Holly Jeffcoat named dean of SMU Libraries


Holly Jeffcoat

University of Connecticut Associate Dean of Libraries Holly Jeffcoat, a leader in the use of technology in instruction and library services, has been selected as the next dean of SMU Libraries. She will assume her new duties Wednesday, August 1, 2018.

“Holly Jeffcoat has deep leadership skills, as well as broad administrative experience in the library system of a highly ranked research institution,” said SMU Provost and Vice President for Academic Affairs Steven C. Currall. “She will lead SMU Libraries in forging a collective vision in line with SMU’s goals for even greater academic quality.”

SMU President R. Gerald Turner lauded Jeffcoat’s strategic vision.

“Holly is wonderfully forward-thinking in her understanding of the role of technology in libraries now and in the future,” Turner said.

As associate dean of UConn Library, Jeffcoat leads core library operations that include access services, administration, marketing, development, facilities, finance, human resources, information technology and strategic planning. She oversees a $22 million budget, and leads the Library’s five-year, $20 million master plan renovation effort.

She is a key contributor to One UConn Library, an endeavor that ultimately will align systems across all UConn libraries. She also serves as interim leader of the strategic library areas of research, teaching, service and outreach. Previously at UConn, she served as the interim vice provost (the head UConn librarian), the assistant vice provost, and as the associate university librarian of planning, finance and assessment.

“It is an honor and privilege to join the SMU community as the new dean of SMU Libraries,” Jeffcoat said. “This is an exciting time of change and growth in academic research libraries and at SMU. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to collaborate with world-changing faculty, students, staff, and the broader SMU community to create a shared 21st-century vision for SMU Libraries built upon the existing strengths of dedicated library professionals, outstanding special collections, and inspiring facilities.”

Prior to an international search for a new dean, Currall convened a task force to review existing university library organizational structures and processes, and to make recommendations for a new structure favorable to coordination among the libraries, and conducive to future strategic planning. A new unified organization model will take effect when Jeffcoat begins her new post.

As SMU Libraries dean, Jeffcoat will oversee DeGolyer Library, SMU’s principal repository for special collections in the humanities, the history of business, science and technology; Fondren Library Center, including the Norwick Center for Digital Services; the Hamon Arts Library; Bridwell Library, which supports theological education and scholarship; the Business Library; and human resources needs for the libraries. She will serve as ex officio member of the SMU Libraries Executive Board and the Friends of the SMU Libraries.

“Holly understands modern research libraries from the ground up and across all disciplines,” said Thomas DiPiero, dean of SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, who chaired the 15-member search committee. “Her terrific strategic planning experience will help her lead collaborations across SMU Libraries.”

Prior to UConn, Jeffcoat held positions at the University of New Mexico College of University Libraries and Learning Sciences as well as the UNM Health Sciences Library and Informatics Center. Her library leadership career began in Galápagos, Ecuador, as the director of the Charles Darwin Research Station. Jeffcoat has published and presented on translational science support, use of virtual reality in education, collection development in health sciences, and numerous scholarly communication topics.

Jeffcoat is a founding creator of BLC Leads, a Boston-based leadership program for mid-career librarians, and serves as a program mentor. She is a 2018-19 fellow in the prestigious Association of Research Libraries (ARL) Library Leadership Fellows program.

She earned B.A. degree in psychology from Greensboro College, where she minored in sociology and French. She earned an M.S. degree in sociology from Utah State University, and an M.A. degree in library and information sciences from the University of Arizona.

Currall thanked Elizabeth Killingsworth, who has served as interim dean since July 2017, for her leadership. “Elizabeth guided us through this period of transition extremely well,” he said. “She’s a wonderful asset to SMU Libraries and the University.”

Anthony Elia named Bridwell Foundation Endowed Librarian, director of Bridwell Library


Anthony Elia, Bridwell Foundation Endowed Librarian and Director of Bridwell Library, SMUAnthony Elia has been named J.S. Bridwell Foundation Endowed Librarian and director of Bridwell Library in SMU’s Perkins School of Theology, effective June 1, 2018. He succeeds retiring director Roberta Schaafsma, who has served in that role since April 2007.

Elia, director of library and educational technology at Christian Theological Seminary in Indianapolis since 2013, will be responsible for providing vision, strategic direction and operational leadership for Bridwell Library. In addition, he will promote the development of collections and oversee the library’s public service and user education efforts.

“Bridwell Library is an extraordinary institution, both in the theological library world and the greater global community of research and scholarship,” Elia said. “It is a great honor to join such an exceptional staff and inclusive community, where students, teachers, scholars, lay community members, ministers, alumnae/i, and many others are able to work with world-class collections.

“The vision for Bridwell will be a vision of partnerships, engagement, and community participation, where all will continue to feel welcome to find inspiration and spirit in their work, life, and vocations,” he said.

Elia earned a B.A. degree in religious studies from St. Lawrence University, M.A. degrees in religious studies from The Hebrew University of Jerusalem and in history of Christianity from the University of Chicago Divinity School, and the Master of Science in Library and Information Science (MSLIS) degree from the University of Illinois.

He brings significant expertise in library science and educational technology, which he has utilized in both U.S. and global contexts.  From 2010-13, he served as head Public Services Librarian at Burke Library, Columbia University, and was a lecturer in theological writing at Union Theological Seminary, both in New York City.  In addition, he has held positions at the JKM Library of McCormick Theological Seminary and Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago, the American Theological Library Association, and the Regenstein Library, University of Chicago.

The author of numerous publications, he will present “The Theology of Cybersecurity” at the June 2018 American Theological Library Association (ATLA) conference in Indianapolis.  Elia has held numerous leadership positions in his field, including membership on the Directors’ Committee of the Private Academic Library Network of Indiana (PALNI), where he also served as secretary of the Executive Committee.  He was chair/president of the New York Area Theological Library Association (NYATLA) from 2011-12 and vice-president of the Chicago Area Theological Library Association (CATLA) in 2010.  In addition, he was chair and past co-chair of the International Relations Round Table IVC Committee, American Library Association (ALA) from 2013-15.

Elia has also been awarded a number of grants, including a 2015-16 Wabash Center Grant for “Pedagogy of the Archive.”

A composer, Elia served as Composer in the Religion, Spirituality, and the Arts Seminar at Butler University and was also invited by the Indianapolis Symphony Orchestra to deliver a pre-concert lecture on Olivier Messiaen and Theology in 2016.

“Anthony Elia brings extraordinary energy and intellectual curiosity to this position,” said Perkins Dean Craig C. Hill. “In addition to his academic degrees, he has studied some twenty languages, including work in Prague, Rome, and Nairobi. Just as important, he has demonstrated the ability to forge connections between a theological library and the wider university and community.”

The J.S. Bridwell Library—among the best theological libraries in the nation—includes a full range of theological, biblical, and historical materials relating to the development of Christianity. In addition to the material available in the basic lending collection of the library, which is strong in Methodist materials, Bridwell Library contains a number of special collections that are especially valuable for the study of topics related specifically to the background, rise, development, and present status of Methodism.

With total holdings exceeding 370,000 volumes, Bridwell Library’s Special Collections contain over 50,000 printed books dating from the fifteenth to the twentieth century. Most of the printed works in these holdings, often in first and early editions, are in the fields of theology, church history, scripture, liturgy, and philosophy. Many of these editions are distinguished by fine illustration and typography, notable provenances, and historically significant bindings. Holdings also include manuscript correspondence by John Wesley and other important figures in early Methodism, archival collections of American Methodism and private presses, and a small group of Medieval and Renaissance manuscripts.

> Visit SMU’s Bridwell Library online: smu.edu/bridwell


Site Spotlight: Handy tips from SMU Libraries as 2017 Fair Use Week begins


ARL Fair Use Week infographicThe Association of Research Libraries observes 2017 Fair Use Week Feb. 20-24, and SMU’s Central University Libraries is celebrating with handy resources for students and other University community members.

Dillon Wackerman, SMU’s Digital Repository librarian, has answered some questions about fair use in honor of the week, which is organized to “celebrate the important doctrines of fair use in the United States” and “promote and discuss the opportunities presented, celebrate successful stories and explain the doctrine.”

Share the link to spread the word.

> Read and share via the SMU CUL News blog


Marshall Terry to receive 2012 SMU Literati Award

Author and SMU Professor Emeritus Marshall TerryMarshall Terry, the emeritus professor and alumnus affectionately known as “Mr. SMU,” will be honored with the Friends of the SMU Libraries Literati Award at the 2012 Tables of Content dinner Saturday, March 31.

The celebration begins at 6 p.m. at the James M. Collins Executive Education Center with a cocktail reception honoring Top Ten Haute Young Authors, and featuring entertainment by magician and SMU President’s Scholar Trigg Watson. The honorees include Matt Bondurant, Christopher Heaney, P.J. Hoover, Paul Otremba, Dominic Smith, Michael Anthony Steele, Becky Wade, Christine Warren, Jo Whittemore and JoaquÍn Zihuatanejo.

The presentation of Terry’s award and Tables of Content dinner will follow at 7:15 p.m., with SMU faculty members (and other interesting members of the Dallas community) serving as table hosts.

Michael H. Collins and Melissa A. Collins ’10 are honorary chairs for the event.

“As SMU commemorates its centennial, we decided there was no one more fitting to honor than ‘Mr. SMU,’ Marshall Terry,” says Amy Carver, director of Friends of the SMU Libraries. “His legacy as a writer, teacher and mentor to generations of writers is just one of the many reasons we chose to honor him with the Literati Award this year.”

Terry, E.A. Lilly Distinguished Professor Emeritus of English in Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences, helped President Willis M. Tate write SMU’s 1963 Master Plan, which laid the foundation for the Strategic Plan guiding the University today.

Terry earned Bachelor’s (’53) and Master’s degrees (’54) from SMU. He introduced the creative writing specialty into the English major, served twice as chair of the English Department, founded the nationally recognized SMU Litfest and has directed SMU programs in Madrid, Oxford and Taos. He also served as Faculty Senate president and associate provost for undergraduate education.

His latest book, Loving U: The Story of a Love Affair (And Some Lover’s Quarrels), is an affectionate narrative of Terry’s involvement with SMU over six decades, told with characteristic wit and wisdom. “His life’s work is inextricably bound up in the history of SMU, and his memoir provides us with a valuable perspective on SMU’s past,” said Russell L. Martin III, director of SMU’s DeGolyer Library, which published the book in late 2011.

The Literati Award was created by the Friends of the SMU Libraries in 2010 to honor the 40th anniversary of the founding of the organization, to celebrate the power of the written word and to recognize significant achievements in creativity. The Friends of the SMU Libraries is an organization dedicated to promoting and enriching the resources, services and operations of the eleven SMU libraries. In 40 years, the Friends have funded more than $750,000 in library materials and services.

Past Literati Award winners include former First Lady Laura Bush ’68 (2011) and noted screenwriter and author James V. Hart ’69 (2010).

Tickets are $150 and are available for online purchase. Table sponsorships are also available. All reservations must be received by Monday, March 26. Black tie is optional, and valet parking will be available. For more information, contact Cindy Ruppi, 214-768-3225.

Written by Nancy George

> Visit Friends of the SMU Libraries online at smu.edu/friends

Discover-ing SMU Libraries’ revolutionary search engine

Librarian in the stacksSMU Libraries are pioneering a revolutionary service that allows students and faculty to search the library the same way they search the Internet.

The Discover SMU Libraries service, found on the SMU Libraries’ homepage in the Quick Search box, lets users search thousands of the libraries’ resources – books, articles, newspapers, databases and more – from a single search box. The SMU Libraries are one of a handful of university library systems around the world who are pioneering this simple, instant search of library collections.

Studies show that students and faculty prefer the quality of information found in libraries, but find web-style searching simpler and more straightforward. The Discover SMU Libraries service is designed to mimic open web search methods, delivering the kind of content that only the library holds.

“Offering this revolutionary service to our community [was] a culmination of several months of investigation, evaluation and planning by SMU Libraries and Office of Information Technology staff,” said Toni Nolen, IT Services Librarian at Fondren Library Center, who led the implementation effort. “We are excited to introduce this user-friendly service that will help researchers find the best information provided by the SMU Libraries for their needs.”

The Discover SMU Libraries service was created by Serials Solutions, a Seattle-based company that specializes in developing technology that enables university libraries to more easily manage their electronic content collections. The company developed the service in conjunction with universities on three continents and also works with thousands of publishers to pre-load content into a single repository of information – much like the web, but specific to each library’s holdings. The service’s technology allows searching to be precise and fast so that students and faculty spend less time hunting for the right information.

The Discover SMU Libraries search includes records from the SMU Libraries catalog, SMU Libraries Digital Collections, Central University Libraries research guides, and may index some or all of the libraries’ databases and journals.

> Read more from SMU News
> Enter a DIscover library search term with SMU Libraries’ Quick Search box

Outstanding library staff members receive service awards

Five exemplary librarians and library staff members have received the 2009 SMU Libraries Staff Service Awards. The awards recognize outstanding contributions to the Libraries and to the information professions, as well as service to library users.

Jim Quevedo, Central University Libraries, was named Employee of the Year, awarded to a library staff member who has demonstrated exemplary service and successful management of one or more major projects or innovations that enhance service or improve operations and reflect positively on the University.

