Indaba Bios

Abdul Alkalimat

Abdul Alkalimat (Gerald A. McWorter) is a founder of the field of Black Studies and author of many books and papers about Black liberation. He wrote the first college textbook for the field, Introduction to Afro-American Studies, which has seen seven editions, the last one free and online. A lifelong scholar-activist with a PhD from the University of Chicago, he has lectured, taught, and directed academic programs across the US, the Caribbean, Africa, Europe, and China. Two of his early contributions were serving as chair of the Chicago chapter of the Student Non-Violent Coordinating Committee, and co-founding the Organization of Black American Culture (OBAC) in 1967. Raised in Chicago’s Cabrini Rowhouses, he is now professor emeritus at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign (Department of African American Studies and School of Information Sciences). His most recent books are The Wall of Respect: Public Art and Black Liberation in 1960s Chicago, co-edited with Romi Crawford and Rebecca Zorach (Northwestern Univ Press) and Black Toledo: A Documentary History, with Rubin Patterson (Brill). Much of his work is freely available at

Heidi Charles

Heidi Charles is a first year graduate student in the LIS program at the School of Information Sciences. Heidi is most interested in pursuing a career in Archives and/or Special Collections. Currently, she serves as the GA for the Alpha Tau Omega Archives at the Student Life and Culture Archives. Areas of interest include archival instruction and issues of access to archival material for marginalized groups.

Nicole A. Cooke

Dr. Nicole A. Cooke is an Assistant Professor at the School of Information Sciences, at the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign, where she is also the Program Director for the Master’s of Library and Information Science program. Dr. Cooke is a 2012 graduate from Rutgers University with a PhD in communication, information, and library studies, where she was one of the first 12 American Library Association Spectrum Doctoral Fellows. She holds the MLS degree from Rutgers University, and a M.Ed. in Adult Education from Pennsylvania State University. Previously, Dr. Cooke was a tenured reference and instruction librarian at Montclair State University (NJ). Dr. Cooke is professionally active in ALA, ACRL, the Association of Library and Information Science Educators (ALISE), and several other professional library organizations. Dr. Cooke was awarded the 2017 ALA Achievement in Library Diversity Research Award, presented by the Office for Diversity and Literacy Outreach Services, and the 2016 ALA Equality Award. She has also been honored as the University of Illinois YWCA’s 2015 Leadership Award in Education winner in recognition of her work in social justice and higher education, and she was selected as the University’s 2016 Larine Y. Cowan Make a Difference Award for Teaching and Mentoring in Diversity. She was the 2013 Recipient of the Norman Horrocks Leadership Award given by ALISE, and Library Journal named her a Mover & Shaker in 2007. Dr. Cooke’s research and teaching interests include human information behavior (particularly in the online context), critical cultural information studies, and diversity and social justice in librarianship (with an emphasis on infusing them into LIS education and pedagogy). She has published articles in journals including JASIST, The Library Quarterly, InterActions: UCLA Journal of Education and Information, Polymath: An Interdisciplinary Arts and Sciences Journal, Library and Information Science Research, Information Research, and New Review of Academic Librarianship. Cooke coauthored Instructional Strategies and Techniques for Information Professionals (Chandos Press, 2012), co-edited Teaching for Justice: Implementing Social Justice in the LIS Classroom (Library Juice Press, 2017), and her latest book is Information Services to Diverse Populations: Developing Culturally Competent Library Professionals (Libraries Unlimited / ABC-CLIO, 2016).

Peter Darch

Peter Darch is an assistant professor in the School of Information Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Prior to joining the iSchool at Illinois, Darch worked as a postdoctoral researcher in the UCLA Department of Information Studies and Center for Knowledge Infrastructures, with which he continues to collaborate on studies of the building, running, and effects of information infrastructures that support scientific collaboration. He is particularly interested in the profound changes in the organization and conduct of contemporary scientific research that result from the interaction of technologies that afford collection of increasing quantities and types of scientific data with broader social and ethical concerns.

