Announcement | New Health and Biomedical Library Services Unit at Brown

The Library will establish a new department — Health and Biomedical Library Services — to provide more direct and focused support for Brown’s programs in medicine, public health, and biomedical sciences.

The growth of these programs in size, scientific reputation, and societal impact is transformative for Brown and requires enhanced library support for research, teaching, and learning. Establishing Health and Biomedical Library Services (HBLS) as a distinct department will increase the Library’s contributions to advancing the mission of the Division of Biology and Medicine and the School of Public Health — as well as their statewide partners in research, education, practice, and community engagement. 

Further enhancing the Library’s identity as the go-to place for expert partners in education and research services, this new unit will bring enhanced focus to the specific academic and scholarly goals of the Division of Biology and Medicine (including The Warren Alpert Medical School and the Program in Biology) and the School of Public Health. HBLS will build upon existing services such as literature review support, data management, and publishing, impact, and compliance to enhance our support for the research lifecycle. In cooperation with leadership at The Warren Alpert Medical School and our clinical partners, HBLS will develop targeted outreach and education to clinical faculty and residency programs.

Planning for the new department involved close consultation with Allan Tunkel, Senior Associate Dean for Medical Education, and Kimberly Galligan, Executive Dean for Administration for the Division of Biology and Medicine at Brown. Increased communication between the Library and the Division of Biology and Medicine and the School of Public Health will amplify the Library’s ability to nimbly adapt and respond to the rapid changes in Rhode Island’s healthcare landscape.

Erika Sevetson, who has been serving as Director of Academic Engagement for Health, Biomedical, and Physical Sciences and Medical Librarian for The Warren Alpert Medical School, will now serve as the Director of the new HBLS department. In her new role, Erika will serve on key Division of Biology and Medicine committees and leadership teams, including the Extended Leadership Group that supports Jack A. Elias, MD, Senior Vice President for Health Affairs and Dean of Medicine and Biological Sciences. She will also collaborate with the Office of Biomedical Advancement to identify opportunities for fundraising in support of information resource needs for health and biomedical sciences. The HBLS team includes Andrew Creamer (who will also continue to support programs outside HBLS), Chelsea Misquith, and Kelsey Sawyer.

Announcement | Frank Donnelly, GIS and Data Librarian

The Library welcomes Frank Donnelly as the new GIS (Geographic Information System) and Data Librarian. Frank joins us from Baruch College CUNY where he served for thirteen years as the Geospatial Data Librarian at the William and Anita Newman Library. His work at Baruch included providing research support for courses and faculty projects along with managing a GIS lab that incorporates data creation and processing, workshops, and free and open web resources using analytical tools like Python, SQL, and GIS. While at Baruch, Frank was an affiliate of the CUNY Institute for Demographic Research.

He is the author of Exploring the U.S. Census: Your Guide to America’s Data (SAGE Publications, 2020), which serves as a researcher’s guide to understanding and accessing this vast array of demographic and socio-economic data. You can read more about Frank’s professional work on his blog, At These Coordinates.

At Brown, Frank will support growing campus needs to support data tools and methods, and will work with Library staff, campus stakeholders, faculty, and students to develop a geospatial information and data service program and infrastructure for use of data and GIS in research and teaching. 

Learn more about Frank, including how to get in touch.

Announcement | Chelsea Misquith, Public Health and Research Support Librarian

The Library is pleased to announce Chelsea Misquith as the new Public Health and Research Support Librarian. Chelsea (pronounced Chel-SEE-uh) comes to us from the Ruth Lilly Medical Library at Indiana University School of Medicine, where she worked as the Emerging Technologies Librarian. At IU, she served on Indiana’s COVID-19 Evidence-Based Rapid Response Team (a collaboration between the medical library and the state and local Departments of Health). She was a member of IU’s team-based systematic review service, which consults on search methodology and guidelines and standards, as well as providing library- and course-based instruction. She also brings experience with virtual reality and 3D printing services in the health sciences. 

At Brown, Chelsea will provide research support and develop undergraduate and graduate education/instruction for the School of Public Health community. In addition, she will collaborate with the other health sciences librarians to develop and manage the Library’s literature review service and to support clinical faculty and residents at the affiliated hospitals of Alpert Medical School.

Learn more about Chelsea, including how to get in touch.

