About the Jan Merrill-Oldham Professional Development Grant
The Award is established by the Preservation and Reformatting Section (PARS) of the Association for Library Collections & Technical Services (ALCTS) to honor the career and influence of Jan Merrill-Oldham, distinguished leader, author, and mentor in the field of library and archives preservation.Over the past three decades Ms. Merrill-Oldham has been instrumental in the development of standards and best practices, writing more than forty publications including co-authoring the Guide to the ANSI/NISO/LBI Library Binding Standard, a document used by almost all libraries and commercial library binders. Ms. Merrill-Oldham has served on key committees within ALCTS, ALA, the Association of Research Libraries, the Council on Library and Information Resources, the National Information Standards Organization and many others. She has educated and mentored countless preservation librarians and conservators and her support for students and dedication to the field serves as a model to all of us. In September of 2010, Ms. Merrill-Oldham announced her retirement after a long and notable career in library and archives preservation. In December 2010, she was named the recipient of the ALCTS Ross Atkinson Lifetime Achievement Award. This award recognizes Jan Merrill-Oldham’s wide ranging contributions, deep commitment to the field of library and archives preservation, and her undying support of young professionals by supporting participation in an ALA Annual Conference.It is important however to encourage new and young preservation librarians and staff to further pursue their professional development. A significant part of that involvement is to attend the ALA Annual Conference to network and learn from their colleagues. Ms. Merrill-Oldham over her career has dedicated herself to mentoring young professionals and it is in recognition of that service that an award that supports professional development and involvement by librarians and para-professionals new to the preservation field be established.The Jan Merrill-Oldham Professional Development Grant is awarded by the ALCTS Preservation and Reformatting Section to provide librarians and paraprofessionals new to the preservation field with the opportunity to attend a professional conference and encourages professional development through active participation at the national level. The grant is to be used for airfare, lodging, and registration fees to attend the ALA Annual Conference.
assistant librarian/assistant conservator at Syracuse University’s Bird Library
Although Swanberry-Hanley is at an early stage in her preservation career, she is already sharing her knowledge and giving back to the profession by teaching disaster planning and book repair workshops. It is this active participation in the field, beyond the library walls, that represents qualities that Jan Merrill-Oldham would have encouraged. She has shown a dedication to continuing education and a clear commitment to and passion for the preservation profession.
Swanberry-Hanley earned a B.A. in English from Canisius College in 1987 and an MLIS from Syracuse University in 2000. In 2010, she began her foray into preservation in the Preservation Department at Syracuse.