Beverly P. Lynch receives the 2012 Melvil Dewey Medal Award

For Immediate Release
Thu, 03/22/2012

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CHICAGO — Beverly P. Lynch, professor in the Graduate School of Education and Information Studies at the University of California Los Angeles, is the winner of the 2012 Melvil Dewey Medal Award, sponsored by OCLC. The prestigious honor, given in recognition of creative leadership of high order, is named in honor of Melvil Dewey, who was actively interested in library management, library training, cataloging and classification and the tools and techniques of librarianship.  

“The jury for the 2012 Melvil Dewey Medal is pleased to honor Beverly Lynch for her many accomplishments during a long, varied and distinguished career in American librarianship,” said Chair Winston Tabb. 

Among the achievements specially noted by the Dewey jury and the many colleagues who wrote in support of this award are Dr. Lynch’s unique role in training dozens of current library leaders while director of the UCLA Senior Fellows program since 1990; her vision in creating and serving as founding director of the California Rare Book School, one of the most prestigious centers in the world focused on this increasingly important aspect of academic librarianship; and her commitment and contributions to the importance of international librarianship, exemplified through her service as chair of ALA’s International Relations Committee and as a founder of the US-China Librarians’ conference series.

“Taken together, these achievements, accurately described as ‘extraordinary and legendary’ by one nominator, demonstrate in an exemplary way the ‘creative professional achievement in library management and the tools and techniques of librarianship’ the Dewey Medal was established to honor,”  said Tabb.

Dr. Lynch has served in numerous professional leadership positions.  In 1972, she was appointed the Executive Secretary of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), where, among other things, she proposed and designed the first national ACRL conference. Dr. Lynch’s involvement in ALA has been extensive, including ALA Council, the Committee on Accreditation, the International Relations Committee and the Budget and Finance Committee. She also served as the president of ALA in 1985/86.  She served as university librarian at the University of Illinois-Chicago, 1977-1989, before assuming the deanship of  UCLA’s graduate school of library and information studies.  She also served as interim president of the Center for Research Libraries in 2000 and in 2004 became the founding director of the California Rare Books School.  She was awarded ALA’s Joseph W. Lippincott award in 2009.

The 2012 Melvil Dewey Award will be presented at the ALA Awards Ceremony Reception on June 26, during the ALA Annual Conference in Anaheim, Calif.

In addition to Chair Tabb, Sheridan dean of university libraries and museums at John Hopkins University, the members of the 2012 Melvil Dewey Award jury are:  Emily Bergman, retired librarian, Glendale Calif.; Susan DiMattia, consultant,  DiMattia Associates, Stamford, Conn.;  Brenda Tirrell, librarian, YBP Library Services, Contoocook N.H.; and Joyce Wright, librarian, University of Illinois.

The deadline for submission of applications for the 2013 Melvil Dewey Award is Dec. 1.

Guidelines and application forms are available on the ALA website.