Jennie Durán

Jennie Marie Durán is a current MLIS graduate student expected to graduate in 2019. In addition to being a graduate student she currently works fulltime in the Office of Diversity, Equity and Access where she serves as an EEO investigator for cases of discrimination and sexual harassment. Jennie holds a Juris Doctorate from SUNY Buffalo Law School with a certificate in International Human Rights Law and is certified in Diversity Management from Cornell University’s Labor and Relations Department. She has focused her career on EEO law for over a decade. Most recently, Jennie worked for the State Department in Washington D.C. as a Diversity Manager and Special Emphasis Manager for Native American and Latino recruitment. Her end goal is to become an academic law librarian with a specialty in International Human Rights law and indigenous communities. Jennie was an adjunct lecturer in Ethnic Studies for Northern Arizona University and was an integral member of the University’s Office of Affirmative Action and Equal Employment Opportunity, ensuring that NAU met its commitment to diversity. Jennie has worked in Los Angeles with homeless individuals on Skid Row and on worker’s rights issues with migrant farm workers. She also has practiced tribal law for the Hualapai and Havasupai tribes in Arizona. Jennie is from Flagstaff, Arizona and is Chicana/White Mountain Apache.

Jamillah Gabriel (Organizing Committee)

Jamillah R. Gabriel is a doctoral student in the School of Information Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. Her research interests center around the information needs and behaviors of African Americans, and the effectiveness of cultural heritage institutions (libraries, archives, museums) at meeting the needs of African American communities. She holds a Master of Arts in Museum Studies from Indiana University Purdue University Indianapolis, Master of Library and Information Science from San Jose State University, Bachelor of Arts in Black Studies and Journalism from California State University Long Beach, and an Associate in Arts in English from Cerritos College. Additionally, Gabriel is the founder of Call Number, a book subscription box highlighting Black literature and authors from America, the Caribbean, and Africa.

Chris Hamb

Christopher Hamb (MSLIS ’04, BS Mathematics ’02) specializes in bringing and keeping not-for-profits, small businesses, and local governments online. Before founding Chrisp Media, LLC in 2008, he worked as a Reference and Digital Librarian at the Grainger Engineering Library. While at Grainger he created the first library staff blog, coding it himself. He also taught graduate courses in computer programing to Grainger graduate assistants. Christopher Hamb is a native of Chicago.

Sharon Han

Sharon Han is an MSLIS student focused on science and outreach librarianship. Prior to entering the iSchool, she worked as an Earth Science Educator at the St. Louis Science Center. She holds a Bachelor’s degree in Archaeology from Washington University in St. Louis. Her professional interests include science communication, outreach to underserved communities, and informal education in physical and digital spaces.

Kathryn Harris

A native of Carbondale, IL and a graduate of Southern IL University—Carbondale, Kathryn M. Harris is the first woman and the first African American to serve as the President of the Abraham Lincoln Association since its inception in 1909. She received her Masters of Library Science degree from the University of IL at Champaign-Urbana, and retired in 2015 as the Library Services Director of the Abraham Lincoln Presidential Library, formerly the IL State Historical Library, after more than 25 years of service. She began her library career at the Lincoln Library, Springfield’s public library before moving to Florida and serving in a supervisory capacity at Florida International University, Miami.

She has held managerial and supervisory positions at the IL State Library and the SIU School of Medicine Library in Springfield. She has served on the Board of the IL Library Association and the Consortium of Academic and Research Libraries in Illinois (CARLI); in addition she is a Past President of the Sangamon County Historical Society and is a recipient of a Lifetime Achievement Award from the IL State Historical Society. In 2015, she was recognized by the Springfield Rotary Club and is a Rotary Paul Harris Fellow; she was honored as a Woman of Influence by the Springfield Business Journal and recognized by the Society of Public Administrators.
She has also served on the Board of the IL Humanities Council (now IL Humanities) and is currently a “Road Scholar” for IL Humanities where she presents on the “1908 Springfield Race Riot” and “Mrs. Keckley: Friend and Confidante of Mrs. Lincoln”. She currently serves on the Board of the Springfield and Central IL African American History Museum.

