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Jean Riddle Weihs

b. Nov. 12, 1930, Ottawa, ON

Achievements:

During her long and distinguished career, Jean Weihs worked in university, public, school and special libraries as a reference librarian, a bibliographer and a school librarian. Most of her career has been involved in cataloguing, both as a practitioner and a teacher of librarians, library technicians, and school librarians in Canada and as a visiting professor in the United States. Her major contribution has been in the cataloguing of nonbook materials, where she played a major role in the development and standardization of the principles, rules and practices used in the cataloguing of such materials. She was an internationally recognized expert on the bibliographical control of nonbook materials. Jean Weihs has had a long career of active participation serving in 45 positions on national and international committees, publishing 19 books and more than 150 articles, chapters, and reviews. She represented the Canadian Committee on Cataloguing for nine years on the Joint Steering Committee for Revision of AACR, five years of these as JSC Chair. The ground breaking work, Nonbook materials: the organization of integrated collections, was accepted by the American Library Association as one of the four primary sources for the development of the Anglo-American cataloging rules, 2d. ed., 1978. Jean Weihs was also involved in developing the list of general material designations that appeared in AACR2.

Awards and Honours:

In recognition of her service and her outstanding work, Jean Weihs received many awards. The Online Audiovisual Cataloguers Nancy B. Olson Award was given to Jean Weihs ‘for being one of the first librarians to recognize the relevance of media collections to all levels of education and all types of libraries and understanding the value of providing bibliographic access to those collections…” The prestigious Order of Canada award citation states: “Jean Weihs steadfast attention to detail has helped shape library science in Canada and around the world. For over 50 years, she has been a leader in developing global standards and practices for cataloguing nonbook materials. She has chaired and participated in many Canadian and international committees, and has contributed numerous articles and books to help broaden the field. Dedicated to improving bibliographic access to information, she is widely celebrated by her peers, both at home and abroad.”
Member of the Order of Canada, 2017
Ruby E. Wallace Travelling Fellowship (given by Canadian Library Association to study nonbook cataloguing), 1968
Canada Council Award (the first given to a librarian for library science research), 1969
Queen’s Jubilee Medal (given by the Governor General of Canada, nominated by the Canadian Library Association), 1977
University of Toronto Faculty of Library and Information Science Alumni Jubilee Award, 1982
American Library Association Margaret Mann Citation in Cataloging and Classification, 1986
Ontario College and University Library Association Award for outstanding contributions to research librarianship and library development, 1988
University of Toronto Faculty Library and Information Science 60th Anniversary Award for outstanding contributions to the field of library and information science, 1989
Canadian Association of College and University Libraries The Blackwell’s Award for Distinguished Academic Librarian, 1990
John Comaromi Lectureship (awarded for the first time by the Association for Library Collections and Technical Services, American library Association), 1994
Online Audiovisual Cataloguers’ Nancy B. Olson Award for lifetime achievement in the development of access to media collections, 2003
Cataloging and Classification Quarterly Best Paper Award, 2009 for “Designing materials: from germane terms to element types.”
Satija Research Foundation for Library and Information Science (India), World Library Leaders Life Time Achievement Award (first time awarded), 2013

Comments:

“All of Jean Weihs’ achievements have been accomplished in a very quiet and unassuming way…She had a simple objective: to produce a manual of practice which would help Canadian library catalogers solve their nonbook problems. She had no thought or premonition that her work would play an important role in the standardization of nonbook cataloging…It has been diligence and persistence in the search for underlying principles and rules, as well as their logical and careful application in practice, which has ultimately led to her success. In all of her activities, Jean has endeavoured to leave no stone unturned and no problem without a reasonable solution.”–– Nancy J. Williamson

Education:

1951 BA Queen’s University, Kingston, ON
1953 BLS University of Toronto
1965 Specialist in School Librarianship, University of Toronto

Positions:

