Beth Blakesley, associate dean of libraries at Washington State University, assumes leadership this month as editor-in-chief of the “Journal of Academic Librarianship” (JAL), one of the top publications in the academic libraries field.
Established in 1975, the international and refereed journal publishes articles on issues related to college and university libraries. JAL provides information on subjects of interest to academic librarians, including technology, trends and research in international librarianship, a guide to sources and analysis of library metrics, book reviews, bibliographic essays and more.
“From the earliest days of my library and information science education, JAL was one of the sources I often turned to, and I was proud to publish in JAL earlier in my career,” Blakesley wrote in her introductory editorial for JAL’s first issue of 2015. “It is quite an honor to now be taking the reins as editor of the journal.
“In the past twenty-four years, we have seen many changes in the technologies we use, but our mission remains the same as it has. Budget constraints have been an underlying theme for decades, shaping our efforts to do more with less. I am particularly interested in what library history, much like history in general, tends to show: that (very) similar issues present themselves, and we keep trying to solve them with (slightly) different versions of the same tools.”
Blakesley has been with WSU Libraries since 2003, first as head of library instruction, then as assistant dean for public services and outreach before stepping into her present role as associate dean in 2008.
Before joining WSU, she served as information services librarian at Indiana State University and reference/instruction librarian in literature, languages and cultural studies at University of Massachusetts at Dartmouth.
Blakesley has contributed editorial services to other library-related publications and co-edited the Association of College and Research Libraries’ “Information Literacy Instruction Handbook.”
She wrote the second edition of “Great Women Mystery Writers,” a bio-bibliographic guide to 90 English-speaking women writers, and co-wrote “Literary Research and the American Modernist Era” with WSU humanities librarian and bibliographer Bob Matuozzi. Last year, she also served as a jury member for the Washington State Book Awards.
Blakesley received her bachelor’s degree in English and Spanish from the University of Dayton (Ohio) in 1991 and her master’s in library sciences from Indiana University (IU) at Bloomington in 1993. She also received a master’s in comparative literature from IU in 1995 and a postgraduate certificate in digital archives and records management from San Jose State University in 2013.