Category Archives: Member of the Week

Member of the Week: Robert Seal

Bob SealBob Seal is Dean of Libraries at Loyola University Chicago. Bob has been an ACRL member since 1986 and was awarded the 2015 ACRL Academic/Research Librarian of the Year Award. He is your ACRL member of the week for August 3, 2015.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Dedicated, focused, and caring.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device(s)? A Short History of Nearly Everything by Bill Bryson.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Professional, supportive, and opportunities.

4. What do you value about ACRL? The focus on the needs of academic libraries and librarians, including the work the Association does to promote standards (for example, standards for information literacy).

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? Articulating the needs of the library in support of all phases of the academic enterprise. Also, providing leadership that emphasizes putting users first. I am proud of our staff at Loyola University Chicago for exhibiting such an outstanding service orientation. Our unofficial motto is “Our students and faculty are not an interruption; they are our reason for being here.”

6. In your own words: Although I intended to be a special librarian (I majored in astronomy as an undergraduate), I ended up at the University of Virginia as circulation librarian, a move that turned out to be a great first step towards becoming a library administrator. To this day, I feel fortunate to work in an academic library, to work and interact with students and faculty doing so many interesting things. The university environment is stimulating and exciting, and I am fortunate to have been part of it for some 40-plus years.


Editor’s Note: Are you an ACRL member? Would you like to be featured as ACRL Member of the Week? Nominate a colleague? Contact Mary Jane Petrowski at mpetrowski@ala.org for more information.

Member of the Week: Jenny Oleen

Jenny OleenJenny Oleen is Scholarly Communication Librarian at Western Washington University in Bellingham, Washington. Jenny has been an ACRL member since 2007 and is a Scholarly Communication Workshop Presenter. She is your ACRL member of the week for July 27, 2015.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Creative, dedicated, and enthusiastic.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device(s)? I just finished A Tale for the Time Being, by Ruth Ozeki, which was recently announced as the 2016 Whatcom READS! community reading book. I’m just starting Getting the Word Out: Academic Libraries as Scholarly Publishers, edited by Maria Bonn and Mike Furlough. I plan to switch back to leisure reading after that with Quilting with a Modern Slant: People, Patterns, and Techniques Inspiring the Modern Quilt community, which I picked up while at the ACRL 2015 Conference.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Empowering, inspiring, and community.

4. What do you value about ACRL? I find ACRL to be invaluable to an academic librarian – it provides an opportunity for collaboration with colleagues, a wealth of support and information, and numerous professional development opportunities.

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? As the Scholarly Communications Librarian at Western Washington University, I have helped build the new Scholarly Communication program and institutional repository, Western CEDAR. I organize training, promote open access and the IR, provide copyright reference, and have the opportunity to interact with the amazing scholars and educators that make up our community.

6. In your own words: I like to look at my job as flipping librarianship. Instead of working to connect patrons with the materials they’re looking for, it’s my job to work with authors to push their works out to connect with readers. It means tackling a project or question from another angle, keeping a different elevator speech on the tip of your tongue, and collaborating with colleagues from all over campus. While you don’t always get the immediate rewards, such as when you connect a student with that perfect resource for their project, the responses I receive from faculty when they see their download statistics more than make up for it.


Editor’s Note: Are you an ACRL member? Would you like to be featured as ACRL Member of the Week? Nominate a colleague? Contact Mary Jane Petrowski at mpetrowski@ala.org for more information.

Member of the Week: Devin Savage

Devin SavageDevin Savage is the Assistant Dean for Assessment and Scholarly Communication at the Illinois Institute of Technology in Chicago, Illinois. Devin has been an ACRL member since 2013 and is your ACRL member of the week for July 20, 2015.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Curious, optimistic, and collaborative.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device(s)? I’m unfortunately not reading too much for fun, but I’ve really enjoyed reading BJ Novak’s The Book with No Pictures to my son. Professionally, I’ve read a couple of articles recently that I thought were really interesting. The first was a contributed paper at ACRL from Amanda Folk “Access or Awareness? Identifying Relationships between Reference and Other Dimensions of Public Services.” The other was “Evaluating Big Deal Journal Bundles” by Theodore Bergstrom, et al, who used FOIA requests to analyze the advent of the “Big Deal” journal bundling practice.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Active, informative, and fun.

4. What do you value about ACRL? I value ACRL’s relevancy, how active it is organizationally, and the membership’s willingness to stand up for their values. And more than anything, I enjoy how ACRL provides platforms for librarians to be both pragmatic and inspiring.

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? I feel we as librarians probably don’t do enough self-promotion about the crucial nature of our role in sustainably supporting and promoting the continual creation and refinement of knowledge. My role in assessment and scholarly communication has opened many doors for contribution at many levels – from accreditation activities to launching support for Open Education Resources. Still, some of the most enjoyable activities have come from my instructional duties as an academic liaison – there’s nothing like seeing students realize you just made their work so much easier.

