Meet the Candidates: Jack Fritts

Editor’s Note: In the lead-up to the 2015 ALA/ ACRL election, we’re profiling the 2015 ACRL Board of Directors candidates. We’ll feature one candidate in slate order each weekday from March 13 — 20. Complete details on candidates for ACRL offices are available on the election website. Make sure to vote for the candidates of your choice starting March 24.

Jack FrittsJack Fritts is the University Librarian at Benedictine University in Lisle, Illinois, and a 2015 candidate for the ACRL Board of Directors as Director-at-Large.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Forward-thinking, loyal, thoughtful.

2. What are you reading right now (or listening to on your mobile device)? You may be sorry you asked! I am frequently handed books by my teenage daughter to read, so right now on that front I’m reading The Duff and a book titled The Murk. Beyond those I am working through The First Christmas by Borg and Crossan, The Sixth Extinction by Elizabeth Kolbert, Dragons at Crumbling Castle by Terry Pratchett, God’s Secretaries by Adam Nicolson, and a variety of materials dealing with the court and court life of Elizabeth I in order to go play Renaissance with my daughter this summer. And, finally, there are the various mystery and suspense series I’m working through as time allows.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Advocate, transformative, educational.

4. Why do you value about ACRL? I value the fellowship, growth, and learning opportunities ACRL offers through the availability of groups focused on specific interest or work areas. The Section model is an example of the possibilities we can pursue.

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? I see my role as multi-faceted. Internally, my primary task is to provide the support and opportunities that allow the library personnel to soar to their own levels, while offering occasional reminders of our operational focus. Externally, within the campus, I serve to build relationships at higher levels, to be a strong advocate for the library and its operations, and to work collaboratively with the deans and other administrators to keep the library in the center of ongoing growth and development.

6. In your own words: There are a lot of writings about ideal or dream jobs. I believe that mine is a dream job, because it’s very difficult to fall into a rut. Yes, a library lives to certain rhythms, and there are always the normal ongoing events, but those serve as a backdrop to whatever else is really going on. I have learned to expect the unexpected, and I never know at the start of a day where that day might end. By definition, at least my definition, unexpected does not always mean good, but even some of the less pleasant surprises are opportunities. I am sure that what comes next is true of all types of libraries, but some of the best things to me about the academic library world are the ability to explore, to experiment, and to build relationships both within an individual library and across the broader academic world.

ACRL Releases New Roles for the Road Ahead

Media KitAs part of its 75th anniversary celebration, ACRL announces the release of “New Roles for the Road Ahead: Essays Commissioned for ACRL’s 75th Anniversary” authored by well-known bloggers and thought leaders Steven J. Bell, associate university librarian at Temple University, Lorcan Dempsey, vice-president of OCLC research and chief strategist, and Barbara Fister, academic librarian at Gustavus Adolphus College. The collection also includes an introduction by Nancy H. Allen, dean and director at the University of Denver; and an afterward by Lizabeth Wilson, vice provost for digital initiatives and dean of university libraries at the University of Washington in Seattle.

In a series of twenty essays in three sections, “Framing the Road Ahead,” “Shifts in Positioning,” and “Responding to Opportunity: Creating a New Library Landscape,” Bell, Dempsey, and Fister share their thoughts on the world in which academic libraries will thrive, ways libraries are responding to change, and new roles for libraries and librarians. The essays include reflections on ways academic libraries can succeed in a changing higher education environment, take advantage of opportunities, and think about the best ways to deliver both ongoing and innovative services to students and faculty.

ACRL members provided commentary on the draft of the report, much of which was incorporated into the final work. Bell states that “just like this publication, which is something that was made better by a group of people coming together to achieve much more than we could have as individuals, ACRL depends on academic librarians working together to make sure the generations that follow us will be doing great things for higher education many years from now.”

The authors will discuss “New Roles for the Road Ahead” at their ACRL 75th Anniversary Invited Panel to be held at the ACRL 2015 conference from 3:00 to 4:00 p.m., on March 26, in the Oregon Convention Center Portland Ballroom 251/258.

