Member of the Week: Madeleine Charney

Madeleine CharneyMadeleine Charney is Sustainability Studies Librarian at the University of Massachusetts Amherst W.E.B. Du Bois Library in Amherst, Mass. Madeleine has been an ACRL member since 2012 and is your ACRL member of the week for January 5, 2015.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Energetic, out-of-the-box, inquisitive.

2. What are you currently reading (or listening to on your mobile device)? A favorite genre of mine is the modern autobiography. Two that I read recently were Yes, Chef! by Top Chef alum Marcus Samuelsson and Natural Woman by musician Carole King. I am fascinated and inspired by the struggles and triumphs of talented individuals who often battle great odds to achieve their best.

3. Describe ACRL in three words: Forward-thinking, supportive, thought provoking.

4. What do you value about ACRL? The myriad professional development opportunities, both online and in person at conferences.

5. What do you as an academic librarian contribute to your campus? UMass Amherst has a rapidly growing body of sustainability courses and programs for which I’ve become the main point person in our libraries. I play an active role in organizing professional development opportunities for faculty teaching sustainability across disciplines. My participation reminders others of the library’s vital resources and services that support these programs and the students, our future leaders, who will work toward building a more resilient society.

6. In your own words: The part of my job I love most is the one-hour consultation with a student, professor, or community member. This allows me to listen deeply to their ideas and information needs. I sometimes refer to myself, but only half-jokingly, as an “information therapist.” In our fast-paced, DIY culture, I believe this kind of personalized, focused attention is appreciated and needed more than ever.

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.