The Deanna Nipp-Kientz Memorial Award was first presented in 2012, in honor of Deanna Nipp-Kientz. Deanna Nipp-Kientz was Tenn-Share’s longtime Membership Records Coordinator from 1995 until she passed away in June 2012. Deanna set the highest possible bar for volunteerism in Tenn-Share, serving as the Membership Records Coordinator from the very first year that Tenn-Share collected membership dues. Her grace and diligence in dealing with missing, vague or incorrect information to be sure that all members were promptly served earned her the title of “Database Queen” at Tenn-Share’s 2002 Fall Conference.
The selection criteria is a volunteer who works hard for Tenn-Share but in a capacity that will not qualify them for the Tennessee Resource Sharing Award. The volunteer cannot be serving on the Tenn-Share Board at the time the award is presented.
- 2021 No award presented
- 2020 No award presented
- 2019 Lori Warren, Chattanooga State Community College
- 2018 Mary Ellen Sloan, Middle Tennessee State University
- 2017 Elizabeth Kozlowski, Director, White House Public Library
- 2016 Courtney Fuson, Librarian of Electronic and Educational Resources at Belmont University
- 2015 Jim Nance, Reference and Research Educator Librarian and Associate Professor at the University of Tennessee at Martin
- 2014 Tracy Luna
- 2013 Leah Allison
- 2012 Jodie Gambill
President Pat Van Zandt chose Mary Ellen Sloane as Tenn-Share’s Volunteer of the Year, presenting her with an award at the Tenn-Share Fall Conference on September 28, 2018.. Mary Ellen has been employed at Middle Tennessee State University for 14 years – and a volunteer with Tenn-Share for almost as long. In 2009, she proposed that Tenn-Share form an Electronic Resources Committee, now known as TSERC. She served on the TSERC committee as the Tennessee Board of Regents representative from 2009 through 2014, followed by a term as Secretary of Tenn-Share’s Board of Directors from 2016-2017.
Mary Ellen has served as a valuable member of the Fall Conference Committees, most notably in 2016 when she brought in Joyce Coleman to speak on African American Genealogy, and in 2017 when she brought in Dr. Vincent Woodrow, MTSU, to speak on student success/Drive to 55, then monitored a panel discussion on the same topic featuring librarians from Tenn-Share institutions. Both keynote speakers are still remembered as favorites by attendees. Pat remarked, “She’s always thinking Tenn-Share,” evidenced most recently by initiating and planning Library Carpentry Day in January 2019, in cooperation with MTSU and Tenn-Share (details forthcoming).
The 2017 Deanna Nipp-Kientz Memorial Service Award was presented to Elizabeth Kozlowski, Director of the White House Public Library in recognition and thanks for her exemplary volunteer spirit. President Leah Allison said Elizabeth “is a servant-leader in the truest sense of the word. She works hard at promoting Tenn-Share and it is during her time as Marketing chair that Tenn-Share has seen the creation of promotional materials such as its newsletter, Facebook posts, and a first ever video outlining what the organization can do for its member institutions.”
During the the 2016 Tenn-Share Fall Conference welcome, Leah Allison, President, presented the Deanna Nipp-Kientz Memorial Award to Courtney Fuson, Electronic & Educational Resources Librarian at Belmont University. Courtney is currently one of the co-webmistresses for Tenn-Share and has been involved with Tenn-Share in since 2010, when she was the Learn & Discover chair, coordinating Tenn-Share’s online statewide training program for library staff. She began serving as a co-webmistress in 2011. Courtney has served on several DataFest and Fall Conference committees as well. She has helped design and maintain Tenn-Share’s websites and social media presence, provided technical support, and worked to help maintain Tenn-Share’s membership database. When asked to help with a task, Courtney never says “no,” and her knowledge and work ethic are exemplary. She truly epitomizes Deanna Nipp-Kientz’s attitudes of service, hard work, and dedication to Tenn-Share.
Tracy Luna, Lending Supervisor at the University of Tennessee, Knoxville accepted the mantle from David Adkins, one of the “architects” of the Firefly courier program, at the start of the Firefly Courier Service. Since July 2012 she has been a training developer, quality assurance expert and champion. Tracy has asked great questions and posed practical solutions that show her concern for staff and patrons of all libraries participating in the service.
In the spirit of Deanna Nipp-Kientz, Tenn-Share’s first Membership Coordinator who passed away in 2012, Leah was chosen for her leadership and participation on the Membership and Marketing committees, and special projects. She approaches projects with thorough attention and enthusiasm. Whether the request is tedious or fun, whether it’s within her skill-set or outside, she gives her all. Leah is the Director of Library Services at St. George’s Independent School, Collierville, where she is head coach of three teams. At her school and with Tenn-Share, when Leah says yes to a request for help, she means it.
Jodie Gambill, Systems Librarian at Vanderbilt University Library, is the co-webmistress for Tenn-Share. She was named the first Deanna Nipp-Kientz Memorial Award Volunteer of the Year at the Tenn-Share Fall Conference on September 28. In this role, she has given Tenn-Share excellent website services for several years. She helped to build the Tenn-Share website and related domains, provided technical support, restored lost content, improved security measures, created procedures, and created a database for the membership list. Jodie has also served on other Tenn-Share committees, and she has not missed a board meeting since 2008.
This is but a subset representing the hours and expertise Jodie has given to Tenn-Share. Her tireless and long-term service reflects the legacy of Deanna Nipp-Kientz, Tenn-Share’s Membership Records Coordinator from 1999 until her death in 2012. Deanna shaped the position and stated that it was her joy to work with “Tenn-Share folks, a great group of intelligent and spirited Tennesseans who, with cooperation, vision, and hard work, are the statewide leaders in making information more accessible to our citizens.” Jodie was recognized for exemplifying a similar exceptional volunteer spirit as Deanna, the “Membership Database Queen.”
Deanna Nipp-Kientz, Tenn-Share’s longtime Membership Records Coordinator, passed away in June 2012. Deanna set the highest possible bar for volunteerism in Tenn-Share, serving as the Membership Records Coordinator from the very first year that Tenn-Share collected membership dues. Her grace and diligence in dealing with missing, vague or incorrect information to be sure that all members were promptly served earned her the title of “Database Queen” at Tenn-Share’s 2002 Fall Conference.
Deanna was unofficially Tenn-Share’s head cheerleader. Her belief in resource sharing as a core value of librarianship was evident in her all-out effort to attend every board meeting. Whenever a board meeting needed a little boost to the mood, her “Go, TENN-SHARE!” exclamation was just the right enthusiasm delivered at just the right time.
We miss you, Deanna!