1953–1959 Bibliographer, University of Toronto
1960–1964 General Reference Librarian, North York Public Library
1965–1966 School Librarian, Public Schools, Scarborough, ON
1966 Cataloguer, Ontario Institute for Studies in Education
1967–1969 Head of Technical Services, Public Schools, East York, ON
1968–1969 Instructor, Ontario Ministry of Education
1969–1986 Director of Library Techniques Course, Seneca College of Applied Arts and Technology
1988 Visiting Professor, University of California, Los Angeles
1989 Visiting Professor, Simmons, College

Publications:(selected contributions)

Books:

Weihs, Jean (1981). Library technician. 4th ed. Toronto: Guidance Centre, Faculty of Education, University of Toronto.
Weihs, Jean (1984). Accessible storage of nonbook materials. Phoenix, AZ: Oryx Press.
Weihs, Jean and Lynne Howarth (1988). A brief guide to AACR2 1988 revision, and implications for automated systems. Ottawa: Canadian Library Association.
Weihs, Jean, with assistance from Shirley Lewis (1989). Nonbook materials: the organization of integrated collections. 3rd ed. Ottawa: Canadian Library Association. [Preliminary ed., 1970, 1st ed., 1973, 2nd ed., 1979].
Weihs, Jean (1991). The integrated library: encouraging access to multimedia materials. 2nd ed. Phoenix, AZ: Oryx Press.
Weihs, Jean (1995). Facts about Canada, its provinces and territories. New York: H.W. Wilson Co.
Weihs, Jean, ed. (1998). The principles and future of AACR: proceedings of the International Conference on the Principles and Future of AACR, Toronto, Ontario, Canada, October 23–25, 1997. Ottawa: Canadian Library Association; London: Library Association Publishing; Chicago: American Library Association.
Intner, Sheila S. and Jean Weihs (1998). Special libraries: a cataloging guide. Englewood, CO.: Libraries Unlimited.
Weihs, Jean (1999). Nunavut: our land. Mississauga, ON: M.O.D. Publishing.
Weihs, Jean (2000). Ontario. Toronto: SYSDOCS/MOD Publishing.
Weihs, Jean (2001). British Columbia. Toronto: SYSDOCS/MOD Publishing.
Weihs, Jean and Janice Caven (2001). Aspects of government in Canada: curriculum source guides. Toronto: SYSDOCS/MOD Publishing.
Intner, Sheila S., Susan S. Lazinger and Jean Weihs (2006). Metadata and its impact on libraries. Westport, Conn.: Libraries Unlimited.
Evans, G. Edward, Sheila S. Intner, Jean Weihs ((2011). Introduction to Technical Services. 8th ed. Greenwood Village, CO: Libraries Unlimited.
Intner, Sheila S., Joanna F. Fountain and Jean Weihs (2011). Cataloging correctly for kids: an introduction to the tools. 5th ed. Chicago: American Library Association.
Intner, Sheila S. and Jean Weihs ((2015). Standard cataloging for school and public libraries. 5th ed. Santa Barbara, Calif.: Libraries Unlimited.
Chan, Lois Mai, Sheila S. Inter and Jean Weihs (2016). Guide to Library of Congress classification. 6th ed. Santa Barbara, Calif.: Libraries Unlimited.
Weihs, Jean and Sheila S. Intner (2017). Beginning cataloging. 2nd ed. Santa Barbara, Calif.: Libraries Unlimited.

Articles in books:

Weihs, Jean Riddle (1979). “Problems and prospects in non-book cataloging.” In The nature and future of the catalog: proceedings of the ALA’s Information Science and Automated Division’s 1975 and 1977 Institutes on the Catalog, edited by Maurice J. Freedman and S. Michael Malinconico, pp. 272–290. Phoenix, AZ: Oryx Press.
Weihs, Jean (1987). “Access to nonbook materials: the role of subject headings and classification numbers for nonbook materials.” In Policy and practice in bibliographic control of non-book materials, edited by Sheila S. Intner and Richard P. Smiraglia, pp.53–63. Chicago: American Library Association.
Weihs, Jean (1987). “A taste of nonbook history: historical background and review of the state of the art of bibliographic control of nonbook materials.” In Policy and practice in bibliographic control of nonbook media, edited by Sheila S. Intner and Richard P. Smiraglia, pp. 3–14. Chicago: American Library Association.
Weihs, Jean (1988). “Organizing the collection: state of the art.” In The library microcomputer environment: management issues, edited by Sheila S. Intner and Jane Anne Hannigan, pp. 35–44. Phoenix, AZ.: Oryx Press.