“New Roles for the Road Ahead:  Essays Commissioned for ACRL’s 75th Anniversary” is freely available on the ACRL website.

Reminder: Presidential Candidates Open Online Forum (3/17)

The 2015 candidates for ACRL vice-president/ president-elect will participate in an open online forum at 2 p.m. Central on Tuesday, March 17, 2015. Scott Walter and Irene M.H. Herold will discuss their platforms and vision for ACRL and field questions from the audience. Walter is university librarian at DePaul University, and Herold is university librarian at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa.

Access to the forum will be available approximately 15 minutes before the start time through Adobe Connect at http://ala.adobeconnect.com/r7r0qf2cgdg/.

More information on the 2015 ACRL election, including links to candidate statements from C&RL News, a podcast interview with the candidates for vice-president/ president-elect, and a full slate of candidates for ACRL section offices, is available on the ACRL website.

Voting in the 2015 ALA/ ACRL election begins on Tuesday, March 24. We strongly encourage you to help shape the future of your associations by casting a ballot for the candidates of your choice!

Meet The Candidates: Irene M.H. Herold

Editor’s Note: In the lead-up to the 2015 ALA/ ACRL election, we’re profiling the 2015 ACRL Board of Directors candidates. We’ll feature one candidate in slate order each weekday from March 13 — 20. Complete details on candidates for ACRL offices are available on the election website. Make sure to vote for the candidates of your choice starting March 24.

Irene M.H. HeroldIrene M.H. Herold is the University Librarian at the University of Hawai’i at Mānoa in Honolulu, Hawai’i, and a 2015 candidate for the ACRL Board of Directors as Vice-President/President-Elect.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Intelligent, Thoughtful, and Creative.

2. What are you reading right now (or listening to on your mobile device)? On my nightstand I have Pearl S. Buck’s trilogy: The Good Earth, Sons, and A House Divided. I also just picked up Michael Pollan’s Cooked.  On airplanes I tend to read a lot of what some would term “mind candy” – science fiction, fantasy, regency romances – in paper and on my mobile device. I use my Twitter Feed and Facebook to keep current on trends in higher education.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Engaged, Influential, and Responsive.

4. Why do you value about ACRL? I value the continuing educational opportunities, advocacy and awareness on issues of importance spanning local to global, and the opportunity membership provides to network with creative and diverse individuals across their careers.

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? In my role as an academic library leader, I am able to advocate inter-disciplinarily and can focus on our roles in higher education in ways that enhance what my colleague deans bring to the table. While understanding that the academic library provides invaluable services to the students, researchers, staff, and faculty, it is my job to also heighten awareness that we are partners in the educational and research process. We are a knowledge creation center in addition to providing information access and storage. In a digital age these functions are crucial in different ways than in the past to ensure knowledge is available for future generations.

6. In your own words: Having worked in very small, mid-sized, and now research intensive libraries, and at different levels within ACRL, I know firsthand the excitement of making a difference as an academic librarian whatever my leadership level. Academic librarianship allows us to be creative instructors, and to work with fellow librarians, varied materials, and content experts in fields of evolving information needs. Global interconnectivity has increased our challenges not only with making collections available, but also rights management, copyright, and data curation. As a profession and a professional organization, I believe we can embrace these exciting times and excel as we meet present and future challenges developing services and partnering for the provision of information needs to our students and scholars.

ACRL Podcast: 2015 Vice-Presidential Candidates

In this podcast, ACRL Leadership Recruitment and Nominations Committee Chair Jill Gremmels talks with Scott Walter and Irene M.H. Herold, 2015 candidates for ACRL vice-president/ president-elect, about their potential plans for the association.

Time: 43:36

Complete details on the 2015 ALA/ ACRL elections are available on the ACRL website.

About the Music:
The music in ACRL Podcasts is “Don’t you,” mixed by stefsax and available on ccMixter. The music is used under aCreative Commons Attribution 2.5 license.

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