The iSchool Alumni Association (ISAA), formerly the Library School Alumni Association, has announced the 2017 recipients of its annual awards. The recipients were recognized on June 25 at the ISAA Annual Meeting and reception held at the annual meeting of the American Library Association in Chicago.
Beth Woodard (MS '79) is the recipient of the Distinguished Alumnus Award. Each year this award is given to an alum who has made an outstanding contribution to the field of library and information science.
Woodard is the staff development and training coordinator for the University of Illinois Library. She has made significant contributions to the field through her mentoring of graduate assistants and new professionals; extensive service in the Association of College and Research Libraries and Reference and User Services Association; and numerous publications, invited workshops, and professional development programs. At the iSchool, Woodard has served for many years on the Admissions Committee and taught or co-taught graduate courses in user education and reference services. In addition to supervising hundreds of graduate assistants in the University Library, she has directed multiple independent studies and practicum experiences.
Wolske is a senior research scientist, lecturer, and interim director of the Center for Digital Inclusion (CDI) at the iSchool. Since he joined the School in 1995, he has served in many key roles, including director of Prairienet, Champaign-Urbana’s first community information network and the predecessor to the CDI. For nearly twenty years, Wolske has taught networking and information systems courses, for which he received the 2011 Library Journal Teaching Award. He has served on several campus advisory and review panels related to engagement and, in 2013, he was honored with the Chancellor's Award for Excellence in Public Engagement. His accomplishments also include service as president of the Champaign Public Library Board of Trustees.
Muñoz is interim director of the Maryland Institute for Technology in the Humanities (MITH) and assistant dean for digital humanities research for the University of Maryland Libraries. He works to foster digital projects that involve close collaboration between librarians, archivists, and other digital humanities researchers. He has written, spoken, and consulted about the strategic opportunities and challenges of doing digital humanities work within the institutional and cultural structures of academic research libraries. He has served as principal investigator on numerous grants, and is founding co-editor of DH Curation: A Community Guide to Best Practices for Data Curation in the Humanities.
Kyle Huizenga (MS '17) is the recipient of the Student Award, which recognizes a student who "caught the spirit" of the library and information science profession while employed in a library setting and so chose to enter the master's program. This student must have a strong commitment to return to a professional position in a library setting and help others "catch the spirit."
Huizenga was hired as a graduate hourly employee to work in the reference department of the Illinois Fire Service Institute Library in fall of 2015. In that position, as well as in providing reference service, he learned how to handle the library's budget; create quarterly budget, acquisitions, and statistical reports; log receipts from national and international library-related travel; and interact with the Institute's business department as a representative of the library. He was promoted to graduate assistant the following year and took over the budget, receipt-reporting, and report-creation responsibilities for which he had been trained. This past spring, Huizenga trained two iSchool graduate hourly employees in his areas of responsibility and acted as their mentor.