Member of the Month: Russ Dennison
Name: Russ Dennison
Institution: Winona State University
Job Title: Library Faculty Department chair, Archives and Assessment Librarian
How long have you been a member of ULS?
About 3 years
What or who inspires your work?
When students are excited about learning, I am very happy. However, I would have to say that I was originally inspired by the Golden Age and early New Wave of science fiction I read when growing up. Heinlein, Clarke, Smith, van Vogt, and more. Learning seemed the key to improving life.
What most excites you about academic librarianship?
I love watching my students when they grasp a key concept or discover a new way of understanding. I also like seeing the same with faculty and staff. As a recent example, at an IT sub-committee meeting I mentioned clustering search engines. None of them were familiar with such engines so I demonstrated Carrot2. They were blown away.
What exciting or interesting project are you working on right now?
WSU just did a soft-opening of our digital repository “OpenRiver.” Among other things we have 5,000 historic photos of the university and area. I’m increasing the amount of metadata on those and prepping another 3,000 to add to the database.
What do you do for fun?
I read science fiction, fantasy and military history. Board games, FRP, and online games are another interest. I also make medieval armor, especially mail.