Roy Tennant


I excel at communicating with technical and non-technical staff in terms they each understand (I co-authored the first book about the Internet for librarians in the early 90s, which is how many librarians learned to use the Internet). I can reduce complex topics to what is essential to know, and communicate the information efficiently and effectively (I wrote a column for Library Journal for over decade, then blogged for another nearly dozen years). I spot trends not just in libraries, but in the broader environments in which they are situated, and can predict the potential impacts of those trends, admittedly with varying degrees of success (I read widely).

I am experienced with supervising staff, and have run a unit of the Library Systems Office at UC Berkeley. I have worked with academic faculty to launch innovative online services that provided them with new publication opportunities. I am familiar with academic governance structures and procedures.

I have extensive experience with digitization, both professionally (starting in the 1990s) as well as personally (I built the online archive of over 1,500 items at to remember the fight to save the Stanislaus River, now flooded by a dam). I've digitized slides, photographic prints, documents, books, audio, and video, and have recorded metadata elements describing these objects. I'm very familiar with digitization and description standards.

I have broad and deep technical experience, from the first types of library automation projects in the 1980s to querying the application program interfaces (APIs) of modern library systems. I performed structured text markup first in HTML and SGML, then in XML. I edit and execute XSLT stylesheets. I write programs in Perl and Python, and have extensive experience processing 420 million MARC records on a Hadoop cluster. Most importantly, I know when a problem should be automated with software, and can estimate how long it will take.


2007 - 2018 Senior Program Officer
OCLC Research, San Mateo, CA

Plan, design and implement programmatic and research projects that engage institutions in the OCLC Research Library Partnership and contribute to a work agenda and associated deliverables for the division. Provide expertise and advice on scholarly expectations and research information needs; suggest possible technical and policy responses within enterprise and in the target communities. Serve as a primary external communicator helping to craft and amplify what the primary OCLC Research constituencies understand about and expect of the division. Represent OCLC Research nationally and internationally on topics related to the division.

2003 - 2007 User Services Architect
The California Digital Library, University of California, Oakland

Serve as program manager for multiple initiatives to create effective and configurable services that campus library staff can deploy to serve their users. Duties include scheduling, coordinating, and leading complex sets of activities ranging from integrating a variety of software components to the development of user interfaces. Lead project teams of diverse expertise — programmers, librarians, database designers, information architects, graphic designers, and usability engineers. Provide leadership in creating and deploying tools for campus libraries to use to deliver end-user services.

2000 - 2003 Manager - eScholarship Web & Services Design
The California Digital Library

Responsible for the design, specification, implementation, and management of web-based services in support of eScholarship. Create and manage web sites as appropriate, including eScholarship, the eScholarship Repository, the eScholarship Editions, and others. Provide leadership in a team-based approach to web support for CDL projects.

1995 - 2000Digital Library Project Manager
The Library Systems Office, University of California, Berkeley

Responsible for planning and managing digital library projects. Responsible for creating and managing the s work agenda and objectives. Berkeley Digital Library SunSITE, a digital library and support service for digital library developers. Specific sub-sites created and managed in association with topic specialists include the Emma Goldman Papers, the Librarians' Index to the Internet, The Online Medieval and Classical Library, and KidsClick! Served as The Library Project Manager for the California State Library InFoPeople Project. Co-developed and taught the Institute on Digital Library Development, supported by a U.S. Dept. of Education grant. Responsible for managing the Web4Lib and Swish-e electronic discusions. Creator, contributor, and Web manager for the current awareness publication Current Cites.

1993 - 1995 Head, Information Systems Instruction & Support
The Library, University of California, Berkeley

Responsible for the leadership, organization, and management of the unit. Provided strategic leadership in planning and developing effective instruction, training, technical assistance, and consultation programs on applications of library technology. Identified instruction and support needs and created appropriate means for meeting those needs. Provided leadership in creating and/or implementing electronic information resources and access tools. Prepared written reports, guidelines, procedures, and instructional documents. Represented ISIS and The Library on appropriate Library and campus committees. Responsible for coordinating unit activities with other Library units and campus departments. Maintained awareness of campus, University of California, and national issues regarding computerized management and information resource sytems, and contributed to the identification and resolution of these issues through appropriate professional activities. Participated in user instruction, training and support activities. Hired, supervised, and evaluated unit staff.

