Institute for Oral History News
Steven Sielaff Joins Baylor Faculty as BUIOH Senior Editor & Collections ManagerJune 2, 2014
On June 1, 2014, Steven Sielaff became a full-time lecturer at Baylor University in the position of Senior Editor and Collections Manager in the Institute for Oral History. Steven brings to the job three years’ experience across a broad range of oral history practice as a BUIOH graduate assistant and staff member. In addition, he has worked as an independent oral historian contracting with the Dallas Heritage Village to produce a series of interviews on the history of the neighborhood surrounding the historic village. He holds two Baylor degrees that prepared him well for oral history practice: a BA in history and religion and a master’s in museum studies.
As a BUIOH graduate assistant, Steven became proficient in oral history basics, from researching and interviewing to processing, transcribing, auditing, and editing. In addition, he wrote BUIOH’s Wikipedia page and created two online exhibits: For the Greater Good: Philanthropy in Waco and Waco Citizens Remember the Great War. He also created the online video documentary exhibit for interviews gathered by Dr. Stephen Sloan for the Texas Holocaust and Genocide Commission’s Texas Liberators Oral History Project.
Upon completion of his graduate studies, Steven continued with the Institute as full-time university researcher, investigating background stories and interviewing significant figures in the major events of Baylor’s last twenty-five years. He also assumed oversight for the digitization of BUIOH's analog recordings and the migration of audio files to the institute's searchable online database, ContentDM. He became Baylor’s official contact for the forthcoming integration of the Institute’s oral history collection with the University of Kentucky's Oral History Metadata Synchronizer (OHMS) online software. He served as technical advisor and lecturer for the Institute’s online oral history workshops and presented lectures on oral history for genealogical societies and community organizations. Proficient in multiple software and social media programs, he is assisting in the creation and administration of Waco History, an interactive web and mobile application detailing local history. He assists with the BUIOH web pages, manages our news and social media, and keeps us current with the rapid transformations in technology for recording, preserving, and disseminating oral history.
As a student and staff member, Steven quickly assumed leadership roles in many of the local, state. and national organizations with which the Institute maintains close relationships. He was recently elected to the board of the Heart of Texas Regional History Fair. He is currently the vice president of the Board of Directors for the Texas Oral History Association (TOHA), maintains TOHA’s Facebook page, and contributes to TOHA’s web pages. An active participant as presenter and panelist for annual meetings of the Oral History Association, he has also served as editorial assistant for the Oral History Review, data analyst for the OHA’s Emerging Crisis Research Fund, and author for the Oxford University Press blog. An editor/technical advisor/webmaster for H-Oralhist, Steven aided the oral history listserv’s recent migration to the H-Net Commons.
Exciting days are ahead for oral history and the Institute, and we fully expect Steven Sielaff to contribute creative and dynamic direction to the profession. Welcome aboard, Steven!