The Outrider The Outrider The Outrider

October/November 2001
Volume 33
Number 10 and 11


 Around the State


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Bibliographic Services provides variety of support to libraries, patrons

  • Editor’s note: This is the fourth of a six part series on the Wyoming State Library.

The bibliographic services staff at the Wyoming State Library (WSL) perform a wide range of services for libraries throughout the state ranging from monitoring the quality of bibliographic records to compiling discard lists.

The four who staff bibliographic services are Bobbi Thorpe, Janet L. Williams, Jan Batson and Alta Hepner.

Some of the services they provide include training in cataloging and other system modules; processing federal documents; checking in serial records for both federal documents and trade; creating authority records; correcting and reporting OCLC database errors; performing mending and binding; and receiving, distributing and assigning numbers to all state documents.


Bobbi Thorpe is the head of bibliographic services and WSL’s WYLD Database manager.

Some of her duties include overseeing bibliographic services functions; providing cataloging and technical processing training throughout the state; and providing consultation to libraries not on the WYLD system.

Bobbi Thorpe

Thorpe also works with the WYLD Network Online Quality Committee to set standards for the quality of bibliographic records in WYLD. She manages the authority records within the WYLD database.

On any given day, Thorpe is at her computer terminal working in the statewide bibliographic database to preserve the integrity of the database by merging duplicate records, creating authority records for consistent entry and cross referencing, and correcting errors in records that hinder their retrieval in WYLD CAT.

In the fall of 1990, Thorpe came to the State Library from the Park County Library System in Cody to become head of technical services. She cataloged state documents for a year before moving into the WYLD office to move to the position of database manager. In 1999, she reassumed the managerial responsibilities of the technical services section when she became head of bibliographic services. However, she retains her commitment to WYLD by remaining as database manager along with her responsibilities in bibliographic services.

In addition to working at the State Library, Thorpe also worked at the University of Wyoming Libraries for more than eight years. She also, more recently, served as adjunct professor in UW’s College of Education where she taught a correspondence study cataloging class for four years.

Thorpe received her undergraduate degree in English literature at the University of Wyoming and her master’s of library and information science at the University of Washington in Seattle.

She is a member of Wyoming Library Association (WLA), Mountain Plains Library Association (MPLA) and the American Library Association (ALA). She has served as the Wyoming representative to MPLA.

Jan Batson is the senior library technician at the WSL.

Some of her duties include receiving and assigning WyDocs numbers; copy cataloging; processing and distributing Wyoming state documents; working on inventory of the state document collection; and adding records and holdings to the WYLD database.
Jan Batson

Batson, who has worked at the State Library for 12 years, also manages the Large Print Rotating Collection (LPRC). She orders the large print books and keeps the LPRC manual up-to-date.

“My days are busy and interesting. That’s what I like about the job,” she said. “There is a lot of variety on any given day. Most of the phone calls I get are about large print problems.”

“It’s a great program, and we have had other states show some interest in our operation and manual,” she said.

Batson has worked in various libraries since high school including school libraries and military base libraries at F.E. Warren Air Force Base and in Italy.

On-the-job training and job-related workshops are how Batson received training for her trade. While in Italy, Batson received an award for Outstanding Career Woman of the Year.

She also submitted the State Library’s large print program to Thorndike/G.K. Hall and, in 1996, won a second place Community Service Award for large libraries. Batson is also part of the WLA paraprofessional section.

Janet Williams is the WSL’s cataloger.

She provides original cataloging and advanced copy cataloging for Wyoming state publications and commercial or nonprofit agency publications in a variety of formats.
Janet Williams

Williams, who has worked at the WSL since February 1992, has a bachelor’s degree in history with a minor in business administration, and a master’s of library science from the University of Oregon. She completed her post-graduate courses in archival administration and conservation and preservation of archival materials, and completed her internship at Sacred Heart Medical Center Library. At one point in her career, she was a certified medical librarian.

Williams’ “typical day” includes adding records in the OCLC and WYLD databases.

“I might create and send name authority requests for Wyoming residents, government bodies and organizations to the NACO Project at the University of Wyoming Libraries,” she said. “For people not from Wyoming, and conflicting corporate-name authority records, I send the same type of information to the Cataloging Product and Support Office at the Library of Congress.”

Williams is a member of many organizations relating to her field of expertise including WLA; WLA Academic and Special Library Section, past chair; MPLA, secretary-treasurer of the preservation, archives and special collections section; and ALA.

Williams also volunteers her time by doing genealogy reference with the Family and Local History department at the Laramie County Library System.

Williams has won the Positively Cheyenne Award sponsored by the Greater Cheyenne Chamber of Commerce, for her genealogy volunteer work with the Laramie County Library System. She also presented talks for the National Genealogical Society’s annual conference in the states, the Weld County (Colo.) Genealogy Society, WLA, and meetings of the Albany and Laramie County Genealogy Societies.

In her spare time, Williams sings with the Capital Chorale, serves as a committee chair for the Friends of the Cheyenne Symphony Orchestra and is a co-founder of the Cheyenne Community Sing-Along Messiah.

Alta Hepner currently serves as technical services specialist at the WSL. Before that, she worked in central acquisitions for one-and-a-half years until she transferred to the federal documents section of the library in November 1996.
Alta Hepner

Some of her duties include shelving all federal documents and regular collection materials and newspapers; helping WYLD staff monitor the database for duplicate records; and working with acquisitions on all subscriptions.

She processes and checks in all federal depository documents including books, microfiche, CD’s, DVD’s, trade serials and newspapers from every city in Wyoming.

Hepner has worked at the State Library for more than six years and was first hired as a temporary employee through Manpower in August 1995. A member of WLA, Hepner was elected secretary for the government information section in 2000. She’s also a member of the paraprofessional section.

“I enjoy working at the Wyoming State Library because of all of the wonderful things I have learned,” she said.

Bibliographic Services contacts:

  • Bobbi Thorpe, 307/777-3668,;

  • Jan Batson, 307/777-6330,;

  • Janet L. Williams, 307/777-6337,;

  • Alta Hepner, 307/777-7282,

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