Wisconsin Library Heritage Center

The Wisconsin Library Heritage Center is a program of the Wisconsin Library Association Foundation promoting understanding and appreciation of the history of libraries and librarianship in Wisconsin.

Louise S. Robbins, 2017 Library Hall of Fame Inductee

Posted by Larry T. Nix
Larry T. Nix
Larry T. Nix has not set their biography yet
User is currently offline
on Tuesday, October 10, 2017 in Hall of Fame
Louise S. Robbins was inducted into the Wisconsin Library Hall of Fame at the Wisconsin Library Association annual meeting in Wisconsin Dells on October 19, 2017.
louise-robbins-blog-72Louise S. Robbins has been a force in and for Wisconsin libraries since she became Assistant Professor and Faculty Administrator at the UW-Madison School of Library and Information Studies in 1991.  She joined SLIS after being a reading specialist, teacher, and librarian in Oklahoma where she also served as Ada, Oklahoma’s first woman council member and then mayor.  Her work in Oklahoma resulted in being named an Oklahoma “Library Legend” in 2007. In her initial capacity at SLIS she was director of the School’s Laboratory Library.  While at SLIS she built a distinguished record of teaching, service, and research along her way to becoming a full professor and serving as director of the School from 1997 to 2009.  Robbins’ record of activity made an exceptional contribution to Wisconsin libraries that did not stop with her retirement in 2011.  She remains active in the Wisconsin library community through her work with the Red Cliff Band of Lake Superior Chippewa and their effort to rebuild a community library as well as her work with the wider Tribal Libraries, Archives and Museums project and the IMLS funded “Convening Great Lake Culture Keepers,” projects she was instrumental in getting going.  
Louise Robbins has had an impact on library service at the state, national, and international level. As a library and information studies (LIS) educator as well as practitioner she has mentored many librarians in Wisconsin and beyond. At various times Robbins’ teaching load included the required field-practice, or practicum, course as well as the introductory course, meaning virtually every student who came through SLIS for many years had the opportunity to study with her. Besides her teaching/mentoring, Robbins was a force for the profession in Wisconsin by among other things: raising the profile of the School at the University; working on Wisconsin Library Association (WLA) committees; advocating for libraries at the local and state levels; contributing to a report in 2004 on Wisconsin library system organization; and was co-lead for an IMLS grant which provided scholarships and other support to increase diversity among students and the profession. Notably, WLA recognized Louise Robbins’ many contributions in 2001 with their Wisconsin Librarian of the Year award. 
Louise Robbins’ influence on library service goes well beyond the state.  She was actively involved with the Association for Library and Information Science Education, including being president in 2003 and 2004.  She was active in the American Library Association (ALA) and a member of the Committee on Accreditation, meaning she provided feedback to LIS programs in other places.  She was the external reviewer for numerous LIS faculty at other universities. And she was a member of the National Board for Beta Pi Mu, the librarian honor society which raises scholarship money and published a scholarly monograph series (for which she served as a member of the editorial board from 1996-2003). On the international level, she has consulted with librarians in Kazahkstan to help develop the Nazarbayev University Library and in China through her work with the Evergreen Education Foundation.    
Louise Robbins has made important and lasting contributions to the profession through her scholarship.  Robbins’ main research stream investigated the development of Intellectual Freedom as it contributes to the understanding of librarianship as a profession and the library as an institution. Her best known work is The Dismissal of Miss Ruth Brown: Civil Rights, Censorship, and the American Library, published by the University of Oklahoma Press in 2000.  The book won several awards including the Eliza Atkins Gleason Book Award of the Library History Round Table of ALA and a WILLA Award (named for Willa Cather).  She is author of several other books including Censorship and the American Library: The American Library Association’s response to Threats to Intellectual Freedom, 1939-1969, which was published by Greenwood Press in 1996.  In 1994 she published one of many articles in library publications titled “Loyalty Investigations in the Library of Congress: 1947-1956 : No ‘Communists or Cocksuckers’” in Library Quarterly.  The article helped launch the ALA conference program, “Hidden from History: Lesbigays in Libraryland” which led to a book edited by James Carmichael, Daring to Find Our Name: The Search for Lesbigay Library History that came out from Greenwood in 1998.  Robbins’ work was timely and part of the work which helped create a professional tide improving climate for GLBT users and employees.  Robbins’ research also contributed to LIS pedagogy through her “action research” on the laboratory library.  Along with her work with ALISE, she has contributed to the profession by influencing the notion of LIS education itself. 
Robbins received a B.A. with honors at Mary Washington College in Fredericksburg, VA in 1965; a M.Ed. from East Central University in Ada, OK in 1973; a M.L.S. from Texas Woman’s University in Denton, TX in 1984; and a Ph.D. from Texas Woman’s University in Denton, TX in 1991.
Robbins professional positions prior to coming to Wisconsin included serving as Assistant Professor and Librarian at Linscheid Library, East Central University, Ada, OK and Elementary School Library Media Specialist, Byng School, Ada, OK.
This Hall of Fame entry was adapted from content provided by Michele Besant.


