Member of the Week: Orolando Duffus

Orolando Duffus

Orolando DuffusOrolando Duffus is Business Librarian at the University of Houston in Houston, TX. Orolando has been an ACRL member since 2014 and is your ACRL member of the week for September 12, 2016.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Resilient, motivated, gracious.

2. What are you reading (or listening to on your mobile device)? I am currently reading Michael Eric Dyson’s book entitled The Black Presidency: Barack Obama and the Politics of Race in America. In addition, I enjoy reading Steve Cramer’s blog posts, where he shares his “adventures as an embedded business librarian.” I use my mobile devices to listen to a wide cross-section of music from artists such as Celine Dion, Luther Vandross, and the legendary Bob Marley.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Supportive, community, resource.

4. What do you value about ACRL? I have been very fortunate throughout my career to cross paths with great mentors, many of whom are longstanding members of ACRL. The association recognizes that mentorship is an essential part of recruiting and retaining librarians who are of underrepresented backgrounds. I see great value in ACRL’s ability to demonstrate its commitment to diversity through the establishment of mentorship programs such as the Dr. E. J. Josey Spectrum Scholar Mentor Program.

5. What do you, as an academic librarian, contribute to your campus? As a teaching librarian, it is compulsory that I wear many hats. Faculty/staff depend on my colleagues and me to develop and maintain a comprehensive collection to support their research and interests. The students also depend on me to be their coach/mentor, career counselor, advocate, etc. My contribution to campus is best summarized by the testimonials from many of my students. At the conclusion of each semester I receive unsolicited endorsements from students who use words such as essential, crucial, pivotal and important to describe the services and support that I’ve provided.

6. In your own words: The roles and functions of academic/research librarians have evolved over many centuries and are expected to continue evolving with the needs of our patrons. Therefore, it is imperative that I stay current and proactive so that I may be effective in meeting the needs of my constituents. My job as a business librarian is thrilling and very exciting in that it allows me to be a change agent—some of my basic job functions may directly impact student success, retention and their future.

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.