Did you know that April is National Records and Information Management Month (RIMM)? Originally started by ARMA in 1995, this observance, now celebrating 26 years, was created to bring greater awareness and recognition to those RIM practitioners who are doing great justice to the profession!

To honor and celebrate RIMM, the Access team wanted to do something special this year. So, I reached out to Access team members, partners and other friendly RIM professionals who I know are passionate about RIM and asked them to share their experiences, memories and perspectives with the following themes in mind:

  1. Why should RIM be celebrated?
  2. What does RIM mean to you/meant for your career?
  3. What is your favorite RIM memory?
  4. Share a RIM prediction for the future
  5. Perspectives on RIM

As you’ll see in the passages below, this group really delivered! We hope you enjoy the many perspectives and memories that these industry professionals were gracious enough to share for this special homage to RIMM 2021!

Why should RIM be celebrated?

“RIM should be celebrated because information is power. In the 21st Century, this notion is proving truer than ever. Those who control information are in the best position to control outcomes and expand business opportunities to once unimaginable heights.”

John Isaza, Vice President, Information Governance Advisory Services, Access

“RIM was the reason I was able to build two companies and sell them, make life-long friends, and find my husband.”

Cynthia Alsup, VP Solution Specialists & Virgo

“RIM professionals have been so under-respected for so long, it is great to see a new realization that the knowledge of the Records and Information professional is something to be cherished. As privacy, security, and AI take a more prominent position in the enterprise, other disciplines are turning more strongly towards the knowledge of the RIM professional.”

Nick Inglis, Director of Information Governance, IPRO / Host, The Strategy of Information on InfoGov.net

“Records are tied to the history of the modern world. We should appreciate how integral recordkeeping is to our way of life.”

Matt Hillery, CTO, Access

“Information management has been part of my career since 2006. Over the years I’ve seen that the value of safeguarding accurate information is the foundation of what ‘keeping the truth’ means. When people need the truth, they always find it in the original historical record which we help to protect and keep.”

Quinn Brack, Marketing Director, Acquisitions, Access

What does RIM mean to you and your career?

“RIM was one of those industries that I fell into early on. I was fortunate enough to get a summer job with friends at a start-up; we worked hard, learned (or made things up as we went!) about the industry, and became successful. Over the years, that ‘job’ turned into a career in an industry that I love.”

Randy Sanders, Senior Product Manager, Access

“On this National Records and Information Management Month (RIMM) I reflect on my 25 years in the industry. RIM is an integral part of my life today working at Access.”

Cynthia Alsup, VP Solution Specialists & Virgo

“To me, RIM has been a topic and an industry that has captured my attention in a way I did not anticipate. Subtle but far more challenging than others would expect.”

Matt Hillery, CTO, Access

“I have been in RIM/IG my whole career and first joined ARMA in the late 80’s. I have made many good friends. It has been exciting to be part of the evolution. We continue to develop and deliver technology to meet the changing demands for RIM.”

Darrell Mervau, President, FileTrail 


“I originally got into the RIM business when I was a 19-year-old college kid who took a temporary position doing document indexing. Fast forward 22 years later and most of my career has been spent in this industry. RIM opened up a vast amount of opportunity in my life and helped structure my professional path forward in Operations Management, Sales and Solutions.”

Joe Halstead, Senior Solutions Engineer, Access

 What is your favorite RIM memory?

“A highlight of my RIM career was the 1999 ‘Don’t Stash It – Trash It’ campaign at the Oil and Gas Division of the Texas Railroad Commission. The purpose of this RIM initiative was to dispose of duplicate and obsolete information including records with expired retention periods. An entire day was devoted to the effort with Antonio Garza, U.S. Ambassador to Mexico, who is now Counsel for White & Case, Mexico, leading the charge. We were able to reduce the volume of unnecessary and obsolete paper records and outdated electronic records by more than 10 tons.”

Susan Cisco, CRM, PhD, Information Governance Consultant


Photo of Susan Cisco and Antonio Garza (Twitter: @aogarza), circa 1999

Photo of Susan Cisco and Antonio Garza (Twitter: @aogarza), circa 1999

“My RIM memories are filled with the people I have worked with and challenges we have had the opportunity to overcome together. I have always been involved in automating the records process and leveraging technology, so I’m going to share a story from the early days. The clockwas just passing midnight and we were in the main server room of a major New York law firm. We were trying to install our database application, which was written for SQL, but we had committed that we could use their Oracle database. It was our first time doing this.

Earlier that day, I had sat at the firm’s massive conference room table, filled with prominent client stakeholders representing different departments of the firm. The head of IT turned to me and explained that if our project wasn’t up and running by the next day, it would impact all of their other projects. He asked me to state out loud in front of the audience at the table that there was no issue. ‘No issue,’ I said. So, as it passed midnight, I could do little but keep the programmers company, like a nurse leaning over the operating room table to mop the brow of the concentrating surgeons.

I finally had to go back to the hotel room that we were all sharing to rest for the meetings in the morning. They said that they almost had it and would be right behind me.

Back in the room, I barely slept waiting for them to return – 1:00am passed, 2:00am passed, then at 3:00am, I finally heard the door open. I could tell by the way they entered that the night had not been a success. I finally fell asleep despite the anticipation for what lay ahead. At 6am, I was awoken by my eager partner. ‘I’ve got it,’ he said. We were out of the room in minutes and hailed a cab back to the familiar server room. It took 3 more hours, and as people were arriving and the office was coming to life, he looked over and smiled, ‘done.’ Minutes later the head of IT came around the corner with his morning cup of coffee. He asked, ‘Are we on time?’ We answered, ‘No problem, let us show you.’ We had a long relationship with the firm thereafter and the program was used for decades.”

Kurt Thies, VP, Product Evangelist, Access

“Three words – The Canadian Party.”

Matt Hillery, CTO, Access

Share a RIM prediction for the future:

“I believe, in the future, business owners won’t have to think about tagging or classifying records.  RIM will be a continuous service that will employ technical experts and service delivery teams for the foreseeable future.”

Cynthia Alsup, VP Solution Specialists & Virgo

“The future of the Records and Information Management professional is deeply tied to enabling future technologies like AI, Machine Learning, and technologies that haven’t yet been conceived. All of these technologies rely on information to be effectively utilized.

The Professionals most ready to assist in making these technologies the most effective are the professionals who are closest to the information and know/understand its’ structure: that is the RIM professional.”

Nick Inglis, Director of Information Governance, IPRO / Host, The Strategy of Information on InfoGov.net

“Courts and governments will no longer accept paper in less than 25 years.”

Matt Hillery, CTO, Access

Other perspectives or parting wisdom:

“All known business document types can be centrally cataloged and managed.”

Matt Hillery, CTO, Access

“The need to keep information (whether in paper or electronic form) will never go away. COVID may have changed how we access it, but the rate of information is only growing and the regulations and fines are too. Information still has to be recorded, protected and safeguarded. We’ll always need information management to help decipher regulations and determine how to best keep the information.”

Quinn Brack, Marketing Director, Acquisitions, Access         

We hope you enjoyed this fun collection of personal perspectives and memories on RIM and are finding ways to celebrate RIMM yourself.

To learn more about Records and Information Management, download our eBook, Integrated Information Management Roadmap.