2006 Student Award Recipents

Posted: May. 15, 2006

The following awards were presented at GSLIS Convocation on May 14, 2006.

Bryce Allen Award for Reference Services

Presented to Michelle Maloney by Dr. Linda Smith and John Dunkelberger:

This year's Bryce Allen Award for Reference Services recognizes Michelle Maloney's accomplishments both as a student and as a graduate assistant at the Information Desk in the University Library. Based on Michelle's excellent work in his class, John Dunkelberger notes that Michelle is "one of those individuals that belongs in public service and will represent the profession well to all with whom she comes in contact." Head of Reference Jo Kibbee observes that Michelle excels at one-on-one service, demonstrating that she genuinely cares about helping patrons with their queries. With her intellectual curiosity, people-skills, and enthusiasm, Michelle Maloney will be an outstanding reference librarian.

C. Berger Group Entrepreneurial Promise Award

Presented to Kyle Naff by Dr. Fernando Elichirigoity:

I am pleased to present the C. Berger GROUP AWARD to Kyle Naff. Kyle has demonstrated, both as a student and as a member of the GSLIS community, a commitment to learning, and an innovative and entrepreneurial spirit.

Kyle has a professional interest in Business Intelligence analysis and has been working for over a year in the Office of Technology Management at UIUC. There, he has performed preliminary market and industry analysis for applications of new technologies invented at Illinois. He has also analyzed the intellectual property portfolio of the university to look for commercially valuable inventions. Kyle brings energy, dynamism and commitment to his work, which spills over to the classes he has taken at GSLIS and to serving in student run organizations, including the Special Libraries Association Chapter where he served as treasurer, webmaster, and, currently, as president.

We wish Kyle continued success with his career.

Berner-Nash Memorial Award

Presented to Besiki Stvilia by Dr. Les Gasser:

Garbage in...Garbage out.

The quality of information affects every decision - from term paper sources to government policy. The personal and social costs of bad information can be huge. Besiki has invented new ways to measure information quality, or IQ. He's tested them on two collections: Wikipedia – an open web encyclopedia lately in the news, and the Colorado Cultural Heritage Digitization Program's metadata. Both are community-built collections. Besiki's results are surprising: collaboration created IQ problems in the Colorado metadata, but Wikipedia's community process improved its information quality. Besiki will continue refining IQ methods in his new job as Assistant Professor at Florida State University. We congratulate him on his ideas and his new status, and wish him well!

Presented to Keren Moses Joshi by Drs. Betsy Hearne and Chip Bruce:

Keren Moses Joshi's dissertation, "Literate Attachments in a Multilingual Kindergarten: A Case Study," is a naturalistic study of emergent readers in an ethnically diverse, working-class, multilingual public school. Keren's research explores the importance of peer interactions, emotions, and aesthetics in children's early literacy. It shows that story attachments are often socially constructed, involving multiple children in a community-building process. Keren's writing is compelling, the methodological footwork is meticulous, and the impact of the conclusions on schools and public libraries is significant: The freedom to play with language and exert choice in reading is central to the acquisition of knowledge.

Anne M. Boyd Award (Beta Phi Mu)

Presented to Annette Lesak by Dr. Betsy Hearne and Sue Searing:

A daughter of Polish immigrants, Annette made a 4-point average while holding assistantships at Central Circulation and Bookstacks, and at the Residence Hall Library System. But what really distinguishes Annette's work is the kind of insight revealed in her final Storytelling project, presented in a dynamic web site entitled, "Is the Library Really Sinking?: Campus Lore and Urban Legends at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign." This tour of folkloric UIUC concludes with these words:
"UIUC's undergraduate students, despite being blasted with technology, have not lost their sense of story--for story lives inside of us, and the need for it is as subconscious as the need for oxygen and…water. Story connects us with one another, and that is a basic human necessity."

Annette is a great connector, and fortunately for us, she will remain connected to GSLIS as she extends her educational experience with the CAS/K-12 Program in Summer '06.

Jane B. and Robert B. Downs Professional Promise Award

Presented to Julie Derden by Fred Schlipf, Director of Urbana Free Public Library:

It is appropriate that Julie Derden receive the Robert Downs Award for professional promise because she brought an unusual degree of professionalism to her work at GSLIS. This was obvious in a number of ways.

  • She brought an extremely professional attitude to the classroom—she was enthusiastic, involved, and took pains to be thoroughly informed on the subject matter.
  • Her written work was impeccable and extraordinary, in both content and professional presentation.
  • Julie always did more than expected, even volunteering for extra work to help check a course handout for accuracy and completeness. And she did it on her spring break vacation!

One of the best things about Julie's participation was that she always managed to have fun along the way. As a result, she was a catalyst for class interaction, questions, and discussion.

