Search begins for vice provost and university librarian

Olin Library
Olin Library in April 2020. (Photo: James Byard/Washington University)

Provost Beverly Wendland has appointed a committee to identify candidates for the position of vice provost and university librarian at Washington University in St. Louis. 

In January, Denise Stephens, vice provost and university librarian, announced plans to serve as dean of libraries at the University of Oklahoma, from which she earned her bachelor’s and master’s degrees. 

Douglas Dowd, professor of art at the Sam Fox School of Design & Visual Arts and of American culture studies in Arts & Sciences, and faculty director of the D.B. Dowd Modern Graphic History Library, will chair the committee. Lisa M. Siddens, assistant provost for strategic projects and appointments, will assist the committee in this search.

“This is an important moment,” Dowd said. “We’ve launched a new strategic planning effort. Chancellor Martin and Provost Wendland are focused on academic distinction. The search for a university librarian offers a chance to explore how the libraries contribute to the research enterprise of WashU and to reinforce the role they play in teaching and learning.”

Other search committee members are:

  • Marleigh Anderson, graduate student studying classics, Arts & Sciences;
  • Jennifer Arch, senior lecturer in English, Arts & Sciences;
  • Jeff Catalano, professor of earth and planetary sciences, Arts & Sciences;
  • Elizabeth Childs, the Etta & Mark Steinberg Professor of Art History, Arts & Sciences, and a member of the Faculty Library Council;
  • Rudolph Clay, head of library diversity initiatives and outreach services and African and African American studies librarian;
  • Ann Desloge, member of the University Libraries National Council;
  • Deborah Ehrstein, head of access services at Olin Library;
  • Joseph Jez, the Spencer T. Olin Professor of Biology, Arts & Sciences; 
  • Marvin Marcus, chair of East Asian languages and cultures and professor of Japanese language and literature, Arts & Sciences, and member of the Faculty Library Council; and
  • Kathleen McDermott, professor of  psychological and brain sciences, Arts & Sciences, professor of radiology, School of Medicine, and member of the Faculty Library Council.

To access the position profile, visit here. To recommend a candidate, contact Park Square Executive Search at