Morris Library dean to transfer after 11 years at SIU

By Tara Kulash

After 11 years at the university, Morris Library Dean David Carlson will transfer to a Texas university July 1.

Texas A&M University selected Carlson as the university’s dean of university libraries Dec. 20 after an extensive search of both national and international applicants, according to a TAMUtimes article, the Texas university’s online publication. Carlson said he accepted the position to work at a much larger institution.

“The library in particular reflects a much larger budget and size, a little more staff — so it’s a big step up, I think, in just about every measure,” he said.


Carlson said his 11 years at SIUC is the longest he’s spent in any professional position.

He said with SIU’s new administration, he thought it would be a good time for change.

As dean of Morris Library, Carlson has been responsible for overall administration and operations of the library such as library support services, information services, special collections, library advancement and development.

Carlson said his recent, successful advocation of open access policies could have been why the Texas university chose him. Though scientific research is paid for with tax dollars, many only have access to research in scientific journals through subscription. Carlson promoted that journals be made available online no later than six months after publication.

He said Morris Library is also a member of some of the same organizations as Texas A&M’s library such as the Association of Research Libraries and the Greater Western Library Alliance.

Carlson said he made friends and memories, and many improvements to the library during his time at SIUC.

“It’s some very mixed emotions for me as I prepare to leave, not only professionally but also personally,” he said.

University spokesperson Rod Sievers said Carlson did a great job at Morris Library and SIU wishes him the best as he advances his career. He said it was too early to say when or if a search will begin for a new dean.