Tuesday, July 17, 2012

Observations and Reflections:

Last week Deirdre Scaggs, Greg Casey and I had a very enjoyable visit with Judge Sara Combs at Fern Hill Farm in Powell County which she shared with her late husband, Governor Bert T. Combs. 
Judge Combs was the first woman to serve on the Kentucky Supreme Court.  She presently serves on the Kentucky Court of Appeals and is the first woman to serve as Chief Judge.

Next year will mark the 50th anniversary of the conclusion of Governor Bert Combs’ administration.  The Combs administration is remembered for its courage in passing tax legislation to fund veterans’ bonuses and education and for an executive order banning discrimination in all public accommodations.

UK Libraries is pleased to be the home of the Bert T. Combs Collection.  The collection consists of over 130 boxes of papers, photographs, and audio-visual recordings. This collection primarily documents Combs' term as Governor of Kentucky from 1959-1963, but also covers, to a lesser extent, his other political activities as well. The Louie B. Nunn Center for Oral History also houses interviews that were conducted with Combs on subjects such as his role in the lawsuit that led to the Kentucky Education Reform Act of 1990, and the political careers of such notable Kentuckians as John Sherman Cooper, Edward F. Prichard, and A.B. "Happy" Chandler.

We look forward to highlighting the collection and Governor Combs’ accomplishments during 2013.
 Last week I also participated in a retreat held with Medical Center Library faculty and staff.  MCL has an excellent history of supporting medical education, research, and health literacy both on campus and throughout Kentucky.  The rapidly rising costs of medical library collections and budget challenges facing UK mean that MCL must be innovative and strategic in everything it does. 

I benefited from my conversations with the MCL faculty and staff and I look forward to working with them as they reinvent a medical research library for the 21st century.

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