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Dr. Elizabeth Aversa

May 14, 2014

A belated nod to Dr. Elizabeth Aversa, who retired in September, 2013. She was into bibliometrics, and was a masterful manager, retiring as Director of the School of Library and Information Studies, University of Alabama.

My appreciation of her teaching style is summed up thusly: “Dr. Aversa, you lay these perfect minefields, and no matter where I step in your assignments, I learn something.” Tolerant, firm, demanding, she would not ask anyone to do anything that she would not do herself, and excelled at leadership—by example. Her command presence was formidable, and her advocacy for libraries and librarians, unstinting.

I am thinking of Dr. Aversa today as I found a farewell note she wrote to family, colleagues, and friends dated September 23, 2013. I quote in part:

“…long and wonderful professional journey that ends here in Tuscaloosa, Alabama. … No one could have had a better career, thanks to you and the others with whom and for whom I’ve worked in libraries, publishing, and universities.

[We] are relative newcomers to Tuscaloosa, but it will continue to be our permanent home. For those who say, ‘You’re not from around here,’ all we can say is that we got here as soon as we could!”

Just saying I hope to live long enough to become so gracious, and, to earn so many friends.

Hope your friends are well-earned, mliswilltravel.

P.S.—A good friend of mine pointed out that not only is Dr. Aversa still teaching, but that she remains very active in many pursuits concerning librarianship. And, the opera, don’t forget the opera. I guess the use of the past tense “was” was a bit jarring. Having re-read, I agree. Dr. Aversa, you go, girl!

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