2011 GODORT Award Winners

James Bennett Childs Award

The 2011 James Bennett Childs Award is given to Tim Byrne, Senior Outreach Librarian at the US Dept of Energy, Office of Scientific and Technical Information for his lifetime and significant contribution to the field of government documents and their use in libraries.

Tim’s letters of nomination note, in a career spanning more than 30 years, he has been a prominent force in the field of documents librarianship.

Tim worked to make the University of Colorado-Boulder Library a source for technical information and administered one of the largest collections of government technical reports in the country. Further, he used the knowledge of that collection to aid in the work with GWLA (Greater Western Library Alliance) and their TRAIL (Technical Report Archive and Image Library) Project. Tim was solely responsible for helping teach the group the importance of, knowledge held by, and unique contributions that could be made by government documents librarians. These contributions ranged from teaching project participants about the history of particular series of publications to helping the project contact and share the vision of the project with leaders in government agency information divisions. His ability to reach out to these individuals and groups with expediency demonstrated his extensive network within the government documents community.”

As a regional librarian, he has been active and interested, coordinating monthly meetings to keep librarians in selective depositories informed and to facilitate their knowledge of federal information sources. He has worked with the Five-State Depository Meetings then spearheaded the Government Information in the 21st Century Project to build the knowledge of electronic government information by librarians and library staff of all types. This project was the recipient of an IMLS, Laura Bush 21st Century Librarian Program grant award (2006-2008). Since moving to the Department of Energy, he has provided training to the depository community, either on-site or virtually. And more recently he has been working as an Adjunct Professor at the University of Tennessee Knoxville’s School of Information Science teaching government documents.

Tim has made presentations at a variety of conferences and mediums, and through on-site and virtual connections. He has served on seventeen different committees and task forces in GODORT, many of them for multiple terms, and more recently he served on the Depository Library Council to the Public Printer and as its chair.

One letter sums up Tim’s career, “Tim Byrne’s commitment to Government Documents, to Government Information and to the librarian profession can be readily observed in his record of professional service to many organizations, and also in his work at Virginia Commonwealth University, at the University of Colorado-Boulder and now at OSTI. Tim continues to be active in the Documents Community and to leave his mark on other librarians and the public with his training sessions. Educating his colleagues and the next generation of librarians about the importance of Government Information is just one admirable quality that makes Tim Byrne rise to the top in my esteem and why I support his nomination for this lifetime achievement award.”

ProQuest/GODORT/ALA "Documents to the People" Award

The 2011 Proquest/GODORT/ALA Documents to the People Award is awarded to Lou Malcomb, Head of Government Information, Kent Cooper Services (ET2) and Geosciences Library at Indiana University, Bloomington. This award is given to Lou for her “commitment, creativity and dedication to the principles embodied in the phrase “Documents to the People.”

Examples of her innovative and pragmatic approach include her brainchild, the CIC Floppy Disk Project, one of the first attempts to preserve federal depository materials in digital format. This project continues to provide web-based access to both the data and software required to access and use the data, helping libraries provide immediate user access to valuable information distributed on this now-obsolete format. More recently she provided the impetus and leadership for a much larger-scale preservation and access project, the Indiana Light Archive for Federal Documents. As noted in one nomination letter, “Lou’s presence and stature within the Indiana government documents community played a significant role in assuring the integrity and feasibility of such an undertaking. With Lou’s help and guidance what began as a project involving only the Indiana University federal depository libraries became an unprecedented collaboration involving all of the depositories in Indiana.” As chair of the project working group, she and the working group hammered out the details of collection assignments, cataloging standards, preservation best practices, delivery criteria, disposal guidelines, and reference, instruction, training, and professional development responsibilities that formed the basis of two critical documents: the Indiana Light Archive Collection Stewardship Guidelines and Memorandum of Understanding/Cooperative Agreement. These allowed creation of a collaborative shared print repository for the state of Indiana to become a reality. It is also now a national model for collaboration in preservation, cataloging and public access.

Lou’s passion for government information, expertise and generosity have won her the respect of her colleagues, one of whom describes her as the “quintessential government documents librarian.” She has shared this enthusiasm and encyclopedic knowledge of government resources with innumerable graduate students as a former adjunct faculty member in the IU School of Library and Information Science, for which she was honored with the Indiana University, School of Library and Information Science Alumni Award in 2005 and the Indiana University Teaching Award for teaching achievements in the School of Library and Information Science in 2002.

