Society of Georgia ArchivistsPreserving the past and present for the future.

Brenda S. Banks
SGA Fellow
Class of 2009

Brenda S. Banks was President and CEO of Banks Archives Consultants whose projects included serving as managing archivist for the Morehouse College Martin Luther King, Jr. Collection, project manager for SOLINET’s Gulf Coast Academic Library Recovery Project, senior project archivist for the Audre Lorde Collection at Spelman College, and working with architecture firms in developing design elements for archives and other cultural institutions.  Banks was the Deputy Director of the Georgia Archives where she was responsible for administering the archives program and served as project manager for the construction of a new 172,000 square foot state of the art archives facility. From 1999-2005 Banks administered and coordinated a nationwide archives education and training program for HBCUs and served as the Board Chair for the Georgia Archives Institute.

Banks has served as president of the Society of Georgia Archivists and the Society of American Archivists, served on the Board of the National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators, and the International Council on Archives. Banks was also appointed as a transition team leader for the Clinton Administration to conduct a management review of the National Archives and Records Administration.

Honors include: Fellow of the Society of American Archivists, Governor’s Award in the Humanities, Archives Advocacy Award (Georgia Historical Records Advisory Board), Individual Achievement Award in Archives and Records Management (Georgia Records Association), Society of American Archivists Council Exemplary Award, Fellow of the Society of Georgia Archivists, Distinguished Alumnae Award (National Association for Equal Education Opportunity), Alumnae Achievement Award (Spelman College), Beta Phi Mu, and featured in Black Enterprise and Ebony magazines.

Banks was a graduate of Spelman College where she received a B.A. in History and had a Masters in Library and Information Science with a concentration in archival management from Atlanta University.  She passed away in 2016.

Describe how SGA has influenced your development as a professional.

SGA was the first professional organization that I joined shortly after beginning my career at the Georgia Archives. SGA provided a forum for me to learn and grow in the profession and to meet other archivists. It was also provided an environment for me to develop organizational and leadership skills that served me throughout my professional career.

What advice would you give a student or individual considering a career in archives?

Students and individuals entering the profession should take full advantage of the opportunities offered through membership in SGA.  It provides opportunities to meet other professionals and to develop skills that will assist in achieving professional goals. The archives and information management field is constantly changing due to advancements in technology and the way that information is created, used and managed. It is important to continue to learn and build knowledge to be proficient in the field and to support both your professional goals as well as those of your institution.

Describe one of your fondest memories or a highlight of your career in archives.

While I cannot point to just one highlight during my 30 year career in archives I will mention a few experiences that provided a unique opportunity for me to serve my profession. The presidential appointment to the Clinton Gore Transition Team to lead the management review of the National Archives and Records Administration, serving as the project manager for the planning and construction of the new Georgia Archives building, serving as project manager for the Morehouse College Martin Luther King, Jr. Papers Project, and being elected President of the Society of American Archivists are all opportunities that I feel honored to have been a part of and that also provide some of the fondest memories of my archival career.

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  Rincon, GA 31326

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