library Employee?  Examples could be:

…a new employee you’d like to introduce

…someone with a unique job or on a unique career path

…an employee you find inspirational

…a coworker whose gifts you wish were more widely known

…someone who’s “an institution” full of interesting stories

…a role that has a new focus or is reaching a new audience

…someone you’d like to make more visible to potential employers

Submit name(s) and contact information, along with place of employment, to Shannon Mawhiney at  We’ll do all the work of contacting; we just need you to connect us!