1989 - 1992 Public Service Automated Systems Coordinator
The Library, University of California, Berkeley

Responsible for developing, coordinating, and evaluating Library instruction program for faculty, students, and staff. Edited online catalog news screens and online comments. Created and coordinated the Library Techonology Watch Program and the Library HyperGuide Project. Responsible for guiding the development of the GLADIS automated circulation system including consultation with users to determine their needs, organizing staff training, preparing documentation, and writing specifications for Systems Office programmers. Provided advice and assistance to library branches regarding automated circulation issues and implementation. Planned and coordinated barcoding projects. Wrote planning documents to support the automation process. Provided reference assistance at a branch library reference desk.

1988 - 1989Coordinator for Automated Circulation
The Library, University of California, Berkeley
1987Automated Circulation Coordinator
Moffitt Undergraduate Library
1987 - 1989Reference and Collection Development Librarian
Moffitt Undergraduate Library, University of California, Berkeley
1985 - 1986Evening/Weekend Circulation Supervisor
Moffitt Undergraduate Library
1982 - 1985Evening/Weekend Circulation Supervisor
Humboldt State University Library, Arcata, California, 95521
1979 - 1982Audio-Visual Circulation Assistant
Columbia College Library Columbia, California, 95310
1977 - 1979Evening/Weekend Circulation Supervisor
Columbia College Library




  • Hastings, Kirk and Roy Tennant, How to Build a Digital Librarian," D-Lib Magazine November 1996.
  • Kalin, Sally W. and Roy Tennant, "Beyond OPACS...The Wealth of Information Resources on the Internet," Database, v. 14, no. 4 (August 1991).
  • Tennant, Roy. The Art & Science of Web Server Management - Proceedings of the Untangling the Web Conference at UC Santa Barbara, April 26, 1996.
  • --------. "A Bibliographic Metadata Infrastructure for the Twenty-First Century," Library Hi Tech v. 22, no. 2 (2004): 175-181.
  • --------. "The Berkeley Digital Library SunSITE" D-Lib Magazine February 1996.
  • --------. "Determining our Digital Destiny" American Libraries, v. 31, no. 1 (January 2000): 54+.
  • --------. "Digital Libraries" column in Library Journal. November 15, 1997 - 2007.
  • --------. "Digital Library Developments at the UC Berkeley Library" Library HiTech v. 14, no. 2-3 (1996): 59-61.
  • ---------. "Guest Editorial: Lessons Learned," Internet Reference Services Quarterly, v. 3, no. 2 (1998):1-7.
  • ---------. "Internet Basic Training: Teaching Networking Skills in Higher Education," Electronic Networking: Research, Applications, and Policy, v. 1, no. 2 (Winter 1991):37-46.
  • ---------. "Internet Basics," ERIC Digest, EDO-IR-92-7, October 1992.
  • ---------. "Internet Basics: Update 1996," ERIC Digest, EDO-IR-96-03, February 1996. Also republished in Educational Media and Technology Yearbook, 1998, v. 23, Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited, 1998, p. 102-104.
  • ---------. "Libraries Share Their Resources -- Digitized Holdings on the Net," Syllabus, v. 9, no. 8 (May 1996): 37-38.
  • ---------. "Network Basics," Computers in Libraries, v.12, no. 4 (April 1992): 55-57.
  • ---------. "So You Want to Be a Web Manager," Syllabus, v. 9, no. 4 (January 1996): 50-53.
  • ---------. "Tips and Techniques for Internet Trainers," Bulletin of the American Society for Information Science, (February/March 1994):22-24.
  • ---------. "The Virtual Library Foundation: Staff Training and Support," Information Technology and Libraries, v. 14, no. 1 (March 1995): 46-49.
  • ---------. "Web4Lib: The Library Web Manager's Electronic Discussion List", Ariadne Issue 5 (September 1996).
  • ---------. "Web4Lib: The Pulse of Librarians Online", Library Hi Tech News, v. 20, no. 2 (March 2003): 7-9.


This is a representative list, not an exhaustive one, and does not include presentations since 2004.