May 24, 2005 — The University of Utah has selected Joyce Ogburn as its new Director of the J. Willard Marriott Library. Ogburn comes to Utah from the University of Washington where she was Associate Director of the Libraries, Resources and Collection Management Services (RCMS). She takes over for Sarah Michalak who left to become university librarian and associate provost for university libraries at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill.
Besides her latest position at the University of Washington, which she has held since 1999, Ogburn has served in similar posts at Old Dominion University, Yale University, and The Pennsylvania State University. In announcing Ogburn’s appointment, University of Utah President Michael K. Young praised her extensive qualifications. “The Marriott Library is the primary repository in Utah for printed materials and electronic information, indeed, one of the largest library collections in the entire United States. I am absolutely delighted that we have attracted someone equal to the task of managing and improving it. Joyce Ogburn has had precisely that experience at some of the very best university systems in the country and has succeeded marvelously well wherever she has been. I am extremely pleased she has agreed to join our educational team.”
A nationwide search for a new librarian was conducted by a committee of University personnel and external experts in library science. Dave Pershing, senior vice president for Academic Affairs says the U has hired a librarian with a balanced view of the future who understands the importance of traditional research collections while also recognizing the opportunities and risks in the electronic future. “I am very excited to welcome such a highly qualified librarian to oversee the Marriott Library. We conducted a thorough search to ensure Utah’s most important information repository is well managed and I am convinced Joyce Ogburn will be an outstanding leader for the Marriott Library. She takes over at a crucial time in the library’s rich history and we’ll be asking a lot of her as the renovation project gets underway.”
Managing the Marriott Library takes superb organizational skills. It is an ARL (Association of Research Libraries) library and has holdings of nearly 3 million volumes, including 25,444 journals in electronic and print formats, and a considerable number of other networked electronic resources. The library has recently partnered with industry and five other ARL universities to develop a Scholar’s Portal. It is currently involved in a large-scale building renovation which will vastly increase the building’s seismic safety, add a state-of-the-art Information Commons, and a center to create multimedia digital content. Current teaching facilities include three PC labs, four Mac labs, three demonstration classrooms, and a 250-seat auditorium, all with multimedia capabilities. Undergraduate education is a University and library priority. Outreach to transfer groups and local schools is a high priority.
In accepting the position, Ogburn pledged to work closely with the campus community to ensure the library is meeting all educational needs. “Being named director of the J. Willard Marriott Library is an enormous honor. The University of Utah is justifiably proud of the library and its great staff. I am attracted to the collaborative spirit on campus and the prospect of building exemplary integrated services for the University. The renovation project underway presents a tremendous opportunity to shape the services and directions of the Marriott Library for many years to come, and I look forward to joining this effort in the fall.” Ogburn will begin her duties September 1.