They’re letting me talk in public again

18 Oct

I’ve actually got a couple of speaking gigs on the horizon, and it feels like it’s been a little while.

On November 4, I’ll be at NYLA’s annual conference, where the CUNY Graduate Center’s Jill Ciracella and I will be giving a talk on “Walking the Open Access Walk“. We’ll be covering the recent big events in the OA world, and then leading some facilitated discussion on what libraryfolk need to be doing right now to promote and embrace OA.

And then on December 2, my colleague Aliqae Geraci and I will be on a panel discussing power, labor, and archives at the ACRL/NY 2016 Symposium: Money and Power. Our focus is, “Documenting dispute: Who is preserving the record of public sector collective bargaining?” and it’ll touch on our research into state-level collections of CBAs, but also look more broadly at the place of labor libraries in supporting labor communities and action.

I’m excited to be out speaking again, and very excited to be a part of two excellent programs. So check ’em out.


Scholarly Commons Hits 1 Million Downloads

12 Oct

Three years ago this month, the Scholarly Commons went live. Supporting Cornell’s School of Hotel Administration, it’s the second open access digital repository that I manage, and was both the biggest project of the post-consolidation HLM Digital Projects Group and the justification of our expansion from two people to three.

And in August, we recorded our one millionth full-text download.

Hitting that milestone in less than three years is kind of mind-boggling, but we’ve been ridiculously successful in this endeavor. We have papers from 70% of SHA’s faculty, we are now the point of dissemination for all publications from SHA Centers and Institutes… and folks are demonstrably reading this stuff, too.

Thanks go out to Sara Palmer, who does the lion’s share of the work on this repo, to her predecessor Chubing Tripepi, and to Steve Gollnick who helped get things off the ground while keeping DC@ILR uploads on track. (It’s worth noting that Sara and Steve won the Cornell University Library Outstanding Performance award behind this work.)

It’s been a helluva ride, and I’m looking forward to the future.

SLA Academic Division statement on SLA Annual 2018 and North Carolina

8 Apr
The SLA Academic Division is grateful to SLA Board President Tom Rink for his statement condemning North Carolina’s recent passage of HB2, a law that discriminates against LGBT people. We also stand with the New York and Philadelphia Chapters of SLA in calling for immediate negotiations to change the location of the SLA Annual Conference in 2018 from Charlotte, NC.
This law runs counter to the principles of our Association, our Division, and our profession, and as such it would be irresponsible for our Association to hold our annual conference in North Carolina while said law stands. SLA’s Board has shown itself capable of taking decisive action in the past year, no matter the difficulty, and this should be no exception.
Jim DelRosso
Chair, SLA Academic Division

Come work with us! Business Research Librarian

23 Mar

We’re looking for a Business Research and Instruction Librarian to join us at Cornell’s Hospitality, Labor, and Management Library!

Apply here!


Business Research Librarian-31405

The Business & Hospitality Research Team at Cornell University Library is looking for creative and forward-thinking candidates to join their group as a Business Research and Instruction Librarian. The successful candidate will provide research and instruction support to the faculty, students, and staff of the newly announced Cornell College of Business. Above all, candidates must be excited by the opportunity to develop the relationships and services needed to support success at a top-ranked business school.

Duties and Responsibilities:
Reporting to the Assistant Director of Research & Learning Services, the Business Research and Instruction Librarian:

  • Designs, teaches, and assesses instruction sessions, including working with faculty to develop curriculum-integrated instructional programs.
  • Provides direct research assistance to the College of Business community and Cornell researchers with business information needs.
  • Contributes actively to team building, goal setting, and long term planning for the department.
  • Collaborates with colleagues and customers across Cornell University.
  • Cultivates personal subject knowledge and skills through training and self-directed learning; participates actively in professional organizations, library, and university committees; and engages in scholarly pursuits.


  • An ALA-accredited MLS or equivalent graduate degree.
  • Demonstrated interest and excitement for business as a discipline.
  • Passion for and experience with teaching and research support.
  • Strong analytical, quantitative, problem-solving, and critical-thinking skills, especially in a research context.
  • Excellent interpersonal, organizational, and written/oral communication skills.
  • Ability to resolve competing demands in an environment of fast-paced change.
  • Strong service ethic and customer-centered thinking.
  • Demonstrated ability to work independently and collaboratively in a service-oriented environment.
  • Commitment to the Hospitality, Labor and Management Library’s core values of collaboration, excellence, flexibility, innovation, integrity, and service.