Announcement | Cathy Weng, Head of Technical Services

The Library is pleased to announce Cathy Weng as the new Head of Technical Services. Cathy comes to Brown from City University of New York (CUNY) where she served as Head, Resource Description and Metadata Services in the Office of Library Services. In that position, Cathy oversaw central cataloging operations and led the future development of metadata services for the twenty one institutions in the CUNY community. Cathy also managed CUNY’s migration to the Ex Libris Alma library system, which positions her well to contribute to the Brown Library’s migration to Alma in 2021.

Prior to joining CUNY, Cathy worked at The College of New Jersey as Head of Cataloging and at Temple University, initially as Head of Serials Cataloging and later as Acting Head of the Bibliographic Services Department.

Outside of work, Cathy enjoys reading, hiking, and traveling.

Announcement | New Publication on Chinese Rare Books in the Brown University Library

An Illustrated Catalogue of Ancient Chinese Books in the Brown University Library by Li Wang

Prestigious Chinese publisher, China Book Company, has published An Illustrated Catalogue of Ancient Chinese Books in the Brown University Library by Dr. Li Wang, the Library’s Curator of the East Asian Collection. The volume contains detailed bibliographic and research information on all Chinese rare books found in the Library published before the end of the Qing dynasty (1912). Most of the 256 books in the Catalogue are part of the Gardner Collection at the Rockefeller Library, though several of the books are held at the John Hay Library. 

This published work is a result of many years’ dedicated efforts in special collection management and providing Library patrons with an effective reference and research tool in Chinese and East Asian studies. In the Preface, the author expresses his sincere gratitude to many people who have helped and supported the long journey of research, especially Prof. Gardner and his family, former East Asian Collections curators and staff, other library colleagues, East Asian Studies faculty at Brown, students and scholars, and other friends, both domestic and international. 

The publication is a milestone in the development of the East Asian Library at Brown. 2020 marks the the 120th anniversary of the birth of Charles S. Gardner (Jan.1, 1900 – Nov. 30, 1966). This new book is not only a scholarly summary of Gardner’s legacy, but also a way to pay homage to this devoted and pioneering scholar in East Asian studies and cross-cultural exchange.

Announcement | Hay Fellow in Early Modern Studies 2020-21

photo of Kenneth Molloy
Kenneth Molloy

Kenneth Molloy, a PhD candidate in the Department of Theatre Arts & Performance Studies, has been awarded the 2020 – 2021 John Hay Library/Center for the Study of the Early Modern World Fellowship. 

This fellowship, a partnership between the University Library and the Brown Center for the Study of the Early Modern World, provides support to PhD candidates completing their dissertations in any field involving study of the Early Modern World, defined as the period between 1500 and 1800, and that involves an innovative project to be completed using resources available at the John Hay Library.

Kenneth’s dissertation project comprises “a critical historiography of Islamic theories of theatricality and performance in the post-Mongol to early modern period” that highlights cosmological readings of shadow and puppet theatre in Arabic and Persian materials.

His fellowship project at the Hay will involve organizing an interdisciplinary symposium “on theatricalities and the global early modern world” with the aim to “showcase innovative performance-based inquiry into the early modern world.”

Brown University Library: Next Steps in Response to Racial Injustice

The leadership and staff of the Brown University Library join the national outpouring of anguish at the recent killings of Ahmaud Arbery, Breonna Taylor, George Floyd, Tony McDade, and numerous others that continue the centuries of violence against Black people in our country.  Black Lives Matter to the Brown University Library.  We also deplore the devastating impacts of systemic racism that are also found in the pandemic of COVID-19, which has resulted in disproportionate death and suffering in communities of color.

The Library stands firmly in opposition to racism and racial violence, and laments the nation’s long history of murderous and systematic oppression of Black, Indigenous, and People of Color.   This opposition comes with recognition that persistent structures of racism in the U.S. have benefitted and shaped privileged institutions like ours.  We want to be in the vanguard of change.

We also recognize that statements ring hollow if they are not grounded in substantive actions. We commit to becoming actively anti-racist through an intensive interrogation of our work, practices, policies, and collections.  We will engage in programmatic and resource planning to ensure that we are continually uncovering and dismantling our participation in systems of structural racism. Through our partnerships with the University’s departments, centers, and institutes, we will also contribute to advancing education and scholarship to confront racism and racial violence in our society.  We will provide more information about specific actions in the coming weeks.

We hold ourselves accountable to this work. The Brown community should hold us accountable as well.

Announcement | Brown Library Staff Recognized for Service Milestones on BEAR Day

On Tuesday, February 18, 2020, Brown University staff gathered for the annual Brown Employee Appreciation and Recognition (BEAR) Day, at which staff are recognized for milestone years of continuous service. With so many employees with impressive longevity, the Library is always well represented at BEAR Day.

