Open Source News

Women in Open Source: Rhonda Kuiper

This month we are interviewing some wonderful women in the open source community! Here are some excerpts from our interview with Rhonda Kuiper of Round Rock Public Library.

Please tell us a little bit about yourself, your background and your current role in open source.

My name is Rhonda Kuiper and I am the Technical Service and Collection Development Manager at the Round Rock Public Library in Round Rock, Texas. I am also the current president of Koha-US, a US based user group for the Koha ILS. Before getting my MLIS, I earned a BS in Home Economics Education and a BA in Math/Computer Science. What this tells you about me is that I like to solve problems be it how to manage a family’s budget to save for a vacation or how to write a program to accomplish a task.

What led you to open source?

When RRPL started looking for a new ILS, we invited a number of companies to demonstrate their products. I was draw to the idea of libraries having the ability to determine what function is valuable to their staff and patrons rather than a company that is selling the software.

What is a favorite project, experience or memory related to open source?

My favorite experience related to open source was attending KohaCon in Portland, OR. Learning about the impact that Koha has in enabling libraries all over the world to have an ILS when they can’t afford a proprietary ILS was something that I had not thought about before the conference.

What do you love about open source?

I love the community that comes with open source! The people I have met through the Koha community are fantastic. The things I have learned through conversations at conferences and, yes, Zoom meetings has enabled our staff to serve the Round Rock community better.

What is something you are listening to or reading right now?

Books I am reading/listening to are Caste by Isabel Wilkerson and A Time for Mercy by John Grisham

Podcasts I am listening to are Dare to Lead by Brené Brown and Cleaning Up the Mental Mess by Dr. Caroline Leaf

Anything else you'd like to share?

Join the Koha-US community in McKinney Texas in September! It will be a great time!