Professor and Executive Associate Dean Linda C. Smith (MS '72) has been named an Illinois Library Luminary by the Illinois Library Association (ILA). This distinction honors individuals whose efforts have made a significant contribution to Illinois libraries.
Smith's nearly 50-year career began when she came to the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, Graduate School of Library Science (now the School of Information Sciences) in 1971 shortly after graduating summa cum laude in physics and mathematics from Allegheny College (PA). She received her MS from Illinois in 1972 and spent a year at Washington University School of Medicine Library in St. Louis as a trainee in computer librarianship. She then earned an MS in information and computer science from Georgia Institute of Technology in 1975 and a PhD from Syracuse University, School of Information Studies in 1979.
Currently, Smith serves as executive associate dean for the iSchool, where she began as an assistant professor in 1977. She has been routinely named to the University's List of Teachers Ranked as Excellent throughout her tenure and was named a University Distinguished Teacher-Scholar in 1999. She works with graduate students on campus (MS, CAS, PhD) and, since 1997, online (MS, CAS).
A prolific writer, she has authored books, journal articles, chapters, reports and conference papers, and served as co-editor for five editions of Reference and Information Services: An Introduction (Libraries Unlimited). Her most recent publication is the co-authored chapter "Transforming Library and Information Science Education by Design" published in Advances in Librarianship (v. 44A, 2018). Smith is also the recipient of numerous awards, honors, fellowships, and grants. She has been an invited speaker in Finland, The Netherlands, Sweden, and throughout the United States.
Her memberships include the American Library Association, American Association for the Advancement of Science, Association for Information Science and Technology, Association for Library and Information Science Education, Association for Computing Machinery, Beta Phi Mu, Health Science Librarians of Illinois, Illinois Library Association, Medical Library Association, and Special Libraries Association, among others. She continues to serve on a variety of committees at the University and in professional associations, most recently as a member of the American Library Association's Committee on Accreditation.