AAO News

  • 07 Apr 2020 11:15 AM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    Dear AAO Members,

    The last number of weeks have presented unprecedented challenges for all of us. It is the sincere hope of the Board that you, your families, and loved ones are safe and well during these uncertain times. We offer our support however possible.

    As you are aware, the AAO made the difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Conference. With this done, we will be moving our Annual General Meeting (AGM) online to a live interactive format. Please save the date for the afternoon of June 25, 2020, as it is important for all members to attend. We have several important matters to discuss, including our 2020-2023 Strategic Plan and we hope to welcome as many of you as possible to our virtual meeting.

    More information about the AGM will follow in the coming weeks.

    With the AGM rescheduled to June, we will be extending the nomination period for available Board positions to May 4, 2020. We are currently accepting nominations for the positions of Director-Without-Portfolio (2-year term) and Vice-President/President-Elect/Past-President (3-year term). Please be in touch with the AAO Office at aao@aao-archivists.ca should you have any questions.

    In regards to membership renewals, we recognize the current situation is creating economic uncertainty and hardship for many. We invite any member who is unable to renew their membership at this time to reach out to the AAO Office at aao@aao-archivists.ca. Our membership coordinator is able to extend the membership renewal date from April 1, 2020 to August 31, 2020 for any member to ensure a continuation of services until at least that date. All those who have had their memberships extended to August 31 will receive a renewal notice at that time.

    I would again like to thank our wonderful volunteers for their work and all of you, as members, for your continued support of our association. We have faced a difficult year but are emerging stronger as a community.


    AAO Board of Directors

  • 06 Apr 2020 3:18 PM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    In celebration of Archives Awareness Week 2020 and our theme of “Archives Online”, the Archives Association of Ontario has organized an “Ask an Archivist” event, taking place Tuesday, April 7 to Thursday, April 9 between 10 am to 4 pm EST. Each day, a roster of guest host archivists will take over the AAO Twitter account @AAO_tweet for one hour to answer your questions and comments.  

    The schedule of guest archivists and their areas of expertise is listed here. Please join us for these conversations on Twitter @AAO_tweet, and don’t forget to tweet about your own Archives Awareness Week 2020 celebrations using the #2020AAW hashtag!

  • 06 Apr 2020 2:19 PM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    Dear AAO Members,

    As you may remember, on October 23, 2019, Deyohahá:ge: The Indigenous Knowledge Centre at Six Nations Polytechnic, the Archives Association of Ontario, and the Archives of Ontario held a one-day symposium exploring how memory workers and communities may respectfully care for and provide access to the many forms of Indigenous Knowledge. Its goal was to provide an opportunity to hear from Indigenous Knowledge Keepers, Elders, and memory workers and to explore linkages between Indigenous knowledges and Western archival practice.

    Due to overwhelming response we were unable to accommodate everyone in person. We are pleased to announce that recordings of all speakers are now available for viewing on the AAO’s website.

    This event was a joint venture of Deyohahá:ge: The Indigenous Knowledge Centre at Six Nations Polytechnic (SNP), the Archives Association of Ontario (AAO) and the Archives of Ontario, with generous sponsorship from the Toronto Area Archivists Group (TAAG).


    This event was webcast live; visit the Archives Association of Ontario’s YouTube channel to view recordings of the speakers and panels from this symposium.

    Click here to see the Symposium agenda. 

    You can also view the conversation held by participants on Twitter using #AccessCare2019.

    To follow further discussions on Indigenous knowledge and archival practice, subscribe to the Decolonizing Description listserv.

  • 31 Mar 2020 3:25 PM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    Dear Membership,

    As usual, AAO plans to celebrate Archives Awareness Week with our members this year. Given the current situation we know most, if not all, archives are closed to the public and will not be running events. AAO would like to organize a virtual celebration using AAO social media. In honour of our theme "Archives Online", we would like to offer an "Ask an Archivist" event in which a number of people donate some time to respond to questions people tweet, or to chat about what they are doing to maintain a virtual archive presence, what is new in their institution, etc.. 

