Allen Lanham, dean of Library Services at Eastern Illinois University, has been named the 2008 Illinois Academic Librarian of the year.
A special reception in his honor will take place from 3:30 to 5 p.m. Tuesday, Oct. 14, in Booth Library, Room 4440. The public is invited to attend.
Lanham received the award at the Illinois Library Association Conference held at Navy Pier in Chicago. The award is given annually by the Illinois Association of College and Research Libraries. The Consortium of Academic and Research Libraries of Illinois (CARLI) sponsors the monetary award on behalf of the association to individuals who have performed outstanding service for the Forum and for the Illinois Library Association, as well as providing leadership and exemplary library service in an academic setting.
Lanham has been a professor and the dean of Library Services at Eastern since 1992. Prior to coming to EIU, he served at the Inter American University of Puerto Rico for 16 years. He oversaw the $22.5 million renovation and expansion of Booth Library completed in 2002.
In addition to his many university responsibilities, Lanham served as president of the Illinois Library Association in 2004-2005, and has been on numerous ILA committees. He has also served on the Lincoln Trails Library System Board of Directors since 2004, and he was elected to the CARLI Board of Directors in 2008. Lanham has also made significant contributions to the Illinois State Library, serving on a variety of committees and as a mentor for their SYNERGY library leadership program.
Lanham encourages his staff and academic colleagues to share their experiences in person and in professional publications, and is a frequent conference presenter himself. He has presented at conferences worldwide, including Bolivia, Brazil, Canada, Costa Rica, Peru and South Korea. He is a strong advocate for international librarianship and has assisted the Mortensen Center for International Library Programs at the University of Illinois Library at Urbana-Champaign.
Lanham has also hosted many international librarians at Booth Library, providing an opportunity for the sharing of ideas and information.
As primary investigator for the Art and Architecture in Illinois Libraries project, Lanham and his staff developed an exhibit that traveled to 65 academic and public libraries highlighting selected works. In August, he presented a paper based on that work at the International Federation of Library Associations conference in Quebec.