Bernadine Abbott Hoduski Founders Award

The 2011 Bernadine Abbott Hoduski Founders Award is given to Laura Harper, Head, Government Information Services and Regional Depository Librarian at the John Davis Williams Library at the University of Mississippi. Her letters of recommendation mention numerous examples of her work including her helpfulness and her ability to ‘find anything you’re looking for.’ Her knowledge of government documents is extensive.” The letter continues, “Laura has contributed significantly to promoting and improving access to government information in the State of Mississippi.” During her tenure as Regional Depository Librarian she has developed a passion for the collection and, according to one letter, her goal of making the collection accessible to the public “is second to none.”

She has been active on the national level within the Government Documents Round Table and other units of the American Library Association as well as continuing to be very involved with the Mississippi Library Association and, in most cases, the work concerned documents. She serves on the Steering Committee of the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries Collaborative Federal Depository Program."

In addition, she serves as a mentor to other librarians within the state. Notably, one letter mentions, “She continues to encourage those librarians in Mississippi who work with documents, and she has remained steadfast in her support of the state chapter of GODORT.” The letter continues, “Laura has been instrumental in seeing that a program related to U.S. documents has continued to be presented at the annual conference of the Mississippi Library Association.”

In her duties as regional coordinator of Mississippi Government Documents libraries, Laura has without fail demonstrated true devotion. She has helped depository libraries in Mississippi with inspection preparations, biennial surveys, collection development, and offered any other assistance necessary to improve the collections and services of the Mississippi depositories. She is an extraordinary librarian.

Margaret T. Lane / Virginia F. Saunders Memorial Research Award

George Dehner, Assistant Professor of History at Wichita State University is the recipient of the 2011 Margaret T. Lane / Virginia F. Saunders Memorial Research Award for the article, WHO Knows Best? National and International Responses to Pandemic Threats and the “Lessons” of 1976 which was printed in Journal of the History of Medicine and Allied Sciences, October 2010, vol. 65, no. 4, pgs 478-513.

The article focuses on the discovery of a novel influenza strain at Fort Dix, New Jersey, in 1976—dubbed Swine Flu—which prompted differing responses from national and international health organizations. The article examines the responses of these organizations and cites government information from the World Health Organization and United Nations, as well as documents, reports, and files in the National Archives from a wide variety of federal agencies, the Weekly Compilation of Presidential Documents, and congressional testimony.

W. David Rozkuszka Scholarship

Laurie Aycock, a graduate student in the Library and Information Science Program at Valdosta State University, in Valdosta, Georgia, is the 2011 recipient of the W. David Rozkuszka Scholarship. For Laurie, libraries have been an important part of her life for as long as she can remember. One of her earliest memories is going with her mom to meet the bookmobile that visited her rural community and selecting stacks of books to take home. Libraries and librarians have always had a positive impact during her education and Lindsay would like to do the same for another generation of students.

In addition to taking graduate classes, Laurie currently works as the Government Documents associate at the University of West Georgia, in Carrolton, Georgia. She is responsible for managing the day-to-day operations of the department and overseeing the technical processing of the new items. She also works closely with the cataloging department to resolve questions or issues that arise. Her other responsibilities include supervising students assistants and working weekly shifts on the reference desk.

The Ingram Library on the campus of West Georgia is currently being renovated and the government documents collection will be housed in compact shelving once the renovation is complete. Laurie has undertaken a few large projects during this renovation period. She has removed outdated publications and materials that are no longer of use and offered them to other libraries. Her goal is to have every document in the collection inventoried and cataloged prior to moving the collection in to the new space. Though she currently enjoys her work she knows that to go farther in the profession she must earn her Master’s degree in Library and Information Science. This degree will enable her to fulfill a long-term career goal of becoming a government information librarian. Having worked with documents collection, Laurie is aware of the wealth of information the government provides via the Federal Depository Library Program and she believes that many library users are unaware of this important information.

Laurie’s passion and commitment for librarianship whether in public services or working with the government documents collection is evident by her hard work, attention to details, and the goals she has aspired to achieve. From earning her master’s degree to having all the documents at the Ingram Library cataloged, Laurie’s desire to play an active role in educating library patrons on the wealth of information found in a documents collection will make her an excellent documents librarian.