Announcement | Nadine McAllister, Library Associate Specialist

The Library is pleased to welcome Nadine McAllister, who joined us on October 15 at the Library Collections Annex as a Library Associate Specialist. 

Nadine has a background in retail management with experience in automated inventory control systems.  

In addition to being an avid reader, enjoying crochet, and leading her own Girl Scout Troop, Nadine volunteers as the Cranston Service Unit Manager for the Girl Scouts of Southeastern New England.

Announcement | Stacey Anter, Senior Library Specialist for Technical Services

The Library is pleased to welcome Stacey Anter, who began as a Senior Library Specialist for Technical Services on September 30. Her work focuses primarily on acquisitions for our collections in variety of languages and formats. 

Prior to joining the Brown Library staff, Stacey worked as the Director of the Pontiac Free Library in Warwick. Simultaneously she held a position as a reference librarian at the Coventry Public Library. These positions have led to all around knowledge of the workings of a library. Her familiarity with library acquisitions will be a great asset in learning new routines.

Stacey is a native Rhode Islander, born and raised in Pawtucket near the East Side of Providence. She enjoys creative writing and is currently writing a novel. She also runs a writer’s group at the Coventry Public Library. Stacey is proficient in American sign language and enjoys signing to songs.

Announcement | Johanna Mercado, Senior Library Specialist for Sciences Circulation

The Library is pleased to welcome Johanna Mercado, Senior Library Specialist for Sciences Circulation. Johanna’s first day was October 3.

Prior to joining the Brown Library staff, Johanna worked at Rhode Island School of Design, digitizing the Gorham Silver Project. She has also worked at Rhode Island College.

Johanna is a native Rhode Islander, born and raised in Providence, and currently residing in Cranston. She is completing her last semester of Library School at the University of Rhode Island. Johanna likes to read all kinds of things when she has spare time, which can be challenging with four children under the age of 5.

Announcement | Joseph Campbell, Director of Library Facilities

The Library is pleased to announce that Joseph Campbell will be joining us as Director of Library Facilities.

Joe brings over two decades of professional experience to the position, including five years in Brown’s Facilities Management Department as the HVAC Controls Supervisor. During this time Joe has provided leadership and direction to the Controls Division, including work on several energy management and building automation projects as well as collaborations with various departments within Facilities and across campus, such as Environmental Health and Safety, the Office of Sustainability, and Planning, Design & Construction.

As the Director of Library Facilities, Joe will be part of the Library’s executive team and report directly to the University Librarian. In this role, Joe will bring an understanding of the special characteristics and requirements of collections, study, and research facilities as he assesses Library needs and opportunities relating to facilities quality and building safety. Coordination with campus partners will be an essential part of the job, especially with Facilities Management, Public Safety, Environmental Health and Safety, and Computing and Information Services. Library construction, renovation, and repair efforts are under the director’s purview, as is compliance with University, state, and federal laws and regulations.

Joe has assumed HVAC, power plant, and property management leadership roles in organizations including the University of Massachusetts Dartmouth, Mount Auburn Hospital in Cambridge, MA, and Rhode Island Hospital in Providence.

Joe will serve a critical function for the Brown Library, working to ensure continuous improvement in the quality and functionality of Library spaces for students, faculty, researchers, staff, and visitors, making the Library a safe, inclusive, and welcoming space for academic pursuits.  Among the philosophies Joe values is the concept of a collaborative work environment that encourages ongoing growth and skill development for individuals as well as a strong appreciation of the benefits of continuous process improvements.

Joe’s first day at the Library is November 4, 2019.

Event | Exploring the Digital China 2019 with Li Wang, PhD

Li Wang, Ph.D.

On Wednesday, October 23, 2019 at 12 p.m. in the Digital Scholarship Lab at the Rockefeller Library, Dr. Li Wang, Curator of the East Asian Collection, will give a talk, “Exploring the Digital China 2019.” This event is free and open to the public. Coffee and cookies will be served.

This new visual report will focus on Dr. Wang’s professional trip this summer in China, where he attended several conferences, Beijing International Book Fair, and other events. During this period, he delivered two presentations at the International Conference on Digital Publishing and Digital Libraries and the Sino-American Academic Library Forum on Collaboration and Development. The first presentation, entitled “Digital Scholarship at Brown (Continuance): Knowledge Innovation and Research Engagement in North American University Libraries,” is a follow-up chapter of his award-winning paper on “Digital Scholarship at Brown” from 2014. The second is on American Sinologist Charles S. Gardner and the Chinese collection at Brown University, which won the first prize for papers at the Sino-American Library Forum.

