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Library Assessment Career Achievement Awardees Named for 2012

laca-awards-2012s600x600clockwise from top left: Karin De Jager, Joan Rapp, Sam Kalb, Don KingARL is pleased to announce the 2012 Library Assessment Career Achievement Awards. These awards recognize individuals with substantial contributions to effective, sustainable, and practical library assessment as evidenced through presentations/publications, methods, service, advocacy, and other work. The 2012 awardees are Karin De Jager and Joan Rapp from South Africa, Sam Kalb from Canada, and Don King from the United States.

Joan Rapp served as Executive Director of Libraries at the University of Cape Town from 1998 until 2011. Prior to coming to coming to UCT, she held senior positions in several American university libraries and had an “optimistic, grounded” view of library assessment. She believed that libraries could know their environment well enough to align performance with it, and could integrate assessment results into their work of implementing relevant change. Joan immediately set out to develop a framework and culture of quality assurance, using internationally developed measures. In 2005, she took the lead in bringing LibQUAL+® to the libraries of South Africa. Two years later, UCT participated in the ARL consulting project “Effective, Sustainable, Practical Assessment.” In 2008, the university awarded Joan its prestigious Vice-Chancellor’s Medal. She has spent the last year completing the Carnegie Corporation-funded Research Libraries Consortium project, a grant to six South African universities to better support graduate research.

Karin De Jager has been a teacher and researcher at the University of Cape Town and a pioneer in the field of library assessment and evaluation for more than twenty years, both in South Africa and internationally. In South Africa, her assessment work has included information literacy, research commons, information technology in libraries, a framework for assessing library quality, and working with public library staff to strengthen the role of libraries in the community. She was also active as a researcher, teacher, and mentor in the Carnegie Corporation-funded Research Libraries Consortium project. Internationally, Professor De Jager has a long history of active involvement in the Northumbria International Conferences on Performance Measurement in Libraries and International Services, and serves on the Board. She has participated in each of the biennial Library Assessment Conference meetings, and is a productive member of the International Standards Organisation Working Group, which is developing a standard on the impact of libraries. As a researcher, teacher, and mentor she has always emphasized assessment and evaluation that has practical applications to improve library services.

Sam Kalb has been the Assessment Coordinator at Queen’s University in Ontario, Canada. He has also worked over the last ten years to expand assessment to the national scale in Canada as the coordinator of the LibQUAL+® Canada consortium, a role he undertook on behalf of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries. Sam has played a leadership role in assessment in research libraries by developing the LibQUAL+® Canada consortium in 2007 and 2010, organizing Canadian assessment workshops, conducting a study to compare the LibQUAL+® and LibQUAL+® Lite survey instruments, and provided ongoing advice and support to colleagues across more than 60 academic libraries. Sam has been active in ARL initiatives, serving on the Library Assessment Conference 2010 Planning Committee and the Ad Hoc Task Force for Best Practices in Counting Serials, and contributing to the ARL E-Metrics Project. He shared his knowledge in library assessment broadly through numerous publications and presentations.

In his 50 year career as a consultant, Don King has developed methods to determine return on investment (ROI) and value of libraries, written hundreds of articles, reports, and books that explain these findings and methods, and taught librarians how to conduct value assessments. As one of the nominees stated, “A resume of over 47 pages identifies publications of 17 monographs and over 400 articles, with notable evidence of impact through high levels of citational references by others.” Highlights of his long and distinguished career in assessment include leading two statewide assessments and a national survey of public library users to determine the value and ROI of public libraries, studying the value and contribution of information services in corporate and government settings, and leading national surveys of the value of scholarly readings and libraries to researchers in academic and other settings. His refinement of the critical incident and contingent valuation techniques in library assessment have influenced a generation of librarians and researchers. Don has been recognized by many organizations and has received Special Recognition from the Special Libraries Association and the Research Award and Award of Merit from the American Society for Information Science & Technology. He continues in his retirement to undertake research in specific venues and to be generous in consulting and assisting others to undertake their own assessments.

The Library Assessment Career Achievement Awards are offered in conjunction with the biennial Library Assessment Conference organized by the Association of Research Libraries, the University of Virginia, and the University of Washington. The awards will be presented on Tuesday, October 30, 2012, during the conference reception in Charlottesville. Information about awardees from earlier years can be found at: http://libraryassessment.org/archive/LACA-award.shtml.

The Association of Research Libraries (ARL) is a nonprofit organization of 125 research libraries in the US and Canada. Its mission is to influence the changing environment of scholarly communication and the public policies that affect research libraries and the diverse communities they serve. ARL pursues this mission by advancing the goals of its member research libraries, providing leadership in public and information policy to the scholarly and higher education communities, fostering the exchange of ideas and expertise, facilitating the emergence of new roles for research libraries, and shaping a future environment that leverages its interests with those of allied organizations. ARL is on the web at http://www.arl.org/.