Monthly Archives: January 2012

Dr. Christopher Reed Speaks on Chicago’s Black Metropolis 2/21

Roosevelt University Professor Emeritus Christopher Reed comes on February 21st to the Richard J. Daley Library for a live interview and discussion. Reed returns to the institution that helped him to complete his work on the historically underrepresented black population in Chicago. His contributions regarding the black population earned him recognition from the Chicago Tribune as “One of Chicago’s 25 Outstanding contributors to Culture” and earned him Roosevelt University’s St. Clair Drake Award for Outstanding Scholarship. 
Reed will speak in Room 1-470 at 4:00pm. Please email Linda Naru at to RSVP or with any questions.
Dr. Reed will discuss his research and the resulting book The Rise of Chicago’s Black Metropolis, 1920-1929.

Blues, Jazz, and Language: Award Winning Sterling Plumpp Returns to UIC 2/14

UIC Professor Emeritus Sterling Plumpp returns to UIC on February 14th to read selections from his award-winning work. A UIC professor of English for 30 years, Plumpp’s distinctive use of language concreted his standing as a blues poet. Through all of his work, Plumpp communicates with his ancestors from Africa to the plantations of his native Mississippi.
Come to the Richard J. Daley Library, Room 1-470 at 4:00pm to hear the prolific Plumpp read his works. Please email Linda Naru at to RSVP or with any questions.
Sterling Plumpp is a recipient of the 1999 Richard Wright Literacy Excellence Award for outstanding contributions to literature and the Carl Sandburg Literary Prize for poetry. He has published 13 books; his latest collection of poetry, Home/Bass, will be released in spring 2012.

Regina Thompson Retires after 30 Years

January 31st will be the last day Regina Thompson spends in the Daley Library after 30 years of service. It will be the final day out of the 10,957 days Regina has worked for the Daley Library. “The time simply flew by,” Regina noted of her 30 years with the Library.

A bus ride down Lake Shore Drive and a chance meeting brought Regina to the Daley Library 30 years ago. On her trip home, Regina met Nancy John, now an Associate Professor Emeritus, who worked at the Daley Library. As the two talked, Regina mentioned her job search, and Nancy encouraged her to apply at the Daley Library. The two then came to realize they lived in the same building on the same floor. “That’s kind of like fate,” Regina remarked about the chance meeting that sparked her interest in the Daley Library. As Nancy said regarding the meeting that minted a career, “Regina was friendly, clearly bright, and in need of work; I took an immediate liking to her… A lot of people make the library their career … So I’m not so surprised [Regina did].”

Regina thinks often about change, appropriate considering the amount of transformation she has seen since joining the Daley Library. Most notably, the Daley Library was not named the Daley Library when Regina started; it was the UIC Main Library. Regina worked at the Daley Library the day Richard M. Daley visited and the building was named after his father. Later, she was here when the papers of Richard J. Daley were given to the Daley Library by the Daley family. Regina recalls days when the guard at the front door asked why someone was bringing a beverage with them into the library, as well as when the sentiment “ Ssh….this is a library” prevailed. “The library isn’t the same anymore…it’s a hangout, its networking, it’s coming to figure out how to use your computer to the best of its ability,” Regina said regarding some of the change she has seen in her 30 years.

Regina’s career has also changed in the time she has spent at the Daley Library. She began as a clerk and over the years progressed to become Library Specialist in the Resource Acquisition & Management (RAM) Department. She occasionally moved from branch to branch, and was always glad to return to the Daley Library. She also progressed to having student workers under her supervision, and Regina recounts fondly that one of her student workers went on to become a librarian while another former student, Shirley Junius, now works with her in the RAM department. “Regina gave me my first job, and she is a great mentor with so much knowledge. I’m going to miss her, and it has been a pleasure to work with her. She’s leaving behind big shoes to fill,” Shirley noted about Regina’s departure.

With the time provided by her retirement, Regina will visit family, and sees herself keeping in touch with the friends she has made over her 30 years at the Daley Library.

On the Front Lines conference registration opens

The On the Front Lines conference for “front line” library staff, sponsored by the State Library, takes place March 12–14 at the University of Illinois Springfield. Registration information is now available online.

Forty scholarships will be awarded to cover costs of the registration fee, conference supplied meals and a two-night hotel stay. The scholarship does not cover travel or incidentals. The deadline to submit scholarship applications is January 30. Scholarship recipients will be announced in early February. The scholarship application is online.  For questions or comments, pleased email Gwen Harrison ( or call her at 217-785-7334.

Registration open for 2012 IACRL conference

Registration is now open for the 2012 IACRL Conference – Adapt, Adopt, Accelerate.  The conference will be held Friday, March 16, at the DoubleTree Hotel Oakbrook.

Steven Bell, ACRL 2011-2012 Vice-President and Associate University Librarian for Research and Instructional Services, Temple University, will present the keynote: Adopt a Design Approach to Accelerate Library Innovation.

Registration information and the preliminary conference program are available online.

