DU Alumni / Magazine Feature / People

Former library professor worked to support literacy

Former DU library Professor Anne Mathews died Oct. 21 at the Life Care Center of Evergreen, Colo.

Mathews was born in Philadelphia in 1928. She earned an AB at Wheaton College in Illinois in 1949, majoring in speech. She earned an MA in library science at DU in 1965, and in 1970 she became an instructor in DU’s Graduate School of Librarianship and Information Management. While continuing to teach she earned a PhD in speech communication at DU in 1977.

She also taught as a visiting lecturer at Simmons College in Boston and at Oregon State University.

Mathews was promoted to full professor with tenure shortly before the DU library science program closed in 1985 (the program reopened 10 years later). She later served as director of the Office of Library Programs in the U.S. Department of Education, on the board of the Jefferson County Public Library and on the board of the Friends of the Denver Public Library.

Her husband, Frank Mathews, notes that Mathews “pioneered research and created policy in community support for libraries and literacy, reciprocal borrowing, computerized card cataloging and virtual reference systems.”

A celebration of Anne Mathews’ life will be held at 2 p.m. on Nov. 13 at the Rockland Community Church, 17 S. Mount Vernon Country Club Road.

In lieu of flowers, the family suggests that memorial gifts be made to the Rockland Community Church to help support the Olmotonyi Middle Girls School in Arusha, Tanzania.

2 Comments

  1. Clara Sitter says:

    Anne was on the faculty when I completed the Advanced Studies Certificate (one year beyond the masters) in library science in 1982. She was “engaged” with students and I considered her a mentor. She will be missed.

  2. Anne’s charm along with her communication skills were outstanding. Her social skills should not obscure the fact that she was committed to her work. She had a serious student following and was certainly an inspiration to women going into librarianship. All of this plus the Mom to four children.

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