Inaugural 6 Spectrum Doctoral Fellows announced

Contacts: Gwendolyn Prellwitz
ALA Office for Diversity
(800) 545-2433 x5048
Toni Carbo
University of Pittsburgh
School of Information Sciences

(412) 624-9310
For Immediate Release
June 8, 2007

Inaugural 6 Spectrum Doctoral Fellows announced

CHICAGO - The American Library Association (ALA) and University of Pittsburgh's School of Information Sciences are proud to announce the first six recipients of the Spectrum Doctoral Fellowship. The Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) is providing nearly $1 million to fund the program.

The six inaugural Spectrum Doctoral Fellowships recipients are: Janet Ceja Alcalá at the University of Pittsburgh, Tammy Mays at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, Liladhar Pendse at the University of California at Los Angeles, Elisabeth Rodriguez at the University of Pittsburgh, J. Brenton Stewart at the University of Wisconsin at Madison, and Vivian Wong at the University of California at Los Angeles. Elisabeth Rodriguez, who was a 2005 recipient of the Spectrum Scholarship for MLIS Studies, has been named the Elizabeth Martinez Spectrum Doctoral Fellow in honor of Elizabeth Martinez, Spectrum founder and ALA executive director from 1994-97.

“I am overwhelmed, and deeply honored to have a Spectrum Doctoral Fellowship named for me,” Martinez said. Fellows will begin their doctoral studies in the fall of 2007. For more information on the Spectrum Doctoral Fellows visit

The Spectrum Doctoral Fellowship program was designed to recruit and provide full tuition support and stipends to 10 full-time library and information science (LIS) doctoral students for all four years of study. The Fellows were selected from the applicants accepted by at least one of the participating programs by a distinguished jury. Dr. Carla Hayden, Director of the Enoch Pratt Library and past president of ALA chaired the jury. Other members of the jury were: Dr. Camila Alire, Interim Dean of the Library, University of Colorado at Denver and Consultant, Greater Western Library Alliance (GWLA); Dr. Claudia Gollop, Associate Professor at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill SILS; Joan Howland, Professor of Law/Associate Dean for Information and Technology at the University of Minnesota Law School; Dr. Hope Olson, Professor at the University of Wisconsin – Milwaukee School of Information Studies; Dr. Maurice Wheeler, Associate Professor at the University of North Texas School of Library and Information Sciences; and Dr. Kenneth Yamashita, Library Division Manager for the Stockton-San Joaquin County Library. Information on the availability of remaining Fellowships for students beginning doctoral studies in fall 2008 will be announced this summer.

In addition to the University of Pittsburgh, nine other library and information science programs participated in the effort: University of Arizona, University of California at Los Angeles, University of Michigan, Rutgers University, Simmons College, Syracuse University, University of Tennessee at Knoxville, University of Texas at Austin and University of Wisconsin at Madison.

The fellowship builds on the success of the ALA Spectrum scholarship program, which began in 1997 and has since provided financial support to 415 individuals pursuing LIS master's degrees or school media certification. Now approaching its 10-year anniversary, the program has become one of the profession's most significant diversity and recruitment efforts.

"This represents a new era for Spectrum. Our hope is that the doctoral fellowship will have the same impact on LIS education and executive-level management that the master's degree scholarship has had on the field at large," said ALA Executive Director Keith Michael Fiels.

To underscore the fellowship program's emphasis on leadership, Spectrum Doctoral Fellows will attend the expense-paid E.J. Josey Doctoral Leadership Institute named for University of Pittsburgh Professor Emeritus and one of the profession's staunchest diversity advocates. The Institute will be held in January 2009 in conjunction with the annual meeting of the Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE).

Betty Turock, Rutgers Professor Emeritus, past ALA president and longtime champion of the Spectrum Scholarship Program, reacted to the news of the creation of the doctoral fellowship by noting, "Spectrum is one of the association's greatest successes, and the Spectrum PhD is a critical and necessary part of its future. Diversity at the front of the LIS classroom and diversity in the profession are deeply intertwined. We are all grateful for IMLS's support."

The Spectrum Doctoral Fellowship is open to applicants of American Indian/Alaska Native, Asian, Black/African American, Hispanic/Latino or Native Hawaiian/Other Pacific Islander heritage. Applicants need not have received a Spectrum master's-level scholarship. Applications for Spectrum Doctoral Fellowships were accepted from October 2006 to January 2007. Applicants were also required to apply for admission to one or more of the 10 participating library and information science programs. 78 individuals expressed interest in the Spectrum Doctoral Fellowship, 18 individuals completed applications for the Fellowship, 11 individuals completed applications to their LIS program(s) and were reviewed by the Fellowship Jury.

For more information on the Spectrum Doctoral Fellowship program, please contact Spectrum Doctoral Fellowship Director, Dr. Toni Carbo, Professor, University of Pittsburgh School of Information Sciences and Graduate School of Public and International Affairs, at

For more information on the Office for Diversity and the Spectrum Program, visit: For more information on the University of Pittsburgh School of Information Sciences, visit: For more information on the IMLS, visit: