2014 Distinguished Librarian Award Recipients

The LAUC-B Distinguished Librarian Award Committee is pleased to announce that the recipients of the 2014 awards are Michaelyn Burnette and William Benemann.

To celebrate the achievements of our Distinguished Librarians, we invite all library staff to join Executive Vice Chancellor and Provost Claude Steele, Associate University Librarian Beth Dupuis and the Librarians’ Association at a reception on Wednesday, December 3, 2014 in the Morrison Library, 3:00-5:00pm.

Each of our Distinguished Librarians has accumulated a body of achievements that advance the research and teaching mission of the University; have had substantial impact on their colleagues and library constituents and forged national and international reputations.

Michaelyn Burnette’s distinguished career is characterized by her devotion to her profession, her passion for teaching, her thorough knowledge of her subject areas, and her unsurpassed skill at building collections. Her tireless enthusiasm, intelligence and professionalism are reflected in all aspects of her work. Over the past 25 years, Michaelyn has built an outstanding literature collection at UC Berkeley that supports both traditional scholarship and the latest cutting edge research. Her impact on the profession has also been notable, particularly her leadership in the Literatures in English Section of the American Libraries Association. She has been a member and leader of many Library and UC committees, task forces, and recruitments, where her contributions are valued for their thoughtfulness and courage. Michaelyn is a staunch advocate for collections issues and for our users, and an impassioned champion of libraries. For those lucky enough to have worked with her, her generosity in sharing her knowledge will have a lasting impact.

William Benemann began his career as a librarian at the University of California, Berkeley in 1989 as Head of Cataloging at The Bancroft Library and in 1994 moved to the Berkeley Law Library (Boalt Hall) to become Head of Technical Services. In 2000, his current position as Berkeley Law Archivist was created, establishing the Berkeley Law Archives which is dedicated to documenting and preserving the history of Berkeley Law. Bill has also established himself as, in one colleague’s words, “a scholar of the first order.” He has edited or authored three influential books that expose previously unexplored aspects of American history and life. His most recent book, Men in Eden: William Drummond Stewart and Same-Sex Desire in the Rocky Mountain Fur Trade (2012), was given a starred review in Booklist, which called it “[an] engrossing, eminently readable study of one of the most intriguing figures in the history of the Old West.” As the lead curator of “A Place at the Table: A Gathering of LGBT Text, Image & Voice,” Bill boldly realized his vision of mounting the first ever exhibition of gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender collections of The Bancroft Library. The exhibit was a rousing success, and has been described as “serious and scholarly, worthy of being staged at Berkeley, but also compelling, fun, and easy to engage with.”