No comments made yet. Be the first to submit a comment

Leave your comment

Guest Sunday, January 26, 2020


Popular Tags

14 Hall fo Fame 2012 Hall of Fame 2010 World War I WHCLIS Library people WLA 125 Special libraries Hall of Fame 2015 Brown Deer Public Library Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries School of Library and Information Studies Carnegie libraries Clinton Public Library Wisconsin Free Library Commission Campaign Jerome P. Daniels Academic Librarians J. D. Witter James Huff Stout Hall of Fame 2009 10 Library celebrations Anniversaries Richard E. Krug Library People Historical Register S. Janice Kee Irene W. Newman Library people Postcards Richard J. Sorensen Public library systems Ruth Ann Montgomery Sarah Janice Kee UW-Madison school of library and information studies Beloit Public Library Marketing-Publicity Manitowoc Public Library 23 Nancy Marshall Lutie Eugenia Stearns Evansville Wisconsin campaign Milwaukee Public Library Meter mail slogans WLA 125 Gertrude Thurow COLAND Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Peter G. Hamon Black River Falls Wisconsin Historical Society WLA 125 Lowell W. Wilson Library Artifacts Beaver Dam Public Library Association of Library Trustees Advocates and Friends Dorothea M. Krause McMillan Memorial Library Helen Adams library legislation Charles Bunge Gilbert H. Doane Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Eratus Swift Wilcox Wayne A. Wiegand Library e Jane K. Billings campa Bob Bochfer Hall of Fame 2019 20 Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Wisconsin Rapids campaign Wisconsin Library Bulletin Sandra Friedman Dolnick buil Black River Falls Public Library Campaign for Wisconsin Libraries Ruby Roeder Hall of Fame 2012 Library Buidlings campaign UW-Milwaukee Libraries William J. Wilson background T. B. Scott Free Public Library Wisconsin Free Library Commission I Love Libraries Campaign Events & Meetings Postcards National Library Week Wisconsin State Normal School-Milwaukee Hall of Fame 2012 28 Dick Sorensen Hall of Fame 2012 Portage Public Library Inform Wisconsin Middleton Public Library Wisconsin Literary Travel Guide Digital Collections Hall of Fame 2015 caly film Milwaukee Public Library caly film UW-Milwaukee School of Information Studies Oshkosh Public Library Woman's Congress 27 Madison Public Library Lucy E. Smith Morris Hall of Fame 2008 John J. Jax Ripon Public Library Milwaukee Art Museum CCBC Exhibits Edward Asahel Birge library exhibit Clarence Brown Lester ca hall of WLA 125 National Bookmobile Day Hall of Fame 2015 Increase A. Lapham Hall of Fame 2011 Governor's Conference on Library and Information Services Hall of Fame 2018 Wisconsin Library Trustees and Friends Robert Bocher Larry T. Nix Soughton Public Library Matthew S. Dudgeon Suring Area Public Library Hall of Fame 2016 Parcel post Marjorie Sornson Malmberg books-by-mail Superior Carnegie Libraries John Miller Chancellor Katharine MacDonald Jones Gerald A. Somers WAAL Library Trustees Hall of Fame 2014 Cam American Library Association Rusk County Community Library membership libraries caly film Campaign Cornelia Marving Pierce Hartford Public Library WWI Library War Service archives bookworm Centennial DeForest Area Public Library library memorabilia Eager Free Public Library Dianne McAfee Hopkins Wisconsin Library Association Lutie Stearns Hall of Fame 2018 Postcards Tower Hill Wisconsin Elroy Public Library Hall of Fame 2013 Kimberly-Little Chute Public Library Amer Events 22 Pinback buttons Wilbur Lyle Eberhart Pewaukee Public Library Capitol Fire 1904 Events & Meetings bed and breakfast Wisconsin State Law Library Public libraries Zona Gale American Library Association Library War Service Carl Spitzweg cam Buttons Library Buildings 11 State Law Library Bookmobiles Delia Ovitz Louise S. Robbins 24 Publications Bernard Schwab Library Systems state historical society Hall of Fame 2017 Postcards presentations Dick Sorensen Hall trav Cooperative Children's Book Center Hall of Fame 2015 Wisconsin Library Heritage Center Public libraries Klaus Linderfelt Academic Libraries Hall of Fame 2015 White House Conference on Library and Information Services Brown Deer Public Library Wisconsin Association of Academic Librarians Ice Storm 21 Nolan I. Neds James Duane Doty Anniversaries traveling libraries Wisconsin Federation of Women's Clubs Orrilla Blackshear Library History Council on Library and Network Development Brown County Library Campaing for Wisconsin Libraries People library education anniversaries Frank Avery Hutchins Appleton Public Library School libraries Uncategorized

Wisconsin Library Association Foundation Logo