Susan Ottignon, Distinctive Collections Librarian/Archivist, retired in June, after 26 years of service to Falvey Memorial Library.
Ottignon grew up in Hackensack, N.J., and graduated from Rider University (formerly Rider College) with a BA in Spanish. She received her MS in Library Science from Drexel University and MA in History from Villanova University. Ottignon came to Falvey in 1992, working as a reference/research support librarian, helping students across all disciplines. As her responsibilities became more focused, Ottignon’s position shifted to research/liaison librarian to romance languages. Working with faculty in the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures, Ottignon helped build the library’s collection to support curricular needs of the department. She was also responsible for assisting students speaking Japanese, Russian and Chinese; offering instruction courses to resources that aided their studies. Recognizing her outstanding work, the Department of Romance Languages and Literatures nominated Ottignon for a Facultas Award, which she received in the spring of 2012.
Working as distinctive collections librarian/archivist, a position she held until retirement, Ottignon assisted in curating a number of exhibits, both digitally and physically, including “Wildcats Past and Present: Moments from the History of Sport at Villanova” and “Paving the Way: Villanovans on the Move.” She described, assigned and published numerous items for the Villanova University Digital Library, including the transcription of multiple letters in the Barry-Hayes Collection.
Some of Ottignon’s finest memories at the library were those she spent celebrating with her fellow co-workers at holiday parties and year-end picnics. In retirement, Ottignon will continue to volunteer at her local church and plans to offer her services to the Voorhees Animal Orphanage, working as cat cuddler. Contributing to numerous online transcription projects, Ottignon is currently working on transcribing the Pentagon Papers and tagging photos of Betty Ford honoring her centennial birthday for the “Citizen Archivist Mission” project with the National Archives. She is looking forward to reading countless books into the early morning hours – not having to worry about setting her alarm clock. From all of us at Falvey, best wishes in retirement, Sue!