Title: Associate Professor of Library Services, Assistant Chair of Technical Services
Company: Joan and Donald E. Axinn Library, Joan and Donald E. Axinn Library
Location: North Baldwin, NY United States
An educator and an information specialist, Melanie Freese has dedicated more than 45 years to sharing knowledge with others. She started her career as an elementary school teacher on Long Island, NY, in 1967, but found her true calling in the Swirbul Library of Adelphi University in 1972. She served the institution for 11 years in a variety of roles, including assistant to the social work librarian, assistant to the acquisitions librarian and biographical searcher, reserve librarian, and circulation assistant. Currently, Ms. Freese parlays her experience into her positions as an associate professor of library services and assistant chair of technical services at the Joan and Donald E. Axinn Library of Hofstra University. There, she uses her expertise in children’s literature and education material to catalog a variety of materials for the curriculum materials center.
In addition to her professional responsibilities, Ms. Freese also takes time to mentor younger colleagues. She strongly believes that mentoring is a vital part of any profession; schools can teach the theoretical principles of librarianship, but she can offer pragmatic and practical applications beyond the theoretical. Her hands-on experience establishing a library for the residents of the Wayside Home School for Girls in 1993 and founding the religious library at St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Baldwin, NY, has provided her with a unique perspective that she enjoys sharing.
Further, Ms. Freese has used her illustrious background to present numerous training workshops on cataloguing and classification to faculty and staff in both technical and public services. She also reviews materials for “Libraries Alive,” a publication of the National Church Library Association. Ms. Freese authored a chapter titled, ‘Smart Barcodes and Inventory Analysis,’ which appeared in the ninth volume of Library and Archival Security in 1989, and in the 66th volume of PNLA Quarterly.
Ms. Freese worked hard to keep up with the ever-changing nature of her profession. She earned a Master of Library Science from LIU Post in 1977, and a master’s degree in elementary education and a bachelor’s degree in elementary education with a minor in histrory from Hofstra University in 1969 and 1967, respectively. She became a certified public librarian in 1977 and a certified teacher for newborn to sixth grade in the state of New York in 1969.
As a testament to her achievements, Ms. Freese was honored as a Woman of the Year by the Business and Professional Women of Nassau County, Inc., in 1994, and won the Distinguished Service Award from St. Peter’s Lutheran Church in Baldwin, NY, in 1993, among other accolades. She attributes her success to her education and work ethic.
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