Linda C. Smith
The 2010 ASIS&T Award of Merit is presented to Dr. Linda Smith of the University of Illinois, where she is Professor and Associate Dean.
Dr. Smith is an extraordinary leader in our field. As her nominator for the Award summarized, “Linda Smith’s career has exemplified the theory, the practice, and the ethos of access of information in library and information science. Her research has spanned the areas of artificial intelligence, information retrieval, library automation, and education. Her work in reference librarianship has made information more accessible to users everywhere, and she has developed and directed an award-winning online education program that has made LIS education accessible to many who would not otherwise have had that opportunity.
As a mentor and teacher, she has had a lifelong impact on countless students, colleagues, and practitioners. In all of these activities, Linda Smith has been unstinting in generosity, unassuming in leadership, and unequalled in dedication to her profession…. Her dedication to students is legendary, and she’s been recognized with numerous awards for teaching and mentoring, notably the 1987 ASIS Outstanding Information Science Teacher Award, the UIUC Graduate College Award for Outstanding Mentoring of Graduate Students, UIUC Distinguished Teacher/Scholar, the ALISE Award for Teaching Excellence, the Beta Phi Mu Award, and the LSAA Distinguished Alumna Award.” A former student noted that Linda “truly modeled the kind of professor I hoped to become.”
One Award of Merit juror noted, “Linda’s contributions in education and mentoring are exceptional.” Another wrote, “Linda is noted for the care with which she conducts research and the quality of the product. Similarly, she is known and respected for the ways in which she develops programs e.g. the LEEP program. Because of this attention to quality, one can rely on her research and can safely build on it and one can use the programs she has developed as models.”
Dr. Smith is a prolific author of many journal articles, conference presentations, and invited talks, as well as being an author of one of the field’s standard textbooks. Her scholarly achievements have been recognized by her election as a Fellow of the American Association for the Advancement of Sciences.
Additionally, she holds memberships in a wide range of organizations, and is a dedicated leader within organizations such as ALISE and ASIS&T. Despite all of these accomplishments, and her profound influence, Dr. Smith remains one of the field’s most humble servants. She is indeed, a model for us all.
Because of Dr. Smith’s extraordinary range of contributions to scholarship, teaching, and service, we are delighted to award her our highest honor, the 2010 ASIS&T Award of Merit.