    We would channel all Q&A through the AAO Twitter account using our hashtag for the week, #2020AAW. More details will be sent out to those interested. If you are comfortable using Twitter and can donate some time to respond to tweets next week between Tuesday, April 7 and Thursday, April 9, please email the Archives Advisor at archivesadvisor@aao-archivists.ca by Thursday, April 2nd.

    Kind regards,

    Communications and Advocacy Committee

  • 30 Mar 2020 11:05 AM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    Hi Everyone,

    Following on the heels of Iona's great message, I too wanted to offer my support as Archeion Coordinator. If you need to get your mind off these intensely chaotic and challenging times we face, even for a short time, Archeion is a virus free zone!

    Feel free to browse the descriptions and authority records, search for family connections or even search our cat photos!


    I haven't forgot you dog lovers:


    Ferret lovers, I have one digital object just for you!


    Institutional Members can update, or add, descriptions, authority records and digital objects. As well, bulk uploads have been very popular. Want to know more about those? Just email me, and I am happy to go through bulk upload options that work for your situation.

    Never used Archeion or AtoM before? Or do you feel rusty, and need some training to remind you how to use it? Just email me and I can arrange virtual training by Zoom (even if you don't use Archeion, but want to know how to use AtoM). I can also send you my Archeion manual, soon to be updated to the newest AtoM version we upgraded to last week. Oh and if you are thinking of becoming a member, or may be a future member, don't be shy, contact me!

    This is a tough time for all of us, certainly uncharted waters, and to date, I have eaten likely a quarter of the chocolate in the world just out of stress and anxiety. You aren't alone in this, so if Archeion can help you forget things just for a few minutes, that is super! Please don't hesitate to reach out to me, I am happy to answer any questions, and help with what I can!




    Lisa Snider
    Archeion Coordinator
    Archives Association of Ontario
    e: archeion@aao-archivists.ca
    t: (800) 208-1936

  • 27 Mar 2020 4:32 PM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    Greetings to Everyone.

    As we all struggle to deal with the new reality and concern for our families and friends, we as archivists are still the record keepers, the storytellers who will document this part of our history for future generations, as we also continue to provide access to essential information to keep the wheels turning. Doing so will require new ways of doing business, possibly for some time, but archivists, record managers, librarians, curators are capable of the challenge.  Forced to think outside the box as we are may result in new opportunities, collaborations and innovative ideas that will serve us well in the future.  

    As part of the archival community I wanted to assure you that as AAO Advisor I am still here and working to offer information and guidance to any who need support.  So do not hesitate to reach out to me at my contact information below if I can be of help. 

    Stay safe and be positive in these challenging times.  

    Iona McCraith

    e: archivesadvisor@@aao-archivists.ca

  • 23 Mar 2020 2:47 PM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    Dear AAO Members, conference attendees, and conference presenters,

    The Archives Association of Ontario (AAO) has been closely monitoring developments with COVID-19. In response to growing concern and newly-imposed travel restrictions, the AAO has made the very difficult decision to cancel the 2020 Conference. This decision was not easily made and I would like to personally thank the dedication of our Local Arrangements and Programme Committee members who have dedicated their time and energy into preparing what would have been a very successful conference. 

    The AAO cares deeply about the well-being and safety of our community and is committed to offering a safe, productive, and welcoming environment for all of our members. All those who registered for the conference will be issued full refunds within the next 3-5 business days. Please be in touch with the AAO Office should you have any questions about the status of your refund. We also suggest all members who made travel arrangements to reach out to your airline, etc. to seek refunds where possible.

    We are currently exploring options as to the delivery of the 2020 Annual General Meeting (AGM). More information will follow in the coming weeks about the delivery of our pre-conference workshop, Fundraising and Grant Writing, with Raegan Swanson, Executive Director of the ArQuives. We will continue to issue communications on any further developments here, on the AAO email listserv, and through our social media channels.

