myMETRO Member Spotlight: Trevor A. Dawes

This month, it is our pleasure to spotlight Trevor A. Dawes, a long time myMETRO member and the current President of the Association of College and Research Libraries. Trevor recently co-edited Twenty-First-Century Access Services: On the Front Line of Academic Librarianship with Michael J. Krasulski, Jr.; the book is now available for sale through major retailers.


08142013_myMETROSpotlightDawes.jpgTrevor A. Dawes is an Associate University Librarian at Washington University in St. Louis, where he’s responsible for research services (librarians with subject liaison responsibilities, the departmental libraries/librarians, and library outreach), as well as scholarly communications, collections and acquisitions, and preservation.

He was previously the Circulation Services Director at the Princeton University Library, and prior to that held several positions at the Columbia University Libraries in NYC. He has worked with staff in developing and providing training for various public service operations; has authored, co-authored, or edited several books and articles on a variety of topics; and has either planned or presented at various local, national, and international conferences.

Dawes's new co-edited volume on the role of access services in the success of an academic library was published by ACRL in the Summer 2013.

Since 2006, Dawes has been an instructor in the MSLIS program at the iSchool at Drexel University. Dawes earned his MLS from Rutgers University, and has two additional Master's Degrees from Teachers College, Columbia University. He is an active member of the American Library Association and is the 2013-2014 President of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL).

1. When did you first join myMETRO?

I joined myMETRO shortly after the program launched. I thought it was a great way to encourage individual participation in all the wonderful activities and opportunities that METRO provides.

2. Describe your work experience prior to joining the profession. What has been your most rewarding experience as a professional so far?

I’ve always worked in libraries, except for some odd summer jobs as a teenager. I started “my career” as a work-study student in college and the rest, as they say, is history. My most rewarding experience so far is having been elected Vice-President/President-Elect of the Association of College and Research Libraries (ACRL). To hold this position has long been a goal of mine as ACRL, the Higher Education Association for Librarians, has long been an advocate for advancing learning and transforming scholarship. I am thrilled to have the opportunity to lead this organization whose member leaders work diligently to make the association successful and, more importantly, work toward helping students, faculty, and other scholars and researchers on our campuses succeed.

3. What drew you to your particular line of work?

As I mentioned, I started library work as a work/study student. I had some wonderful mentors who encouraged me to pursue librarianship as a career. I have always, however, been pulled towards public services work. I do have some experience in technical services and, while I enjoyed that work, much prefer the contact that I have with our library users and certainly enjoy the satisfaction I get in knowing that I – either directly or indirectly – have contributed to the success of the students, faculty member or any other library patron.

4. Tell us a little about the projects that capture your interests these days (either for yourself or an organization).

Right now I am focusing on financial literacy projects, trying to develop ways for librarians and library staff to help our community members be better stewards of their finances. I’ll be focusing on this topic as ACRL President and am also working with some campus partners to develop financial literacy resources and programs on our campus as well. In addition to information about how to afford college, many of our students (and faculty and staff as well) need information about planning for retirement, saving and investing, and making major purchases. As librarians we are uniquely positioned to provide (or help provide) these much-needed resources.

5. What are your favorite ways to stay on top of industry trends?

Attending conferences and participating in other professional development activities are instrumental in helping me keep up to date. I also try to read a lot. I read several library related blogs and literature, and I also read higher education, business, and technology blogs as they often report on issues relevant to what we do in libraries. It’s often a challenge keeping up with all the reading though, so I also rely on my friends and colleagues who keep me up-to-date through our social media connections.

6. What do you find most valuable about your myMETRO membership?

I find the networking and professional development opportunities to be most valuable. METRO has long been a place to which I turn for local, affordable professional development options and the access afforded to myMETRO members makes membership worthwhile!


Are you a myMETRO Member? Would you like to be featured in a myMETRO spotlight? Contact Tom Nielsen at for more information.