Reference librarian Judy O’Dell will retire from the Central Michigan University Libraries on December 31, 2021. Judy joined the Libraries in December 1979 as a Law Librarian. In the early 1980s she was given the responsibility to providing library support to the School of Accounting, with the responsibility for liaising with the other College of Business Administration programs being added her duties during the 1990s. Her final subject responsibility, Computer Science, was added in 2014. Throughout her CMU career she has worked closely with students and faculty to provide them with the information they need to complete their assignments and their research. She also worked with faculty in these departments to select appropriate journals and books for inclusion in the Libraries’ collections.
As a long-time library faculty member, Judy was a regular instructor for the library’s LIB 197 course, having taught it more than 50 times.
Prior to joining CMU Judy worked as a Business/Law Librarian at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte and in the same capacity at Florida Atlantic University, having originally been hired there as an Assistant Acquisitions Librarian. Her first librarian position was at the PACT of New Detroit, which was a group founded following the Detroit Race Riots to fight racism and improve race relations.
Since her arrival on campus Judy has noticed so many changes to both CMU and the city of Mount Pleasant. The city has grown considerably. Independent businesses have made way for big box stores and there is a lot more traffic around town. Years ago, the university was smaller and there were many fewer programs offered, and these things made it easier to meet and form relationships with others, though there were also fewer people to meet. One of the biggest changes, however, has been the rise of technology in both the library and the classrooms. Students today would be quite surprised to discover how little technology there was back in 1979.
Judy’s retirement plans are undecided at this time, so for now she will enjoy her new-found free days and determine in due time what lies ahead. The staff of the University Libraries wish Judy a very happy retirement!