    I would again like to thank our wonderful volunteers for their work and all of you, as members, for your continued support of our association. We have faced a difficult year but are emerging stronger as a community.

    Please write to us at aao@archivists-aao.ca if you have any questions or concerns.


    AAO Conference Local Arrangements and Program Committees 2020

    AAO Board of Directors

  • 12 Mar 2020 10:37 AM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    Dear AAO Members, conference attendees, and conference presenters,

    The Archives Association of Ontario (AAO) is closely monitoring developments on COVID-19 and possible implications on our services. The 2020 AAO Conference in Thunder Bay, ON, is scheduled to proceed as planned from 13 to 15 May.

    The AAO cares about the well-being and safety of our community and is committed to offering a safe, productive, and welcoming environment for our 2020 Conference. As of today there are no confirmed or presumptive cases of COVID-19 in the Thunder Bay area and the level of risk to visitors is low. Up-to-date information on Thunder Bay’s response to COVID-19 and other helpful resources are available here.

    We are in communication with members, conference speakers, attendees, and exhibitors. Please write to us at aao@archivists-aao.ca if you have any questions or concerns.

    The AAO Board of Directors hopes to welcome you all in Thunder Bay this May. We will issue communications on any further developments here, on the AAO email listserv, and through our social media channels.

  • 11 Mar 2020 10:05 AM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    Dear Membership,

    The Archives Association of Ontario is pleased to announce Archives Awareness Week 2020! This year’s event will run from Monday, April 6 to Sunday, April 12.

    Online tools and technology have revolutionized the way archivists work, and we pay tribute to these new developments with this year’s Archives Awareness Week theme: “Archives Online”. 

    To help with planning, we've put together a kit with a few resources and questions to get you started. 


    The following are some questions and prompts to inspire you and get you thinking about how the online environment has influenced your work as an archivist. Feel free to use as many as you want, or come up with your own.

    • What platforms and channels are you using to promote and provide access to your holdings?
    • Are you planning or have you planned any online exhibits?
    • How are you using social media at your institution? 
    • Do you have any online projects you would like to promote?
    • Are you doing any digitization work at your institution? What are your users asking to be made available online?
    • How have online capabilities improved your services? What have you accomplished or achieved?


    Use our AAW posters to celebrate and promote your events. Share them online or post them around your institution to get the word out. You can find them on the AAO website here.

    AAW Resource Page

    AAO members also have access to the AAW Resource Page. Click here for more ideas and tips on how to plan and promote your events.


    Do you have an AAW event planned at your institution that you want to highlight? Let us help you reach a wider audience! Contact archivesadvisor@aao-archivists.ca and we will share your event on the AAO website.

    Please reach out if you have any questions or comments, and don’t forget to use the #2020AAW hashtag. We can’t wait to see what you have in store!

  • 09 Mar 2020 2:57 PM | MacKenzie Gott (Administrator)

    Dear AAO members,

    In accordance with Section 20 (Amendments to the Constitution), the AAO Board is distributing proposed updates to the AAO Constitution, which must be distributed to the membership at least 60 days prior to the Annual General Meeting (AGM).

    AAO Board will be tabling two motions at the AGM regarding our Constitution: 1) To establish a standing committee, “A Student and New Professional Outreach Committee,” and 2) To revise the wording of the Institutional Development Committee’s membership requirements.

    These amendments will be sanctioned by a vote at the 2020 AGM at the annual conference in Belleville. Please find a summary of the recommended changes here.

    Thank you for your time and continued support in the AAO. We hope to see you in Thunder Bay!

    Please direct any questions regarding the AAO Constitution to myself.

    Kind Regards

    James Roussain

    President, 2019-2020
    Archives Association of Ontario (AAO)

The Archives Association of Ontario (AAO) is led by a committed community of volunteers from across the province. 

411 Richmond Street East, Suite 200, Toronto, ON, M5A 3S5

aao@aao-archivists.ca  |  (647) 343-3334


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