I have had an extremely long association with libraries, but I won't bore you with all the details. Suffice it to say that one of my deepest, darkest secrets is that during high school I belonged to an organization known as the Future Librarians of America. I count myself lucky to have come from a family that truly valued books and reading. Books were always the most frequent gift among us, and I hardly remember a Christmas or birthday when they were not exchanged. Not until college did I realize that this was not necessarily a good thing. By then the household book count exceeded 5,000 volumes and easily double that in magazines and comic books.
In largely a bid for living space, I fled to graduate school and to, by my standards, a truly spacious dorm room. While I thought I had overcome the family obsession and genetic tendencies, my wife soon disabused me of such notions. For sixteen years now, I have had to justify every book that enters my house or try to sneak it in among the others and hope my wife doesn't notice. Many people have helped shape my professional development. The bibliographers and reference librarians at the University of North Carolina introduced me to the many pleasures of librarianship. I enjoyed even more mentors at UCLA. Ann Hinckley and Janet Ziegler will remain forever my models of professionalism. Mona McCormick and Marie Waters demonstrated to me on a daily basis that the building of a stellar collection depends upon the detailed critical analysis of all your resources, both old and new.
For the last ten years, my colleagues and patrons at William and Mary have offered me the continual encouragement and challenges necessary for keeping my work interesting and fun. At the same time, I enjoyed the happy coincidence of working closely for many years with Jim Rettig and serving what seemed an eternity on ALA-RUSA's Reference Sources Committee, which chooses a list of outstanding reference titles each year. Both experiences have afforded me the pleasure of close contact with the latest developments in reference publishing. I owe all these people a great deal, but none are to blame for my shortcomings. I hope to use at least some of what they have taught me in my reviewing for this column. I will have to trust you, the reader, to let me know how I'm doing.
John R.M. Lawrence, January 2000
3300 Joyner Library
North Carolina Collection
East Carolina University
Greenville, NC 27858-4353
Office: (252) 328-4088
M.S.L.S. University of North Carolina. Chapel Hill, NC. 1985.
B.A. History, Magna Cum Laude. East Carolina University. Greenville, NC. 1980.
Graduate Study in American Studies, College of William & Mary. Williamsburg, VA. 2000-
Graduate Study in History. Kent State University. Kent, OH. 1980-1982.
British Universities Summer School. University of Edinburgh, Scotland. 1981.
Reference Librarian. North Carolina Collection. Joyner Library. East Carolina University. Greenville, NC. 2005 to present.
Associate Director for Administrative and User Services. Joyner Library. East Carolina University. Greenville, NC. 2001 to 2005.
Head of Interlibrary Loan/Reference Librarian. Earl Gregg Swem Library. College of William and Mary. Williamsburg, VA. March 1989 to 2001.
Reference/Interlibrary Loan Librarian. University Research Library. UCLA. Los Angeles, CA. September 1985-February 1989.
Reference Librarian. Carolina Population Center Library. University of North Carolina. Chapel Hill, NC. June-September 1985.
Reference Librarian (part-time). Public Documents and Maps Department. William R. Perkins Library. Duke University. Durham, NC. February-June 1985.
Graduate Assistant. Walter Royal Davis Library. University of North Carolina. Chapel Hill, NC. September 1982-February 1985.
Graduate Assistant. History Department. Kent State University. Kent, OH. 1980-1982.
American Library Association (ALA)
Reference and User Services Association (RUSA)
- Collection Development & Evaluation Section (CODES)
- History Section
- Machine-Assisted Reference Services Section
- Reference Services Section
Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL)
- ACRL University Library Section
- ACRL Bibliographic Instruction Section
- ACRL Rare Books and Manuscripts Section
University of North Carolina School of Information and Library Science Alumni Association.
Offices and Committee Service:
ALA. RUSA. Collection Development Section (CODES).
Chair, 2001-2002. Vice-Chair, 2000-2001.
ALA. RUSA. CODES. Dartmouth Medal Committee.
Member, 2003-2005. Chair, 2004-2005.
ALA. RUSA. CODES. Louis Shores/Greenwood Publishing Group Award Committee.
ALA. RUSA. CODES. Nominating Committee.
ALA. RUSA. CODES. Reference Sources Committee.
Member, 1993- 1999. Chair 1997-1999.
ALA. RUSA. CODES. Reference Collection Development and Evaluation Committee.
ALA. RUSA. History Section. Bibliography and Indexes Committee.
Member, 1987-1991. Editor: 1989-1990.
University of North Carolina. University Librarians Advisory Council (ULAC)
Task Force on Document Delivery. 2003-2004.
Virtual Library of Virginia Interlibrary Loan Enhancement Committee.
Virtual Library of Virginia Full-Text Database Selection Committee.
Virginia Library Association. Interlibrary Loans Forum.
Vice-Chair: 1990-1991. Chair 1991-1992.
VTLS Users' Group OPAC/Keyword Standing Committee.