COLUMBUS, OH; Oct. 25, 2012 – Chancellor Jim Petro today appointed Gwen Evans to serve as executive director of OhioLINK and placed the library consortium under the umbrella of the Ohio Technology Consortium (OH-TECH).
Petro had appointed Evans as interim director of the consortium of 88 Ohio colleges and university libraries in August, replacing John Magill. Magill had directed the consortium since his 2010 appointment and left the OhioLINK post in August to focus on workforce and economic development initiatives at the Ohio Board of Regents.
"Gwen Evans has demonstrated strong leadership skills as interim director and in other vital capacities," said Chancellor Jim Petro. "She has more than 20 years of experience working in libraries and with technology – valuable experience that she will leverage to guide this consortium. At the same time, incorporating the OhioLINK function within the OH-TECH infrastructure will allow the organization to be further strengthened through a close partnership with Ohio's other educational technology units."
OhioLINK (www.ohiolink.edu) serves more than 600,000 students, faculty and staff, providing them with access to more than 46 million books and other library materials, millions of electronic articles from 10,000 journals, 100+ electronic research databases, over 80,000 e-books, theses and dissertations from Ohio students, and thousands of images, videos and sounds.
OH-TECH serves as the research and technology arm of the Ohio Board of Regents. The organization now is comprised of OhioLINK, the Ohio Supercomputer Center, the Ohio Academic Resources Network, eStudent Services (a realignment and expansion of the former Ohio Learning Network) and the recently established Research and Innovation Center.
Formerly director of special projects for OH-TECH, Evans served as a liaison between OhioLINK and OH-TECH on issues regarding technology infrastructure and services. She also worked to pursue research and grant opportunities for OhioLINK infrastructure development.
"I'm honored to have earned the confidence of the Board of Regents and the OhioLINK advisory board, and am looking forward to leading an organization that is so integral to providing cutting-edge library services to Ohio's higher education community," said Evans. "This year, OhioLINK will mark twenty years of providing shared resources and services to the academic institutions of Ohio. My challenge will be to continue the extraordinary vision of the founding members of OhioLINK by adapting to the rapidly changing library and higher education environment.
"The state is fortunate to have such a long history of shared library services in Ohio, from OhioLINK itself to the collaborative efforts between OhioLINK and other state library networks. The full integration of OhioLINK into OH-TECH will give us further opportunities to partner with OARnet, the Ohio Supercomputer Center and the Research and Innovation Center, especially in the areas of research and technology infrastructure. "
Prior to the OH-TECH post, Evans served as an associate professor and coordinator of library information and emerging technology at Bowling Green State University. Her expertise spans access services, reference, systems and digital initiatives, as well as experience in libraries at research universities, mid-size universities, small colleges and community colleges.
Evans chaired the OhioLINK Digital Resource Management Committee from 2010 to 2012. During her tenure, Evans spearheaded the successful nominations for the Digital Resource Commons to receive the American Libraries Association's Office for Information Technology Policy Cutting Edge Technology in Library Services award and a National Endowment for the Humanities Digital Humanities Start Up grant. She also was a founding member of the Association of College and Research Libraries TechConnect blog.
Evans received her master's degree in library and information science from the University of Illinois Urbana Champaign in 2002. She also earned a master's degree in cultural anthropology from the University of Chicago.