Journal Articles:

Jean published numerous articles in the journal Technicalities and in ELAN.
Riddle, Jean, Shirley Lewis and Janet Macdonald (1970). “Bibliographic chaos and control in the Multi-Media Centre.” Canadian Library Journal 27 (6): 444–447.
Weihs, Jean Riddle (1972). “Cataloguing rules for nonbook materials.” Technical Sidelights 3 (3): 21–32.
Weihs, Jean Riddle (1973). “The standardization of cataloging rules for non-book materials: a progress report, April 1972.” Library Resources & Technical Services 16 (3): 305–314.
Weihs, Jean Riddle (1976). “Library technicians: a personal view.” Emergency Librarian 4 (1): 24–26.
Weihs, Jean Riddle (1976). “Problems of subject analysis for audio/visual materials in Canadian libraries.” Canadian Library Journal 33 (5): 453–455.
Weihs, Jean Riddle (1977). “Nonbook cataloguing: problems and prospects.” Hennepin County Library Cataloging Bulletin 29: 36–42.
Weihs, Jean (1979). “Survey of library technician programs in Canada.” Canadian Library Journal 36 (6): 354–369.
Weihs, Jean, with Warren Grabinsky (1984). “Library technicians in school systems: the story behind the document: the Ad Hoc Committee on the Role of the Library Technician in Respect to School Libraries.” School Libraries in Canada 4 (4): 17–21.
Weihs, Jean (1987). “Predictions for library technicians: a look at their education and working lives.” Canadian Library Journal 43 (5): 303–306. Reprinted in The AALT Technician 13 (4):37–40.
Weihs, Jean (1987). “AACR2: a practical approach.” Journal of Educational Media and Library Sciences 24 (3): 255–260.
Howarth, Lynne C. and Jean Weihs (1994). “AACR2R: dissemination and use in Canadian libraries.” Library Resources & Technical Services 38 (2): 179–189.
Weihs, Jean and Lynne C. Howarth (1994). “AACR2R format preferences in Canadian libraries.” Library Resources & Technical Services 38 (3): 306–315.
Howarth, Lynne C. and Jean Weihs (1995). “AACR2R use in Canadian libraries and implications for bibliographic databases.” Library Resources & Technical Services 39 (1): 85–99.
Weihs, Jean and Lynne C. Howarth (1995). “Nonbook materials: their occurrence and bibliographic description in Canadian Libraries.” Library Resources & Technical Services 39 (2): 184–197.
Weihs, Jean (1997). “Technical services education for library technicians in the 1990s.” Technical Services Quarterly 15 (1/2): 43–50.
Weihs, Jean (2001). “A somewhat personal history of non-book cataloging.” Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 31 (3/4): 159–188. Also published In The audiovisual cataloging current, Sandra Roe, ed., pp. 59–188. New York Haworth Press.
Weihs, Jean (2004–2005). “Future of the GMD: what can be done to improve it or to find alternative ways to fulfill its function? Presented by Chris Oliver, a report.” OLAC Newsletter 24 (4): 28–30 and Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 41 (1): 215–217.
Weihs, Jean and Frances Davidson-Arnott (2005). “The evolution of library technician programs in Canada.” Feliciter 51 (1): 27–30.
Weihs, Jean (2005). “An interview with Lynne Howarth.” Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 40 (1): 3–17.
Howarth, Lynne C. and Jean Weihs (2007). “Making the link: AACR to RDA. Part 1: setting the stage.” Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 45 (2): 3–18.
Weihs, Jean and Lynne C. Howarth (2008). “Designating materials: from germane terms to element types.” Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 45 (4): 3–24.
Weihs, Jean (2008). “The emergence of Library Technician Programs in Canada: a brief history.” Feliciter 54 (2): 70–73.
Weihs, Jean (2008). “Libraries, librarians, indexes and indexing: should we care?” The Indexer 26 (2): 79–82. Also published In Newcomers: a selection of articles for those new to indexing, edited by Maureen McGlashen, pp. 6–14. London: Society of Indexers, 2012.
Howarth, Lynne C. and Jean Weihs (2008). “Enigma variations: parsing the riddle of main entry and the ‘rule of three’.” Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 46 (2): 201–220.
Weihs, Jean and Lynne Howarth (2008). “Uniform titles from AACR to RDA.” Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 46 (4): 362–384.

