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Galter Library Recognizes Staff Service to FSM and NU


This article was featured in Library Notes, #46 (Winter 2008)

By James Shedlock, AMLS, Director

At the 2007 Galter Library holiday event, several staff members were recognized for their many years of service to the Feinberg School of Medicine and Northwestern University.

Photograph of Ramune Kubilius.Ramune Kubilius, MALS, Collection Development and Special Projects Librarian, has been at the Galter Library for over 20 years.  Ramune has held many different positions in the library and is currently responsible for selecting books for the circulating collection, tracking potential new serials and databases for the electronic collections, assisting in organizing these same resources in the library’s internal databases and providing backup historical research.  A chief skill is her ability to do extensive research in tracking the scholarly literature, finding and verifying facts and figures, and tackling unusual topics that are often requested by medical school administration.

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Photograph of Susan WishnetskySusan Wishnetsky, AMLS, Electronic Resource Management Librarian, has also been at the Galter Library for 20 years.  She too has held various positions in the library, concentrating chiefly on the processing of materials and related resources.  Susan is charged with tracking the complex intricacies of electronic resource management, namely, making sure the connections to the library’s online resources work when they should.  When print collections dominated her time, Susan would track subscriptions, bindery shipments and missing issues.  Today, she spends the bulk of her time making sure users have access to the 8,000 online journals and other resources in our collections.

Photograph of Ron SimsRon Sims, MALS, Special Collections Librarian, came to the Galter Library at the time of the merger of the medical and dental libraries but has been at NU since 1990.  Formerly a catalog librarian, Ron is now responsible for organizing and promoting the library’s Special Collections, namely, its rare books and related historical artifacts.  In this role, Ron is the medical school’s unofficial historian and maintains the legacy of Northwestern’s dental school.  When not working on making the rare books collection more accessible to users, Ron spends considerable time responding to requests for historical research.  Many requests come from individuals seeking information about their ancestors who have graduated from Northwestern’s medical schools (both Feinberg and the former Women’s Medical College).  Ron is currently researching various Chicago-area organizations to see if they have material connected to the medical school that could be used for the upcoming sesquicentennial celebrations.

Photograph of Steve HuntSteve Hunt, MILS, Web Librarian, has been a part of the Galter Library for over 15 years.  He too has progressed through various positions in the library starting as a shelving clerk in 1989.  Steve’s current responsibilities involve programming the library’s various systems so users can easily and efficiently search our electronic resources for the information they seek.  Steve played a critical role in the library’s grant from the National Library of Medicine to create the Health SmartLibrary project.  This project is now evolving into the website redesign that will be launched within the next few months.

Photograph of Ira HardinIra Hardin, Library Assistant in User Services, celebrated his ten years at the medical school and university this past holiday season.  Ira is part of the team that keeps the library operational at night and on weekends.  Ira has a special talent for art, particularly in the field of animation, and he also has helped the library’s preservation efforts by constructing special boxes and doing other repair work for various historical volumes located in the lower level stacks.

Photograph of Tony OlsonIn the past many other staff members have earned recognition for their service to the medical school and university.  One of the Galter Library’s more senior members is Tony Olson, MALS, Catalog Librarian.  Like other staff already mentioned, Tony’s career has concentrated on the cataloging and processing of the library’s rich print and electronic resources.  An authority on library automation, Tony was involved early on in the online systems that assisted in the organization of the library’s books, journals and audiovisual materials.  He and others at the university library were instrumental in devising the automated means of tracing subject headings across various national lists.  This vocabulary tracking aids fellow catalogers in providing the correct headings for local systems and makes it easier for users to find resources based on any keyword they use.  Lately, Tony has been the Galter Library’s key person for understanding Project Café, the university’s new financial accounting system.  Tony is working with other university librarians to make sure Project Café is compatible with the libraries’ internal management systems.

Both Rodney Jackson and Julia Hsiao have over 20 years of service to the university and have brought considerable experience to their positions at Galter.  Rodney is the library’s point person for binding what remains of the print journal collection and assists in the acquisitions function as well as circulation services.  Julia manages the library’s accounts and serves as the financial assistant.  Patty Sekirka is the Program Assistant in Library Administration and has been at Galter for over 15 years.  Having started in the processing area, her chief responsibility now is keeping the administration office and the library as a whole operating in smooth order.  Patty is also responsible for the library’s personnel records.  Jerry Pendergast, LaShanda Howard-Curry and Isabel Diaz all have over ten years of experience at Galter.  Jerry keeps the print collections in order and serves as overall handyman for the library.  LaShanda manages the Interlibrary Loan Office and uses specific online systems to track what we borrow for users and what we lend to libraries across the country.  Isabel is usually the first person users see upon entering the library.  She keeps the reserve collection in order, assists users in finding information in the library and helps maintain the circulation system.

The above staff have provided nearly 200 years of service.  They, along with all the other Galter Library staff, make the library work for all our users and the library cannot exist without them.  Please join me in recognizing the great work of the Galter Library staff.

(You can put a face to the name and a name to the face by seeing a list of all staff in the Galter Library staff directory.)

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Updated: March 5, 2020