6. In your own words: I love working in a field where all we do is help people. I love assisting researchers and faculty, and being a part of changing the way that students think. We are uniquely situated to be an unconditional ally to the students, and to further the mission of higher education while concurrently celebrating and promoting the accomplishments of all of partners on campus. Most of all, I love the collaborative and team-oriented nature of academic librarianship. It’s such a pleasure to get to work with such amazing, intelligent, hardworking, and passionate library professionals.


Editor’s Note: Are you an ACRL member? Would you like to be featured as ACRL Member of the Week? Nominate a colleague? Contact Mary Jane Petrowski at mpetrowski@ala.org for more information.

Member of the Week: Anali Maughan Perry

Anali PerryAnali Perry is Collections & Scholarly Communications Librarian at Arizona State University in Tempe, Arizona. Anali has been an ACRL member since 2008 and is a Scholarly Communication Workshop Presenter. She is your ACRL member of the week for July 13, 2015.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Optimistic, dedicated, and balanced.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device(s)? I’m just about to start reading The Martian by Andy Weir for our library book club. I’m also currently reading Long Hidden: Speculative Fiction from the Margins of History, a really interesting and creative anthology.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Relevant, engaging, and educational.

4. What do you value about ACRL? As a Scholarly Communications librarian, ACRL has been one of the primary places where I can find other people with similar roles. When I started this job 9 years ago, there weren’t very many of us, and while the number is growing, it is still pretty small in the scheme of academic librarianship. Being able to connect with people and see how others do things and learn from them is critically important in any position.

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? I’m the go-to person at ASU for questions regarding copyright, fair use, open access publishing, and the ASU Digital Repository. I manage a collection of recently published articles by ASU-affiliated authors, which has proved to be a great way to reach out to faculty and engage them in conversations about their research and open access. On the lighter side, I’ve achieved a small measure of fame among the students due to my role as host our video series, The Library Minute.

6. In your own words: I think this is such an exciting time to be a librarian, especially in academia. There are so many opportunities for us to work closer with students and faculty than we ever have before. I believe we are becoming more engaged, both in research and teaching, and I think that many services that seem new to us – like information literacy, repository services, and data management – are just extensions of things we’ve always done. As long as I’ve been a librarian, we have been in a constant state of change. Good thing I’ve always enjoyed a good roller-coaster ride!


Editor’s Note: Are you an ACRL member? Would you like to be featured as ACRL Member of the Week? Nominate a colleague? Contact Elizabeth Caris at ecaris@ala.org for more information.

Member of the Week: Eliot Boden

Eliot BodenEliot Boden is E-Learning Librarian at Washington University in St. Louis. Eliot has been an ACRL member since 2014 and is your ACRL member of the week for July 6, 2015.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Motivated, organized, and creative.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device(s)? I’m usually reading fiction and listening to nonfiction at the same time but lately I’ve been on a Mississippi River kick (it must be the onset of another humid summer here in St. Louis). I just finished Rising Tide: The Great Mississippi Flood of 1927 by John Barry and now I’m reading Old Glory: An American Voyage by Jonathan Raban. I’m currently listening to Life on the Mississippi by Mark Twain, which is read superbly by Grover Gardner.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Inspiring, educational, and rewarding.

4. What do you value about ACRL? I really value the ideas and energy that come from such a dynamic group of people. I was overwhelmed when I first started in my new position, but I was able to make a strong beginning thanks to the publications and discussions coming from the various sections. I helped redesign our teaching space and establish new partnerships with campus offices in large part thanks to the resources of the Instruction Section, especially the tutorials featured in Peer-Reviewed Instruction Materials Online (PRIMO). They are so inspiring!

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? The first question many people ask me is “What is an E-Learning Librarian?” I create a variety of online materials that support our mission of teaching and research. I started with the idea I would only be making videos about library resources but I’ve since branched out and I now collaborate with people across the university. I’ve made everything from screencasts about registering for classes to video introductions to chemistry experiments, and I’m always looking for new opportunities to share library resources and technology.

6. In your own words: I’m very glad to be in a position that allows me to exercise my passion for visual design and academic research. I always learn something new from the students and faculty who come to me for help, whether it’s about identity politics or chemical reactions of acids, bases, and salts. I hope they learn something from me as well – helping people discover new information is the most rewarding part of my job, and I look forward to sharing new ideas and viewpoints with people every day.


Editor’s Note: Are you an ACRL member? Would you like to be featured as ACRL Member of the Week? Nominate a colleague? Contact Elizabeth Caris at ecaris@ala.org for more information.

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