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New director appointed for Robbins Library, Koller-Collins Center

June 16, 2015
Marie Turner

Marie Turner

Marie L. Turner has been appointed director of the Rossell Hope Robbins Library and the Koller-Collins Center for English Studies at the River Campus Libraries, effective Sept. 15, 2015. Turner is currently a research associate at the Schoenberg Institute for Manuscript Studies in the Kislak Center for Special Collections, Rare Books, and Manuscripts at the University of Pennsylvania. She succeeds Alan Lupack, who retired in February after nearly 27 years of service.

Located on the fourth floor of the University’s Rush Rhees Library, the Rossell Hope Robbins Library houses one of the most comprehensive medieval studies collections in North America. The Koller-Collins Center for English Studies began as the English Department’s core collection for graduate study of literature. The collection has evolved from representing the canon of the field into a reference collection for literary study.

Mary Ann Mavrinac, vice provost and Andrew H. and Janet Dayton Neilly Dean of River Campus Libraries, made the announcement following a national search.

“We are very pleased that Dr. Turner will be joining us,” she said.  “Her academic qualifications, experience in traditional and digital scholarship, and collaborative spirit ensure a bright future for the Robbins Library and the Koller-Collins Center.”

Turner received a doctorate in English from the University of Pennsylvania in 2014. Her research specializes in Middle English and Anglo-Norman literature, manuscript studies, and digital humanities. Since 2013, she has served as a fellow and research associate at the Schoenberg Institute for Manuscript Studies, where she directs the development of the Penn Roll Project, a forthcoming online portal dedicated to the study of 15th-century genealogical rolls. This digital resource will provide a scholarly introduction to late-medieval genealogical literature, displaying images and transcriptions of manuscripts from around the world.

Turner is recognized for her strong paleographical and transcription skills, as well as her experience with digital projects that include Text Encoding Initiative (TEI) and data visualization. She is also a lecturer in the University of Pennsylvania’s Department of English.

Jim Kuhn, assistant dean and Joseph N. Lambert and Harold B. Schleifer Director of Rare Books, Special Collections, and Preservation, chaired the search committee.

“The Robbins Library is a unique and treasured medieval studies resource,” he said. “We are very fortunate to have Dr. Turner join us as our new director. Her doctorate in English medieval romance, combined with her experience in leading and collaborating on digital projects, position her well to lead the Robbins Library in serving diverse academic communities both on and off campus.”

The Robbins Library’s physical holdings include all aspects of Middle English literature, as well as Old English, Anglo-Norman, and medieval French literature; medieval history, art and stained glass, philosophy, and theology; witchcraft; manuscript studies; and Arthurian studies. The Robbins Library Digital Projects–including The Camelot Project, TEAMS Middle English Texts Series, and Visualizing Chaucer–are highly regarded for their use in teaching and research across the globe.

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Category: University News