ATG Star of the Week: Sue Polanka, Wright State University

by | Mar 17, 2011 | 0 comments

Recently named a Mover and Shaker 2011 by Library Journal, Sue Polanka is our Star of the Week for March 17, 2011.

Name: Sue Polanka
Title: Head, Reference and Instruction
Organization: Wright State University Libraries
Address: 3640 Colonel Glenn Hwy, Dayton Ohio 45435
Phone: 937-775-3142

Born and lived: Cincinnati and Dayton, Ohio areas, Austin, Texas for a short stint. 

Professional career and activities: Reference and instruction librarian and a writer, editor and blogger for reference and ebook topics.

Family: Nice nuclear family with an Alaskan Malamute named Moon

In my spare time: I travel as often as possible, preferably with family and friends and enjoy life to the fullest

Favorite books: Love the legal thrillers and mysteries, but have no time to read them

Pet peeves: bad service and the statement “we’ve always done it that way”

Philosophies:  Everything happens for a reason, the more you give, the more you get, and work hard, play harder

Most memorable career achievement:  Receiving a trademark on No Shelf Required.  The idea for a blog to discuss electronic reference and ebooks was suggested to me by a reference publisher in 2008.  I took the idea and ran with it, developing the content and brand over time.  For me, No Shelf Required® is the perfect intersection of my experience as a librarian and my education in communication and marketing. 

Goal I hope to achieve five years from now:

Professionally – create the ultimate research environment for library users, whether a digital tool, collection of services, or a combination of the two  

Personally – Visit the three continents still on my bucket list with my family and friends

How/where do I see the industry in five years: I hope to see authors, artists, publishers and libraries much more in-tune about licenses, DRM and business models.  Ideally, we will be settling into good practices based on collaborative efforts amongst our groups, all to provide the best access and service to end-users.

History and brief description of your library – Named after the world-famous Wright brothers, Wright State University in Dayton, Ohio, continues their spirit of innovation. The university serves nearly 18,000 students, offering more than 100 undergraduate and 50 Ph.D., graduate, and professional degrees.


  • No Shelf Required:  E-Books in Libraries, ALA Editions, 2011
  • E-Reference Context and Discoverability in Libraries:  Issues and Concepts, IGI Publishing, forthcoming
  • No Shelf Required II:  The Use and Management of E-Books, ALA Editions, forthcoming

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