Indexes for publications: (compiled by Jean Weihs)

Anglo-American cataloguing rules, second edition, 1998 revision, prepared under the direction of the Joint Steering Committee for Revision of AACR. Ottawa: Canadian Library Association, 1998.
Cataloguing Hebrew materials in the online environment: a comparative study of American and Israeli approaches, by Susan S. Lazinger and Elhanan Adler. Englewood, CO: Libraries Unlimited, 1998.
The concise AACR2, 1998 revision, by Michael Gorman. Chicago: American Library Association, 1999.
Opacity: gender, sexuality, race and the “problem” of identity in Martinique, by David Murray. New York: Peter Lang, 2002.
Homophobias: lust and loathing cross time and space, edited by David A. B. Murray. Durham: Duke University Press, 2009.
ELAN: Ex Libris Association Newsletter

Associations/Committees: (selected)

Member, Joint Advisory Committee on Nonbook Materials, 1970–1995
Canadian Library Association representative to the American Library Association, Resources and Technical Services Division, Audiovisual Committee, 1973–1980
Member, American Library Association, Resources and Technical Services Division, Cataloging and Classification Section Ad Hoc Subcommittee on Subject Analysis of Audiovisual Materials, 1975–1978
Canadian Library Association representative to Canadian Committee on Cataloguing, 1978–1986
Member, Editorial Board, Technicalities, 1980–1986
Chairperson, Canadian Committee on Cataloguing, 1981–1986
Chairperson, Canadian School Library Association Ad Hoc Committee on the Role of the Library Technician in Respect to School Libraries, 1982–1985
Member, American Library Association, Resources and Technical Services Division, Cataloging and Classification Section Committee on the Cataloging of Children’s Materials, 1983–1987
Member, Ontario Library Association Professional Development Committee, 1984–1987
Chairperson, Joint Steering Committee for Revision of Anglo-American Cataloging Rules, 1984–1989
Co-chairperson, Task Force on the Roles of Librarians and Library Technicians, Canadian Library Association, 1986–1989
Ontario Library Association representative to the Toronto Education Group, 1987–1992
Member, American Library Association, Cataloging and Classification Section Committee on Education, Training, and Recruitment, 1988–1992
Member, Online Audiovisual Catalogers Editorial Committee, 1991–1994
Co-chairperson, Education Committee, Ontario Library Association, 1992–1995
Secretary, Ex Libris Association, 1995–2021
Member, Editorial Board, Journal of Library Metadata, 2007–
Member, American Library Association, Resources and Technical Services Division, Cataloging and Classification Section, Policy and Research Committee
National Library of Canada representative to formulate with the Library of Congress the official list of media designations for the Anglo-American Cataloguing Rules

Sources:

Williamson, Nancy J. (1986). “Margaret Mann citation, 1986: Jean Weihs.” Library Resources & Technical Resources 30, no. 4 (October/December): 423-426.
Online Audiovisual Catalogers (2003). “The Nancy B. Olson award winner [Jean Weihs].” OLAC Newsletter 23, no. 3 (September): 36–37.
Roe, Sandra K. (2003). “An interview with Jean Weihs, Nancy B. Olson and Verna Urbamski.” Cataloging and Classification Quarterly 36 (1): 3–23.
Governor General of Canada. Ms. Jean Weihs, Order of Canada, member of the Order of Canada. https://www.gg.ca/en/honours/recipients/146-10307
Jean Weihs. https://prabook.com/web/jean.weihs/3740509

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