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Karen Schmidt

Karen Schmidt

Karen Schmidt Named University Librarian

March 16, 2007

BLOOMINGTON, Ill. – Karen Schmidt, acting university librarian for the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, has been named university librarian for The Ames Library at Illinois Wesleyan University.

Schmidt succeeds Susan Stroyan as university librarian. Stroyan, an employee of the Illinois Wesleyan University since 1992, is on leave, working on a special project at Illinois State University regarding digital copyright.

Illinois Wesleyan Provost and Dean of the Faculty Beth Cunningham announced Schmidt’s appointment, which is effective August 1, 2007.

“Karen Schmidt is a welcome addition to Illinois Wesleyan,” said Cunningham.  “We know her talents and contributions to library sciences will complement the magnificent resource that is The Ames Library.”

Schmidt earned both her bachelor’s degree in anthropology and master’s degree in library science from Indiana University in Bloomington, Ind.  She obtained her doctorate in library science and information from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign.

Working for the University of Illinois since 1982, Schmidt led the university librarian faculty and staff, coordinated library programs, contributed to the campus strategic plan, developed new collection programs and was responsible for the management of the $13 million collections budget. She has been active with state and national library associations, several library editorial boards and has worked diligently within the U of I, including roles on its press advisory board and strategic planning committee.  During her 25-year tenure at U of I, she held the titles of acquisitions librarian, coordinator of collection development and associate university librarian, before taking on the role of acting university librarian in 2006.  She also taught as a professor of library administration.

Her career also includes work for The Ohio State University in Columbus, as head of the regional campuses technical services, and Illinois State University in Normal, as a reference librarian, assistant acquisitions librarian and head of the bibliographical searching unit.

A resident of Bloomington, Ill., Schmidt is the 2002 winner of the YWCA Women of Distinction. She was named the 2001 “Librarian of the Year” from the Association for Library Collections and Technical Services (ALCTS) and received a 2004 research grant for the study of Illinois academic libraries from the Consortium of Academic and Research Libraries in Illinois (CARLI).  She is the author of numerous publications in the field of library sciences.

Schmidt will assume duties from Kristin Vogel who has served as acting university librarian for The Ames Library for the past two years.  “We would like to thank Kristin,” said Cunningham.  “She has provided leadership in all aspects of the operation of the library, and is highly regarded by the University faculty and administration.”  Vogel will maintain her position as associate university librarian for Ames.

At the intellectual heart of Illinois Wesleyan, The Ames Library opened in 2002. The $25.7 million facility houses scholarly information and provides a place for interaction, collaboration, study and reflection.  Named in honor of B. Charles Ames ’50 and Joyce Eichhorn Ames ’49, special spaces within the building include the Bates & Merwin Reading Room, Beckman Auditorium, John Wesley Powell Rotunda, Thorpe Music & Media Center, Tate Archives & Special Collections and the collection of stained glass windows from Pembroke College of Oxford University.

Contact: Sherry Wallace, (309) 556-3792