Award Details


The Distinguished Librarian Award is presented annually by the University of Washington Libraries to a librarian whose contributions advance the mission of the Libraries and the University. The awardee is recognized at the University of Washington Awards of Excellence Ceremony.


University of Washington Librarians (UW Seattle, Bothell, Tacoma, Law Librarians), either full-time or part-time, with permanent, provisional, continuing or non-continuing status are eligible. Librarians with temporary appointments are not eligible. Members of the selection committee are not eligible during their term of service. A librarian may receive the award only once.

Nomination Procedure

Anyone may nominate a librarian for the Distinguished Librarian Award. Nominators should submit a completed nomination form and a letter of nomination (two pages maximum). The Selection Committee asks nominees for their CVs and the names of up to three people who could serve as references. The committee then contacts the references to ask for letters of support. Letters should discuss the nominee's accomplishments and how she or he contributes to the Libraries and to the University. The Committee makes decisions based solely on the content of the nomination and support letters, and does not review additional materials or websites. After the awards are announced, each nominee will receive a copy of his or her nomination packet. Individuals nominated are kept in the pool for three years.


      The award recognizes excellence in librarianship, especially as it benefits the academic community through innovative approaches to professional practice, research, and/or teaching and learning. Additional factors include creativity, leadership, service, scholarship, and demonstration of the University of Washington values of integrity, diversity, excellence, collaboration, innovation and respect.



        October 2022: Vice Provost and Dean of University Libraries appoints Selection Committee

        November 1-December 31, 2022: Selection Committee issues call for nominations

        December 31, 2022: Deadline for nominations

        January 20, 2023: Deadline for letters and CVs

        January 20, 2022-February 17, 2023: Nomination review

        Winter/Spring 2023: Libraries reception held to honor all nominees

        Spring 2023: Awardee announced and will be honored at the annual Awards of Excellence ceremony and reception

        Selection Committee

        The selection committee is appointed by the Vice Provost for Digital Initiatives and Dean of University Libraries, and is composed of librarians drawn from the three UW campuses, a representative designated by the chair of the Faculty Council on University Libraries, and a representative from the Information School. The Vice Provost and Dean designates one member of the committee to serve as its chair. The selection committee issues the call for nominations, reviews the nomination packets, and makes recommendations to the Vice Provost and Dean of University Libraries who makes the final selection.

        2021-22 Selection Committee

        Justin Wadland, Head, Digital Scholarship, UW Tacoma Library

        Jessica Albano, Head, Gov Publications, Maps, Microforms, and Newspapers, Reference & Research Services

        Conor Casey, Head, Labor Archives of Washington, Special Collections

        Electra Enslow, Director, Clinical Research and Data Services, Health Sciences Library

        Nia Lam, Research & Instruction / Media Studies Librarian, UW Bothell/Cascadia Campus Library

        Deb Raftus, Romance Languages & Literatures Librarian/Arts & Humanities Liaison Team Leader, Reference & Research Services

        Andrew Weaver, Media Preservation Librarian, Preservation

        Trent Hill, Associate Teaching Professor, Information School

        P. V. "Sundar" Balakrishnan, Professor, UW Bothell School of Business / Faculty Council on University Libraries