Harris presents one woman first person shows which honor four historic 19th century African American women: Harriet Tubman, Jarena Lee, Phoebe Florville, and Elizabeth Keckley. She makes these presentations to school children, civic, church and social groups; her favorite character to introduce to audiences is Harriet Tubman.

Héctor R. Hernández

Héctor R. Hernández is the Branch Manager at the Rudy Lozano Branch Library of the Chicago Public Library. Arriving in Chicago at the age of twelve, Hernández grew up in Chicago’s Bridgeport community and attended De La Salle Institute. He has a Bachelor’s Degree from the University of Illinois at Chicago and two Master’s Degrees from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, one is in Library and Information Science and the other in Spanish and Latin American Literature. Serving the library and information needs of the city’s Spanish-speaking residents, he has spent 39 years with the Chicago Public Library. He was Hispanic Services Coordinator and worked in Logan Square, Back of the Yards, and Pilsen. He is now on his 29th year as Branch Manager at the Rudy Lozano Branch Library. This library is an important cultural space in the Pilsen neighborhood. Contemporary social issues are debated there and programs related to Mexican history, culture, literature and language take place at Lozano. It has a chess club, for people of all ages, that has met on a weekly basis for 29 years. Mr. Hernández has received many awards for his service to the community. Among them are: 1995 Librarian of the Year by REFORMA -The National Association to Promote Library Services to the Spanish-speaking-, “Pride of Pilsen” by the Pilsen Together Chamber of Commerce, and recognition by Hispanic Literacy Council, Pilsen Alliance, Casa Aztlán and the Illinois State Library. He was a founder of a local REFORMA Chapter, with other CPL librarians, in the 1990’s.

“Hector Hernandez: His own role model,” from American Libraries, June 1989 (three months before the Rudy Lozano Branch library opened to the public). LINK

A 3 minute video, teens telling the story of their involvement with our Knight Moves Chess Club over the years.

Knight Moves Chess Club one of five Chicago Public Library programs among fifty programs nationwide cited for ‘excellence in library service’ by the American Library association.  LINK.

An article from Chess Life magazine from July, 2015. LINK

Articles about Hector:

Jerry Lewis

Jerry Lewis is the Acquisitions and Systems Librarian at the William J. Campbell Library, United States Court of Appeals, Seventh Circuit. Since 2005, he has been purchasing all of the legal books and databases used by Federal Judges, chambers and judiciary staff, and six satellite libraries located in Illinois, Indiana and Wisconsin. Lewis is also the manager of the Court’s ILS and maintains the computer hardware and software for all library locations. Before working for the Court, Lewis was the Systems Librarian at Chicago State University from 2000-2005. The primary focus of time there was maintaining the library’s web page and library computing facilities. His first job in the information industry was a temporary position as a researcher with the Institute of Food Technologists in 1999-2000. In his previous career, Lewis was in the food service industry from 1977-1999 in every capacity from dishwasher to regional trainer for contracted facilities management. He holds an A.A. in Culinary Arts from City Colleges of Chicago. Lewis is a 1999 GSLIS graduate, from LEEP’s second cohort. He also graduated from Purdue University Northwest in 1993 with a B.A. in English, and from South Suburban College with an A.A. in Liberal Arts, 1989.

Malaika McKee

Malaika McKee (PhD, Higher Education Policy and Administration, University of Minnesota) is a visiting assistant professor at the University of Illinois, Urbana/Champaign in the Department of African American Studies, Philosophy of Education Professor in the Odyssey Project: Illinois Program for Research in the Humanities, and co-founder of De.SH(ie) (Designing Spaces of Hope/ Interiors and Exteriors) a lab for the study of the intersections of architecture, sociobiology and race. As part of her commitment towards international education, she has presented about the De.SH(ie) study abroad model before the French Ministry of Foreign Affairs/Paris as part of a set of bilateral international governmental agreements between the United States and France. She earned a Master of Education from the Harvard Graduate School of Education and doctorate in Higher Education Policy and Administration from the College of Education, University of Minnesota. Her research interests focus on the intersection of civic engagement and higher education with special emphasis on the experiences of students of color. Awards include Diversity Faculty Fellow at the Morgridge College of Education, University of Denver, Denver, CO, Research Fellow at the Mathematica Policy Institute in Princeton, NJ, Research Affiliate at the National Center for SuperComputing Applications, and National Science Foundation University of Illinois I-Corps Team. Contact info:, Department of African American Studies, 1201 W. Nevada Street, Urbana, IL 61801, 217-333-7781

