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Harvard College Library News: News from around the libraries

Excellence in Service Award Winners Recognized

hcl committees

Nancy M. Cline, Roy E. Larsen Librarian of Harvard College, held a reception in her office for the recipients of the 2009 Excellence in Service Award recently. Pictured (l. to r.): Judith Nelson, Sarah Tudesco, Nancy Cline, and Adam Johnson. Not pictured: Jennifer LeRay and Joanne Bloom.

November 23, 2009 – Selfless co-workers, prolific catalogers, technology experts and excellent service providers – all were recently recognized as winners of the 2009 Excellence in Service Awards, a merit-based honor established to recognize employees who go above and beyond the call of duty to support of the mission and values of Harvard College Library.

“Now in its fifth year, the Excellence in Service program continues to be successful thanks to the commitment of the HCL community,” said Sherrie Whang, Senior Human Resource Consultant. “The honorees are nominated and selected by colleagues to recognize their dedication and contribution to the mission and goals of HCL.”

Established in 2005, the award is given annually to support staff and administrative professional staff who are nominated by co-workers for their exceptional contributions to HCL. Winners are selected by a committee made up of the previous year’s winners.

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At a reception on November 18, Nancy Cline, the Roy E. Larsen Librarian of Harvard College recognized this year’s honorees: Jennifer LeRay, Library Assistant, HCL Technical Services; Judith Nelson, Library Assistant, HCL Technical Services; Joanne Bloom, Photographic Resources Librarian, Fine Arts Library, Adam Johnson, Senior Systems Support Engineer, HCL ITS; and Sarah Tudesco, Collection Management and Reporting Librarian for Harvard College Library, Widener Library.

"Congratulations to this year’s recipients of the Excellence in Service Award,” said Cline. “This award provides staff members the opportunity to recognize their colleagues who rise above challenges and contribute to HCL's success every day. The success of this program is due to the active participation of the HCL community, and we thank those individuals who recognized the dedication, accomplishments and contributions of their colleagues."

HCL supervisors and colleagues who nominated the award winners find them commendable for a multitude of reasons. Jennifer LeRay was nominated to recognize her selfless dedication to the library’s mission. Always willing to help out in times of need, LeRay volunteered to help with coverage of the Periodical and Newspaper Microfilm reading rooms after several employees retired, ensuring patrons received excellent service throughout the spring and summer months. LeRay also assisted with the rearrangement of the Periodicals Stacks from call number to alphabetical order.

Judith Nelson was recognized for her contribution to the RetroAcq Project created for the Widener Library collections of French and Italian materials. Working on a very tight deadline, Nelson compiled bibliographic lists, received a large majority of the materials ordered during the project, handled the complicated tasks involved in returning duplicates to vendors and processing the credits and trained other HCL staff on various aspects of the program – all while keeping track of the details required for project management on the Technical Services side, and working on end-of-year transactions with Financial Services.

As the Photographic Resources Librarian, Joanne Bloom was responsible for shepherding the entire Fine Arts Library Special Visual collections through the preparations for the library’s move. Her efforts involved consideration of the content and disposition of more than 1 million images in a variety of formats, as well as the preparation of more than 150 collections for HOLLIS cataloging. Bloom also created processes to facilitate access, and managed the increase in requests for access to collections while preparing for the move. She also successfully completed a project with ARTstor to digitize over 3,000 images from the Ralph Lieberman collection.

Adam Johnson was recognized for his contributions to the supportability and management of HCL’s desktop and laptop computer systems. In the past year, Johnson coordinated the final stages of HCL transition to the Altiris computer management system, which opened the door to remote software installations, allowing for quicker responses to customer requests for help or for new software applications. Johnson also led the ITS’s Workstation Development Team in its analysis, testing and deployment of technical solutions that improved the supportability of Macs in HCL, and provided strong customer support to the users of “specialty systems,” including Imaging Services and Audio Preservation Services and in implementing the “wake on LAN” capability.

Sarah Tudesco was commended for her creation of the “Serials Decision Database,” which recorded decisions associated with the project to re-organize, relocate and re-evaluate subscriptions for periodicals in the Widener Periodical Reading Room and Periodical Stacks. A flexible tool, the database has proven useful in collecting data on all of Widener’s periodical subscriptions, as well as for analytical purposes for HCL and other Harvard libraries. Tudesco was also recognized for her commitment to helping staff work with the database by providing one-on-one assistance, despite a busy schedule.

Candidates for the Excellence in Service Award can be nominated by any member of the HCL community and can hold either a full-time or part-time position. Recipients were selected by a six-member committee. The current year's recipients are invited to serve on the next year's selection committee. The 2009 committee consisted of: Susan Berstler, Computer Support Associate, Tozzer Library; Sebastian Hierl, Librarian for Western Europe, Germanic Emphasis, and Interim Librarian for France, Italy and Scandinavia; Monique Duhaime, Staff Assistant, Houghton Library; Julia Featheringill, Assistant Manager, Digital Imagery and Photography Services, Widener Library; James Perlman, Computer Support Specialist, Widener Library; and Albert Genna, Library Assistant, Widener Library.