Former Canadian Studies Librarian Linda Di Biase will retire from UW Libraries this spring after over thirty years with the university. As Canadian Studies Librarian from 1988 to 2006, Linda helped to build one of the most robust collections on Canada in the country: UW Libraries boast well over a half million catalogued volumes, maps, videos, serials, and government documents on Canada in English, French, and Indigenous languages. In 2006 Sion Romaine took over as Canadian Studies Librarian continuing to build one of the nation’s strongest collection in Canadian studies.
During her time as Canadian Studies Librarian, Linda managed the Title VI subvention for Canada acquisitions, assisted the Center in writing Title VI grant proposals, and regularly wrote a column for the Center’s newsletter. She also wrote a number of grant proposals to the governments of Canada and Québec, resulting in tens of thousands of dollars in funding to enhance the Canada collections in UW Libraries. From 1988 to 1997 she served as the Chair for the Library Committee for the Pacific Northwest Canadian Studies Consortium, organizing and chairing meetings of Consortium librarians in conjunction with the annual Consortium board meetings. In this role she was awarded a $55,000 (CND) grant from the Department of External Affairs, Canada, to acquire the Early Canadiana microform collection as a cooperative purchase among nine Consortium libraries.
From 1997 to 2001 Linda served as the Executive Director of the Pacific Northwest Canadian Studies Consortium, chairing the Canadian Studies Discussion Group of the Association of College and Research Libraries, presenting at biennial meetings of the Association for Canadian Studies in the United States (ACSUS), serving on the first ACSUS web site committee, and presenting on Canadian studies topics at meetings of the American Library Association.
The Canadian Studies Center, Pacific Northwest Canadian Studies Consortium, and the Association for Canadian Studies in the United States all owe a great debt of gratitude for Linda Di Biase, who contributed so much to the vibrancy of the Canadian studies community at the university, regionally and nationally. Linda will be much missed and always greatly appreciated for her time and sincere dedication to the study of Canada. Merci mon amie!