Dean of Libraries and University Librarian
James Branch Cabell Library, Room 314-C
As Dean of Libraries and University Librarian, John E. Ulmschneider oversees all aspects of the strategic direction and operations for Virginia Commonwealth University’s library operations, teaching, and collections. He leads strategic planning for the library system and ensures that VCU’s libraries advance the success of students and faculty throughout the university.
He has guided the growth and maturation of VCU Libraries since 1999. During his tenure, VCU Libraries has grown to 3 million volumes, achieved membership in the Association of Research Libraries (ARL), and received the Association of College and Research Libraries’ Excellence in Academic Libraries Award. He oversaw the 2014-16 award-winning expansion and renovation of James Branch Cabell Library.
A native Virginian, Ulmschneider holds a B.A. from the University of Virginia and the M.S. in Library and Information Science from the University of North Carolina-Chapel Hill. Before coming to VCU, he had various management roles in information technologies and librarianship at North Carolina State University Libraries, the College of William and Mary and the National Library of Medicine.
Early in his career, he presented at many library conferences and wrote regularly for professional journals. More recently, he has focused on representing VCU and Virginia’s academic libraries in legislative and institutional advocacy for open educational resources, better stewardship of taxpayer and tuition resources, and fundraising and development for VCU Libraries. He has played an active role in library consortia and professional organizations, including leadership roles with the Association of Southeastern Research Libraries (ASERL), the Scholarly Publishing and Academic Resources Coalition (SPARC), the Virginia Library Association (VLA), the Virtual Library of Virginia (VIVA), and the Richmond Public Library Board of Trustees and Foundation.