Michael Ridley
University of Guelph
Guelph, Ontario, Canada

I’m a librarian at the University of Guelph. Currently I teach interdisciplinary undergraduate courses in the First Year Seminar program. For the next year I will be the Acting Director of the program. It’s too much fun.

For a number of years I’ve been the Editor-in-Chief of Open Shelf, the e-magazine of the Ontario Library Association.

Until January 2012 I was the Chief Information Officer (CIO) and Chief Librarian at Guelph. I have been a professional librarian since 1979 working at a variety of positions at the University of Guelph, the Health Sciences Library at McMaster University, and the University of Waterloo. In 1995 I returned to the University of Guelph as the Chief Librarian and in 2004 I was named the CIO.

I hold degrees from the University of Guelph (B.A.), the University of New Brunswick (M.A.), and the University of Toronto (M.L.S. and M.Ed.).

I have served as the President of the Canadian Association for Information Science, President of the Ontario Library Association, and Chair of the Ontario Council of University Libraries. I have been a member of the Board of the Canadian Association of Research Libraries (CARL) the Canadian Research Knowledge Network (CRKN), the Canadian University Council of CIOs (CUCCIO), the Ontario Research and Innovation Optical Network (ORION), the Canadian Library Association and the University of Guelph Board of Governors.

In 2007 I was named “Academic Librarian of the Year” (now called the OCULA Lifetime Achievement Award) by the Ontario College and University Library Association (OCULA), a division of the Ontario Library Association (OLA). In 2008 I was thrilled to be awarded the newly renamed Larry Moore OLA Distinguished Service Award (or as we now called it “The Larry”)from the Ontario Library Association. In 2010 I was honoured to be awarded the Miles Blackwell Award for Outstanding Academic Librarian by the Canadian Library Association. In 2013 I was given the Outstanding Alumni Award from the Faculty of Information Alumni Association (FIAA) at the University of Toronto. In 2015 I was very honoured to receive the Ron MacDonald Distinguished Service Award from the Canadian Research Knowledge Network (CRKN).

My job and professional life are very important to me but my family is the center of my universe. My wife is the Vice President of an advertising agency and we have two daughters (both graduates of the University of Guelph).

For some reason I am also obsessed by the alphabet. I have a collection of children’s alphabet blocks and wooden printer’s type. This has lead to a dangerous exploration of the idea of “post-literacy.” Go figure.