Longtime academic libraries professional will become dean at WMU

Contact: Cheryl Roland
Photo of Julie Ann Garrison.


KALAMAZOO, Mich.—A longtime information specialist with an extensive background in meeting the research and instructional needs of university communities has been named dean of University Libraries at Western Michigan University.

Julie Ann Garrison, currently associate dean of research and instructional services at Grand Valley State University, has been named to the position, effective March 1. Garrison's background includes library and information services roles at Central Michigan University, Duke University Medical Center, the National Network of Libraries of Medicine and the University of California-Los Angeles.

"Julie Garrison brings a wealth of experience in managing the needs that are served by a modern academic library," says WMU Provost Timothy Greene. "That experience and her ability to engage with faculty, staff and students led to her emergence as a superb candidate during our national search to fill this position. We look forward to welcoming her to the WMU community."

Garrison will replace Dr. Joseph Reish, who is retiring from WMU after a 43-year career with the University.

"I am so excited to join the WMU community and become a part of the great energy and enthusiasm I encountered while visiting the campus," says Garrison. "During that visit, I saw so many connections and such potential. The projects librarians and staff are already undertaking align closely with my own background and skills, and I know my vision for the future dovetails with what the campus would like to achieve—expansion of the physical and programmatic presence of the library across the campus and in the community."

Julie Ann Garrison

Garrison has been at GVSU since 2007. As associate dean, she is the libraries’ budget officer and a member of the GVSU libraries executive leadership team. She leads the Research and Instructional Services unit, overseeing 21 professional librarians.

Prior to taking the GVSU position, she spent four years at CMU as director of off-campus library services. Prior to that, Garrison spent seven years in a series of progressively more responsible roles at the Duke University Medical Center Library, ending her tenure there as associate director of public services. In addition, her background includes an internship at the National Network of Libraries of Medicine and a reference desk assistant position at UCLA's Louise Darling Biomedical Library.

Garrison is widely published with a series of book chapters and journal articles on library staff development and academic library operations to her credit. She also is active in a number of professional library organizations. She is chair-elect of the Michigan Academic Library Association's Administration Section, a member of the editorial board of portal: Libraries and the Academy, a board member for the Association of College and Research Libraries and an advisory board member for SAGE Library.

A Michigan native, Garrison earned a bachelor's degree in English literature from the University of Michigan in 1992 and a master's degree in library science from UCLA in 1995.

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