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Demonstrated excellence in teaching and research support.
  • At least 1 year of business research experience in a corporate or academic environment.
  • Intermediate to advanced knowledge of Excel or other software relevant to data manipulation and statistical analysis.
  • Advanced degree or coursework in business or related fields.
  • Willingness to explore the use of new technology or methods in support of effectively achieving goals, with a high tolerance for risk and failure.


The Business & Hospitality Research Team serves the newly announced Cornell College of Business, which will be comprised of Cornell’s three accredited business programs: the School of Hotel Administration, the Charles H. Dyson School of Applied Economics and Management, and the Samuel Curtis Johnson Graduate School of Management. The College of Business will be one of the most comprehensive business schools in the nation with 145 research faculty and nearly 2,900 undergraduate, professional (MBA), and graduate students. Based on the past success of its future member units, The College of Business will cement the University’s position as a world-class center of teaching and research for business management and entrepreneurship.

In addition to traditional library services that support the academic and career research needs of the College of Business, the Business & Hospitality Research Team welcomes candidates with a keen eye towards innovative and user-focused programs. The librarians in this team are members of the larger Research & Learning Services (RLS) department within the Hospitality, Labor, and Management (HLM) Library. In addition to the College of Business, HLM RLS supports the Industrial and Labor Relations School with a dedicated Labor and Employment Research Team. HLM’s physical footprint includes three facilities integrated into the schools they currently serve. The successful candidate will join a team of 10 professionals serving the hospitality, labor, and business information needs of the university.

Cornell University is an innovative Ivy League university and a great place to work. Our inclusive community of scholars, students and staff impart an uncommon sense of larger purpose and contribute creative ideas to further the university’s mission of teaching, discovery and engagement. Located in Ithaca, NY, Cornell’s far-flung global presence includes the medical college’s campuses on the Upper East Side of Manhattan and Doha, Qatar, as well as the new Cornell Tech campus to be built on Roosevelt Island in the heart of New York City.

Diversity and Inclusion are a part of Cornell University’s heritage. We are a recognized employer and educator valuing AA/EEO, Protected Veterans, and Individuals with Disabilities.

Come work with us! Railroad Collections Project Archivist

16 Feb

The Kheel Center is hiring an 18-month position is support of this totally awesome project. Description below, link to the application here.


Railroad Collections Project Archivist-31039

Cornell University Library’s Kheel Center for Labor-Management Documentation & Archives seeks qualified candidates for an 18-month, temporary professional position as Railroad Collections Project Archivist. The successful candidate will improve description of 65 archival collections documenting railroad history in the United States, coordinate digitization of roughly 1,600 photographs, and assist with outreach efforts related to the project.

With rich manuscript and media collections pertaining to labor unions, management theory and practice, and labor relations and as part of the Martin P. Catherwood Library, the Kheel Center supports the curriculum and research interests of Cornell’s School of Industrial and Labor Relations (ILR School) and attracts scholars nationwide and from all over the world.

The Catherwood Library in the ILR School is the nation’s most comprehensive library for workplace issues, specializing in labor history, human resources, collective bargaining, organizational behavior, and international and comparative labor movements. In 2010, Catherwood consolidated with the Nestlé Hospitality Library and the Management Library to form a single structure serving Cornell’s specialized business and labor Schools. The consolidated structure serves over 1800 undergraduates, 1300 graduate students, 100 resident faculty, and extensive distance education, executive education, and extension programs. Cornell University Library is a leading academic research library with outstanding collections, service and instructional programs, and a leader in digital library applications including digitization of its print collections and development of strategies for curation of the research output of its faculty.

Responsibilities: Reporting to the Director of the Kheel Center and working closely with other staff, the Railroad Collections Project Archivist is responsible for: assessing the detailed description needs for 65 archival collections documenting railroad history; enhancing basic descriptions of those 65 archival collections as appropriate; and coordinating digitization and online delivery of roughly 1,600 photographs from Kheel Center’s railroad collections. The successful candidate may supervise one or two student assistants and will work closely with the Kheel Center’s Director, Technical Services Archivist, and Digital Archivist.

Characteristics: The Railroad Collections Project Archivist is a highly organized and collaborative professional who is able to approach a large, 18-month assignment in a methodical and comprehensive manner. S/he works well with colleagues, drawing on and contributing to their subject and archival expertise, but is also able to work independently. S/he has a strong understanding of standard and traditional archival practices but also embraces the change and opportunities that new technologies bring to the archival field. Most importantly, s/he understands the research process and researchers and can keep their needs in the forefront of their mind when making processing and description decisions.

