Director of Strategic Initiatives and Planning
University Libraries, University of Missouri-Kansas City
Kansas City, MO
2013 – Present
- Director of the Information Technology and Strategy Division which includes the User Centered Design department (4.2 FTE), the Libraries Technology Office (2 FTE), and the University Libraries’ strategic planning efforts.
- Strategic Leadership: Collaboratively developed strategies, and introduced policies, processes, technology, training, and competencies to enable the organization to set and achieve goals that align with user outcomes, stakeholder interests and university strategic goals.
- Conducted interviews with 67 library staff and faculty members to gather insight into the organizational culture.
- Led the Student Library Advisory Council to gather student input.
- Implemented collaborative strategic planning activities to develop mission, vision, values, goals and initiatives including a director’s retreat.
- Selected and implemented an outcomes model for assessment. Developed a Blackboard course for Outcomes Based Planning and Evaluation (OBPE) based on the shapingoutcomes.org course from IUPUI. Created a new Outcomes and Assessment Librarian position to focus on staff training and an outcomes focused culture of assessment.
- Implemented web-based work planning and tracking software (JIRA) across many library departments to improve project and work management.
- Implemented team collaboration software (Confluence) across all library departments to support project planning, communication, iterative design, requirements management, and institutional memory for project work.
- Design Research: Co-lead on a photo-elicitation and interview based study of music and dance conservatory students to inform the planning for UMKC’s new Downtown Campus for the Arts.
Co-Executive Director and CTO, eXtensible Catalog Organization, LLC
University of Rochester
2007 – 2013
- Lead and conduct software design and development activities for eXtensible Catalog, a suite of open source, user-centered software applications for academic libraries and consortia. XC incorporates a discovery layer on Drupal together with a Java-based metadata management server and standards-based ILS connectivity tools (http://eXtensibleCatalog.org). Each of the four applications has a modular, plug-in architecture. Communication among applications is standards based. XC has had broad influence, for example on standards efforts and on LC’s decision to move forward with RDA implementation, and has been implemented in Spain and Japan and by the CARLI consortium in Illinois.
- XC Drupal Toolkit: Faceted search interface for end-users that integrates with academic library systems. XC was the first fully production-ready demonstration of the FRBR (Functional Requirements for Bibliographic Records) data model and RDA (Resource Description and Access) metadata schema. XC Implementation Examples:
- XC Metadata Services Toolkit: Metadata management system based on OAI-PMH with modular services, record aggregation, format conversion, and automated synchronization. A web-based staff interface includes faceted browsing for debugging metadata issues. Designed to handle on the order of 100 million records, the MST splits and combines records to expose relationships, resulting in a new set of records that enables the XC Drupal Toolkit to provide a more usable interface to library users. The MST maintains the relationships between the source records in the legacy format, on the one hand, and the records with the improvements to the way important relationships are revealed, on the other.
- XC NCIP2 Toolkit, XC OAI Toolkit: Connectivity suite enabling legacy integrated library systems to communicate with the other XC toolkits using standard protocols.
- Technologies and standards: Java, PHP/Drupal, Apache SOLR, MySQL, OAI-PMH, XML, NCIP, LDAP, RDA, FRBR, MARC, and Dublin Core.
- Provide leadership and management oversight for XCO, a not-for-profit organization launched by University of Rochester in 2009 to sustain, lead, and foster community participation in the eXtensible Catalog software project. XCO operational activities included fundraising, marketing, budgeting, software development, software project management, website maintenance, staffing, and coordination with community partners.
- Co-wrote grant proposals and negotiated partnerships to support the seven-year XC project. $2.4 million in external funding and host institution support.
- Planning project: $280,000 Andrew Mellon Foundation (2006-2007) (Co-PI)
- Development, user research, and implementation grant:
- $750,000 Andrew Mellon Foundation
- $600,000 Partner institutions (2007-2009, 22 month)
- Acted as co-PI, supervising seven software developers and the Director of Community Development.
- Continuation/bridge grant: $175,000 Andrew Mellon (2009-2011) 24-month grant to fund development and maintenance (PI).