Saundra Rice Murray Nettles

Dr. Murray Nettles’s research and theoretical interests include neighborhood, community and other environmental influences on child and youth outcomes.  Before joining the College of Education at Illinois as teaching professor in educational psychology, she had rich and varied experiences: as special recruit and information systems analyst at the Library of Congress; as librarian at the Moorland-Spingarn Center at Howard University; as head of public services at a large community action agency; as principal research scientist at the Johns Hopkins Center for Social Organization of Schools; and as associate professor of human development at the University of Maryland. She earned a B.S. (Phi Beta Kappa) in philosophy and Ph.D. in psychology from Howard University and the M.S. (Beta Phi Mu) in library and information science at the University of Illinois.  She is a Woodrow Wilson Fellow, a founder of the Section on Black Women in the American Psychological Association (APA) Society for the Psychology of Women, and the 2009 president of the APA Society for Environmental, Population, and Conservation Psychology. She has published two books and numerous peer-reviewed articles and book chapters.

Moises Orozco Villicaña

Moises Orozco Villicaña serves as the director of enrollment management for the School of Information Sciences. He earned a Ph.D. in Educational Policy Studies from the University of Illinois, Urbana-Champaign. Dr. Orozco has implemented best practices and cultivated strong partnerships to recruit diverse students to higher education. Over the past 9 years, he has worked at a community college and four-year institutions in the areas of outreach, recruitment, academic advising, and student affairs. His research interests span from recruitment to retention of underrepresented student in higher education. He also holds leadership roles in professional organizations such as NASPA and ILACHE.

Sandra L. Osorio

Dr. Sandra L. Osorio is an assistant professor in the School of Teaching and Learning at Illinois State University. She teaches courses in early childhood, bilingual education, and English as a second language. She is a former bilingual educator who has worked with children from diverse racial, ethnic and linguistic backgrounds for over 9 years. Her own personal narrative having a deficient-based identity placed upon her because of her linguistic differences has served as source of motivation to become an educator and researcher. Dr. Osorio’s research looks how early childhood children can engage in critical discussions and how to prepare teachers to work with students of color.

Allen Renear

Allen Renear is dean and professor at the School of Information Sciences. He teaches courses in data curation, information modeling, digital publishing, and conceptual foundations for information organization. His current research focuses on the development of formal ontologies for scientific and cultural objects and application of those ontologies in information system design, scientific publishing, and data curation in the sciences and humanities. His publications include articles in Communications of the ACM and Science as well as in journals and conference proceedings in library and information science. Prior to his appointment at Illinois, Renear was director of the Scholarly Technology Group at Brown University. He has served as president of the Association for Computers and the Humanities and was a distinguished visiting fellow at the Oxford University Computing Unit, a member of the advisory board of the Text Encoding Initiative, and the first chair of the Open eBook Publication Structure Working Group (the predecessor to ePUB, now the standard data format for eBooks). Renear received an AB from Bowdoin College and a PhD from Brown University. He holds an affiliate appointment in the Department of Philosophy.

Miguel Ruíz

Miguel is a graduate of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign Graduate School of Information Sciences. As a professional, he’s had the opportunity to work in diverse information environments including public, academic, and special libraries. Currently he serves as the Information Services Supervisor at the Skokie Public Library, where he leads efforts in transforming reference, information, and technology services.
He has an extensive background in issues of equity, diversity and inclusion in libraries and in communities and currently sits on the American Library Association National Committee on Diversity, and the Illinois Library Association Diversity Committee. He has also served as the Membership Co-Chair for REFORMA, the leading national association promoting library services to Latinos and Spanish-speaking.

