What is your full time position?
I am Associate Professor and Research & Scholarly Services Coordinator at the University of Scranton. My primary duties are managing the Research Services department (i.e., reference), teaching, and performing other faculty duties. Before taking on this role, I was Public Services Librarian & Outreach Coordinator, also at the University of Scranton.
In addition to my position as a librarian, I also teach as an Adjunct Professor in the Department of Philosophy. Courses I have taught include PHIL 120: Introduction to Philosophy, PHIL 210: Ethics, and PHIL 387: The Philosophy of Consciousness.
What are some interesting things you’re working on?
Our reference collection is pretty dated and hardly used. We’re working on deaccessioning, updating, and just thinking of new ways to lay out the floor once we downsize. Outside of the library, I am working on my dissertation for my Ph.D. in philosophy, which focuses on the philosophy of mind.
How did you come to serve in the leadership role with ALCTS? What prepared you, and how did you get the position?
When I was on the tenure track, I was looking for service opportunities and needed to publish more. One of my tenured colleagues, Narda Tafuri, was serving as Editor of the Library Materials Price Index (LMPI), and she asked if I wanted to be a compiler for the British Academic Books section. I was nervous at first, but she coached me through it, then asked me to be Assistant Editor. Recently I became Editor after she reached the two-term limit. What prepared me was Narda’s mentorship!
What do you do in your leadership role with ALCTS?
I continue to compile the British Academic Books section of LMPI, which involves gathering data on books published in the U.K. and determining useful information, such as the annual price change. As Editor, I set deadlines for other compilers, rework the narratives and tables so that they are uniform, liaise with Information Today, Inc. who publishes “Prices of U.S. and Foreign Published Materials” in the Library and Book Trade Almanac, and copyedit the final product with my Assistant Editor, Rachel Fleming.
What do you do in your spare time?
My spare time is mostly eaten up by dissertation work and teaching as an adjunct in the philosophy department. My wife Lindsay and I see a lot of movies, however. We go to the movie theater at least three times a month, and we also watch a lot of movies and TV shows at home.
What is your favorite book?
I am constantly reading non-fiction, but I won’t claim that I have a favorite non-fiction book. Jean-Paul Sartre’s Nausea is the work of fiction that sticks with me the most, so I usually tell people it’s my favorite novel. It’s been quite a few years since I last read it and would like to again soon to see if I still like it. It’s certainly not a book for everyone. The last two fiction books I read were Lincoln in the Bardo and The Underground Railroad; I recommend both. My guilty pleasure is listening to Jack Reacher audiobooks when I have a long commute and when I’m doing yard work.
What is your professional or personal philosophy?
I consider myself to be a teacher—it doesn’t matter whether I’m staffing the research services desk, writing an article, doing collection development, or actually teaching a class. Teachers do a public good; they help make society better by continually learning and sharing their expertise with others. Built into this philosophy is the need to be empathetic. Not everybody learns the same way, and not everyone appreciates having to learn, so patience and flexibility are a must in order to live up to the ideal.