Anderson, Ton, and Wilson Receive a National Endowment for the Humanities Grant

Bethany Anderson, Mary Ton, and Kristen Wilson received a $60,000 grant from the National Endowment for the Humanities to support the development of a portal of women in science. Anderson, Natural and Applied Sciences Archivist at the University of Illinois Archives, serves as the project director alongside co-project directors Mary Ton, Digital Humanities Librarian, and Kristen Wilson, Illinois Distributed Museum Coordinator. Their project, “No Longer at the Margins: A Digital Project to Amplify Access to the Archives of Women in Science,” received one of thirty-three Humanities Collections and Reference Resources Grants awarded nationwide. The grant supports institutions’ preservation and accessibility efforts of collections essential to scholarship, education, and public programming in the humanities. “No Longer at the Margins” was also selected to receive funding from the NEH’s special initiative, American Tapestry: Weaving Together Past, Present, and Future, which is awarded for humanities projects that address “contemporary social challenges, including strengthening our democracy, advancing equity for all, and addressing our changing climate.”

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Fall 2023 List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students Recognizes Revell, Song, and Teper

Students have the opportunity to assess instruction and course quality through the Instructor and Course Evaluation System (ICES) questionnaire forms at the end of each academic term. These forms are maintained by Measurement and Evaluation, Center for Innovation in Teaching & Learning. From this evaluation process, three University Library faculty were recognized on Fall 2023’s List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students! These individuals and their courses are acknowledged below.

  • Zoe Revell, Organizational Development & Training Specialist, has been ranked as Outstanding for her course Administration and Management of Libraries and Information Centers (IS544).
  • Yoo-Seong Song, Associate Professor and Labor, Economics, & Korean Studies Librarian for the University Library, has been recognized for his courses Applied Business Research (IS514) and Information Consulting (IS534).
  • Jennifer Hain Teper, Professor and Preservation Services Head at the University Library, has been ranked as Outstanding for her course Preserving Info Resources (IS523).

For the full list of Fall 2023 Teachers Ranked as Excellent by Their Students, please visit the following link:

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Thomas a Hugo Award Finalist

Lynne M. Thomas, head of The Rare Book & Manuscript Library, is once again a finalist for a Hugo Award—science fiction’s most prestigious award. She is a nominee for the Best Semiprozine award for her work in Uncanny Magazine. Thomas serves as the co-editor-in-chief and co-publisher alongside her husband, Michael Damian Thomas. The nomination includes Managing Editor Monte Lin; Nonfiction Editor Meg Elison; and Podcast Producers Erika Ensign and Steven Schapansky. Lynne M. Thomas and Michael D. Thomas are also finalists for the Best Editor Short Form Hugo Award!

One Man’s Treasure” by Sarah Pinsker and “The Year Without Sunshine” by Naomi Kritzer are finalists for the Best Novelette Hugo Award. “How to Raise a Kraken in Your Bathtub” by P. Djèlí Clark and “The Mausoleum’s Children” by Aliette de Bodard are finalists for the Best Short Story Hugo Award. 

The awards will be announced on Sunday, August 11, at Glasgow Worldcon, the 82nd World Science Fiction Convention in Glasgow, Scotland. The Hugo Award was first presented in 1953 and then awarded every year since 1955 by members of the World Science Fiction Society at the World Science Fiction Convention. It is considered the most prestigious literary award in science fiction.

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Steven Bermingham and Helen Zhou Awarded 2024 CSEA

The University Library is pleased to announce that two of its employees have been recognized at the campus level. Steven Bermingham, Facility Operations Specialist, and Helen Zhou, Senior Web Applications Developer, have both been awarded the Chancellor’s Staff Excellence Award (CSEA). The CSEA is designed to “recognize the importance of the outstanding work of all university staff members who perform a wide range of critical functions for our university.” This prestigious award highlights the outstanding performance of Zhou and Bermingham.

CSEA nominees must meet the criteria of at least three qualities valued by the university. Valued attributes include:

  • Demonstrating excellence in overall work performance
  • Promoting positive morale
  • Self-improvement, development, and recognition of others
  • Exhibiting initiative and creativity
  • Enhancing the image of the department and/or university

The selection committee evaluates each nominee based on these criteria, and Chancellor Robert Jones approves the recommended finalists. Winners of the CSEA award are honored at a reception hosted by the Chancellor, where they receive $1,500, a commemorative award, and a feature in a podcast or video. 

Steve Bermingham

Tim Newman, Assistant Dean of Facilities, commented, “Steve is always willing to go above and beyond to ensure the continued operations of the University Library, comprising 31 departmental libraries and units in 800,000 square feet across 16 facilities around campus. He is instrumental in monitoring humidity and temperature conditions in spaces that house some of the Library’s most delicate, unique, and historic collections, including the Rare Book and Manuscript Library, Illinois History and Lincoln Collections, Archives Research Center, and Sousa Archives and Center for American Music.”

Janelle Sander, Patron Services Manager, remarked, “Steve is one of the most observant and motivated people I have met. He constantly looks for ways to improve the experience of staff and students at the University Library by responding to smaller situations before they are even reported. He is the go-to person for all types of shelving questions in the Main Stacks…he has demonstrated his skills in this area time and time again, often giving library staff tips and tricks for operating the shelving.”

Associate University Librarian for Fulfillment Mary Laskowski noted, “Steve works across all our library units and has a positive impact on the ability of individual library units to keep the doors open, the lights on, and ensure that library facilities issues are handled efficiently and effectively. He contributes not only to the necessary upkeep of our facilities but also in terms of promoting a positive work environment.”

University Archivist and Head of Archival Programs Joanne Kaczmarek wrote, “Without a doubt, Steve embodies the qualities this award is built around and demonstrates them every day through his work for the Library and the university. I have known Steve nearly as long as I have worked at the Library and throughout that time, I have never seen him falter in his steady-handed approach to problem-solving or in his kind and helpful demeanor.”

Helen Zhou

Tracy Tolliver, Director of IT, shared, “Helen was instrumental in enabling the Library to pioneer Google Analytics 4 technology and then provided over 25 presentations and sessions to other colleges and units to help ensure a smooth campus transition to this important technology. She is a natural teacher and a voracious student, and in just a few short years has become a leading expert in digital accessibility and currently serves on two World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) community groups to continue the University of Illinois’ global reputation in the area of accessibility.”

Associate Dean for Digital Strategies Chris Prom noted, “Helen is generous in time and spirit, modeling effective work habits to peers, while shaping broader strategic directions. She stands out for her overall compassion, empathy, and service…and inspires others to action through her example, top-notch work, and supportive ethic.”

John Laskowski, User Experience & Web Strategy Coordinator, remarked “I can think of no one who better exemplifies the Library’s mission statement of “striving to ensure unfettered access to information” than Helen. Helen’s dedication and knowledge have strengthened the Library’s position as an “accessibility-first” web content provider and reinforced the university’s long-standing reputation as a leader in accessibility in higher education.”

Lori Lane, Specialist in Universal Design for Learning at CITL and Chair of the Web Con Accessibility Subcommittee, wrote, “Helen is an initiator and creative…her reputation shines, and she is well-respected for the work she does for the university.”

The full list of 2024 CDSA Award Winners can be found on the Illinois Human Resources website. Congratulations to Helen and Steve on this achievement!

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