Frye named winner of Atkinson Award

Contact: Mary Ellen Davis


ALA News Release

For Immediate Release

February 2001

Frye named winner of Atkinson Award

Larry Frye, head librarian at Wabash College in Crawfordsville, Ind., has been named the 2001 winner of the Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial Award. Named in honor of one of the pioneers of library automation, the Atkinson award recognizes an academic librarian who has made significant contributions to the area of library automation or management and also has made notable improvements in library services, library development or research.

The nomination application for Frye noted: "In his vision for library service, his leadership of networking initiatives, his service on behalf of colleagues and his practical, persuasive effectiveness at achieving cooperative goals, Frye exemplifies both the spirit and accomplishments of Hugh Atkinson." Further, his contributions to librarianship and library networking "have been [made] through his drive, intelligence and keen insight without direct control over human or capital resources."

"Mr. Frye's leadership/action in advancing library services via cooperation and the use of technology epitomizes the essence of the Atkinson Award," said Donald Riggs, chair of the award selection committee. "As a result of Larry Frye's risk taking the Indiana Spectrum of Information Resources (INSPIRE) became reality. INSPIRE is a statewide virtual library permitting access by every citizen and library in Indiana to a multidisciplinary package of online scholarly and general resources." Riggs also noted Frye's leadership in forming the Private Academic Library Network of Indiana (PALNI), a consortium of 25 private colleges and seminaries with a combined catalog of 4.4 million items.

Prior to joining the faculty of Wabash College as head librarian and associate professor in 1980, Frye was library director and college archivist at Bethany College, Bethany, W.Va. He earned his bachelors at Bethany College, and was a Woodrow Wilson Fellow in theology at the Yale University Divinity School. He received his masters in library science from Rutgers University, and his archivist certificate from Case-Western Reserve University, Cleveland, Ohio.

Frye received the 1979 West Virginia Library Association Distinguished Service Award. In 1985, he received the Outstanding Service to Indiana Libraries Award for his direction of the statewide retrospective conversion project for Indiana's private colleges, and he received the Indiana Library Federation Special Services Award for his role in creating PALNI.

The Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial Award is jointly sponsored by Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL), Library and Administration Management Association (LAMA), the Library and Information Technology Association (LITA) and the Association for Library Collections and Technical Services (ALCTS), divisions of the American Library Association (ALA).

Frye receives a citation and a $2,000 award, which he is donating to the ALA Freedom to Read Foundation in memory and recognition of his friend and colleague David Dickey. Dickey was the director of Taylor University Library until his death in 1999.

Frye will also receive a gold giraffe pin, designed by Tiffany's, from the Faxon Company to recognize the "sticking your neck out" aspect of the award.

Previous award winners include: Kenneth Frazier (2000); Susan K. Nutter (1999); Arnold Hirshon (1998); William Gray Potter (1997); Thomas W. Shaughnessy (1996); Nancy L. Eaton (1995); Dorothy Gregor (1994); Richard De Gennaro (1993); Miriam Drake (1992); Donald E. Riggs (1991) and Russell Shank (1990).