Louise Giles

Meet the ACRL Presidents: Louise Giles

Louise GilesOver the course of ACRL’s 75th anniversary celebration, we’ll highlight the association’s history by profiling our past presidents.

In 1975, Louise Giles became the first black president of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL). Giles was a graduate of Drexel University’s library school and Dean of the Learning Resources at Macomb County Community College. She was outstanding in the field of community college learning resource centers and a leader in the American Library Association and Michigan Library Association.

Louise Jones Giles passed away with her husband of 23 years in a house fire on December 31, 1976. On February 1, 1977 ALA Council approved a resolution unanimously endorsed by the ACRL Board of Directors and the ALA Awards Committee that honored Louise Giles and renamed the ALA Minority Scholarship as the Louise Giles Minority Scholarship. In 1977, Clara Stanton Jones, the first African American President of the American Library Association (ALA) awarded the first Louise Giles Minority Scholarship and scholarships were awarded annually thereafter.

At its 2002 Spring Meeting, the ALA Executive Board voted to permanently incorporate the Louise Giles Scholarship into the Spectrum Scholarship Family of funds and to retain its name as the Louise Giles Spectrum Scholarship and a scholarship has been named annually in her honor since 2003.

Remembrances of Louise Giles can be found in Volume 38, no. 2 of College & Research Libraries News and in the Spring 1977 newsletter of the Michigan Library Association.

Meet the ACRL Presidents: Trevor A. Dawes

Over the course of ACRL’s 75th anniversary celebration, we’ll highlight the association’s history by profiling our past presidents. Trevor A. Dawes served as ACRL President from 2013-2014.wul_eh_trevor_dawes_2013_E

1. Three words to describe your ACRL presidency: Humbling, exciting, educational.

2. What is your most enduring memory of your presidential year? I had such a great presidential year and there isn’t just a single memory that will stay with me. The fairly routine matters of working with the board, the staff, and engaging with members will stay with me for a long time. However, I will also always remember calling the recipients of the ACRL Excellence in Academic Libraries Award to inform them that they’d won. I could almost see the excitement on their faces over the telephone. Seeing the excitement in person when I got to present the award is a memory that will stay with me forever.

3. What are you most proud of accomplishing during your presidential year and why? I am delighted that there was—and remains—as much interest in financial literacy education (FLE) as there is. There was a substantial increase in the number of academic libraries participating in FLE programs this past year and the interest in helping our communities be better stewards of their finances continues to grow. Libraries have the resources and librarians can bring people together to develop the programs and educational opportunities for our communities. I look forward to continuing to work with colleagues in ALA and in libraries on such initiatives.

4. Any advice for future ACRL presidents? I suspect that those who step forward to stand for election to this office will not need a lot of advice. They will already have the leadership skills necessary to assume the role of ACRL president. But if I had to give advice, I’d say listen to the members. ACRL already demonstrates its value in many ways, but it’s important to continue listening to the members to learn about what’s important to libraries and librarians so that the association can evolve and respond appropriately.

Meet the ACRL Presidents: Helen H. Spalding

Over the course of ACRL’s 75th anniversary celebration, we’ll highlight the association’s history by profiling our past presidents. Helen J. Spalding served as ACRL President from 2002-2003.Spalding

1. Three words to describe your ACRL presidency:  Collaboration, Commitment, Productivity.

2. What is your most enduring memory of your presidential year? Our members’ amazing willingness and commitment to serve!  All the new programs mounted in 2002-2003 required many volunteers with extraordinary expertise, creativity and dedicated labor, to work within a very short time-frame.  Volunteers recruited for each effort responded with enthusiasm and miraculously had strong new programs in place by the end of the year, exceeding expectations in size and quality.  This was in spite of the SARS epidemic that slashed attendance at the ALA Toronto Annual Conference, requiring most work to be done through telephone and email collaboration.

3. What are you most proud of accomplishing during your presidential year and why? Accomplishing all the goals I had stated as a candidate, and finding the programs not only remaining in place but being dramatically enhanced over time and continuing to have a positive impact across the profession.

  • Creating the Campaign for America’s Libraries’ Academic and Research Library Campaign (link to http://www.ala.org/acrl/issues/marketing)  with marketing toolkits, manuals, web site, electronic list, standing committee, and training,
  • Creating the ACRL/Dr. E. J. Josey Spectrum Scholar Mentor Program (link to http://www.ala.org/acrl/aboutacrl/directoryofleadership/committees/acr-ssm)
  • Formalizing cross-border relationships with the Canadian Association of College and University Librarians, and the Mexican Consejo Nacional para Asuntos Bibliotecarios de las Instituciones de Educación Superior;
  • Establishing a new electronic list to discuss scholarly communication issues;

4. Any advice for future ACRL presidents? Get to know our members across the association, and intentionally diversify the committees and task forces.  Give those a chance to those who have not had the opportunity to participate, even if you risk offending close and long-serving colleagues.  Participation of all the energy, talent, and ideas our members possess is hampered if they perceive that only the inside, self-perpetuating cliques are able to contribute leadership to the profession.

Meet the ACRL Presidents: William Miller

William MillerOver the course of ACRL’s 75th anniversary celebration, we’ll highlight the association’s history by profiling our past presidents. William Miller served as ACRL President from 1996-1997.

1. Three words to describe your ACRL presidency: Wonderful growth experience.

2. What is your most enduring memory of your presidential year? Being part of the renewed outreach to higher ed organizations, under Althea Jenkins’s leadership.

