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FORUM Vol. 41, No. 17; January 23, 2017


Grand Valley names new dean of University Libraries

Provost Gayle R. Davis has announced the appointment of Annie Bélanger as dean of University Libraries.

Bélanger is currently serving as associate university librarian, information resources and academic excellence in the library at University of Waterloo, located in Waterloo, Ontario, Canada. In this role, she provides strategic leadership for the collections from development through retention, oversees the strategic focus on student engagement and developing research skills, and serves as a sponsor with activities ranging from student wellness support, accessibility and copyright.

Bélanger, who earned a master's degree in library and information science from the University of Western Ontario, replaces Lee Van Orsdel, who served as dean of University Libraries for 11 years and retired in December.

"Grand Valley and University Libraries breathe student focus — a quality that is very important to me in a higher education setting. Dean Van Orsdel has led a tremendous transformation and developed a very innovative, strong and vibrant team," said Bélanger. "I seek to honor the culture that has been created and collaboratively lead the next evolution for University Libraries by building on its strong campus integration."

Bélanger will bring with her to Grand Valley a diverse professional background, having worked in a variety of roles in most types of libraries ranging from corporate and governmental to academic.

“Dean Bélanger impressed all of us with her preparedness and enthusiasm for the Grand Valley deanship,” said Davis. “She has integrated her rich experiential background into an approach to libraries and leadership that meshes seamlessly with Grand Valley’s needs at this time. She will enrich our campus community for years to come.” 

Bélanger will begin her role at Grand Valley on June 5. 

Van Orsdel played a crucial role in the conception, design and construction of the Mary Idema Pew Library Learning and Information Commons, which has been widely recognized as a model for 21st century library design.