Julie Derden is completely professional, and she will make a real impact wherever she goes.

Presented to Richard Urban by Drs. Allen Renear and Carole Palmer:

We are fortunate to have some students arrive with extraordinary skills and experience, but rarely has a student established himself so immediately as a colleague as Richard. Although Richard was a LEEP student, it was as a representative of the Colorado Digitization Program that our research team interacted with him. Richard mobilized his considerable professional experience to make wise and insightful comments in class. His participation in research groups and seminars was always welcome, as his ingenious remarks ensured we had something to puzzle over, and something to learn.

His professional promise lies in his deep interest and understanding of technical and social issues, and I have every expectation that Richard will make advances in improving the value of information resources in museums and libraries and beyond. Not surprisingly, we have accepted Richard into the Doctoral program, where he will continue to remind us just how complicated "stuff" can be.

Faculty Special Award of Merit

Presented to Geoffrey Ross by Drs. David Dubin and Carole Palmer:

From time to time, a student makes a special contribution to GSLIS that may not be within the scope of the established awards, yet deserves public recognition. This year, the Faculty Special Award of Merit goes to Geof Ross for his exceptionally well-integrated understanding of the many diverse concepts, theories, and methods that we teach at GSLIS. Understanding the big picture in such a rapidly evolving field as Library and Information Science is quite a challenge. He demonstrated this integration not only by writing clear and insightful essays, but also by creating elegant and effective programs and designs.

Geoff has impressed us with his high standards, quality work, potential, and talents. We are very pleased to now have him continue on--this time as a student in our Certificate of Advanced Study in Digital Libraries program.

Herbert Goldhor Award for Public Librarianship

Presented to Jennifer Greene by Drs. Betsy Hearne and Christine Jenkins:

Jennifer Greene loves to tell stories to young children! She did it in her previous job at a large bookstore, continued it through her Masters work, and currently practices it as a children's public librarian. She co-authored a website on family literacy and immigrant populations, and gave advice to her fellow students in a paper entitled "Protecting Our Instruments: An Introduction to Practical Vocal Health for Storytellers." Jennifer set a high standard as the first intern at Urbana Free Library and continues to lead the charge as Youth Services Outreach Librarian at the Mount Prospect Public Library in Illinois.

Presented to Margaret Hommel by Drs. Betsy Hearne and Christine Jenkins:

From her editorship at the Cricket magazine group and her work at Melrose Park Public Library, where she initiated several creative teen programs and services, Maggie Hommel brought superlative skills to her graduate assistantship at the Bulletin of the Center for Children's Books. In addition to her academic achievements, Maggie's co-creation of a literacy web site expanded on connections between the library world and popular culture. She also created a useful and dynamic website identifying Latino Children's Book Resources, and founded the Young Adult Book Club, which will thrive even as Maggie sallies forth to transform the world of public librarianship for youth.

Peggy Harris Award

Presented to Mark Lindner by Dr. David Dubin:

The personal and professional relationships you form with classmates will be among the most lasting and valuable benefits that you take with you after graduation. Sometimes a student connects with others to the degree that faculty recognize his or her commitment to others, and to the service mission of our school. Mark Lindner is that kind of exemplary colleague, not simply because of his work as a ITD and User services Graduate Assistant, or because he's been active in nearly every student organization, or because the diversity of his coursework has connected him with such a wide circle of comrades. It's because in those, and many other, points of contact Mark has proved to be exceptionally conscientious, supportive, and compassionate. I'm sure each of you who have worked with him can name a time when Mark has gone beyond the call of duty as a coworker or friend.

Congratulations to Mark, and thanks.

Health Sciences Information Management Award

Presented to James Brucker by Dr. Linda Smith:

Jim Brucker is this year's winner of the Health Sciences Information Management Award. In his current position as Instructional Design Librarian at Galter Health Sciences Library, Northwestern University, Jim is drawing on his technical skills, interpersonal skills, and creativity to partner with faculty in the Feinberg School of Medicine in enhancing instruction through applications of technology. He
will be able to draw on lessons learned in LEEP courses like Professor Twidale's Interfaces to Information Systems to improve education and training in the health sciences by using effectively both established and newly-emerging information technologies.

Information Systems/Technologies Award

Presented to Brant Chee by Dr. Les Gasser:

Brant Chee has been a fixture on the GSLIS infotech scene since he was an undergrad. He's put his considerable skills to use running multi-agent simulations on the big iron at the local supercomputer center (NCSA), programming machines to extract core concepts from big text collections, modeling the evolution of language, and even designing GSLIS' own big iron - our computing cluster for simulation and music retrieval research. And he's done this all the while fighting overtures from venture capitalists eager for his services! Post-degree, he's been working on statistical information retrieval with the Institute for Genomic Biology, displaying his customary expertise and his customary broad smiles. Brant's made wonderful contributions to GSLIS, and we wish him the best.

