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75th Anniversary Scholarship Donor: John P. Culshaw

As part of the celebration of ACRL’s 75th Anniversary, we’ve launched a fundraising campaign to fund 75 scholarships for ACRL 2015. Over the course of the campaign, we’ll profile the ACRL 75th Anniversary scholarship donors and learn why they chose to support to the campaign.

JohnCulshawJohn P. Culshaw is the university librarian at the University of Iowa. He is a member of the ACRL Board of Directors (2014-2018), co-chair of the 2017 ACRL Conference Colleagues Committee, and has been a Friend of ACRL since 2014.

1. Describe yourself in three words: Optimistic. Encouraging. Thoughtful.

2. Why do you support the 75th ACRL Anniversary scholarship campaign? The ACRL 75th Anniversary campaign gave members the opportunity to come together to provide support to individuals who might not have been able to attend the conference otherwise. I’ve benefitted professionally from the ACRL conference over the years both as a presenter and as a member of conference planning committees so I felt like it was an appropriate time for me to contribute financially to help the effort. I was also supportive of the effort to have 100% participation among members of the ACRL Board.

3. What might someone be surprised to know about you? I collect pins from Hard Rock Cafes when I travel (but never eat there!).

4. Since you’ve become a member of ACRL, tell us about someone who influenced you in some way. I was influenced by ACRL even before I was a member. As an undergraduate, I had the good fortune to work as Hannelore Rader’s student assistant during her term as President of ACRL. Thanks to this, I learned a lot about ACRL and ALA and even attended my first ALA conference as an undergrad. Hannelore’s strong mentorship and guidance provided a path for my own career as a librarian. Our friendship showed me the personal benefits of being involved in a professional association like ACRL.

5. What do you hope ACRL will achieve in the next 75 years? I hope ACRL will continue to be seen as the premier professional association for librarians from all sizes and types of academic and research libraries. The opportunities to learn from one another and to collectively solve problems are endless. We also need to ramp up efforts to demonstrate our value and return on investment to our institutions

6. In your opinion, what is the most important work that ACRL does? Networking. ACRL has been incredibly successful in building communities around the issues that we face in academic and research libraries today.