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2 Concordia Library veterans are shifting into new roles at other institutions

Danielle Dennie will move on to Laurentian University and Geoffrey Little to Western University
May 16, 2024

Smiling woman with glasses and shoulder-length brown hair Danielle Dennie has been appointed university librarian at Laurentian University.

Longstanding Concordia librarians Danielle Dennie and Geoffrey Little will be leaving the university in early summer to take up new roles. Dennie is head of Georges P. Vanier Library and research data librarian, and Little is associate university librarian for scholarly communication and director of Concordia University Press (CUP).

Dennie has been appointed university librarian at Laurentian University and begins her new role on July 1. Her last day at Concordia Library will be May 31.

Little is making the move to Western University where he will assume the role of vice-provost and chief librarian beginning July 22. His last day at the Library will be June 7.

“Danielle and Geoffrey have both in their own time here established new services in the Library, helping us engage with the community in new and significant ways,” says university librarian Amy Buckland.

“Their knowledge, experience and leadership have greatly contributed to the success of the university.”

‘Respectful collegiality and collaboration’

Dennie has been head of Vanier Library since July 2021 but has been working at the Library in many different roles over the last 18 years. In her current role, Dennie leads the circulation and reference teams at Vanier Library and manages its general operation and public spaces.

Some key projects that stand out for Dennie in her leadership role at Vanier Library include adding artworks in the Vanier Library from Art Volt. This involved collaborating with students on the Library Services Fund Committee.

Dennie worked with the head of information services at the R. Howard Webster Library to create a new space for the Vanier Leisure and Wellness Collection. She also oversaw the move of the Vanier reference office and staff to a new space within the library.

Since 2018, Dennie has been the research data librarian. In this role, she directed the drafting of Concordia’s Institutional Research Data Management Strategy and consultation process that resulted in its approval by Senate. The objective of the strategy is to help researchers work toward adopting data management best practices and to express Concordia’s commitment toward excellence in this area.

“I worked on several projects, either internally in the library or university-wide initiatives, and the one thing that strikes me every time is the high level of respectful collegiality and collaboration here at Concordia,” Dennie says.

“These values allowed the library to successfully bring to fruition many projects and initiatives like the Art Volt artwork in the Vanier Library and the consultations that led to the adoption of the Institutional Research Data Management Strategy.”

As university librarian at Laurentian University, Dennie explains that she will work to ensure that the university’s J.N. Desmarais Library and Archives play an integral part in its new strategic plan.

“My plan is to work with staff, librarians and the community of library users to see which initiatives the library can implement to participate in and achieve the goals set out in the plan.”

Smiling man with short, greying hair and a beard, wearing a blue shirt and dark blue blazer Geoffrey Little is going to Western University where he will assume the role of vice-provost and chief librarian.

‘A career-defining experience’

Little has been Concordia Library’s associate university librarian for scholarly communication since 2018. He joined Concordia in 2010 as collections coordinator and became scholarly communication librarian in 2014.

Little was actively involved in the creation and launch of Concordia University Press in 2016 and has been the press’s director since 2018. He describes Concordia as a place that values experimentation, different ways of thinking and risk taking.

“The launch of CUP is a great example of this. It was a moment when several scholarly publishers in Canada and the United States were closing or under threat of being shuttered,” Little says.

“But Concordia believed that there was space for a small, agile publisher that could make a big impact with beautifully designed open-access books. Playing a role in the press’s creation and work has been a career-defining experience and just one example of the many opportunities that I’ve had at Concordia.”

Other initiatives established during Little’s tenure include the library’s development of a comprehensive digital preservation program. Starting in 2018, several years have been spent establishing guidelines, building infrastructure and creating the digital preservation policy and framework.

Little played a key role in the library’s implementation of the platform ORCID, which stands for Open Researcher and Contributor ID. An ORCID ID is a unique, digital persistent identifier assigned to an individual researcher to distinguish them from others.

As Little begins his new role at Western, he plans to focus on the ongoing multi-year renovation of Western’s D.B. Weldon Library and other library spaces on its campus that need to remain accessible and responsive to users’ needs.

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