Frances B. Jenkins Award

Presented to Pamela Shaw by Dr. Linda C. Smith:

Pamela Shaw is this year's recipient of the Frances B. Jenkins Award, recognizing the master's degree student who exhibits the greatest potential as a science librarian. Pamela has moved from the laboratory workbench, where she served as a research technologist in neuropathology, to become biosciences librarian at Galter Health Sciences Library, Feinberg School of Medicine, Northwestern University. With knowledge gained as a LEEP student, she is well prepared to support faculty and students in their use of specialized molecular biology, genetics, bioinformatics, and science information tools.

Library School Alumni Association Student Award

Presented Honore Bray by Dr. Linda Smith and LSAA President Donna Dziedzic:

The Library School Alumni Association Student Award is presented to Honore Bray, a native of Montana and currently director of the Missoula Public Library. As a LEEP student, Honore shared her experiences as a public librarian by serving as a mentor to other students who were new to the field. Through her work with the Montana Library Association and the Montana State Library, she will continue to inspire others to further their education in library and information science, and to improve library services to their communities.

Alice Lohrer Award for Literature and Library Services for Youth

Presented to Diane Foote by Drs. Betsy Hearne and Christine Jenkins:

Diane Foote has already proven her versatility in publishing, reviewing, and now administration. Recently appointed the Executive Director of the Association for Library Services to Children, she distinguished herself as an editor at ALA's Book Links while turning in a superlative performance as a Masters student in the LEEP program, including the co-creation of a brilliant web site on book talks as a tool for collaboration between school and public libraries. Her previous work at Holiday House and William Morrow in New York, her position on the Board of the Children's Book Council, and her experience reviewing for Kirkus and Booklist have all demonstrated her leadership in the field of Literature and Library Services to Youth.

Presented to Marianne Martens by Drs. Betsy Hearne and Christine Jenkins:

Marianne Martens' interests have centered on the international aspects of children's literature. Adept in six languages, she has worked at North-South Publishing, has been a judge for the pre-eminent international Hans Christian Andersen Award, and has meanwhile done remarkable work as a LEEP student in Youth Services, including a publishable paper entitled "Users and Suppliers: International Children's Literature and Subversive Cultural Exchanges." Other projects closer to home have included devising ways for daycare center children to attend library story-times and public library poetry slams for teenagers. Marianne has also translated books, and works continuously to introduce global literature to children in the U.S. and around the world.

Hazel C. Rediger Award

Presented to Carrie Nelson by Dr. Allen Renear:

Every faculty member knows the experience: you are lecturing on a topic that has some deep waters, but think you know the hazards and are navigating well. A student question appears, and you stop and stare and realize that you are suddenly well off your safe course and being asked about one of subtlest problems in the field—one too hard to even describe let alone answer. For me, the student was Carrie Nelson. Carrie's extraordinary intelligence and her uncanny ability to ask a question or make a comment identifying a profound issue or problem made PhD students and instructors catch their breath. But what I especially marveled at was Carrie's relentless intellectual curiosity. She was always thinking, always wondering, always seeking out opportunities to delve just a little bit deeper into things already rather dauntingly deep. And for no other reason than just to know.

Social Justice Award

Presented to Matthew Cordial by Drs. Ann Bishop and Chip Bruce:

Matt Cordial worked with Prairienet to renovate donated computers for use in public-access community technology centers in Champaign-Urbana and East St. Louis. He also provided technical support for the Books to Prisoners program, which sends books to prisons throughout Illinois. This required innovative design because the Books to Prisoners program needed a system to track prisoners' requests for books and, unlike a library, it is continually sending its collection out and away to other institutions. Matt has generously given presentations on the request-tracking system to a number of GSLIS courses. His work shows how technical knowledge can be directed to the achievement of positive social goals.

Presented to Seon Hee Jeong by Drs. Ann Bishop and Chip Bruce:

Sunny Jeong integrates social justice throughout her lived experience, as a student activist, and in her research. Her work emphasizes understanding of cultural and political aspects of information. Sunny is conducting doctoral research on information practices in the Amish community and presented a paper entitled, "Facilitating Sustainable Community Development by Empowering Local Members: Social Network Analysis of Informal Structure of Community", at the 3rd Global Summit on Peace through Tourism. Sunny led the local effort to create a Korean Cultural Center on the UI campus. Her infectious energy and good humor have inspired others working with the Community Informatics Initiative.

Filed Under: School News, honors and awards, student news