The highest honor that MLA confers is the Marcia C. Noyes Award. Jean P. Shipman, AHIP, FMLA, executive director, Knowledge Management and Spencer S. Eccles Health Sciences Library, and director, MidContinental Region and National Library of Medicine National Training Center, National Network of Libraries of Medicine, University of Utah–Salt Lake City, received the 2017 Marcia C. Noyes Award at MLA ’17 in Seattle, Washington.
Shipman launched her professional career in 1980 at the Welch Medical Library, Johns Hopkins University. In 1981, she joined the Maryland Association of Health Sciences Librarians, and since that time, she has been robustly active in service to the health sciences librarianship community of practice.
With a career spanning over thirty-five years, Shipman has proved to be a remarkably effective advocate for the profession, as evinced by the leadership positions she has held on behalf of MLA. She joined MLA in 1984 and began holding leadership positions at the national level in 1992, when she served as chair of the Ida and George Eliot Prize Jury. Since then, she has held at least seven elected or appointed leadership positions, including, but not limited to, 1998–2001 cochair of the 2001 National Program Committee, member of the 1999–2002 Board of Directors and secretary of the Board of Directors from 2000–2002, 2001–2002 chair of the Informationist Conference Task Force, 2006/07 MLA president, 2007/08 chair of the MLA Nominating Committee, and 2011–2014 Journal of the Medical Library Association (JMLA) associate editor, Building Projects. Additionally, Shipman was awarded MLA Fellowship in 2009.
Her passion for the profession is evident in her words and actions. Shipman’s leadership of the National Library of Medicine (NLM)/MLA Health Information Literacy Project has had a positive and enduring impact on patients and health sciences librarians. Many libraries used the tools that the project developed to bring information literacy resources and health literacy concerns to health care professionals, improving patient education activities and interdisciplinary cooperation.
Shipman has devoted her life to innovation in health sciences librarianship, making impactful and durable contributions through service to the profession and through research, scholarship, and applied practice initiatives in the areas of scholarly communications, library space planning, health information literacy, hospital librarianship, mentoring and leadership, and the evolution of new roles for health sciences librarians. Like Marcia C. Noyes, Shipman models the professional and personal characteristics that honor the enduring principles of health sciences librarianship.