After 18 years of service to the NNLM PSR, the last eight as Associate Director, and overall career of more than 30 years with the UCLA Library, Alan Carr has announced his upcoming retirement on July 1. His last day of work will be Monday, June 29. Nisha Mody, UCLA Health & Life Sciences Librarian, will become interim Associate Director on June 1.
Alan joined the RML in 2002 as Outreach Coordinator and also briefly served as Member Services & Exhibits Coordinator before his appointment as interim Associate Director in 2012. Prior to these positions, Alan was a librarian in the UCLA Biomedical Library Reference Division. Immediately after his 2002 appointment, Alan launched into the effort of coordinating an HIV/AIDS Information Summit, which was held in March, 2003, on the UCLA campus. He chaired the Steering Committee which planned the event, worked closely with event co-host California AIDS Clearinghouse, was master of ceremonies for the day, and subsequently wrote an article about the successful day-long event, which was published in the Journal of the Medical Library Association.
As Associate Director, Alan provided leadership for RML staff in the accomplishment of several major initiatives. He led the team effort to write the successful cooperative agreement funding proposal for NNLM PSR to serve as the 2016-2021 Regional Medical Library. He also led RML staff efforts to conduct two site visits with NLM review teams, in 2013 and 2019. He developed strong relationships with National Library of Medicine staff, managed RML personnel and budgets, and provided general grant management. He oversaw preparation of administrative supplement funding proposals, to enhance main grant funds. He also worked closely with Kelli Ham on the RML’s response to NLM’s high priority of supporting Network members as the Affordable Care Act (ACA) was rolled out in 2013. Alan and Kelli co-authored an article about development of an ACA LibGuide for the NNLM PSR website, which was published in the May 2014 issue of MLA News.
Alan was active in professional associations throughout his career, particularly the Medical Library Association (MLA) and the Medical Library Group of Southern California and Arizona (MLGSCA) chapter. He served on and chaired numerous MLGSCA committees, and also served as Treasurer in 1999-2000 and President in 2003-2004. For his involvement and dedication to the chapter, he received the MLGSCA Louise Darling Achievement Award in 2006. More recently Alan served a three-year term as MLA Chapter Council Representative for MLGSCA in 2012-2015. He has been a Distinguished Member of MLA’s Academy of Health Information Professionals since 1996. In addition, in 2017-2018 Alan served as Chair of the Librarians Association of the University of California, Los Angeles, a professional organization consisting of all UCLA librarians.
Nisha Mody is a health sciences information professional and a certified speech-language pathologist. She has worked with education and health professionals in private practice, skilled nursing, hospital, K-12, and higher education settings for 11 years. She is passionate about equity and centering marginalized populations. In her spare time, Nisha pursues creative non-fiction writing and is the host of MigrAsians, a podcast about creative and political Asians and their story of migration. She is also a proud cat mom to her sister cats, Sonya and Vera.
Nisha is currently the functional lead for Teaching in Learning in User Engagement. As functional lead she serves as a member of the User Engagement Leadership Council and manages a group of approximately ten librarians and staff who lead teaching and learning activities, foster continual improvement of face-to-face and online instruction, and promote professional development and reflective instructional practice for library staff. Nisha is an exceptional writer. She has a number of publications and participated as a chapter author with User Engagement colleagues in a recently published ACRL monograph, Leading Change in Academic Libraries, Chapter 7, “User Engagement: A Matrix Reorganization.”