WM Names New Dean of Libraries

March 30th, 2011 by Amber Lester Kennedy

WM_Carrie_CooperThe College of William and Mary has hired a new dean of the university’s libraries, who will start the job Aug. 1.

Carrie Cooper comes to William and Mary after spending 13 years in library leadership at Eastern Kentucky University, serving as dean of the university’s libraries for the past five years. She succeeds Connie McCarthy, who retired last summer following 13 years at the helm of Earl Gregg Swem Library. Bea Hardy, the Marian and Alan McLeod Director of Special Collections Research Center, served as interim dean while the search was underway.

“We are delighted that Carrie Cooper will be our next dean of university libraries,” said President Taylor Reveley in a press release. “She brings experience, enthusiasm and vision to the job.”

In her time at Eastern Kentucky, Cooper revitalized the library’s fundraising program, secured the largest private gift in the university’s history and oversaw a renovation of Crabbe Library. The renovation project included relocated the existing writing center, adding an oral communication center and integrating research assistance for students. Cooper currently oversees 69 professionals and support staff.

Incorporating media and technology into the library experience has been one of Cooper’s priorities. At Eastern Kentucky, she led a multimedia project intended to celebrate the scholarly and creative achievements of faculty and staff.

“The digital age presents many opportunities for librarians to support and enhance an academic community,” Cooper said. “In this evolving environment, I look forward to leading one of the country’s most prestigious academic libraries.”

She joined Eastern Kentucky library staff in 1998, when she was appointed the team leader of the Learning Resources at Crabbe Library. In 2002, she was named coordinator of research and instruction, overseeing everything from reference to government documents. In 2005, she became the interim dean of libraries and took over the role in 2006.

She started her career in education as a fourth- and fifth-grade teacher in Florida, later serving as a high school librarian before becoming a university librarian in 1998. Cooper received her bachelor’s degree in elementary education from Florida State University in 1992 and her master’s degree in library and informational services from the University of Southern Mississippi in 1997.

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