Bard College Names Heather Topcik as Dean and Director of LibrariesANNANDALE-ON-HUDSON, N.Y.—Bard College is pleased to announce the appointment of Heather Topcik as dean and director of libraries. In this role, she will be responsible for developing, articulating and implementing a vision for expanding collaboration among all of the libraries across the Bard network. She will also continue to serve as director of research collections at Bard Graduate Center (BGC) and will be dividing her time between Annandale and New York City. As part of this new structure, Alexa Gordon Murphy has been promoted to associate director for public services and outreach and Amber Billey has been promoted to associate director for systems and metadata to create a leadership team at Stevenson Library beginning on July 1, 2023.
Since joining Bard Graduate Center in 2001, Topcik has worked to investigate and advance the role of libraries as centers of academic, artistic, and civic life, with a focus on engaging a diverse constituency of patrons in the generative practice of research. As director of BGC’s library, she has collaborated with faculty to develop and adapt collections to evolving curricula and design a program of bibliographic instruction to support graduate researchers. In addition to initiating and overseeing the development of Blacklight, a custom discovery tool built on open-source software, she spearheaded the integration of BGC’s object collection into the library’s search interface along with the creation of an archive documenting the institution’s exhibition history. In 2017, she created the BGC library’s artist-in-residence program, inviting visual and performing artists whose practice is grounded in research to use the library collection as a resource and incubator for new work.
Born in St. Paul, MN, Topcik graduated from the University of Michigan with a B.A. in art history and studied textiles and fiber arts at the Oregon School of Arts & Crafts before going on to earn dual master’s degrees in library science and art history from Pratt Institute. Prior to joining Bard Graduate Center as a research librarian, she began her library career at the Thomas J. Watson Library at the Metropolitan Museum of Art.
About Bard College
Founded in 1860, Bard College is a four-year, residential college of the liberal arts and sciences located 90 miles north of New York City. With the addition of the Montgomery Place estate, Bard’s campus consists of nearly 1,000 parklike acres in the Hudson River Valley. It offers bachelor of arts, bachelor of science, and bachelor of music degrees, with majors in more than 40 academic programs; graduate degrees in 13 programs; eight early colleges; and numerous dual-degree programs nationally and internationally. Building on its 163-year history as a competitive and innovative undergraduate institution, Bard College has expanded its mission as a private institution acting in the public interest across the country and around the world to meet broader student needs and increase access to liberal arts education. The undergraduate program at our main campus in upstate New York has a reputation for scholarly excellence, a focus on the arts, and civic engagement. Bard is committed to enriching culture, public life, and democratic discourse by training tomorrow’s thought leaders. For more information about Bard College, visit bard.edu.
Bard Press Contact:Ania Bartkowiak
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