Under the direction of the Kheel Center Director, does archival technical services work on the Kheel Center’s railroad history collections and coordinates digitization and online delivery of select railroad history photographs. The Railroad Collections Project Archivist may supervise one or two student assistants and works closely with the Kheel Center’s Director, Technical Services Archivist, and Digital Archivist.


  • Master’s degree from an ALA-accredited program with a concentration in archives management, or equivalent combination of education and experience
  • Knowledge of 20th century US history
  • Strong organizational, planning, and problem solving skills
  • Excellent interpersonal, oral, and written communication skills
  • Ability to work both independently and collaboratively with a variety of staff in a rapidly changing environment

Preferred Qualifications:

  • Experience and/or interest in US railroad and labor history
  • Experience arranging, describing, and preserving archival, manuscript, photographic, and other non-print materials, including experience processing large collections.
  • Experience creating MARC records and EAD guides for archival collections
  • Experience working with photographic collections
  • Degree in history or a related discipline
  • Record of engagement with professional groups and activities and/or contributions to professional or scholarly literature.

Looks like I get to be an Associate Librarian

7 Dec

I’ve been waiting on the official letter from HR to make the public announcement, and now it’s arrived, so:

On August 17, 2016, I will be promoted to the rank of Associate Librarian at the Cornell University Library. I put my promotion packet in last July, and it seems as though it was sufficiently convincing. To say that this is an exciting moment and a load off of my mind would be a grand understatement.

There’s a lot of folks to thank for this: first and foremost my family, who have been hugely supportive of my pursuit of this whole librarian career thing. Thank you, and I love you.

I am also deeply appreciative of the people in my supervisory chain who lent their support to my promotion: Anne Kenney, Kornelia Tancheva, and Curtis Lyons.

I am exceedingly grateful to those who were willing to write letters of recommendation to the promotion committee on my behalf: Cheryl Beredo, Esta Bigler, Amy Buckland, Suzanne Cohen, Aliqae Geraci, Jill Hurst-Wahl, Michelle Paolillo, Oya Reiger, and Jill Wilson.

And massive thanks to Suzanne, Curtis, and Deb Lamb-Deans, who gave me great feedback on my promotion packet.

Last but certainly not least, I want to thank all the folks with whom I’ve been lucky enough to collaborate with during my career at Cornell, not only within the university but also through organizations like SLA. There is very little that I’ve done as a librarian that I feel comfortable claiming sole credit for, so thank you for working with me on so much cool stuff.

10 Years, 10 Million Downloads

26 May

Real-Time Readership Map - LargeThis month, DigitalCommons@ILR recorded its 10 millionth full-text download. This corresponds with the tenth year the repository’s been in operation, so naturally we’re celebrating:

Launched just over a decade ago, DigitalCommons@ILR provides free online access to over 21,000 resources for executives, managers, workers and researchers. It serves as a repository not only of scholarship produced by faculty and researchers, but also historic and born-digital materials relevant to the ILR community and workplace researchers and practitioners internationally.

Covering all aspects of work and the workplace, DigitalCommons@ILR documents are freely available online with no access restrictions. Researchers from every state in the union and around the world download items, often found through Google searches, on everything from general workplace subjects such as creativity or teamwork to specialized questions such as the transition from disability to retirement benefits or the implications of specific labor laws and rulings. The site’s real-time readership map showing download locations emphasizes the school’s global reach as it pursues its mission of “Advancing the World of Work.”

Follow the link to read the whole press release. I want to take this opportunity to give accolades to the folks who helped make this happen:

  • Mary Newhart was the first repository manager, and really set the stage for everything that’s come since. She made it happen. Anything I’ve been able to do as repo manager is building on the foundation she laid. (She also hired me, and I’m very grateful for that.)
  • Suzanne Cohen and Deb Schmidle helped establish the collection development policy that still governs the repository today, and which I used as the basis for collection development at Scholarly Commons.
  • Steve Gollnick has done the lion’s share of work in getting material ready for the repository and actually uploading it. It’s painstaking and endless work, but Steve does it with skill and aplomb.
  • Deans Harry Katz and Kevin Hallock, Directors Gordon Law and Curtis Lyons, and all the other administrators who believed in our work and provided support over the last decade.
  • Many, many student workers who put in hours making this thing go.

I’m lucky to be a part of a project like DigitalCommons@ILR, and I’m deeply grateful to all the folks who have helped it succeed.