Here are the Library staff members who were recognized this year:

5 Years of Service

  • Andrew Creamer
  • Kimberly Silva

15 Years of Service

  • Kathryn Gearon
  • Erica Saladino

20 Years of Service

  • Diane Cazzarro
  • Bart Hollingsworth

25 Years of Service

  • Joseph Mancino

30 Years of Service

  • Deneen Eugenio

30+ Years of Service

  • Karen Bouchard
  • John Boylan
  • Raymond Butti
  • James Chapin
  • Stephen Conlon
  • Paul Cormier
  • Ann Dodge
  • Patricia Dumin
  • Peter Harrington
  • Joanna Katsune
  • Paula Kojian
  • Andrew Pereira
  • Linda Peterson
  • Patricia Putney
  • Robert Rosa
  • Joanne Tandy
  • Virginia Twomey
  • William Wood

40+ Years

  • Charles Flynn
  • Linda Gesualdi
  • Sheila Hogg

Announcement | Anthony Helm, Director of Library Digital Technologies

The Library is delighted to announce the hire of Anthony Helm as Director of Library Digital Technologies. His start date is March 2, 2020.

Anthony is currently the Head of Digital Media and Library Technologies at Dartmouth College, directing a team of 16 professionals including web developers, programmers, and librarians. As a member of Dartmouth’s leadership team, Anthony was instrumental in strengthening the school’s digital infrastructure by implementing the Alma Integrated Library System. He also led the planning, design, and completion of a $1.7 million renovation project in the Jones Media Center to create a more contemporary, media-focused learning center. 

Prior to Dartmouth, Anthony was the Academic Technologist for the Arts and Humanities at Clark University in Worcester, MA. 

Anthony earned an M.A. in Japanese Language, Literature and Culture from The University of Texas at Austin and a B.A. in Communication Arts—Television/Radio with a minor in Asian Studies from Southern Methodist University.

Announcement | Steven Lubar Appointed Faculty Director of CDS

The Brown University Library is delighted to announce the appointment of Professor Steven Lubar as the inaugural Faculty Director of the Center for Digital Scholarship (CDS). Serving as a senior Library leader during this three-year appointment, Professor Lubar will spearhead the development of academic programming relating to digital scholarship at Brown, working closely with Library leadership and campus partners to advance CDS’s role as the University’s primary hub for new and emerging modes of scholarship that are enabled by digital technology. His directorship began on January 1, 2020 and will run through June 30, 2023.

Steven Lubar

Steven Lubar is Professor of American Studies, Professor of History of Art and Architecture, and Professor of History. He has written and taught about museums and museum history, public and digital humanities, and the history of technology and skills. A 2015 Guggenheim Fellowship helped support his most recent book, Inside the Lost Museum: Curating, Past and Present.

Professor Lubar was director of the John Nicholas Brown Center for Public Humanities and Cultural Heritage from 2004 to 2014 and director of the Haffenreffer Museum of Anthropology from 2010 to 2012. He received his undergraduate degree from MIT and his Ph.D. in history from the University of Chicago.

Enthusiastic about the possibilities this new role entails, Professor Lubar stated, “I am delighted to join the Center for Digital Scholarship as we continue to build on our long history of innovative digital scholarly projects. I look forward to creating connections across the campus and finding new ways to work with faculty, students, and staff to support and expand the exciting work of digital scholarship at Brown.”

CDS Faculty Director

As Faculty Director, Professor Lubar will have primary responsibility for building academic community and programming at CDS. This will include creating a regular digital scholarship seminar and other forums for faculty, students, and staff to consider theoretical, methodological, and practical questions involved in these new and emerging modes of scholarly work. He will also organize an academic oversight structure to guide CDS in its support for faculty’s digital scholarly projects. He will continue ex officio as a member of the faculty advisory committee for the Mellon Foundation-funded Digital Publications Initiative, which will now become a formal part of CDS. 

This new role also includes building stronger partnerships with other campus departments, centers, and programs with aligned interests, exploring new academic program initiatives, and helping to represent Brown in the international community of digital scholarship centers. He will continue teaching and performing other faculty duties in his departments. 

Strengthening Center Organization and Operations

Stemming from the University Library’s strategic plan and further informed by an external review of CDS in 2019, the creation of a Faculty Director is one element in a broader effort to enhance CDS. Other organizational changes are in process to ensure that CDS’s academic programs and service functions form an integrated and coherent suite of resources for digital scholarship at Brown.