Jessie Carney Smith

Dr. Jessie Carney Smith, Dean of the Library and Camille Cosby Distinguished Chair in the Humanities at Fisk University, is a native of Greensboro, North Carolina.  She holds a B.S. degree from North Carolina A and T State University; M.A., Michigan State University; M.A., George Peabody College of Vanderbilt University, and a Ph.D., the University of Illinois.

Dr. Smith is consultant to the Southern Association of Colleges and Schools and has served as consultant to the Office for Civil Rights in the desegregation of higher education institutions in Florida, Kentucky, Missouri, and North Carolina.  She has also served as consultant and proposal reviewer for the Southern Education Foundation and the U.S. Office of Education and the National Endowment for the Humanities.

She attended an internationally known Pugwash Conference in Nova Scotia; lectured in Hato Rey, Puerto Rico; served as chairperson of the library section, Conference on Manding Studies, University of London, London, England; directed a workshop for librarians’ conference, United States Army in the Pacific, Tokyo, Japan; was book reviewer and program participant on Black Bermudians, Hamilton, Bermuda; and made an educational tour of Dakar, Senegal.

Dr. Smith is author of numerous journal articles and editor or author of over 25 books, including Black Academic Libraries and Research Collections; Ethnic Genealogy; Images of Blacks in American Culture; Epic Lives; Black Firsts; Notable Black American Women; Notable Black American Men; Civil Rights Facts and Firsts (coauthored with Linda T. Wynn), Encyclopedia of African American Popular Culture; and more recently, Black Women of the Harlem Renaissance Era (with Lean’tin Bracks) and Encyclopedia of African American Business (rev. ed.).

She has been honored by the Council on Library Resources, Peabody College of Vanderbilt University, Graduate School of Library and Information Science, University of Illinois; Coalition of 100 Black Women the Women’s National Book Association;  and SAGE Magazine (1992). She also received the Bennett College Belle Ringer Image Award; Fisk University’s Research Career Award; was named Librarian of the Year by the Association of College and Research Libraries; and was honored with “A Tribute Resolution, American Library Association Council,” June 30, 2015.  Fisk University honored her in July 2015 for 50 years of distinguished service to the institution. In December, the Fisk faculty honored her again, citing her dedication to the library and the university.

Selected memberships include the NAACP; Pi Gamma Mu (National Social Science Honorary); Beta Phi Mu (National Library Science Honorary, and national president, 1976-77); Alpha Kappa Alpha Sorority; and the Links, Inc.

Linda C. Smith

Linda C. Smith is professor and executive associate dean in the School of Information Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. She joined the faculty in 1977. She works with graduate students on-campus (MS, CAS, PhD) and, since 1997, online (MS, CAS). She teaches courses on Information Organization and Access, Reference and Information Services, and Information Sources & Services in the Sciences. She is a past president of the Association for Library and Information Science Education (ALISE) and the Association for Information Science and Technology (ASIS&T), a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Science (Section T: Information, Computing and Communication), and a University of Illinois Distinguished Teacher/Scholar. She has been recognized with the Graduate College Excellence in Graduate Student Mentoring Award (1998) and the Campus Award for Excellence in Online & Distance Teaching (2007) as well as awards from ASIS&T (Award of Merit, 2010; Outstanding Information Science Teacher Award, 1987) and ALISE (Award for Service to ALISE, 2012; Award for Professional Contribution to Library and Information Science Education, 2008; Award for Teaching Excellence, 1999).

Diana Stroud

Diana Stroud is the former Assistant Dean for Advancement and Alumni Affairs at the School of Information Sciences at the University of Illinois, Champaign, where she was responsible for raising more than $17M during the Brilliant Futures Campaign and a part-time, medical social worker at Provena Covenant Medical Center, Urbana.

