Contributed by Hollie Stevenson-Parrish
Gerald Holmes, associate professor and diversity coordinator at UNC Greensboro’s University Libraries, has received the 2019 Distinguished Alumni Award from the UNC Chapel Hill School of Information and Library Science (SILS). The award recognizes Holmes’ work at UNC Greensboro, UNC Chapel Hill, and professional library organizations. Through his work, Holmes has made the library profession more welcoming and opened it up to individuals from underrepresented backgrounds.
At UNC Greensboro, Holmes has spearheaded multiple diversity efforts, including the Faculty Senate Committee on Equity, Diversity and Inclusion, the Chancellor’s Equity, Diversity and Inclusive Excellence Committee, the University Libraries’ Diversity Committee, and the University Libraries’ Diversity Residency Program. Holmes has also worked to mentor other employees and community members by working with stakeholders to build networks of diversity education.
Additionally, Holmes assisted in creating the Association of College & Research Librarians (ACRL) Residency Interest Group, has served on the Executive Board of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCALA), and has served on the Executive Board of the North Carolina Library Association (NCLA) and chaired its Round Table for Ethnic Minority Concerns.
Multiple organizations have recognized Holmes for his contributions to diversity and equity. In 2014, he received the Outstanding Service Award from UNCG’s African American Studies program, and the American Library Association named him an Achievement in Library Diversity Research honoree. In 2015, he received the BCALA Distinguished Service to the Library Profession Award, the NCLA Distinguished Service Award, and the Harvey E. Beech Outstanding Alumni Award from the UNC General Alumni Association. Holmes received his master of science in library science from UNC Chapel Hill and a bachelor of science degree in criminal justice from UNC Charlotte. He is also a life member of Kappa Alpha Psi Fraternity, Inc.