Welcome MIBA's New Board Members
We're excited to announce the appointment of two new board members who share a strong commitment to the bookselling industry to the MIBA board. Ashley Valentine, owner of Rooted MKE in Milwaukee, Wisconsin and Carrie Koepke, manager of Skylark Bookstore in Columbia, Missouri will start their terms January 1, 2023. Learn more about our new board members below.
Ashley Valentine decided to use her expertise in literacy, education, and youth development to support her community by creating a literacy haven--Rooted MKE in Milwaukee, Wisconsin. She has a graduate degree in Exceptional Education and Reading and previously was a public school teacher for 7 years. Her service continued when she joined the Boys & Girls Club of Greater Milwaukee to build STEM curriculum, programming opportunities, and connect STEM professionals to Milwaukee youth. After school, Ashley began to think more broadly about what education, creating, and collaborative partnership could look like. After having children of her own, she decided to give back directly into her community while raising her children, and that's when Rooted MKE was born.
Carrie Koepke has been the manager at Skylark Bookshop in Columbia, Missouri since opening it in 2018. She happened into a bookselling job as a teen and knew she found her people. She has a reputation for walking while reading, because how else do we find time in this industry? She tends to have several books going at once, including working on her own (very slowly). In other lives, she was a gymnastics coach, bio chem lab rat, barista, and more. Other than bookselling, her favorite job has been Mother.
Thank you to our nominating committee, Danny Caine (Raven Book Store) and Emily Hall Schroen (Main Street Books), for their work in helping us maintain a vibrant board of directors.