Fellow: Frederick J. Stielow

Frederick J. Stielow, vice president and dean (emeritus) of libraries, electronic course materials, and ePress for the American Public University System (APUS), will be inducted as a Fellow of the Society of American Archivists (SAA) during a ceremony at the Joint Annual Meeting of the Council of State Archivists, the National Association of Government Archives and Records Administrators, and SAA in Washington, DC, August 10–16, 2014. The distinction of Fellow is the highest honor bestowed on individuals by SAA and is awarded for outstanding contributions to the archives profession.

Stielow earned master’s degrees in history and library and archival science, as well as a dual doctorate in American studies and history at Indiana University. He went on to accrue more than thirty years’ experience as an educator, consultant, and manager in archives and related fields. His managerial experience is diverse; in one of his first professional positions, Stielow served as head of archives and special collections at the then University of Southwestern Louisiana, a major center for the revival of the Cajun and Creole heritage. Later in his career, he headed Wayne State University’s Walter Reuther Library, the country’s premier labor archives repository with a staff of twenty-five.

Stielow also undertook a productive decade-long interlude as an archival educator. He served as the director of the history/library science program at the University of Maryland and built a new archival concentration at the Catholic University of America.

“[Stielow] has made considerable contributions to the archival profession in his role as an archival educator,” one supporter wrote. “He has trained archivists in several different graduate programs and through his writing, but more importantly, he regularly informs, challenges, and engages our community to think about new approaches, clarify existing practices to ensure their rationality and application, and to constantly move forward in our approaches.”

In 2004, he was solicited to build a virtual library as part of regional accreditation efforts at APUS, a virtual university serving 100,000-plus students in more than 120 countries. In less than a decade, Stielow grew collections from 20,000 volumes and 8,000 serials to 170,000 ebooks and multiyear runs of 53,000 journals. Access increased by 3,000 percent and searches now exceed 100,000,000 annually. These efforts resulted in his recent selection as the American Library Association’s (ALA) 2014 Distance Librarian of the Year.

Stielow has been an active member of SAA for thirty years, serving on the ALA/SAA/American Alliance of Museums Committee on Archives, Libraries, and Museums; the Harold T. Pinkett Minority Student Award Committee; and the ALA–SAA Joint Committee.

Stielow is one of five new Fellows named in 2014. There are currently 179 Fellows of the Society of American Archivists.