Digital Media Commons Supervisor Ian Mellor-Crummey ‘17 has won the 2023 Shapiro Library Staff Innovation Award.
The award honors members of the Fondren Library staff who have developed innovative library services programs or shown exemplary service to the Rice community. The award comes from an endowed fund created by the estate of former University Librarian Beth Shapiro, who was renowned for encouraging staff development and investing in electronic resources and other innovative technologies during her years of service.
Mellor-Crummey was honored during a ceremony May 23 for his efforts in digital media support, utilizing his expertise in photography, video production and media production to develop innovative short courses for students and revamp the DMC’s photo studio, among many other initiatives.
“This award ceremony has become one of the highlights of the year for the staff, and certainly for me, because it gives us the chance to recognize the excellent work done by a staff member and also to honor the memory of Beth,” Vice Provost and University Librarian Sara Lowman said.
“Beth would be so happy and excited to know that we've been doing this for 22 years now in her honor and memory, and I know she would be very pleased to see the list of Shapiro Award winners and hear how they have helped move the library's programs forward through their use of innovation. I think that's very special.”
Mellor-Crummey said it was an honor to receive such recognition for his and the DMC team’s work.
“Everyone at the library is putting in such great work to support such a myriad of things across campus, and obviously I feel I have my own small part in that,” he said. “What it mostly comes down to is I think about what we offer at the DMC, and I think about what would have been most useful to me in my time at Rice, and any areas that I see potential for improvements or areas that we could change the way that we're doing things to make things more accessible to students, I feel inspired to do that because it's what I would have wanted as a student.”
DMC Director Jane Zhao touted Mellor-Crummey’s efforts in improving the DMC’s video and photography studio, as well as a studio soundproofing project, for which he did vast research. The latter is now in the library’s capital projects queue, Zhao said.
“Ian is a well-deserved Shapiro Award winner. He is pleasant to work with and is an asset to Fondren and Rice,” she said. “He is very knowledgeable and competent in photography, video production and media equipment, and he has used that to make a visible impact.”
This year’s selection committee included faculty representative Peter Loewen, library student worker Kelton Keck and library staff members Amanda McClendon, Ivan Acero and Traci Patterson.