San Diego Area Law Libraries

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Our Unique World of Law Librarianship: Academic, Court, and Private Firms

December 3 @ 12:00 pm - 1:00 pm

The San Diego Chapter of the American Association of Law Libraries presents three panelists from different niches of law librarianship.

Erin Grimes, Law Librarian for Archive and Research Services at Emory University School of Law

Erin is the Law Librarian for Archives and Research Services at MacMillan law library. Prior to her current position, Erin was a reference librarian and archives manager at California Western School of Law and reference librarian at the San Diego County Public Law Library. Since joining the Emory Law team, she is responsible for the Emory Law Archives and assists students and faculty with research needs pertaining to the archives. In addition to providing research assistance, Erin is an active member of the local and national law library associations.

Erin received her Master of Management of Library and Information Science from the University of Southern California. She has a J.D. from the University of San Diego School of Law and is licensed in the State of California. She also received her Master of Science in International Relations from the London School of Economics.

Val Railey, Branch Librarian for Library and Research Services for the Courts of the Ninth Circuit

Valerie Railey, a graduate of Queens College Graduate School of Library & Information Studies currently holds the position “Branch Librarian” for US Court of Appeals 9th Circuit Court Library System in San Diego, CA. She has held this position since 2005. As the Court Librarian work-product is created for train the trainer sessions to the federal judiciary staff including judges, law clerks, court interpreters and judicial assistants. She has worked consistently as a presenter in the Federal Court Librarian Conferences.

One recent relevant work product item is the lead role in the joint venture on a web digitally posted research guide entitled “resources for tracking federal judicial nominations.”

Another recent significant work product is the participation in the research, planning and unveiling the current “Sketch Art” exhibit that is currently on display in the Schwartz Federal Courthouse.

Ms Railey has been working in law libraries for over twenty years. Her law library work spans across academic, law firm & government agency services. During her tenure as a law librarian she has been affiliated with the law libraries at two leading law firms specifically Willkie Farr & Gallagher & Schulte Roth & Zabel. (Both in New York City)She has held the position “Head of Reference” at Howard University School of Law. She has worked for the Law library of Congress & for the law library at US Court of Appeals for 2nd Circuit in Manhattan, NYC.

Ms Railey is a past president of the San Diego Area Law Libraries SANDALL. She is past Chair of the Leadership, Mentoring & Nomination Committees for the American Association of Law Libraries. (AALL). She is an active member of professional organizations serving as an advocate for library services as an instructor, presenter, speaker & trainer for more than two decades.

Betsy Chessler, Competitive Intelligence Manager at Morrison & Foerster LLP

Betsy has been a member of Morrison & Foerster LLP’s Research Services team for over 15 years, and assumed the role of Competitive Intelligence Manager in June 2017. In addition to managing the firm’s CI program, she also manages researchers in the U.S. and Asia. She holds a Masters in Library Science from the University of Washington, with a concentration in legal research. Betsy can be reached at or on LinkedIn at

Each will share about their day-to-day work experience, what drew them to law librarianship, and where they think the field is headed. Do not miss this opportunity to connect with these SANDALL members!



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December 3
12:00 pm - 1:00 pm


Havilah Joy-Steinman Bakken
Eriberto Ramirez