DUBLIN, Ohio, USA, 8 June 2012óJack B. Blount, an executive with experience leading several technology organizations in a career spanning 35 years, has been named OCLC President and CEO.
Mr. Blount was most recently President and CEO of Alpha Bay Corporation, a global technologies and services provider based in Salt Lake City, Utah. From 2002 to 2005, he was President and CEO of Dynix Corporation, a technology-based library services organization that was acquired by Sirsi in 2005 to form SirsiDynix.
Mr. Blount will succeed Jay Jordan, who announced in June 2011 his intention to retire by the end of June 2012. Effective July 1, Mr. Blount becomes the fifth President and CEO of OCLC, the worldwide library cooperative founded 45 years ago.
"Our search produced several outstanding candidates for this important position," said Larry Alford, Chair, OCLC Board of Trustees, and Chief Librarian, University of Toronto Libraries. "Jack Blount's extensive leadership and management experience, background and expertise in technology, global outlook and demonstrated commitment to and appreciation of libraries will serve the cooperative well as he assumes leadership of OCLC."
"After careful consideration and consultation with our community advisory group and search firm, we are confident that Jack Blount is well prepared to lead the OCLC cooperative into an exciting and dynamic future," said Sandy Yee, Chair, Executive Search Committee, OCLC Board of Trustees, and Dean of the Wayne State University Libraries and Library and Information Science Program.
"I look forward to joining the talented staff at OCLC who are dedicated to the vision set forth 45 years ago to further access to the world's information and reduce costs for libraries," said Mr. Blount. "Social networking, mobile computing, cloud computing and big data present enormous challenges of cost and complexity to libraries and their communities that can best be simplified, managed and enabled by libraries working together through organizations like OCLC. It will be my mission to continue the vision and leadership that is part of OCLC's rich history by offering new research and services to help further enhance libraries and librarianship around the world."
The selection of Mr. Blount was made following an extensive search by the OCLC Board of Trustees, a Community Advisory Group, and executive search firm Heidrick & Struggles.
"The OCLC cooperative owes a debt of gratitude to the individuals who served on the Executive Search Committee and the Community Advisory Group," said Ms. Yee. "Their participation and contributions to the selection process were invaluable, and will have a lasting impact on the cooperative for years to come."
Mr. Blount founded Alpha Bay in 2005 and served as Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer from its inception through May 2012.
He began his career in enterprise systems with IBM more than 35 years ago. Since then, he has held numerous leadership positions with many of technology's most influential organizations, including IBM, Novell, Borland and JD Edwards. While at Novell, he expanded international operations, spending 80 percent of his time in Europe and Japan for several years. Mr. Blount has combined his technical background with expertise in management, operations, marketing and sales to deliver results as an executive with these influential organizations.
Mr. Blount, 60, is a graduate of the Southern Methodist University with a degree in Mathematics.
Founded in 1967, OCLC is a nonprofit, membership, computer library service and research organization dedicated to the public purposes of furthering access to the world's information and reducing library costs. More than 72,000 libraries in 170 countries have used OCLC services to locate, acquire, catalog, lend, preserve and manage library materials. Researchers, students, faculty, scholars, professional librarians and other information seekers use OCLC services to obtain bibliographic, abstract and full-text information when and where they need it. OCLC and its member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the world's largest online database for discovery of library resources. Search WorldCat on the Web at www.worldcat.org. For more information, visit www.oclc.org.