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Jodi Koste to serve as University Archivist

April 17, 2013

Just as VCU embarks on a year-long celebration of its 175th anniversary as an institution of higher learning, it has a new university archivist: Jodi Koste of VCU Libraries. 

"VCU  has entered a time of transformation throughout the institution," said University Librarian John E. Ulmschneider in announcing Koste's appointment. "The pace and scope of change underscore more than ever the importance of a strong university archives program that captures and describes the rich history of our institution while informing and grounding its move ahead."

As University Archivist, Koste will work closely with VCU Libraries' leadership and colleagues and staff throughout VCU to create a policy and procedure framework for a comprehensive archives program appropriate for a major research university in the 21st century. Koste will also identify staffing and other resource needs and educate the university community about the role of university archives in contemporary research universities.   

As a first step in the process of developing her new role, Koste is working with the Office of the President on setting up systems for managing the presidential papers as well as the official record of the Board of Visitors. "There will be many uses for these materials from the perspectives of the administration and to those interested in VCU's story and its history," Koste said.

"These records are the institution's legacy in many ways and we want to ensure that this legacy is here 50 years from now." 

In her association with VCU Libraries, Koste has long been involved in outreach and in helping people on both campuses find and use materials about VCU. As Head of Special Collections and Archives at Tompkins-McCaw Library she retains responsibility for special collections initiatives related to the MCV Campus and its academic programs, which already have a large archival component.

Few people are as uniquely and strongly qualified as Koste to create and lead a university archives program at a major research university. With some 35 years experience as an archivist and historian, she has published widely on matters related to regional and university history and delivered many presentations to local, regional and national conventions on archival practice and collections. She was recognized in 2009 with the Distinguished Service Award by the Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference (the organization's highest honor). She is the only archivist to have been elected an officer of the American Association for the History of Medicine and is former president of the Archivist and Librarians in the History of the Health Sciences (ALHHS).   

"Her distinguished career has earned her the esteem of historians, archivists and librarians across the country and the deep respect of VCU faculty and leadership throughout the institution," Ulmschneider said. "I am grateful that Ms. Koste has agreed to take on the important new responsibilities of University Archivist at a time of such profound change at VCU. Her combination of skills, experience, and expertise will ensure that VCU's new university archives starts with the best possible foundation."

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