- Continuation partner funding: $500,000 (2012-2013)
- Continuation partner staffing: $175,000 (2012-2013)
- Agency: Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, Scholarly Communications Program Grant
- Grant names: eXtensible Catalog Bridge Grant, eXtensible Catalog Phase 2, and eXtensible Catalog Phase 1.
- Organized and co-managed every aspect of a two-day, invitation-only conference that brought together more than 30 internationally recognized library technology leaders and innovators to critique and contribute improvements to every element of the draft project plan.
- Transitioned project to new host institution (CARLI)
Design Workshop Team Leader, Undergraduate Research Refresher Project
River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
2011 – 2012
- Co-led and facilitated research activities for an eight-member project team. Conducted participatory design workshops with undergraduates to understand practices, perceptions and unmet needs for both academic writing and group study work to inform future library spaces, technologies and services.
Director, Digital Library Initiatives
River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
2004 – 2007
- Provided leadership to guide the development of digital library projects, information technology initiatives, and user-centered design through collaboration with library staff, administration and project leaders.
- Managed a staff of seven. The Digital Initiatives Unit under my leadership included four developers, a designer, an anthropologist, a project manager, and student assistants. The unit was responsible for the design, development, and maintenance of the River Campus Libraries website.
- Managed and engaged in design and development of several digital initiatives, including:
- UR Research: the institutional repository for the University of Rochester. Responsible for the design, software project management, and coordination of project resources across organizations. Completed public launch in 2005. https://urresearch.rochester.edu/
- CUIPID: an experimental, XML-based, FRBR-inspired catalog project. Responsible for visioning and software architecture.
- GUF (Getting Users to Full-text), an intermediate OpenURL-based linking server that eliminates the usability issues with current linking tool menus by taking the user directly to full text.
- Grant Writing: Co-Principal Investigator, “Enhancing Repositories for the Next Generation of Academics,” 2006-2008, Institute for Museum and Library Services, National Leadership Grant, Co-wrote a $320,000 two-year grant to conduct research on graduate student work practices and develop improved institutional repository software for academic and university libraries and thereby to improve any university library’s ability to collect, preserve, catalog, and disseminate the work of its faculty members and researchers. Project outcomes included the release of IR+. IR+ is open-source institutional repository software that incorporates researcher pages and a document co-authoring and versioning system. A final report details findings and next steps based on the research. URResearch, the institutional repository at the University of Rochester, utilizes IR+ software. http://code.google.com/p/irplus/
- Project: Team Member and Sub-team Leader, Undergraduate Research Project, Co-led and participated in user research and participatory design activities including observations, interviews, cultural probes, design workshops, and data analysis to understand the process that undergraduates go through to write papers, informing space, technology and reference service design. Co-led design workshops that informed the design of Gleason Library, a $5 million 23,000 sq. ft. space renovation for undergraduate study and collaboration. http://www.library.rochester.edu/gleason/ Led the Digital Initiatives Sub-team to facilitate group analysis of research data including co-viewing of interviews and “magic wand” brainstorming activities to uncover unmet needs in support of next-generation digital products and services.
Web Initiatives Manager
River Campus Libraries, University of Rochester
2001 – 2004
- Managed a multidisciplinary, web design and development group. Responsible for proposing and carrying out technology initiatives for an 11-branch university library system. Increased staffing from zero up to six direct reports in three years.
- Developed “Find Articles,” a simple yet powerful web-interface to a meta-search application enabling undergraduates to find scholarly articles in library databases. Implemented in XML and OpenURL, using the Endeavor ERA API.
- Managed a user-centered design process to redesign a library website with over 6,000 pages, involving 50 content writers, several project teams, and a six-person usability testing group. Led hands-on development of user interface, content organization, and system architecture.
- Designed and implemented a custom content management system with web-based administration, automatic backups, link checking, persistent URL support, dynamic links, web statistics, page-level metadata, software change request management, and section 508 (ADA) compliance tools. Implemented in ColdFusion and SQL.
- Grant funded project: Co-Principal Investigator, “The Social Life of Grey Literature,” 2003-2004, Institute of Museum and Library Services, National Leadership Grant, Conceived and co-wrote a $103,000 one-year grant to conduct a work-practice study of faculty use of “grey literature” and to develop open-source software extensions to MIT’s DSpace institutional repository platform. Project outcomes included the institutionalization of participatory design and work-practice study at the University of Rochester Libraries, a better understanding of faculty priorities for institutional repository software and the development of enhancements to DSpace that enable faculty members to highlight their own work within the repository (called “Researcher Pages”) and to track downloads by others. This grant enabled me to hire the original “anthropologist in the library,” leading to a national profile for the University of Rochester Libraries and the proliferation of studies of work practices in academic libraries worldwide.
