Loretta Parham

Loretta Parham is CEO & Library Director of the Robert W. Woodruff Library of the Atlanta University Center, Inc., an independent entity operating as the single library shared by its four member institutions—Clark Atlanta University, the Interdenominational Theological Center, Morehouse College and Spelman College.  She is responsible for the strategic agenda transforming the Woodruff Library into the best choice for information for its community.  With more than 30 years in the profession her experience includes: Director of the Hampton University Library, Deputy Director of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh, Pa., District Chief of the Chicago Public Library (CPL) and other public service positions with the Chicago Public Schools and the City Colleges of Chicago.

An active leader, scholar and engaging speaker, Parham was named  a 2004 “Mover & Shaker” by the industry publication Library Journal, has authored articles on HBCU libraries and archives, and is co-editor of the book, Achieving Diversity: A How-To-Do-It Manual for Librarians. She has been a featured speaker for programs of the IMLS, University of Tennessee Libraries, Georgia Public Library Services, The Commerce Club, Atlanta, Ga., University of Northern Colorado Libraries, the Heritage Preservation’s National Institute for Conservation, OCLC, the Georgia Society of Archivists, and more.

Parham is a member of the EDUCAUSE Board of Directors, a member of the University of Michigan Information School Alumni Advisory Board, member of the ALA Committee of Accreditation, , and Chair of the ARCHE (Atlanta Regional Council on Higher Education) Library Council.  

Parham is co-founder and past chair of the Historically Black Colleges & Universities (HBCU) Library Alliance, past chair of the Georgia Humanities Council, former board member of the Association of College & Research Libraries (ACRL), the Wayne State University School of Library Science Advisory Board, and past treasurer of the Oberlin Group.  

She has served as faculty for the EDUCAUSE Management Institute, on the National ICT (Information and Communications Technology) Literacy Policy Council’s Governance Committee, past president of the OCLC Members Council, past chair of the Southeastern Library Network (SOLINET-now LYRASIS), and as a member of the Editorial Board of College & Research Libraries (a peer review journal).  

Parham holds the Master of Library Science degree from the University of Michigan-Ann Arbor and the Bachelor of Science in Communications from Southern Illinois University-Carbondale.  Parham is an alumna of the Frye Institute, the ACRL/Harvard Leadership Institute for Academic Librarians, the HBCU Library Alliance Leadership Institute, and Leadership Pittsburgh. She is an active member of ACRL and the American Library Association (ALA).  Loretta O’Brien Parham is married to James B. Parham, Ph.D., and a very proud mother of two sons and a daughter.