SLA Names 2020 Class of Awards Recipients

Hulser, Lenius Receive Highest SLA Honor

McLean, Va., 11 May 2020—Eleven members of the Special Libraries Association who work (or previously worked) in fields ranging from law to biotechnology to robotic spacecraft research to natural history to academia are being honored this year with awards.

The awards, which will be presented at SLA’s 2020 Annual Conference in Charlotte, North Carolina, in October, recognize SLA members at different stages of their careers. The awards are as follows:

John Cotton Dana Award
SLA’s highest honor, named for SLA’s founder and first president, the John Cotton Dana Award is granted to an information professional to recognize a lifetime of achievement as well as exceptional service to SLA and the library and information profession. Two SLA members are receiving the Dana Award this year:

  • Richard Hulser, president of a consulting firm in California and formerly chief librarian and curator at the Natural History Museum in California; and
  • Sharon Lenius, a retired federal and military librarian who served as digital resources librarian for the Headquarters, Joint Staff, National Guard Bureau and as director of the Technical Reference Library of the Reserve Component Automation System.

SLA Hall of Fame
Membership in the SLA Hall of Fame is accorded to SLA members in good standing who are at or near the end of their active professional career to recognize service and contributions to the association. Hall of Fame recognition also is granted for lengthy distinguished service to an SLA chapter or division that has contributed to the success of the association. Two SLA members are being inducted into the Hall of Fame this year:

  • Rita Ormsby, associate professor and information services librarian at Baruch College, The City University of New York; and
  • Tom Rink, instructor for library services on the Broken Arrow campus of Northeastern State University (Okla.) and 2016 president of SLA.

Fellows of SLA
Fellowship in SLA is bestowed on active, mid-career SLA members in recognition of past, present and future service to the association and the profession. Fellows are called upon and expected to advise the association’s Board of Directors and alert the membership to issues and trends warranting action. Individuals receiving this honor will be able to use the title Fellow of the Special Libraries Association. Three SLA members are being named Fellows this year:

  • Anne Barker, an information specialist in the legal department at Genentech;
  • Jeff Bond, scholarly communication librarian and science research liaison at Texas Christian University; and
  • John Coll, associate director of access at the National Library of Scotland.

James M. Matarazzo Rising Star Award
This honor is bestowed annually to recognize outstanding new SLA members who show exceptional promise of leadership and contribution to the association and profession. Nominees must have one to five years of professional experience as an information professional and have been an SLA member for five years or less. Four SLA members are being named Rising Stars this year:

  • Dana Eckstein Berkowitz, owner and chief creative officer at Dana bWitz Creative Services;
  • JonLuc Christensen, records management specialist for NASA/CalTech Jet Propulsion Lab;
  • Thérèse Mainville-Celso, knowledge operations manager at Roche Pharma; and
  • Kelly Durkin Ruth, engineering librarian at the U.S. Naval Academy.

Lists of previous awards recipients are available on SLA’s website.

About SLA
The Special Libraries Association (SLA) is a nonprofit international organization for innovative information professionals and their strategic partners. SLA serves information professionals in more than 60 countries and in a range of working environments, including business, academia and government agencies. SLA promotes and strengthens its members through learning, advocacy and networking initiatives. For more information, visit

Kathy Bradley

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