Advanced Systems Developer
Knowledge Works, Xerox Palo Alto Research Center
1999 – 2001
- Implemented an extension to a web-based document repository (DocuShare) as an advice sharing system (Eureka) for the worldwide Xerox service organization. Implemented in XML and Python.
- Conceived and implemented a Microsoft Outlook add-on in which file attachments would be uploaded to a web-based document repository with an embedded link replacing the actual attachment. This integration became a part of the Xerox DocuShare product offering. Implemented in Visual Basic as a COM Add-In to Outlook.
- Provided software quality assurance to the team responsible for organization-wide documentation review and signoff. Xerox was working towards their goal of software process improvement to attain Level 2 on the Capability Maturity Model.
Lead Software Engineer
Work Practice and Co-Development, Xerox Palo Alto Research Center
1996 – 1999
- Managed the development of ImageShare, a web-based image search and access tool based on a light table metaphor. Implemented in Java, HTML, Z39.50, and the Innovative OPAC.
- Awarded U.S. Patent (6590586) for the ImageShare user interface.
- Led the technical aspects of a two-year work-practice and technology design engagement with Wallace Library at the Rochester Institute of Technology. Studied collection management and classroom use of a large collection of art and architecture images through on-site, in-context interviews and observations with library staff, faculty members and students, co-viewing of videotaped interactions, and participatory design sessions. Developed several technology prototypes.
- Managed the implementation of an add-on to a Xerox metasearch product that allowed it to connect to Z39.50 sources enabling it to be used by libraries.
- Defined, prototyped and field-tested several web-based systems in support of geographically distributed working groups and online community. The “Looking Glass” was an implementation of an awareness tool called Portholes (from Xerox PARC) that was put into production in a French museum. “Web Companion” brought take-along capabilities with you on your web journey. “Quest” was a search engine that connected Xerox researchers based on project work or research area using automated reminders to keep the information current.
Software Engineer and Senior System Administrator
Corporate Research, Xerox Corporation
1992 – 1995
- Developed an end-user client interface to a desktop videoconferencing system similar to today’s instant messenger clients. Ported 25,000 lines of C source code from SunOS platform to Win32 API. Designed, implemented, tested, and put into use at Xerox.
- Designed and implemented a three site, 70-seat desktop videoconferencing system based on research software from PARC and the University of Toronto. Implemented hardware, network infrastructure and software (SunOS servers, analog A/V hardware, matrix video switches, Picture Tel CODECs, ISDN, and PC/Mac/SunOS client interfaces).
- Implemented a driver for serial control of a Utah Scientific matrix A/V switch.
- System administrator (Mac and SunOS) responsible for configuration, backups, printing, cross-platform file sharing, secure dial-up with callback, training, and troubleshooting.
Consultant and Presenter, “Creating a Program and Plan of Service Based on User Needs”
Academic Library Planning and Revitalization Workshop, Academic Impressions
- Delivered a workshop session on how to align library facility projects with the needs and work practices of users. Presented case studies on undergraduate and graduate student study spaces.
Curriculum Developer and Trainer, “User-Centered Design: Design Process & Usability”
LITA Regional Institute
2006 – 2007
- Designed and implemented a two-day course on an organizational management approach to website design that separates content, design, usability, and development priorities into distinct roles with defined responsibilities. The end result is a focus on iterative improvement, which contributes to shortened prototyping, design, and implementation cycles.
- Subject matter expert for the development of Macromedia ColdFusion MX (CFML programming language) online courseware, and classroom training modules.
Website Founder and Developer
Gay Rochester Online (no longer operational)
1996 – 2009
- Identified a market opportunity for a website focused on the LGBTQ community in Rochester. The site was featured in national magazines including The Advocate and Passport and exceeded 8,000 registered users.
- Managed all aspects of the business including content development, design, marketing, sales, accounting, customer billing, and outsourced web hosting.