Susan Roman

Dean Emerita, Graduate School of Library and Information Science, Dominican University

image of Susan Roman


Dr. Roman began her career in libraries working in children’s and youth services in public libraries. She then became the Director of Reference Services at the American Medical Association Library. From this background and experience in public libraries and association work, she became the Executive Director of ALSC.

As the Executive Director of ALSC, Dr. Roman played a part in many major initiatives focusing on literature choices and literacy rights for children. She worked with or served on the board of almost every organization that worked with children’s literature and literacy. These include: the U.S. Department of Education, the Center for the Book in the Library of Congress, Head Start, the Public Broadcasting System, First Book, the Association of Youth Museums, the Children’s Book Council, the Wallace Foundation, the Carnegie Foundation, the Reader’s Digest Foundation, and many others. She also led children’s literature delegations to Brazil, Cuba, Australia, China, Eastern and Central Europe, South Africa, and the USSR.

During her tenure as Director of Development for ALA, she continued to use her skills in advocacy, budgeting, management, outreach, and grant writing to support initiatives including The Campaign for America’s Libraries, Spectrum Scholarships, the Born to Read initiative, 21st Century Literacy, the CIPA Legal Fund, and to implement the ALA’s Planned Giving program.

Later in her career, Dr. Roman, as Dean, led the effort at Dominican University to regain full ALA accreditation for the Graduate School of Library and Information Science (GSLIS), an effort at which she succeeded. Additionally, during her tenure, the Ph.D. in Library and Information Science degree was established at Dominican University. Her focus on marketing, promotion, and advocacy is what has brought the GSLIS program at Dominican University to the place where it is today. She went on to found the Butler Children’s Literature Center at Dominican and to serve as Principle Investigator for the Dominican Study, Public Library Summer Reading Programs Close the Reading Gap.

Awards Won

Title Year
Ken Haycock Award for Promoting Librarianship

An annual award consisting of $1,000 and a gold-framed citation, honoring an individual for contributing significantly to the general public’s recognition and appreciation of librarianship, outside the usual awareness of activities expected of a professional. These skills engender admiration for the profession as critical to the 21st Century, attract broad attention, and perhaps inspire career choices by others.

2018 - Recipient(s)