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Stephen Boss Receives WLA Distinguished Service Award

September 22, 2014

The Wyoming Library Association (WLA) has presented its 2014 Distinguished Service Award to Stephen Boss, University of Wyoming Libraries Information Technology Department head. He will be honored Thursday, Sept. 25, at the WLA’s annual conference award banquet.

The award recognizes the significant accomplishments of a library/foundation employee who has been part of the Wyoming library community for at least the past five years, and his or her contributions toward improving library service to customers; contributions to WLA and the profession; and/or contributions to the community.

“Steve is our go-to-member for conference technology. He has spent the last few years organizing technology volunteers and managing and troubleshooting the laptops and projectors needed for all conference presentations,” says Jamie Markus, who has helped to organize the WLA’s annual conference as both an officer and the state library’s continuing education liaison.

Boss serves on the WLA Executive Board as the Mountain Plains Library Association (MPLA) representative. He spent many hours helping to transition the association to MemberClicks (a web software management program) and has volunteered to chair the 2015 WLA/MPLA conference as well as run for a second term as MPLA representative.

WLA President Richard Landreth’s letter of support noted that Boss has been instrumental in fostering good relationships between WLA and MPLA, thus creating a smooth and efficient planning process to Wyoming in 2015.

Maggie Farrell, UW Libraries dean, thought that supporting nominations would speak to Boss’s contributions to WLA and MPLA, so her nomination letter highlighted other areas of his contributions.

“Steve developed the robust technical infrastructure that UW Libraries enjoy,” Farrell writes. “This was due to his vision of creating an online library that was as functional as a physical library.”

Early in his UW career, Boss analyzed the online catalog that was actually based in Denver, and determined that his office could not only house the servers in Laramie, but do it cheaper and better than outsourcing. Immediately, the UW Libraries saved $35,000 annually in catalog costs. He initiated UW’s work on the Wyoming digital projects, for the state as well as UW.

“His goal was to make accessible the wealth of resources that our citizens should have access to now and in the future. His work forms the basis of our digital library today,” Farrell says. “Thanks to Steve’s leadership and attitude, UW Libraries and Wyoming libraries are making advancements in accessing information and digital content.”

Before working at UW, Boss was a librarian at Coors Brewing, where he developed his understanding of corporate management, marketing, business strategies and working within large, complex organizations.

“This experience has been instrumental for our systems operations,” Farrell says. “Steve is a good leader in helping us to understand the business environment in which our libraries operate.”

Photo:
Steve Boss is the recipient of the Wyoming Library Association’s Distinguished Service Award.


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