2019 CDPDL in Changchun, China

In his talk, Dr. Wang will scan recent trends in digital publishing, knowledge innovation and library services developed in China and other places in the world. He will also share pictures, stories and thoughts on this fruitful journey, including cultural tours of the Russian style Gogol Bookstore, the wonderful Heaven Lake on the China-North Korea border, and the Inner Mongolian prairie in north China, and much more.

The Heaven Lake (elevation of 7,812 ft.) in Changbai Mountain, China

Date: Wednesday, October 23, 2019
Time: 12 – 1 p.m.
Location: Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab, John D. Rockefeller, Jr. Library, 10 Prospect Street, Providence

Announcement | Barbara Schulz, Head of Library Facilities and Security, Retires

Barbara Schulz headshot
Barbara Schulz

Barbara Schulz began at the Brown University Library as the Head of Library Facilities, Finance and Business in 1994. During her 25 years with the Library, Barbara managed a multitude of facilities projects that have shaped the buildings, interiors, landscapes, functions, and security of every Library building and space.

Some of the notable projects she worked on include:

  • At the Rockefeller Library:
    • Vincent J. Wernig Graduate Student Reading Room (2016)
    • Sidney E. Frank Digital Studio (2015)
    • Lobby and Café (2015)
    • Historic Chandelier Restoration (2015)
    • Sorensen Family Reading Room (2014)
    • Patrick Ma Digital Scholarship Lab (2012)
    • Finn Reading Room (2010)
    • Circulation (2010)
  • At the John Hay Library:
    • First Floor Restoration (2014)
    • Life Safety & HVAC Upgrade (2014)
    • Building Security System (2014)
    • Exhibition Room (2009)
  • At the Sciences Library:
    • Quiet Study (2011)
    • Friedman Study Center (2006)
  • At the Library Annex:
    • Construction of the Annex High Bay Storage Module #2 (2014)
    • Construction of the Library Collections Annex (2003; project co-manager)

Barbara officially retires this October as the Head of Library Facilities and Building Safety. The Library is deeply grateful to Barbara for her years of dedicated service and her commitment to the Library’s mission and values. Through her leadership, library facilities offer patrons and staff a safe, comfortable, accessible, and inviting library environment. We wish Barbara all the best in her retirement.

Announcement | Head of Preservation, Conservation, and the Library Annex Exhibits Disaster Preparedness Kit at the United Nations

Michelle Venditelli describes the Brown University Library’s disaster preparedness kit to colleagues from India at the UN

In May of this year, Michelle Venditelli, Head of Preservation, Conservation, and the Library Annex, attended “Sustainable Development Goals in Libraries today: the role of libraries in strengthening our communities,” a panel discussion at the United Nations’ Dag Hammarskjöld Library in New York. While there, she was invited to exhibit at the 68th Annual United Nations Civil Society Conference at the Salt Palace Convention Center, Salt Lake City, Utah. She was also asked to be a mentor during the Youth Mentorship Circle – Setting the Stage for Success.

The three-day conference, held August 26 – 28, 2019, was co-hosted by the UN Department of Global Communications, Salt Lake City, and the NGO Executive Committee. It featured opening and closing plenary sessions, interactive thematic sessions, NGO-sponsored workshops, exhibits, and a youth hub. Speakers and attendees included leaders and other representatives from NGOs, UN agencies, academia, faith traditions, the public and private sectors, and youth from around the world.

The conference focused on #11 of the 17 Sustainable Development Goals (SDGs), a blueprint for action, advocacy, and partnership and a compass to ensure that no one is left behind, including those who are poor and vulnerable. The 11th SDG is, “to make cities and human settlements inclusive, safe, resilient and sustainable by 2030.” The conference also explored the interlinkages among all 17 Goals, including critical issues relating to gender.

During the exhibition component, Michelle presented an exhibit entitled “Reducing Risk in Libraries, Museums, and Cultural Institutions through Disaster Preparedness Kits.” She was accompanied by a fully stocked disaster kit, which represents the Brown University Library’s new approach to localized threats to our collections. Showcasing the kit at this conference provided Michelle with an opportunity to discuss cutting edge preservation efforts and techniques with professional peers from around the globe. “It was an honor to exhibit at this unique and critically important conference,” Michelle said. “Interacting with experts in disaster preparedness as well as professionals seeking to develop best practices around disaster prep for collections of all kinds was incredibly informative and rewarding.”

the kit in front of the exhibit table

The kit was extremely well received and sparked robust, excited conversation from library and museum colleagues from states throughout the U.S. and abroad. More than once, a colleague told Michelle that the kit is “like a crash cart for disasters.”

