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UW Libraries receives $1.25 million for senior conservator position

August 5, 2013

Contact: Stephanie Lamson, Head, Preservation Services
salamson@uw.edu (206) 543-4890

Contact: A.C. Petersen, Communications Officer
acpete@uw.edu (206) 543-9389

The University of Washington Libraries has received a $1.25 million challenge grant from the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to fund a new senior conservator position in its Preservation Services Division.

The Mellon Foundation grant includes $1 million as a permanent endowment and $250,000 to establish the new position while the Libraries raises $1million over three years to match the award, which will generate funding to support the position permanently.

The Libraries has begun a nationwide search for the individual who will take on the role of senior conservator in early 2013.

Stephanie Lamson, Libraries Head of Preservation said, “The creation of the senior conservator position is an incredible opportunity for the Libraries and will dramatically increase our capacity to care for the fragile rare books, manuscripts, maps, and drawings in our special collections.”  She continued, “It will allow us to complete more complicated conservation treatments in-house and expand our education and outreach efforts, enabling us to build on partnerships with other libraries, archives, and museums in the region.”

“The University Libraries is grateful to the Mellon Foundation for their generous support and vote of confidence in our institution,” stated Lizabeth (Betsy) Wilson, Dean of University Libraries, adding, “There are few efforts more important than preserving UW’s internationally significant collections while simultaneously helping to educate the next generation of conservators – at the University of Washington and beyond.”

University of Washington President Michael K. Young, remarked that he “is grateful to the Mellon Foundation for enhancing the capacity of our University Libraries to sustain and grow the invaluable services and leadership they provide to the vast western region of the United States.”

The University of Washington Libraries is a network of more than 16 academic research libraries serving three campuses: Seattle, UW Bothell and UW Tacoma.  Major facilities include Suzzallo and Allen Libraries, Odegaard Undergraduate Library and the Health Sciences Library, as well as subject-oriented libraries including Art, Built Environments, Drama, East Asia Library, Engineering, Foster Business, Mathematics Research, Media Center and the Music Library. Its collections exceed 7 million catalogued volumes and more than 100,000 Libraries-licensed online journal titles. Services include 24/7 online reference services.

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