For three decades, F. Gerald Ham was a forceful, energetic, incisive, and energizing presence at the annual meeting podium, in the pages of The American Archivist, and in the ranks of the Society's leadership. In all of these venues, he urged us to set aside our outdated custodial mindset, take more seriously our role in selecting an archival record for the future, implement strategies of planning and coordination, overcome our isolation and proprietary habits, and, above all, think critically and make the difficult decisions necessary in a new archival era. This article traces Ham's career and reviews his writings for insights into a critical time in our recent professional past, his contributions to the profession, and the ways his ideas remain relevant today.

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