Conservation Education: Commemorating the Library Conservation Education Programs at Columbia University (1981-1992) and the University of Texas at Austin (1992-2009)
November 15, 2011
About the Video:
View video (83 minutes)
About the Lecture:
Thirty years ago, the School of Library Service at Columbia University initiated the first degree-granting program for library conservation and preservation in the United States. The program was developed by Paul Banks, who had headed the Conservation Department at the Newberry Library in Chicago from its inception in 1964, where many leading book conservators had trained through traditional apprenticeships. Collaborating with the Conservation Center at the Institute of Fine Arts (New York University), which had educated art conservators since 1960, Columbia’s School of Library Service offered a three-year program for library conservation and a two-year program for preservation administration.
In 1992, when Columbia’s School of Library Service closed, the conservation and preservation program moved to the University of Texas at Austin (UT Austin). In the past 30 years, alumni of the programs at Columbia and UT Austin have led preservation departments and conserved library and archive collections across the nation, bringing their unique combination of library science and preservation/ conservation knowledge to bear upon the particular challenges presented by library and archive collections.
This 60th TOPS event remembers and celebrates the Columbia and Texas programs and the graduates who keep that legacy alive. Since 2009, the conservation studies program at the University of Texas has not accepted students due to inadequate funding, but education in library and archive conservation in this country continues at the three graduate schools for art conservation, which have piloted new programs to begin to meet this need.
This special TOPS series started in November 2010, celebrating the 50th anniversary of the program at New York University. This year marks the 30th anniversary of the beginning of the program in library conservation and preservation at Columbia University and the University of Texas at Austin.
About the Speakers:
Roberta Shaffer is the Law Librarian of Congress and starting on January 3, 2012, the Associate Librarian for Library Services at the Library of Congress. She has had a distinguished career as a practicing librarian in various settings and as a library science educator, including her service as dean of the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at the University of Texas at Austin.
Ellen Cunningham-Kruppa is an adjunct assistant professor in the Department of Art Conservation at the University of Delaware and adjunct faculty in the Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science. She received a Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Texas at Austin and holds an Endorsement of Specialization in Administration of Preservation Programs for Libraries and Archives from Columbia University’s School of Library Service. She was the founding director of the William and Margaret Kilgarlin Center for Preservation of the Cultural Record at the University of Texas at Austin, School of Information, where she also taught from 2000 to 2009.
Karen Motylewski is an Evaluation Officer at the Institute of Museum and Library Services. She was the Director of Preservation and Conservation Studies at the University of Texas at Austin from 1995 to 1999. Her work prior to this includes: Director of Northeast Document Conservation Center's Field Service Program; adjunct lecturer on preservation for Simmons Graduate School of Library and Information Science; and faculty member of the Commission on Preservation and Access's eight-day program for preservation administrators in college libraries.
Claire Dekle is a Preservation Specialist at the Library of Congress and works in the Conservation Division as a senior book conservator. She graduated from the Conservation Studies Program of the School of Library Service at Columbia University in 1992.
James Thurn is a native of Syracuse, New York. He completed the conservation track at the Kilgarlin Center for Preservation of the Cultural Record at the University of Texas at Austin and his internship in book conservation at the Library of Congress. Since 2006, he has been a Preservation Specialist at the Library in the Preventive Conservation/Collections Stabilization Section.
Benjamin Bahlmann is a Preservation Specialist at the Library of Congress in the Preventive Conservation/Collections Stabilization Section of the Conservation Division and is also currently serving as the Acting Head of the Collections Care Section. He completed his graduate degree in Preservation Administration of Library and Archival Materials at the University of Texas at Austin and has worked at the Library since 2006.