Member of the Week: Christopher Cox

Christopher Cox

Christopher CoxChristopher Cox is Dean of Library Services at the University of Northern Iowa in Cedar Falls, Iowa. Christopher has been an ACRL member since 1998 and is your ACRL member of the week for July 5, 2016.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Collaborative, innovative, driven.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device)? I just finished Straight Man by Richard Russo.  I love reading books about academia and Russo gets much of the details right in his satiric novel.  I have just started reading Robert McCammon’s Usher’s Passing, which follows the descendants of the Usher family from the famous Poe story.  I’m a sucker for horror fiction, particularly of the trade variety.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Forward thinking, inclusive, value-added.

4. What do you value about ACRL? I appreciate the fact that ACRL allows librarians like me to participate in the important conversations of the profession.  I have served on and led numerous committees within ACRL, which have provided me with networking and leadership opportunities that have helped me grow as a librarian. I and my staff have benefited from ACRL’s publications related to information literacy, the value of academic libraries and marketing, its scholarly communication programs, etc.  I also appreciate ACRL’s advocacy for academic librarians across the country and throughout the world.

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? I currently serve as Dean of Library Services at the University of Northern Iowa. In this capacity I work collaboratively to set the library’s vision, hire great colleagues and future leaders, and advocate for resources to support the development and execution of high quality library services.  My main goals are to 1) provide the University’s students with the tools and skills they need to succeed in their studies and in the workplace and 2) to provide faculty with the resources they need to grow as teachers and to expand the research conversations in their disciplines.

6. In your own words: I love being able to get up each morning and work in a profession that is constantly changing, continually challenging, and provides me with unlimited learning opportunities.  My role allows me to transform students’ lives, and make an impact through service innovations, building transformations, or the provision of information to the right person at the right time to help them to answer a knotty problem.

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.