DUBLIN, Ohio, USA, 6 December 2007—Larry Alford, Dean of University Libraries, Temple University, has been named Chair of the OCLC Board of Trustees.
OCLC is the world's largest library cooperative, a research and service organization serving more than 60,000 libraries in 112 countries. OCLC and its member libraries created and maintain WorldCat, the world's largest online resource for finding information in libraries.
Mr. Alford was elected to the OCLC Board of Trustees in May 2002 by the OCLC Members Council, the 71-delegate discussion forum and communications link between member libraries, regional networks and other partners, and OCLC management. Mr. Alford was Members Council President for the 2000/2001 session, and served as a delegate from SOLINET, the Southeastern Library Network.
"OCLC has been built by the intellectual effort and hard work of thousands of librarians over four decades, and I am deeply honored to be chosen by my fellow trustees to chair the board of this remarkable collaborative," said Mr. Alford. "I look forward to working with the creative and dedicated staff and management of OCLC, the trustees, and fellow librarians from around the world as OCLC moves in new directions and develops new strategies to further access to the world's information."
Mr. Alford was named Dean of University Libraries at Temple University in 2005, where he has responsibility for a federated library system that includes the five libraries of the Paley library system, a newly constructed 2 million volume remote storage facility, the three libraries that comprise the Health Sciences Libraries, and the Law Library. Prior to joining the Temple Libraries, he worked in a variety of positions in the libraries at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill over a 30 year period. Mr. Alford holds a Bachelor of Arts and Master's degree in Library Science from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. He received the Distinguished Alumnus Award from the University of North Carolina School of Information and Library Science in May 2005.
Mr. Alford replaces Betsy Wilson, Dean of University Libraries, University of Washington, as Chair of the OCLC Board. Ms. Wilson served four consecutive one-year terms as Board Chair, which is the maximum allowed. Ms. Wilson remains on the Board.
The Board unanimously passed a resolution November 12 to recognize Ms. Wilson's service and accomplishments as Board Chair, noting that she "has served loyally, diligently and effectively," and that she "carried out all of the duties of that office with distinction and dedication."
"OCLC, its member libraries and other cultural heritage institutions, and, most importantly, the users of libraries and information services around the world have benefited from her leadership as OCLC Board Chair," the resolution stated.
The 15-member OCLC Board of Trustees comprises the President of OCLC and eight trustees elected by the Board itself, five of whom come from fields outside librarianship. The other six Board members are elected by the OCLC Members Council.
Founded in 1967 and headquartered in Dublin, Ohio, OCLC is a nonprofit library service and research organization that has provided computer-based cataloging, reference, resource sharing, eContent, preservation, library management and Web services to 60,000 libraries in 112 countries and territories. OCLC and its member libraries worldwide have created and maintain WorldCat, the world's richest online resource for finding library materials. For more information, visit www.oclc.org.