The University of Kansas Libraries
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Jim Neeley named 2008-09 Budig Distinguished Librarian
June 18, 2009
KU Libraries have announced that Jim Neeley is the recipient of the 2008-09 Budig Distinguished Librarian Award. The Gretchen and Gene A. Budig Award recognizes achievements in professional service and scholarship, as well as reputation among professional colleagues.
Jim came to KU in 1977 after receiving his MLS from the University of Pittsburgh. He assumed various leadership responsibilities within the Libraries, often in areas for which there was no precedent. He began in the reference department and became the Head of Watson Reference from 1982 to 1996, illustrating excellence in every aspect of his position. A number of his colleagues remarked on his ability to supervise in a way that nurtured the talents of his staff and fostered strong collegial relationships.
Jim was appointed as the first Electronic Information Librarian at KU Libraries in 1996 and served in this role until 2003. In this position, he shaped principles and policies still in use today. In 2003 until his retirement in 2008, Jim served as the Engineering Librarian and Head of Spahr Engineering Library, where he assumed a leading role in planning the expansion and renovation of the Library. He was also the bibliographer for economics and business for 20 years.
Jim was instrumental in securing the Howey collection on economic thought, an important research collection housed in Spencer Research Library. Additionally, he received a U.S. Department of Education Title IIC grant, allowing the materials to be cataloged, thus increasing accessibility to this unique resource.
Jim Neeley served as the Chair of the Strategic Planning Steering Committee in 2000, playing a key role in shaping KU Libraries' strategic direction. Jim's record shows significant service on the national, state, University, and Libraries level and his continuing commitment to scholarship. His most recent publication (in 2008) details the development of the engineering library at KU.
The 2008-09 Budig Award committee members are: Julie Petr (chair), Deborah Dandridge, Jon Giullian, Deb Ludwig, Scott McEathron and Leslie Tuttle (chair, of Senate Libraries committee).
Contact: Rebecca Smith, KU LIbraries, (785) 864-1761.