During her career she worked as an Assistant Administrator in Long Term Rehabilitation Centers, as a hospital Medical Social Worker and as the Assistant Director of a Child Welfare Agency in Peoria, IL. In 1998 she joined the School of Social Work at the University of Illinois, Champaign as the Director of Development, eventually becoming the Assistant Dean before moving to positions in the Vice-Chancellor’s Office and the Graduate School of Library and Information Science, where she works on a variety of projects including community and health informatics, expansion of broadband and digital inclusion.

Diana joined NASW as a student and has served on the local program, nominations and legislative committee; at the Illinois State level as Vice-President, chair of the membership, child welfare, awards and legislative committees; nationally as a delegate to the Delegate Assembly seven times, Regional Representative to the National Board, Treasurer of the National Board, member of the finance, executive and by-laws committees, and chair of the personnel and finance committee. Currently serving as a member of the NASW Executive Search Committee.

Memberships include; NASW, founding Member of Prevent Child Abuse Illinois, Alpha Delta Mu Honor Society, Champaign County Executive Club, Leadership Illinois, and a United Way Pillar. Diana was named Social Worker of the Year in Peoria and the State of Illinois in 1990, one of her proudest accomplishments.

Diana earned her BSW from Illinois State University and MSW from the University of Illinois, Champaign, specializing in public policy-administration.

Tonia Sutherland

Dr. Tonia Sutherland is assistant professor in the College of Communication and Information Sciences at the University of Alabama. Sutherland holds a PhD from the University of Pittsburgh’s iSchool, an MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh, and a BA in history, performance studies, and cultural studies from Hampshire College. Global in scope, Suther­land’s research focuses on entanglements of technology and culture, with particular emphases on digital culture; data and society; critical engagements with information and communication technologies; technology and the arts; Science and Technology Studies; archival theory and practice; and community and cultural informatics. Recently, Sutherland’s work has focused on 21st century digital cultures of racialized violence, critically examining issues of race, ritual, and embodiment in digital spaces. Sutherland’s current research focuses on national infrastructures, engaging critical data studies, community and cultural heritage informatics, issues of inclusivity, and expert cultures of work and collaboration. Sutherland is a member of the Center for Race and Digital Studies, the Society for Social Studies of Science (4S), and the Association for Library and Information Science Education. Her work appears in The Journal of Critical Library and Information Studies; The American Archivist; Preservation, Digital Technology & Culture; The Annual Review of Cultural Heritage Informatics; and Radical History Review.

Matthew Turk

Matthew Turk is an assistant professor in the School of Information Sciences and also holds an appointment with the Department of Astronomy in the College of Liberal Arts and Sciences. His research is focused on how individuals interact with data and how that data is processed and understood. He received his doctoral degree in physics from Stanford University in 2009. He completed postdoctoral work at the University of California at San Diego and an NSF Fellowship in Transformative Computational Science at Columbia University. He came to Illinois in 2014 to work as a research scientist at the National Center for Supercomputing Applications and as a research assistant professor in the Department of Astronomy.

Kellee Warren

I am currently Instructor and Special Collections Librarian at the University of Illinois at Chicago (UIC). I provide instruction and public services for students, faculty, and community members. I hold a MLIS from University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign (2015), and a BA in English: Media, Rhetoric and Cultural Studies from UIC (2013). I enjoy introducing archival materials to people of all ages, and am interested in collaborative, interdisciplinary projects and research. My research interests include critical information literacy and culturally sustaining pedagogy, community archives, archives of underrepresented groups, oral history, and online learning. These research interests can manifest themselves in really interesting instruction activities. In my spare time, I enjoy music, knitting, crocheting…basically anything that will allow me to creatively express myself, and Twitter. I love pugs, and other animals, but I really love pugs.

Robert Wedgeworth

Robert Wedgeworth was the founding President and CEO of ProLireracy in 2000 serving until his retirement in 2007.  In 2010 President Barack Obama appointed him the board of the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) where he continues to serve.

Wedgeworth received an A.B. from Wabash College, an M.S. from the University of Illinois and a Ph.D. from Rutgers-The State University of New Jersey.

