Rachel Vacek

rvacek's picture

Phone
734-763-0246

Office
Library Infomation Technology
Ann Arbor, MI 48109-1205
Google Talk
rvacek@umich.edu
Head of Design & Discovery

About

As the Head of Design & Discovery (D&D) within the Library IT division, Rachel oversees a team of user experience and accessibility specialists, web designers, front-end web developers, and program managers. 

Beyond the library, she's on the Board of Directors for ALA's Games and Gaming Round Table, an advisory committee for the Designing for Digital conference, and is an editorial board member for Web Management & Marketing: The Peer-Reviewed Journal.

Previously, Rachel was the 2014 President of the Library & Information Technology Association (LITA), a 2014 Library Journal Mover & Shaker, and a 2007 American Library Association (ALA) Emerging LeaderShe was also invited to participate on the Horizon Project Academic & Research Library Panel of Experts for 2016-2017, a group that selects the topics and informs the production of the New Media Consortium (NMC) Horizon Report: 2017 Library Edition

Her research and professional interests include user experience, information architecture, open source technologies, digital libraries, discovery technologies, and library leadership.

Background

Rachel is originally from southwest Ohio and earned her Bachelor of Arts in English from the University of Dayton and her Masters in Library and Information Science from the University of Pittsburgh.  

Rachel joined the U-M Library in August 2016. She has previously worked at the  University of Houston in Houston, TX, Vanderbilt University in Nashville, TN, and Miami University in Oxford, OH.

 

Responsibilities

  • Manages the Design & Discovery department
  • Collaborates with the Library IT leadership team to guide the strategic direction of the division
  • Provides management of the department’s operational portfolio that includes front-end web application development, universal and graphic design, content strategy, user research, and UX strategy
  • Provides leadership for programmatic initiatives within the Library IT division related to service models, cross-divisional workflows, training, assessment, library analytics, and discovery and delivery systems
  • Promotes the adoption of technology policies and standards around user interface design, accessibility, and content governance
  • Coordinates IT project and resource stewardship initiatives
  • Oversees library web services including the library web site, Intranet, in-house and vendor-based cross-platform search and discovery systems, library staff workflow and content tools