Information literacy webcast 2/7

On February 7 from noon to 1:45 p.m., in 1-360 Daley, the faculty Teaching Support and Curriculum Committee will sponsor a webcast from Academic Impressions, “Integrating Information Literacy into the First Year.” Speakers will be Ian Benton, Public Services Librarian, Undergraduate Library, University of Wisconsin-Madison, Anne-Marie Dietering, Franklin McEdward Professor for Undergraduate Learning Initiatives, Oregon State University, and Adrianna Guram, Coordinator of Academic Initiatives, Center for the First-Year Experience, University of Wisconsin-Madison.

Participants will learn to:

  • Utilize librarians in curriculum planning
  • Create research-based learning outcomes that address information literacy
  • Develop authentic and engaging research experiences and assignments for first year students
  • Foster collaboration between librarians and first-year seminar faculty

For more information, see the Academic Impressions Web site or contact


Daley Library and the Library of the Health Sciences Deliver Joy during the Holidays

Santa Claus did not come in the form of a jolly man in a red suit this holiday season for four Chicago families. Rather, the Daley Library and Library of the Health Sciences, led by the efforts of Shirley Junius and Nancy Malinowski, brought joy and presents into four homes through the Operation Santa and Salvation Army Angel Tree programs without any staff needing to don a red suit.

Both Santa and the Library have busy Decembers; while Santa is busy answering letters and delivering presents, the staff of the Library is busy answering student’s questions while delivering 24-hour service during finals week. Just as Santa finds time to deliver presents around the world, the staff of both the Daley Library and Library of the Health Sciences found time to give, raising $385.68 to give presents into local families.

This was the Library’s first year of raising money for Operation Santa, and the fundraising project almost doubled its original goal of $200. Operation Santa began in 1912 when the Postmaster General authorized local postmasters to allow postal employees and citizens to respond to letters addressed to Santa Claus. “It was hard to pick the letters [the Library would fundraise for], especially because some of the kids we’re asking for things like beds,” Shirley noted regarding the heart-warming and occasionally heart-wrenching letters here and Nancy read through.

Thanks to the fundraising, undertaken by the Library Community Building committee and spearheaded by the efforts of Shirley and Nancy, the letters of two girls (5 and 13 years old) to Santa Claus were responded to with toys and clothing as well as a VTech computer and CD player. Since the program surpassed its original goal, two boys (5 and 13 years old) were picked through the Salvation Army Angel Tree program and had their wishes for a winter jacket, basketball, and WWE themed toys and clothing granted.

The overwhelming success of the program did not seem guaranteed in the beginning days of December, Nancy noted. With funds below the $200 goal, Nancy implemented a program called the “10 days of giving,” where, beginning on December 15th, she emailed staff daily to remind them of the fundraising deadline. From there, the fundraising project united Library staff over a common goal, and everyone pitched in for the program. “People were asking the electricians, facility management, and the movers if they wanted to help,” Nancy said regarding the late-December push that jump-started fundraising. Shirley and Nancy hope the success in uniting the library and bringing joy to Chicago families of this year’s program will be the starting point for a tradition of giving during the holiday season for the Daley Library and the Library of the Health Sciences.


Pitol named University Archivist

Scott Pitol has the ability to convince anyone to become a university archivist. He enthralls when discussing his enjoyment of records management, special collections, and archives, and Scott brings that enthusiasm to the UIC Library with his January 3rd appointment as University Archivist and Assistant Professor.

Scott initially thought he would be a reference librarian. Shortly after his decision to attend Dominican University, Scott became interested in archives work. “There’s something about the fact that archives are unique… when you get into special collections, when you get into university archives, the things that we have are unique things, and it’s those things that are interesting and will differentiate libraries in the future,” Scott noted regarding his shift in interest and continued enthusiasm for archives.

A 1984 alumnus of Southern Illinois University, Scott earned his Master of Library and Information Science (with an archives concentration) in 2006. Scott described that his journey into library science was a surprising one. “I was a Web-developer when the bubble burst,” Scott detailed regarding one of the many factors that led to his consideration and eventual decision to pursue a Library and Information Science master’s degree. His path to UIC was as equally surprising. “I worked on the  bioengineering department collection and the papers of two of the professors who were in bioengineering, so I did three collections while I was here [as a practicum student]… and I always hoped that I’d be back,” Scott said.

In the time between his internship and return to UIC, Scott worked as the Records Specialist/Compliance Specialist for The Pampered Chef. There, he worked initially as a Records Specialist handling such challenges as 7,000 boxes worth of unknownmaterials. He then became responsible for the entire Records Department and Corporate Archives of the Pampered Chef. Though his previous UIC experience has helped his transition, Scott noted that the change in size from The Pampered Chef (a company of between 700 and 800 people) to UIC (where his responsibilities are campus-wide) will be one of his biggest challenges.

While Scott is candid about the challenges that await him as the University Archivist, he also has many goals for his new position. “I’m here for the big picture of all the records… I would like to see more units comfortable in dealing with their records…I want to make sure people in different departments know that if they don’t know what to do, or if they have a question, they can come to me,” Scott said. With the help of the Library, Scott will be hiring dedicated records management specialists to make the University Archivist a resource to staff and faculty; when the time for record destruction comes (where his approval is needed to destroy anything), he and his staff will work to prevent large time delays. “I don’t want to be a bottle-neck,” Scott stated regarding one of his priorities as University Archivist.