Linda L. Phillips, Alumni Distinguished Service Professor and Associate Dean of Libraries, announces her retirement from the University Libraries. Phillips served as interim dean of libraries during the 2010-2011 academic year.
Phillips began her 35-year career at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville Libraries as head of reference in the Hodges Undergraduate Library (UGL), which closed for expansion in 1984.
“It has been an honor and a pleasure to work with Linda for 35 years,” said Rita Smith, associate dean of libraries and a colleague since the two were reference librarians at UGL. “Many library successes — both innovative programs and staff accomplishments — are directly attributable to Linda. She has a remarkable leadership presence and a wonderfully optimistic outlook toward everything she undertakes.”
Over the years Phillips headed the Libraries’ departments of science and technology, cooperative information services, networked services, and collection development. She was often on the forefront of trends in librarianship, spearheading statewide resource-sharing partnerships and early forays into electronic delivery of scholarly resources.
As the first head of scholarly communication beginning in 2008, she promoted open access, raised campus awareness of scholarly publishing issues, and co-chaired the university committee on scholarly communication. She pioneered the Libraries’ peer-reviewed digital imprint, Newfound Press, and UTK’s online institutional repository, Trace.
“Linda has made so many contributions at all levels – locally, nationally, and internationally. She will not be replaced,” said the Libraries’ new dean, Steve Smith.
Phillips says she’s looking forward to spending unstructured time on the arts, gardening, and travel in retirement. She plans to visit campus often to use library resources, attend lectures and classes — and lunch with friends. She and her husband, Ken McFarland, who will continue teaching botany and managing Biology Division greenhouses at UTK, hope to spend weekends hiking East Tennessee’s scenic mountain trails.