Jul 12, 2022

Washington’s First Female State Archivist Hopes to Expand Access to Digital, Paper Records

As a longtime public servant in Thurston County, Heather Hirotaka is used to preserving history, not making it. But that’s what Hirotaka did earlier this month, when Secretary of State Steve Hobbs appointed her as the next Washington state archivist, the first woman to ever hold the position.

In that role, Hirotaka will oversee the Washington State Archives, which collects and preserves the state’s historical records and makes them available to the public. The archives have branches in Bellevue, Bellingham, Ellensburg, Olympia and Cheney, which is the first state archives branch in the country dedicated to the preservation of electronic records.

Hirotaka said she is honored to be the first woman in the role, and that it’s incredible to think that it’s taken this long to have a female state archivist.

“I think that as a female, sometimes there are opportunities to see things a little bit differently, and to see things from maybe a different perspective,” Hirotaka said.

You can read more in an article written by Nick Gibson and published in The Spokesman-Review web site at: