2016 RUSA and Section Achievement Award Winners Announced

RUSA has selected the winners of the 2016 achievement awards, which provide research and travel grants in recognition of  the nation’s most exceptional librarians, libraries and projects involving reference services today.

RUSA’s Achievement Awards are a chance to give praise to the most notable librarians, libraries and library research in reference services. These awards are of the highest honor and recognize invaluable contributions to the field.

The following recipients were selected:


Isadore Gilbert Mudge Award
Cheryl LaGuardia, research librarian at the Widener Library of Harvard University, has been named the 2016 winner of RUSA’s highest honor for her distinguished and multifaceted contributions to reference librarianship. Sponsored by Credo Reference. Credo-May2013

Award for Excellence in Reference and Adult Services
The San José Public Library is the 2016 winner of the Award for Excellence in Reference and Adult Services, which honors a library or library system for developing and imaginative and unique resource to patrons’ reference needs. Sponsored by ReferenceUSAReferenceUSA_Logo

John Sessions Memorial Award
The Center for Labor Education and Research, University of Hawai‘i – West O‘ahu was selected as this year’s winner. “The mission of the labor archive at the Center for Labor Education and Research (CLEAR) is to preserve labor history materials for future generations, protect the artifacts and make them accessible for public use, and defend the importance of working class history.” Sponsored by the Department for Professional Employees, AFL-CIO.

NoveList’s Margaret E. Monroe Library Adult Services Award
Dr. Mary K. Chelton, retired professor, Graduate School of Library and Information Studies, Queen’s College, CUNY, was selected as this year’s winner. The award honors a librarian who has made significant contributions to library adult services. Sponsored by NoveListNovLogo_BW_Transparent

Reference Service Press Award
Denice Adkins, associate professor at the University of Missouri School of Information Science and Learning Technologies and C. Sean Burns, assistant professor, University of Kentucky School of Information Science, authored the winning  article, “Arizona Public Libraries Serving the Spanish-Speaking Context for Changes.” The article was first published in Fall of 2013, (Vol. 53, No. 1) of Reference and User Services Quarterly. This award is sponsored by Reference Service Press.


Business Reference and Services Section (BRASS)

BRASS Mergent Excellence in Business Librarianship Award
winner is Jared Hoppenfeld, business librarian at Texas A&M University, for his lasting service on many BRASS committees, his outstanding published works on topics relevant to academic and public business librarians, including “Information-Seeking Behaviors of Business Faculty,” the most-downloaded article of 2014 in the Journal of Business & Finance Librarianship, and his continued support of business students, entrepreneurs and veterans. This award is sponsored by Mergent, Inc. MERGENT logo_color_eps copy

Global Financial Data Academic Business Librarianship Travel Award
winner is Ruth D. Terry, business and government information librarian, assistant professor at the University of Alaska-Anchorage, for her promising work in the area of academic business librarianship. This award is sponsored by Global Financial DataGlobalFinancialData_logo

BRASS Emerald Research Grant Award
winner is Lisa O’Connor, associate professor, School of Library and Information Science, University of Kentucky, for her study, “Why Aren’t Millennials Taking Stock?:  Assessing the Role of Information Literacy in Market Avoidance.” This award is sponsored by Emerald Group Publishingemerald_bar_logo

BRASS SimplyMap Student Travel Award
winner is Katherine Glasoe, student at the School of Library and Information Science, Simmons College for her potential to be very influential in the field of business librarianship and her impressive work and academic experience. Sponsored by SimplyMapSimplyMap Logo_wR

BRASS Morningstar Public Librarian Support Award
winner is Susan Wolf Neilson, librarian, Wake County Public Libraries (N.C.). Neilson was selected for her support of the business community through public library programming, librarian training and working with community business organizations to make her library a great resource for business owners and entrepreneurs. This award is sponsored by MorningstarMorningstar_logo

Collection Development and Evaluation Section (CODES)

Louis Shores Award
Multimedia & Technology Reviews, a publication of the Art Libraries Society of North America, was named the 2016 winner for its incisive, objectively written, critical reviews for a variety of free multimedia resources.

Zora Neale Hurston Award
Dr. Florita Bell Griffin, creative director of ARC Communications, LLC, a Texas-based Visual Art Communications and Publishing Company, was announced as the 2016 winner for her outstanding leadership and tireless efforts in promoting literacy and African American literature through the creation of the Little Flower literacy project. The Little Flower® project works to improve youth literacy, self-esteem, and imagination through the use of art, artistic media, and African American literature (storytelling). Sponsored by HarperCollins. Harper

Emerging Technologies Section (ETS)

ETS Achievement Recognition Award
Beth Boatright, information services and instruction librarian, Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, was selected as the winner for her dedication and enthusiasm to ETS.

HISTORY Section (HS)

Gale Cengage History Research and Innovation Award
winner is Thomas G. Padilla, digital scholarship librarian, Michigan State University Libraries was selected as this year’s winner. Through oral histories, Padilla will create a better understanding of the past, present and future roles of librarians in the Digital Humanities. Sponsored by Gale CengageGaleCengageLearning_Logo

Genealogy / History Achievement Award
Michele C. McNabb, library manager, Genealogy Center, Museum of Danish America was selected for her exemplary service, support, leadership and contributions to the field of genealogical and local history librarianship. Sponsored by ProQuestProQuest

Reference Services Section (RSS)

RSS Service Achievement Award
Sarah J. Hammill, business and online learning librarian at Florida International University, was selected as the 2016 winner of the RSS Service Achievement Award. The award recognizes a member that has made exceptional contributions to RUSA’s Reference Services Section.

Sharing and Transforming Access to Resources Section (STARS)

Virginia Boucher-OCLC Distinguished ILL Librarian Award
Tina Baich, associate librarian and head of resource sharing and delivery services, bibliographic and metadata services, Indiana University–Purdue University Indianapolis. Baich is honored for her outstanding and sustained contributions to the resource sharing community both nationally and internationally. Sponsored by OCLCOCLC_Logo_H_Color_NoTag

STARS-Atlas Systems Mentoring Award
Kimberly Steiner, interlibrary loan technician at Messiah College (Pa.).  Steiner was chosen because as the sole person in interlibrary loan at her library, attendance at the ALA Annual Conference would allow her to learn skills necessary to support users from Messiah College, an institution that is continually expanding their graduate programs; better understand the profession; and also network and learn from colleagues. Sponsored by Atlas Systems, Inc. Atlas Systems_logo

The RUSA Achievement Awards Ceremony and Reception will be held from 5-6:30 p.m. Sunday, June 26 at the ALA Annual Conference in Orlando. All conference attendees are invited to the event. Additional event details will be available on the conference website in April.

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