EPA’s National Library Network named Federal Library/Information Center of the Year

May 20, 2011

EPAThe U.S. Environmental Protection Agency's National Library Network has been named Federal Library/Information Center of the Year by the Federal Library and Information Center Committee (FLICC) at the Library of Congress. The award recognizes outstanding, innovative and sustained achievements during fiscal year 2010 by a federal library or information center. EPA's library network is an essential information partner with EPA staff and the public to support transparency, decision making, environmental awareness and protection of people's health and the environment.

In FY2010, EPA libraries worked together to digitize 7,500 agency publications, adding to the growing inventory of more than 45,000 digital documents available to the public at no cost. Serving as a point of contact for public inquiries, EPA libraries collectively addressed nearly 9,000 public reference questions and loaned more than 8,000 documents, saving taxpayers an estimated $266,000.

Deborah BalsamoDeborah K. Balsamo, School of Information and Library Science (SILS) at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill distinguished alumna (MSLS '97) and National Program Manager at EPA National Library Network in Research Triangle Park is delighted with the acknowledgement.

"We are so honored and appreciative to be recognized in this way at this time," said Balsamo. "Our librarians work hard every day to ensure EPA staff and the public have access to the environmental information they need. I am indeed proud to work with such talented and dedicated information professionals."

"This is a well-deserved award for all who provide service to the EPA National Library Network," said Dr. Gary Marchionini, SILS dean and Cary C. Boshamer Distinguished Professor. "We congratulate you and applaud all who have put forth such phenomenal efforts that gained you this national recognition."

In addition to SILS contract employees who work at the EPA and National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS) Libraries in Research Triangle Park, which include, Tamika Barnes, EPA Library director; Susan Forbes, EPA library assistant director; Michael Cummings, interlibrary loan, reference librarian; Jane Bethel, electronic resources/reference librarian; and Diane Leblond and Paul Tulowiecki, library assistants; as well as SILS/EPA Library interns Rebecca Carlson, Rachel Carriere, Meghan Carter, Tessa Cierny, Michele Hadburg, Laurie Hunter, Jessica LaBrie, Laura Menard, Megan Meyers, Kathryn Roth (MSLS '10), Christine Wells, Aleck Williams and Hannah Winkler; SILS/NIEHS Library interns Ruth Crowe and Lesley Skalla; and additional alumna who are part of the EPA National Library Network include April Errickson (MSLS '99), Federal Library manager, EPA-RTP Library (MSLS '99), Teri DeVoe (MSLS '07), library network coordinator; and Rebecca Garvin (MSLS '96), Region 2 supervisory librarian. 

The long-standing relationship between SILS and the United States Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) Library was extended for five years in October 2009. The 37 year old library internship program has offered an opportunity to develop practical skills in an active library for more than 375 students since its inception. In turn, the program offers EPA and the NIEHS Libraries some of the area's best library students.

The internship was originally negotiated by Dr. Edward G. Holley, former dean of SILS and William Rand Kenan Jr. Professor, in 1974. In 1985, interns also began working with the NIEHS Library, an addition to the program which was driven by SILS alumnus and director of the NIEHS Library, W. Davenport "Dav" Robertson (MSLS '75). This ongoing successful program has consistently delivered quality services, adapting as needed when changes were implemented.

For more information on EPA's National Library Network: http://www.epa.gov/libraries/