During his long career as a librarian, library association executive and educator he worked as acquisitions librarian at Brown University 1966-69 and taught at Rutgers 1969-72. From 1972-1985 he led the transformation of the American Library Association (ALA), expanding its membership, adding new revenue sources and developing new facilities.  He served as the last Dean of the School of Library Service, Columbia University from 1985 until its closing in 1992. He was University Librarian and Professor of Library Administration at the University of Illinois 1992-1999. From 1991 to 1997 Wedgeworth served as president of the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), developing the first global electronic network of libraries of all types and adding new programs on Freedom of Access to Information and Freedom of Expression (FAIFE) and Copyright and Other Legal Matters (CLM).

Wedgeworth has received many honors and awards including the Lippincott Award and Melvil Dewey Medal from the ALA, the McGovern medal from the Medical Library Association and the medal of achievement of the International Council of Archives. He has also been awarded six honorary degrees most recently from Syracuse University, 2008.

Wedgeworth resides in Chicago with his wife, Chung-Kyun, also a retired librarian.  They have one daughter, a journalist and web manager.

Terry Weech

Terry Weech has written nearly one hundred scholarly articles and reports on a wide variety of library and information science (LIS) topics. Most recently, his work focuses on international librarianship issues and professional education for LIS. He has been active in the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA), twice elected the secretary and chair of the Section for Education and Training Standing Committee and twice elected chair of the IFLA Standing Committee on Library Theory and Research. He has lectured on trends and issues in LIS research and education in over twenty countries on four continents. Weech has received five Fulbright Senior Specialist’s awards for travel to five different countries to share his expertise with students, LIS faculty, and practicing librarians. In 2012, he was instrumental in establishing a formal faculty and student exchange agreement with ENSSIB, the French National School of Library and Information Science. Weech has served several terms on the University Senates Conference, the capstone of the University’s faculty governance system, representing the Urbana-Champaign campus on the faculty governance body, which consists of elected representatives from each of the three University of Illinois campuses. Within the iSchool, he has held the position of director of development and chair of the Advanced Studies (PhD and CAS) Committee. Weech has been active in the American Library Association (ALA) as well as state library associations. He served as the chair of the Rural Library Services Committee in ALA and was a member of the Public Library Association Board. He served as chair of Library Association Intellectual Freedom Committees in three states (Illinois, Iowa, and Mississippi) and has been involved in the administration of the Robert B. Downs Intellectual Freedom Award reception at the ALA Midwinter meeting for nearly twenty years. Weech’s teaching experience includes appointments at the University of North Carolina, Chapel Hill, North Carolina; Emporia State University, Emporia, Kansas; University of Iowa, Iowa City, Iowa; and Mississippi University for Women, Columbus, Mississippi.

Weech, Terry. 2002. “The Impact of Utopian Thoughts and Social Protests on Library Education in the 60s and 70s – The recollection of a former utopist and protester, with “a little help from his friends.” Swedish Library Research, Volume 14, Number 3, 2002., pp. 107-116.  Available from:

Kate Williams

Kate Williams (PhD Michigan) is an associate professor at the School of Information Sciences at the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign. Her research asks: Is community possible in the digital age? This follows the early urban sociologists who debated community in the industrial age. Part of this question is: What is the role of the public library in this process? Her scholarship makes use of five interrelated concepts: community, social capital, public computing, cyberpower, and the informatics moment. This helps to clarify how community technology adoption and transformation rely primarily on forces within that community, even in underresourced communities. It demonstrates the usefulness of public spaces for local community members and explained how they function. It focuses on results for communities that use information technology rather than on technology itself as a social intervention. And by identifying the informatics moment, it shifts attention from the structural deficit model implied in the otherwise valuable concept “digital divide” to a process model of self-reliant community transformation. One of her current projects looks at the book boxes known as little free libraries. A forthcoming book is New Philadelphia, a survey of an abolitionist town from before inception to today, with Abdul Alkalimat (Path Press). Publications and more at