Member of the Week: Maryam Fakouri

Maryam Fakouri

Maryam FakouriMaryam Fakouri is Intellectual Property Librarian at Columbia College Chicago in Chicago, IL. Maryam has been an ACRL member since 2003 and is your ACRL member of the week for May 16, 2016.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Creative, thoughtful, environmentalist.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device)? I regularly read the New York Times, the Atlantic, and recipes. I also just bought the exhibit catalog Kerry James Marshall: Mastry.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Plenty of opportunities.

4. What do you value about ACRL? I value the strengths of ACRL’s members.  Librarians in ACRL care about the entire flow of information, from international law to helping beginning college students understand citations.  When I’m at an ACRL event, I know I’m among people who think about what I think about—and more.  My ACRL colleagues help me stay aware of what’s happening.

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? I’m probably most visible on campus as a resource about intellectual property matters.  I teach and consult about copyright, the Creative Commons, and related issues.  Like anywhere else, our students and faculty are both creators and users of intellectual property.  Because I’m at an arts and media college, their questions extend beyond teaching and scholarship.  They ask about using brand names and music in films, and creating choreography, fan art, and parodies.  I explain rights, options, and best practices.  I also provide reference service, teach information literacy classes, and serve as a liaison to a few departments.

6. In your own words: Academic librarianship has many avenues.  I have friends in cataloging, acquisitions, reference, and scholarly communications.  Of course, these often merge.  Good reference service requires quality cataloging.  Developments in scholarly communication affect acquisitions.  And so on.

Information science and information policy form a big pool, and that pool is growing.  We have new sources of information and new tools to share information.  These have new policy implications, such as privacy, access, and preservation.   As information insiders, librarians think about these things.  It’s important that we clearly communicate to non-librarians why these developments matter.

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 for more information.