Distinguished Librarian

The awards process is coordinated through the Office of the President. Nominators are encouraged to consult with the Office of the President about candidate eligibility prior to preparing a nomination; questions about dossier preparation are welcome at any time.

Due to comrelations@oneonta.edu by 12pm, Monday, November 1, 2021.

There is no limit to the number of nominations SUNY Oneonta may submit annually.

General Restrictions on Eligibility

The following are special conditions, applicable to all programs that limit eligibility:

  • faculty holding Distinguished Faculty Rank – Distinguished Librarian, Distinguished Professor, Distinguished Service Professor, or Distinguished Teaching Professor – may not be nominated for another Distinguished Faculty Rank designation;
  • faculty holding qualified academic appointments (as defined in Board of Trustees policies: individuals holding titles of academic rank that are preceded by the designation …“visiting” or other similar designations) may not be nominated; 
  • faculty holding a concurrent administrative appointment above the level of department chair for which they receive extra compensation are ineligible for the DSP;
  • faculty who have retired or faculty serving in part-time capacities are ineligible; and
  • posthumous nominations are not permissible.

Specific Eligibility

Academic Rank - Candidates must have attained the rank of full librarian or, for community colleges, the rank of full professor with clear and direct full-time responsibilities pertaining to library service.

Length of Service - Candidates must have held the rank of full Librarian for at least five years and must have at least three years of full-time service at the nominating institution.    

Criteria for Selection

The scope of librarianship extends beyond the library's physical walls to the opening of limitless electronic networks and to the fostering of information literacy and skills in navigating the information universe. Through such endeavors, librarians create a new place and new roles for themselves in the academy. Librarians demonstrate unique talents and skills as faculty who promote and facilitate access to information for the widest community and assist all sectors of the community to make informed judgments about the nature and quality of the information they seek, find, and use.

The pathways to the rank of Distinguished Librarian are many and diverse. To attain the rank of Distinguished Librarian, a candidate must exhibit all of the following qualities and levels of accomplishments.

  • Candidates must have made contributions to the profession of librarianship that are of national or international significance.
  • They must have achieved stature and distinction beyond their own library, beyond their own college or university, and indeed, beyond SUNY to offer leadership. They may achieve this stature and distinction through formal scholarship, research, and publications, but other paths include extended efforts toward forging alliances, networks, and cooperative programs that advance resource sharing and significantly improve access to information or enhance its usefulness to the community.
  • In all cases, the impact of the contributions of candidates must be transformational. Candidates' achievements at this level must have contributed to transforming the profession of librarianship and the work of librarians to engender and stimulate the "age of information." Candidates must have broken boundaries, expanded potentials, and engendered positive change in academe.
  • Candidates must have demonstrated leadership in realizing the potential for access to worldwide information resources, in changing the nature of information seeking, and/or designing or developing systems which facilitate navigation and effective use of the burgeoning information environment.
  • Candidates will have performed with excellence and innovation in the traditional areas of librarianship, such as technical services, services to the public, system or facilities design, or administration.
  • Candidates' careers will be models for librarians and will provide inspiration to their colleagues. They will have earned the respect of members of the information professions as well as their academic professorial counterparts by the quality, vigor, and innovative nature of their thinking, their standards of performance, and the effectiveness of their initiatives.

Nominators' Responsibilities

It is the responsibility of the nominator(s) to complete and submit all required and allowable support file data. This includes the electronic submission of the following documents to comrelations@oneonta.edu by noon on Monday, November 1, 2021:

  • One complete PDF dossier containing all required materials
  • One MS Word document of the maximum five-page summary
  • One MS Word document of the nominee’s curriculum vitae

SUNY will announce winners in April or May; however, due to timing factors, only award recipients and their campuses will be notified.

Nominator Dossier Preparation

The dossier will contain all required materials in the sequence below, with a table of contents.

  1. The Nomination Abstract - Please provide a brief one paragraph abstract of 150 to 180 words. This abstract should provide a clear, thematic picture that describes the candidate’s main accomplishments. It should highlight why the candidate has been nominated and may be taken from other parts of the nomination package. If the candidate is an awardee, this abstract may be used for press releases or testimonials.
  2. The Summary Presentation (five-page summary) should include direct quotes from the letters of support and must speak specifically to each of the criteria for selection in the SUNY guidelines as follows:

    Criteria for Selection for Distinguished Librarian:

    The scope of librarianship extends beyond the library's physical walls to the opening of limitless electronic networks and to the fostering of information literacy and skills in navigating the information universe. Through such endeavors, librarians create a new place and new roles for themselves in the academy. Librarians demonstrate unique talents and skills as faculty who promote and facilitate access to information for the widest community and assist all sectors of the community to make informed judgments about the nature and quality of the information they seek, find, and use.

