Franklin Runge – VALL Membership Spotlight

Name: Franklin L. Runge

Organization: Washington & Lee University, School of Law

Title: Head of User Services

Franklin Runge

How did you become interested in law librarianship?

When I was in practice, my firm’s offices were located in downtown Boston, Massachusetts. Instead of working in my office, I would head over to the law library that was attached to the Massachusetts Supreme Judicial Court. I loved using the print digests and the reporters. There was an experienced librarian there named Brian, and I thought his research abilities were pure magic. I started to think to myself, “Hey, law librarians get to do cool stuff all day and he does not seem stressed about anything.”

Organization: Washington & Lee University, School of Law

What is your favorite moment of your career thus far? 

Being in an academic environment is about planting intellectual seeds that will grow in the coming years. The best moments are listening to current students or alumni discuss their legal research success stories.

What is your favorite part of VALL? (No need to answer if a new member)

I have only been a VALL member for a year. I was able to attend the Spring 2019 meeting, and I found the quality of programming to be excellent. I also appreciated making connections with firm librarians and comparing their professional challenges with mine.

What is something you would want people to know about you (hobbies, interests, passions, etc.)? 

I am fascinated by evolutionary theory, biology, and where homo sapiens fit into the bigger picture. I love old Toni Morrison novels (her later stuff got hard to read). My maternal grandmother was a hairdresser in rural Kentucky, and she was a fountainhead of humor, wisdom, and bravery. The best part of the human experience is storytelling, especially over a nice dinner with friends. I love watching the NBA. I wish that email had never been invented.  

What is a guilty pleasure you cannot live without? 

Peanut sauce in Thai cuisine.

If Hollywood made a movie of your life; who would you like to see play the lead role as you?

Tilda Swinton

Who would you most like to sit next to on a 10 hour flight and why?

I try my best to avoid flying. I am still slightly bitter about the U.S. taxpayer bailout of the airlines in which the consumer received higher prices and poor service.

What is your biggest pet peve?

As I grow older, I am becoming more tolerant in my life. That said, it burns me up when I see “do as I say, not as I do” behavior patterns.

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The Virginia Association of Law Libraries (VALL) supports and serves its members’ professional pursuits by fostering a spirit of leadership and cooperation, providing educational and leadership opportunities, and promoting and enhancing the value of law libraries.

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