John Milazzo, Central University Libraries, received the Continuing Excellence Award. The honor recognizes a staff member who has “set an example of knowledge, expertise, dedication and enthusiasm” and “the highest level of commitment to service to library users and SMU faculty and staff” for a minimum of three years.

Yan (Patricia) Silong, Cox Business Information Center, was named Outstanding Student Assistant. The prize goes to a student employee who has demonstrated exemplary continuing performance during a minimum of two full semesters of employment. The selection committee considers work habits, knowledge of work, quality and quantity of work, judgment, initiative, adaptability and reliability.

Christine Asberry Milazzo, Central University Libraries, received the award for Effective Use of Technology. The honor is given to a library staff member who has developed and/or implemented an effective use of information technology that enhances library services and operations.

Jon Speck, Bridwell Library, received the Outstanding Achievement Award, given to a librarian or professional library staff member who has contributed significantly to the SMU community or to the information professions through personal service, leadership, scholarship or involvement in professional associations. The winner must maintain a record of exemplary work for a period of 3-5 years.

In addition, the following personnel received Central University Libraries (CUL) awards:

Cindy Gautreaux and Tyeson Seale received the CUL Dean’s Eureka! Award, presented to CUL staff members who showed the most creativity, ingenuity and imagination.

The CUL Cookout Committee – Carol Baker, Cindy Gautreaux, Michelle Hahn, Terre Heydari, Christine Milazzo and John Milazzo – received the CUL Team Award for organizing and serving an outdoor cookout for SMU students, faculty and staff during National Library Week.

SMU Libraries announce 2008 Staff Award winners

The SMU Libraries honored some of its indispensable associates, as nominated by the SMU community, at its 2008 Libraries Staff Awards ceremony May 9 in DeGolyer Library. Staff members from Central University Libraries, Bridwell Library, Underwood Law Library and the Business Information Center were eligible to be nominated for the awards, which carry a cash prize of $500 each.

This year’s recipients:

• Employee of the Year – Cindy Gautreaux, Central University Libraries

• Outstanding Achievement – Sam Ratcliffe and Ellen Buie Niewyk, Central University Libraries

• Continuing Excellence – Maria Isabel Lopes Garcia, Central University Libraries

• Effective Use of Information Technology – Robert Walker, Central University Libraries

• Outstanding Student Assistants – Thien Ho, Business Information Center, and Valencia Pan, Underwood Law Library

In addition, the following staffers received Central University Libraries Awards:

• Dean’s Eureka Award – Cindy Gautreaux

• CUL Team Award – The Digitization Advisory Group: Stacey Beach, Jorge Cruz, Michael Seifi, Robert Walker and Brad Wehring

Calendar Highlights: Commencement Countdown, May 1, 2008

Commencement Countdown 2008Celebrating excellence: SMU’s Dedman College of Humanities and Sciences honors outstanding achievers – including 2008 Distinguished Graduate Robert W. Haley, M.D. at the annual Dedman Celebration 7-9 p.m. May 7 in Dallas Hall.

Libraries’ leading lights: The SMU Libraries honor indispensable associates as nominated by the SMU community at the 2008 Outstanding Library Staff Awards ceremony and reception, 1:30 p.m. May 9 in the Texana Room, DeGolyer Library. All SMU community members are invited to attend.

Commencement Countdown 2008:

  • May 16: Baccalaureate
  • May 17: Faculty Breakfast and Distinguished University Citizen Awards presentation
  • May 17: Commencement
  • May 17: School and departmental diploma ceremonies

Nominate go-to staff members for annual awards

The SMU community has the chance to recognize indispensable staffers in its libraries and throughout the campus with two spring awards.

Nominations are now being accepted for the 2007-08 SMU Libraries Staff Recognition Awards, which recognize outstanding contributions to the Libraries and/or to the information professions, as well as service to library users. The five awards carry a monetary prize of $500 each. General considerations and criteria for these awards can be found at the SMU Libraries website. Any member of the campus community may nominate a Libraries staff member has not won the award within the past 5 years (consult the list of previous winners). The directors of Bridwell Library, Business Information Center, Central University Libraries and Underwood Law Library are not eligible for the awards.

The deadline for consideration is April 18. Submit a nomination online or e-mail Cindy Ruppi for more information or a paper form.

Meanwhile, the Faculty Senate will present citations and gifts to three outstanding University staff members at its final meeting of 2007-08 on May 7. Nominations for the 2008 Faculty Senate Outstanding Staff Awards will be accepted until noon April 14. Faculty members should e-mail Julie Maynard with:

  • your full name, department and position;
  • the full name, department and position of the SMU staff member being nominated; and
  • an explanation of why you believe the individual deserves the award.