Thomas Padilla to join OCLC Research as Practitioner Researcher-in-Residence

Thomas Padilla

OCLC Research is pleased to announce that Thomas Padilla, currently Visiting Digital Research Services Librarian at the University of Nevada Las Vegas (UNLV), will join the division as Practitioner Researcher-in-Residence. In this six-month position, Padilla will investigate and facilitate OCLC’s engagement with the library data science community and will help inform OCLC’s research agenda.

He will work collaboratively across OCLC, OCLC Research, and the Research Library Partnership (RLP), reporting to Andrew K. Pace, Executive Director of Technical Research, to develop an outreach and engagement plan to RLP members and other key stakeholders, plan the program for an in-person event following the 2019 OCLC RLP Research Retreat, and begin building relationships between OCLC and key researchers and data scientists in the field.

“Data Science and Machine Learning are getting more and more attention from libraries,” said Lorcan Dempsey, Vice President of Membership and Research and OCLC Chief Strategist. “It’s great that there are already so many skilled practitioners like Thomas from forward-thinking libraries like UNLV. We’re incredibly grateful to UNLV Libraries for adding Thomas’ expertise to OCLC’s research and engagement endeavors.”

Maggie Farrell, Dean of University Libraries at UNLV, said “As an RLP member, UNLV Libraries are pleased to contribute to exploration of computational approaches that stand to benefit libraries and their many users.”

In addition to his appointment at UNLV, Padilla is currently Principal Investigator of the Andrew W. Mellon Foundation–supported Collections as Data: Part to Whole, and he previously served as Principal Investigator of the Institute of Museum and Library Services–supported Always Already Computational: Collections as Data. Earlier, he was Humanities Data Curator at the University of California Santa Barbara and Digital Scholarship Librarian at Michigan State University. Prior to that he was at the Library of Congress doing digital preservation outreach and education.

He holds an MS in Library and Information Science from the University of Illinois at Urbana Champaign, an MA in History from San Francisco State University, and a BA in History from San Francisco State University. Thomas is a member of the Association for Computers and the Humanities Executive Council (2017–2021), the WhatEvery1Says Advisory Board, and the ARL Fellowship for Digital and Inclusive Excellence Advisory Group.

About OCLC
OCLC is a nonprofit global library cooperative providing shared technology services, original research and community programs so that libraries can better fuel learning, research and innovation. Through OCLC, member libraries cooperatively produce and maintain WorldCat, the most comprehensive global network of data about library collections and services. Libraries gain efficiencies through OCLC’s WorldShare, a complete set of library management applications and services built on an open, cloud-based platform. It is through collaboration and sharing of the world’s collected knowledge that libraries can help people find answers they need to solve problems. Together as OCLC, member libraries, staff and partners make breakthroughs possible.

About UNLV Libraries
As a strong partner in student learning, UNLV Libraries fosters critical thinking and lifelong learning with innovative services, entrepreneurial staff, outstanding digital collections, up-to-date technology and internationally renowned Special Collections and Archives, including two research centers: the Center for Gaming Research and the Oral History Research Center.

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