“America’s Librarian” and tech reporter receive UMSI alumni awards

Dean Thomas A Finholt presents the 2017 Distinguished Alumni award to librarian and author Nancy Pearl.

The School of Information announced the recipients of its annual alumni awards at the opening of the UMSI Bicentennial Symposium on Friday, October 6 in Rackham Auditorium. Dean Thomas A. Finholt presented the Distinguished Alumni Award to Nancy Pearl (AMLS ’67) and the Rising Alumni Award to Mark Gurman (BSI ’16).

Nancy Pearl is a librarian, book critic and best-selling author. She served as the Executive Director of the Washington Center for the Book at Seattle and is a regular contributor to National Public Radio. She received critical acclaim for her first book, Book Lust, a guide to recommended reading on a wide variety of topics. Her second book, More Book Lust, was a Today Show book club selection. In 2012, Amazon announced it would publish all of the out-of-print selections that she recommended in her first two books.

Nancy Pearl was named Library Journal’s Librarian of the Year in 2011 and that same year received a Lifetime Achievement Award from the PNW Booksellers Association. She has been called “the talk of library circles” by the New York Times and has earned the affectionate title of “America’s Librarian” for her celebrity as a champion of books and reading throughout her career. She is the creator of the internationally recognized program “If All of Seattle Read the Same Book” and even has a librarian action figure in her likeness, produced by the Seattle-based novelty company Archie McPhee. Nancy Pearl published her first novel, George and Lizzie, in September, 2017.

Mark Gurman

Mark Gurman was named the recipient of the Rising Alumni award. Gurman was a member of the first cohort of Bachelor of Science in Information students and graduated in 2016. While a student at UMSI, he worked as a senior editor at 9to5Mac, where he broke several stories on new Apple products, including the iPhone, iPad, Apple Watch and Siri. He was named to the Forbes 30 Under 30 in technology, one of the top 25 bloggers by Time Magazine, and one of 16 to watch by Wired magazine.

Following his graduation, Gurman accepted a position with Bloomberg’s Global Technology Team in San Francisco, where he reports and blogs on consumer technology from Google, Facebook, Amazon and Apple, among other companies.

Posted November 3, 2017