Ever wonder what exciting new projects the many employees at NARA are working on? The “What are You Working On?” blog feature aims to introduce a variety of NARA employees and highlight some of the exciting projects we are working on around the agency. Check for this blog series on Wednesdays!
This week, we introduce Michael J. Kurtz, Assistant Archivist for Records Services– Washington, DC.
What is your name and title?
Michael J. Kurtz, Assistant Archivist for Records Services – Washington, DC (NW)
Where is your job located?
I work at Archives II (room 3400) in College Park.
What is your job in a nutshell?
I lead a diverse and talented staff committed to meeting NW’s responsibilities in performing our records management, archival, and public program responsibilities.
What are you working on right now?
Getting the National Declassification Center (NDC) up and running so that we can meet the President’s goal of eliminating our declassification backlog by the end of 2013. This is a tremendous, once in a lifetime opportunity to really expand the historical record.
What has changed since you started at NARA?
Where do I start? We are once again an independent agency in the Executive Branch and at the forefront of complex issues in leading/assisting the Government in fully moving into the digital era with profound records management and archival implications. A real plateful of challenges!
Do you have a favorite day at NARA, or a favorite discovery or accomplishment?
I really like our Constitution Day celebration. The citizenship ceremony held in the Rotunda really brings home the meaning of what we do every day.
What are your passions or interests outside of work?
I love gardening. It is so creative and great exercise as well. Also, you can see the fruits of your labors in fairly short order. I also love to read – mostly biographies.
What is the last book you read, or the last book you loved?
I really enjoy murder mysteries. One of my favorite authors is Agatha Christie. My all-time favorite is “Murder on the Orient Express.” An ingenious plot and a great morality play all rolled into one.
Meet more NARA employees: http://www.archives.gov/careers/employees/