3. What are you most proud of accomplishing during your presidential year? Helping to get the annual ACRL Academic Library Trends and Statistics publication going.  This has been so helpful to me (and presumably to many others) because of its consistency and timeliness. I also wrote a backpage piece for the Chronicle of Higher Education during my year; as President of ACRL, there was no question about whether or not they would publish it.

4. Any advice for future ACRL presidents? It all goes very quickly, and by the time you know what you are doing, it’s over.  You will gain much more than you give, and learn a lot. Pay special attention to the appointments process: the chairs of your committees are really crucial.

Meet the ACRL Presidents: Joanne R. Euster

Joanne EusterOver the course of ACRL’s 75th anniversary celebration, we’ll highlight the association’s history by profiling our past presidents. Joanne R. Euster served as ACRL President from 1987-1988.

1. Three words to describe your ACRL presidency: Intense, absorbing, dynamic.

2. What is your most enduring memory of your presidential year? A high-energy time working with ACRL Director JoAn Segal.

3. What are you most proud of accomplishing during your presidential year? Developing and promulgating a vision of leadership as a capability of everyone in libraries.

4. Any advice for future ACRL presidents? Be prepared to work very hard, but be sure to enjoy it too!

Meet the ACRL Presidents: Connie R. Dunlap

Connie R. DunlapOver the course of ACRL’s 75th anniversary celebration, we’ll highlight the association’s history by profiling our past presidents. Connie R. Dunlap served as ACRL President from 1976-1977.

1. Three words to describe your ACRL presidency:  Invigorating, educational, enjoyable.

2. What are you most proud of accomplishing during your presidential year and why? Establishing the BI Section, which grew to make an important contribution to the education of student (and faculty) library users, and expanding to develop special units for advanced graduate students.

3. Any advice for future ACRL presidents? Involve as many academic librarians in the activities of ACRL and ALA as possible.

Meet the ACRL Presidents: Wyman W. Parker

Wyman W. ParkerOver the course of ACRL’s 75th anniversary celebration, we’ll highlight the association’s history by profiling our past presidents.

Wyman W. Parker served as the 22nd president of ACRL from 1959-1960. Prior to this, he was the director of the Kenyon College Library in Ohio. He received his library degree from Columbia and worked as a librarian at the University of Cincinnati, Wesleyan University, Middlebury College and Bread Loaf Summer School. During his ACRL presidency, a grant of $35,000 was obtained from the United States Steel Foundation Inc., which made possible the fifth annual ACRL grants program. He also served as the chair of the ACRL College Libraries Section from 1949-1950. He was an active member of the ACRL Committee to Study Materials for Instruction in the Use of the Library, Vermont Historical Society, Midwest Inter-Library Corporation, Bibliographical Society (London). He chaired the Ohio College Library Association. He was a major contributor of articles and reviews to The Library Quarterly, Library Journal, and The Journal of Higher Education.

Meet the ACRL Presidents: Robert W. Severance

Robert SeveranceOver the course of ACRL’s 75th anniversary celebration, we’ll highlight the association’s history by profiling our past presidents.

Robert W. Severance (1908-2005) was the 15th president of ACRL, serving from 1952-1953. While serving as president of ACRL, he was also a librarian at Baylor University. Among his many achievements over the years, he founded the Federal Librarians Round Table. Upon leaving Baylor University, Severance became the Director of Libraries at the Air University. During his years at the Air University he became a strong advocate for the Military Librarians Workshop which was originated by his predecessor at the college. Throughout his tenure, he continued to advocate for military libraries and librarians.

75th Anniversary Scholarship Recipient: Marissa Saenz

As part of the celebration of ACRL’s 75th Anniversary, we’ve asked the ACRL 75th Anniversary scholarship recipients to describe the impact of attending the ACRL 2015 Conference on their professional life and/or their library.

Saenz, MarissaMarissa Saenz is the Public Services Librarian at the J. M. Hodges Library, Wharton County Junior College in Wharton, Texas.

“Attending the 2015 ACRL Conference eased my transition into a new job and a different state. The stress and anxiety accompanied by the move, which occurred one week prior to the conference, dissipated after attending my first session. I felt welcome and included being surrounded by such a diverse group of librarians eager to share their perspectives. I met a lot of wonderful people with similar experiences to my own and was pleased to discover that many were first-time conference attendees, career changers, and working in community/junior colleges. All were eager to get involved, to contribute to the profession. Returning to my new library and role I felt ready to face the challenges that will come, knowing that I am now a part of a professional support system that reaches beyond my institution. I look forward to future conversations, collaborations and events.”

75th Anniversary Scholarship Recipient: Ariana E. Santiago

Santiago, ArianaAs part of the celebration of ACRL’s 75th Anniversary, we’ve asked the ACRL 75th Anniversary scholarship recipients to describe the impact of attending the ACRL 2015 Conference on their professional life and/or their library.

Ariana E. Santiago is the Instruction Librarian at the M. D. Anderson Library, University of Houston in Texas.

“The ACRL 2015 Conference in Portland was my first time attending an ACRL Conference, and it also took place shortly after I transitioned into a new job. Throughout the whole conference, I was inspired by the informative sessions, exciting and collegial atmosphere, and thoughtful discussions with librarian colleagues from around the country. My own presentations made the experience even better: I co-presented a poster session and co-facilitated a roundtable discussion, both of which were met with great interest.

I returned from the conference with many new ideas for my own work, and a better understanding of various other areas of academic librarianship. I am incredibly thankful for the Early-Career Librarian Scholarship I received, and can confidently say that the ACRL Conference was my best conference experience to date. I can’t wait for 2017 in Baltimore!”

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