    The pathways to the rank of Distinguished Librarian are many and diverse. To attain the rank of Distinguished Librarian, a candidate must exhibit all of the following qualities and levels of accomplishments.

    • Candidates must have made contributions to the profession of librarianship that are of national or international significance.
    • They must have achieved stature and distinction beyond their own library, beyond their own college or university, and indeed, beyond SUNY to offer leadership. They may achieve this stature and distinction through formal scholarship, research, and publications, but other paths include extended efforts toward forging alliances, networks, and cooperative programs that advance resource sharing and significantly improve access to information or enhance its usefulness to the community.
    • In all cases, the impact of the contributions of candidates must be transformational. Candidates' achievements at this level must have contributed to transforming the profession of librarianship and the work of librarians to engender and stimulate the "age of information." Candidates must have broken boundaries, expanded potentials, and engendered positive change in academe.
    • Candidates must have demonstrated leadership in realizing the potential for access to world-wide information resources, in changing the nature of information seeking, and/or designing or developing systems which facilitate navigation and effective use of the burgeoning information environment.
    • Candidates will have performed with excellence and innovation in the traditional areas of librarianship, such as technical services, services to the public, system or facilities design, or administration.
    • Candidates' careers will be models for librarians and will provide inspiration to their colleagues. They will have earned the respect of members of the information professions as well as their academic professorial counterparts by the quality, vigor, and innovative nature of their thinking, their standards of performance, and the effectiveness of their initiatives.

    The format of the Summary Presentation (five-page summary) is significant because the document, if approved by the local selection committee, will be forwarded to SUNY System Administration. Formatting requirements include:

    • The heading must indicate the name, rank and college of the nominee and the nominator as follows:

      Name, Rank, SUNY Oneonta, nominated for the Distinguished Librarian by Name, Title, SUNY Oneonta.

    • The final paragraph must repeat the nomination and summarize its salient points.
    • Avoid the use of first-person.
    • Single-space with at least 11 point font size and set margins to at least 1".
    • Please do not use acronyms or language which will not be understood by external reviewers.
  3. Curriculum Vita – An up-to-date and moderately comprehensive vita that should have separate sections for educational background, academic/visiting appointments, honors and awards received, publications, external funding, invited/keynote presentations, other presentations, teaching accomplishments (including lists of graduate dissertations, theses and research directed and other mentoring), and service contributions to the University, the community, and the profession (work with learned societies, editorial boards, conferences organized, and other relevant activities). Entries for awards should indicate the significance of each item. Specific data must include the date of the last update, the candidate’s department, the date of appointment to the SUNY system, highest rank attained and date of appointment to that rank.

    Articles in refereed and non-refereed journals should be clearly distinguished from one another and, preferably, listed separately with full pagination and ordered by date of publication. Books should be listed separately from articles. Publications with multiple authors should indicate the senior author if there is one, either by a note at the beginning of the publications list (if senior author position is consistent throughout) or by an asterisk indicating the senior author in each entry. External funding entries should indicate agency, amount, dates, and if there are multiple named investigators, which is the PI.
  4. Internal Letters of Recommendation – At least five but no more than eight, are needed to validate the stature of the candidate proposed for appointment. Letters from the Provost and candidate’s Dean are to provide detailed information and the specific rationale – preferably in laymen’s terms – for the candidate’s nomination and justification for appointment. Letters from those holding Distinguished rank are encouraged.
  5. External Letters of Recommendation – At least five but no more than eight, are needed to validate the stature of the candidate proposed for appointment.  Each external letter should be accompanied by, a one to five page full-page detailed description of the author’s stature sufficient to provide review panelists a context for the recommendation submitted.

    In these letters, the recommenders should: corroborate the candidate’s merit for appointment, describe the candidate’s stature in the discipline, catalog the candidate’s most important achievements, speak to the influence and impact of the candidate’s contribution on the discipline, (in laymen’s terms where possible) and explain the significance of the candidate’s awards and honors.

Last updated 12/19/2017

SUNY Guidelines
Rating Sheet

Incomplete nominations will automatically be disqualified.

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