Staff from the University of Utah’s Marriott Library were particularly impressed with the kit. At the conclusion of the conference, instead of shipping the sizable unit back to Brown, Michelle and the Brown Library gifted it to the Marriott Library, providing them with a much-needed preservation tool, which they were thrilled to receive.

Announcement | Andrew Creamer Named Librarian on AMS Library Committee

Andrew Creamer, Librarian for Computer Science and CLPS – Scientific Data Management

The Library is pleased to announce that American Mathematical Society (AMS) President Jill C. Pipher has appointed Andrew Creamer to the post of Librarian on the AMS Library Committee. Andrew is the Brown University Library’s Data Management Librarian, and he supports Computer Science and CLPS.

Membership on this committee is split between librarians and mathematicians. The committee supports both mathematicians and librarians in the use, maintenance, and betterment of mathematics libraries.

Andrew will serve for a term of three years, effective February 1, 2020 through January 31, 2023.

The AMS Library Committee Charge

The Library Committee considers the use by mathematicians of all the various resources found in mathematics libraries in Canada and the United States. It periodically collects and maintains authoritative data on those libraries, and it provides advice about the questions to be addressed when library surveys are conducted. It studies and articulates the needs and concerns of mathematicians about their use of both print and electronic information. It monitors problems in libraries and fosters dialog between mathematicians and librarians on issues concerning the dissemination and preservation of research. It supports librarians in their efforts to build and maintain better mathematics libraries and to provide ready access to information.

Announcement | Nicholas Friesner, Senior Library Specialist – Assessment

Nicholas Friesner headshot
Nicholas Friesner, Senior Library Specialist – Assessment

The Library is pleased to announce the transfer of Nicholas Friesner from Technical Services to the Office of the University Librarian as Senior Library Specialist – Assessment. This is a new position that will assist in the Library’s expanded focus on assessment, supporting the strategic plan as well as operational and user assessment activities.

Nicholas began his new role on September 16.

Prior to this new position, Nicholas served as Senior Library Specialist – Technical Services for two years, working with the Shared Cataloging team and also working with manuscripts/archival materials at the Rock. 

Nicholas earned his Ph.D. in Religious Studies at Brown. His prior library experience includes working in Special Collections at the Yale Divinity School library and in the Catalog Maintenance Department at Johns Hopkins University’s Milton S. Eisenhower library. Additionally, his very first library employment was as a work-study book shelver in the Rock when he was an undergraduate over a decade ago. 

Announcement | John Hay Library Undergraduate Fellowships

L-R: Alan Mendoza Sosa ’20, Finch Collins ’21, and Evan Kindler ’20, pictured outside the John Hay Library

The John Hay Library Undergraduate Fellowship Program serves to assist Brown students with primary source exploration, inviting them to follow their curiosity, questions, and creativity through self-directed projects focused on an area within the vast special collections resources available within the Library. Working closely with Library staff over 10 weeks, the students will each produce an individual research project, to be presented at a symposium on September 19, 2019.

This summer’s inaugural cohort of John Hay Library Undergraduate Fellows includes:

Alan Mendoza Sosa ’20 

“Nightsky’s Glitter”

Alan will create an experimental queer poetry chapbook inspired by and incorporating elements from the gay pulp fiction collection, the Scott O’Hara papers, the Katzoff collection, and the Smith magic collection. The book will explore themes of gender, sexuality, embodiment, and language, while questioning queer media representation, the social distinction between “high” and “low” literature, and between “academic” and “popular” culture. 

Finch Collins ’21 

“(Trans)formative Fandom: Trans Studies, Problematic Authors, and Reclamation”

Working with the Caitlin Kiernan papers and the gay pulp fiction collection, Finch will investigate negotiations of queer identity through fandom, examine the extent that fandom can serve as a site of reclamation and identity creation, and consider how utopian thinking on fandom’s reclamatory value might fall short. He hopes to produce a 40-50 page paper as a first step toward an honors thesis.

Finch and a projection of HP Lovecraft
Finch presents in the Lownes Room at the John Hay Library on September 19, 2019

Evan Kindler ’20 

“The John Birch Society in the Trump Era”

Evan hopes to examine Trumpism’s roots in Bircherism by looking at how this far-right extremist group’s agenda has been reflected in Trump’s policies and rhetoric. Evan plans to write and submit a paper to an academic journal as well as possibly produce a creative work.

Evan and projection of slide from project
Evan presents in the Lownes Room at the John Hay Library on September 19, 2019