February 11, 2008 The Library of Congress and the Institute of Museum and Library Services Collaborate on Preservation Outreach

Press Contact: Donna Urschel (202) 707-1639
Public Contact: Preservation Directorate (202) 707-5213

Millions of objects in museums and libraries across the country are at risk and will need immediate preservation attention in the next several years. The Library of Congress and the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) are working together to address these concerns. The Preservation Directorate of the Library of Congress has announced that Karen Motylewski from IMLS will serve a one-year detail at the Library as special projects liaison. She will help both agencies advance shared goals for preservation and conservation awareness and action throughout the nation. She will assist the Library in meetings, in training sessions and in developing emergency plans. By collaborating on their outreach efforts, these key federal agencies can realize their goals more swiftly and effectively. “Without immediate attention, some 190 million objects nationwide may be lost in a few short years,” said Anne-Imelda Radice, director of IMLS. “Sixty-five percent of collecting institutions report damage to collections due to improper storage. Eighty percent do not have an emergency plan for their collections and staff trained to carry it out. And 40 percent have no funds in their annual budgets for the fundamental care of their collections.” Deanna Marcum, Associate Librarian at the Library of Congress, said, “To address new challenges facing collections in the 21st century, the Library has committed substantial resources to improve staff competencies and laboratory efficiencies. We welcome the chance for our expert staff to work with IMLS on a number of projects advancing collaborative strategies for preservation research, training and emergency mitigation outreach. We are grateful to IMLS for their continued encouragement of the Library’s preservation efforts.” Motylewski served as an evaluation officer at IMLS. She has experience in preservation and conservation planning; academic and public preservation education and outreach; evaluation; and grantsmanship. The Institute of Museum and Library Services is the primary source of federal support for the nation’s 122,000 libraries and 17,500 museums. The Institute works at the national level and in coordination with state and local organizations to sustain heritage, culture and knowledge; enhance learning and innovation; and support professional development. The mission of the Library of Congress is to make its resources available and useful to the Congress and the American people, and to sustain and preserve a universal collection of knowledge and creativity for future generations. The Preservation Directorate advances this mission through activities and education that support the care and protection of collections.


PR 08-029
ISSN 0731-3527