2020 Agnes and Harvey Reid Honoree: Diana Koppang

The Agnes and Harvey Reid Award for Outstanding Contribution to Law Librarianship is presented annually to librarians who have provided outstanding service to the chapter during the previous year or for contribution to law librarianship.

The 2020 Winner is Diana Koppang.  Please learn more about Diana and help us wish her a well deserved congratulations!

Diana Koppang

In her role at Neal, Gerber & Eisenberg, Diana directs a team of research analysts who manage all research, competitive intelligence, alerts, and knowledge management initiatives for the firm. Diana has presented at conferences for the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL), the Chicago Association of Law Libraries (CALL), Best Practices & Management Strategies for Law Firm Library, Research & Information Services Conference (Ark), ALM Legal Tech, and the Patent Information Users Group (PIUG).

She has also guest lectured for intellectual property research courses at Northwestern University and Boston University. Diana has held board positions and committee leadership roles for the CALL, AALL, and the Private Law Librarians and Information Professionals section of AALL​.

She also currently serves on the Knowledge Management Advisory Board for Bloomberg Law and was recently named to the 2020 Fastcase 50 list for legal tech innovators for her work in analyzing the litigation analytics market.

How has CALL helped you in your Career?

I really believe my career took off when I started being more active in CALL. While I joined CALL when I started my first law librarian job in Chicago in 2004, I didn’t really become active until almost 8 years later. I greatly regret not being active sooner especially as those 8 years I was a solo librarian and the professional network would have been incredibly valuable.

Becoming active in CALL opened up my network, brought me great friends, and showed me the possibilities of the law librarian in our organizations. The education opportunities, professional resources and connections have been absolutely invaluable as my career has developed.

What is one of your outstanding contributions that you are most proud of?

The pro bono work I’ve done as a researcher and the projects I have in the works with area groups that I hope to continue to pursue. When I was a child my parents divorced and my mother had to rely on a legal aid agency attorney. Even at 10 years old I could see how overwhelmed that attorney was. That image stuck with me throughout life. Any chance I’ve had to work on a pro bono project has been so rewarding as I feel that the skills that librarians bring truly gives an advantage to already severely disadvantaged clients.

After one project when I successfully tracked down financial assets and birth records in a paternity suit filed 30 years after a sexual assault case, the legal aid group said “I wish we had full-time librarians, imagine what we could do.” That case has also inspired me to see what law librarians can do to fill this gap in legal support between the aid agencies and full attorney representation.

What does this award mean/would you like to thank anyone?

First I’m very honored to share this award with Clare Willis. We were on the board together a few years ago and I was so impressed by her leadership and passion for our field. Second, thank you to the CALL Community for all the support they’ve ​provided over the years.

To be able to make contributions to our field, for which I’m being honored, would not have been possible without the professionals I work alongside who inspire me and encourage me. I’d like to especially thank my team at NGE for their patience and support to allow me the time to spend on efforts for CALL, AALL and our community at large. Their hard work makes my work possible. Thank you!