Kenney honored by American Library Association

Anne Kenney

Anne R. Kenney, Cornell’s Carl A. Kroch University Librarian, has earned a top honor from the American Library Association: its Hugh C. Atkinson Award.

The award recognizes the accomplishments of an academic librarian who has worked in the areas of library automation or library management and has made contributions to improve library services or to library development or research.

“Anne has made significant contributions to Cornell University Library since she arrived nearly 30 years ago,” said Provost Kent Fuchs. “She has led during a period of change and growth that has made Cornell a pioneer in digitization, access, preservation and deep institutional collaboration. We’re fortunate to have her clear vision and strong leadership at the library during this transformative time.”

The award, first presented in 1988, is sponsored by the Association of College and Research Libraries, the Association for Library Collections and Technical Services, the Library Leadership and Management Association, and the Library and Information Technology Association.

“Anne’s peers describe her as a ‘fearless visionary,’ ‘a thoughtful, intellectual leader’ and a ‘digital library pioneer,’ noting that ‘Hugh Atkinson himself would be proud’ to call her a colleague,” said Lisa Carlucci Thomas, Atkinson Memorial Award committee chair. “Several colleagues who knew Hugh Atkinson shared examples of how ‘Anne Kenney brings Hugh’s spirit of technology-harnessing, tradition-busting leadership – with an additional dash of adventure as well.’”

Kenney’s areas of research and expertise include digital imaging, digital preservation, public services, users’ information-seeking behavior and collaborative models. Active in the archival and preservation communities, Kenney is a fellow and past president of the Society of American Archivists. She also works with the Association of Research Libraries, currently as a member of its membership committee and previously as a member of its board of directors 2010-13. She was chair of the National Historical Publications and Records Commission Executive Committee and a member of the National Science Foundation’s Working Group on Digital Preservation.

Kenney is known internationally for her pioneering work in developing standards for digitizing library materials that have been adopted by organizations around the world, including JSTOR, the Scholarly Journal Archive. She is co-author of three award-winning monographs and more than 50 articles and reports. She has received numerous awards, led continuing education programs in digital imaging and digital preservation that attracted participants from around the globe and has given invited talks on every continent except Antarctica.

She came to Cornell University Library in 1987 and served as associate director for the Department of Preservation and Conservation until 2001. From 2002 to 2006, she was associate university librarian for instruction, research and information services; she was appointed Carl A. Kroch University Librarian in April 2008.

Kenney received her bachelor’s degree from Duke University in 1972, a master’s degree in history from the University of Missouri, St. Louis, in 1975 and a master’s degree in library science in 1979 from the University of Missouri, Columbia.

Gwen Glazer is the staff writer/editor for Cornell University Library.

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