News and Announcements | Digital Library of Georgia

Digital Library of Georgia Director Retiring

After 10 years at the helm of Digital Library of Georgia, Sheila McAlister is stepping into retirement. Her last day is June 30.

McAlister joined the University of Georgia in 1996, first serving as a staff member in the Hargrett Rare Book and Manuscript Library. Her first professional role was as the electronic access coordinator at the Richard B. Russell Library for Political Research and Studies. In 2001, she transitioned to the Digital Library of Georgia, which is a GALILEO initiative based at UGA.

“My whole career has been centered around Georgia’s rich history and culture and sharing it worldwide,” McAlister said about her career. “Every day I learn something new about the state. Working with the wonderful and vibrant cultural heritage community in Georgia has been a privilege, and I can’t wait to see where DLG will go next.”

McAlister started as a DLG project manager and digital metadata coordinator and ascended to assistant director, associate director and finally director in 2014. She also acts as the Georgia Service Hub Director for the Digital Public Library of America.

One of the first service hubs of the Digital Public Library of America, the DLG now provides access to more than one million digitized items and more than three million pages of digitized newspaper content. Additionally, she secured more than $1.4 million in grant funding for digitization.

During her DLG tenure, McAlister also increased free online access to primary sources about the state of Georgia, increased educational usage of partners’ digitized materials by spearheading the creation of the co-branded DLG/New Georgia Encyclopedia online exhibit site Georgia Exhibits, and started the DLG subgranting program as a way to diversify content available to the public, among other accomplishments.

“DLG is a key component of the services GALILEO provides to Georgians, and under Sheila’s guidance we have seen it thrive over the past ten years,” said Lucy Harrison, GALILEO’s executive director. “ We thank her for her leadership and passion, and wish her all the best in her next chapter.”

Nicole Lawrence, DLG’s assistant director, will serve as interim director until a formal search for a new leader is completed.