University Librarian, Brian Schottlaender, to Retire in June 2017

Posted On: February 6, 2017

Following 18 years of extraordinary service as UC San Diego’s University Librarian, Brian E. C. Schottlaender has announced his plans to retire effective June 30, 2017.

Brian Schottlaender, The Audrey Geisel University Librarian

“University Librarian Schottlaender has been an effective and highly respected leader for the UC San Diego Library, and he will be deeply missed,” said Chancellor Pradeep K. Khosla and Interim Executive Vice Chancellor for Academic Affairs Peter Cowhey, in a notice sent to the campus earlier. “He is nationally recognized in his field and has led several collaborative initiatives to advance digitization and digital preservation on the UC system-wide, national and global scales. During his tenure at UC San Diego, print and digital offerings in our Library expanded by more than 50% and the number of collection endowments doubled.”

Schottlaender’s “transformational leadership,” was credited with the UC San Diego Library’s current status as one of the top academic libraries in the nation, along with his “bold and visionary approach to navigating the evolving role of the academic library and in reshaping Library resources and services to best meet the changing needs of the academic community.”

Most recently, Schottlaender launched the Geisel Library Revitalization Initiative (GLRI), with a generous gift from longtime friend and supporter, Audrey Geisel. The GLRI seeks to renovate the interior public spaces of—Geisel Library—the university’s most iconic building, to meet the needs of today’s students and scholars. In 2007, Schottlaender was named The Audrey Geisel University Librarian, an honor bestowed by another generous gift from Audrey Geisel. Schottlaender has also been the recipient of some of the American Library Association’s (ALA) most prestigious awards, including the Hugh C. Atkinson Memorial Award in 2015 and the Melvil Dewey Medal in 2010, for his bold approach to addressing the challenges and opportunities facing libraries and universities in the digital age.

In response to the growing demand at the university for cyberinfrastructure, Schottlaender collaborated with the San Diego Supercomputer Center, Calit2, and other campus partners to build the technological and human capacity to manage and curate the vast amount of digital data generated by UC San Diego faculty and researchers. Today, the Library plays an increasingly critical role in managing and curating research data, and rendering it discoverable by scholars and the public.

Among his achievements, Schottlaender served as lead curator of the Online Archive of California (OAC), an early effort to make library special collections and archives accessible online. He was also instrumental in developing the HathiTrust initiative, a consortium of universities led by the University of California and the University of Michigan, which has become one of the largest online collections of books supporting scholarly work, ever assembled. He was an inaugural member of the Board of the Digital Preservation Network, and led UC San Diego Library’s partnership with Google to build a global digital library. He also helped lead the development of the Western Regional Storage Trust (WEST), a groundbreaking shared print journal repository serving university and research libraries. Now in its seventh year with 74 partner libraries, WEST has become a model for other library consortia. Schottlaender also guided the development of the Pacific Rim Digital Library Alliance, an international consortium of more than 35 major Pacific Rim academic libraries. Recently, the Library entered into collaboration agreements with Chinese and German universities.

Following Schottlaender’s retirement, UC San Diego’s Associate University Librarian for Enterprise Services, Tammy Nickelson Dearie, will serve as Interim University Librarian while a national search is conducted for his successor.

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