For immediate release | February 24, 2016

Cunningham-Kruppa receives Banks-Harris Preservation Award

CHICAGO — Ellen Cunningham-Kruppa is the recipient of the 2016 Paul Banks and Carolyn Harris Preservation Award. This award is given annually by the Preservation and Reformatting Section (PARS) of the Association for Library Collections & Technical Services (ALCTS). Sponsored by Preservation Technologies, L.P., the award consists of $1,500 and a citation. Cunningham-Kruppa’s service as a distinguished educator, her continued advocacy of library and archives preservation training and many years of professional contributions are recognized through this award.

Cunningham-Kruppa attended the University of Texas at Austin, where she received a Bachelor’s degree in Secondary Education and her MLIS. She then headed to Columbia University’s School of Library Service, where she studied under Paul Banks, and earned an Endorsement of Specialization in Administration of Preservation Programs in Libraries and Archives. Cunningham-Kruppa returned to UT-Austin’s General Libraries as preservation officer and 10 years later as digital programs librarian.

In 2000, Cunningham-Kruppa started her tenure at the School of Information’s Preservation and Conservation Studies as lecturer and then assistant director. Two years later she became the director of the newly-formed Kilgarlin Center for the Preservation of the Cultural Record. During this time Cunningham-Kruppa mentored, educated and motivated scores of preservation and conservation students. Her genuine passion for the field and her practical experience have made her an influential teacher and advisor. She continued this charge in 2010 by coordinating Mellon Foundation grants to support library and archives specialty education in conservation programs at University of Delaware – Winterthur and Simmons. As Michele Cloonan writes in a letter of support, “[i]t would not be overstating things to make the claim that Ellen has been the most important person in our field in sustaining conservation training for library and archives.”

Cunningham-Kruppa was awarded a Ph.D. in American Studies from UT-Austin in 2015. Her dissertation, “Disciplining Conservation: Paul N. Banks and the Moorings of Library and Archives

Conservation Education,” examines Paul Banks’ career and the beginnings of the profession through library and archives conservation education, a fitting topic to complement her long-time dedication to that same cause. Cunningham-Kruppa has had a “profound national impact on the preservation community through her advocacy and leadership in preservation education, her widespread influence as a mentor and instructor and her significant professional scholarship,” Holly Robertson writes in her nomination letter. In fall 2015, Cunningham-Kruppa was appointed the associate director and head of the Preservation and Conservation Division at the Harry Ransom Center in Austin, Texas.

The Banks-Harris Preservation Award honors the memories of Paul Banks and Carolyn Harris, early leaders in library preservation and teachers and mentors for many in the field of preservation; Cunningham-Kruppa worked with both at UT-Austin’s Preservation and Conservation Studies program. The award will be presented on June 25 at the ALCTS Awards Ceremony at the 2016 American Library Association’s Annual Conference and Exhibition in Orlando, FL.

The Association for Library Collections & Technical Services (ALCTS) is the national association for information providers who work in collections and technical services, such as acquisitions, cataloging, collection development, preservation and continuing resources in digital and print formats. ALCTS is a division of the American Library Association.


Keri Cascio

Executive Director