Pickering named dean of McFarlin Library - The University of Tulsa
Close Menu
Close Menu

Pickering named dean of McFarlin Library

Person leaning against a table

University of Tulsa Professor Emeritus of Anthropology Bob Pickering has been named the R.M. and Ida McFarlin Dean of the Library after serving as interim dean since July 1, 2022.

Pickering led the master’s degree program in museum science and simultaneously served as senior curator at Gilcrease Museum, which is operated by the university. He received his bachelor’s and master’s degrees from Southern Illinois University and his doctorate from Northwestern.

Pickering is overseeing major transformations in McFarlin’s physical space and digital resources that will make the library more valuable to students and faculty who are conducting research on many fronts. “The beautifully appointed spaces, updated equipment and enhanced amenities will benefit every student, faculty and staff member who walks through our doors,” he said.

This summer, three major changes to the building are starting:

  • The lower level is being redesigned to provide more varied study space configurations and greater access to electronic media for individuals, small groups, and classes.
  • The circulation desk area will become brighter and more open, and the former café area will be remodeled into study spaces for individuals and small groups.
  • The two computer labs that were housed on the plaza level are moving to the Student Union and will be replaced by a full-service Starbucks.

Through the years, Pickering developed and directed successful education programs, curated major exhibitions, and published books and articles for academic and popular audiences – including authoring three nonfiction children’s books in anthropology. After more than a decade at the Field Museum of Natural History in Chicago among other notable museums and universities, Pickering appreciates what a modern library offers researchers.

“My experience informs my ability to help students transform themselves into the scholars and professionals that they want to be,” he said. “I am excited to help others explore their own creative paths to happy and successful lives.

“I have a broad perspective on how libraries and museums benefit everyone, and ultimately enhance society. My vision is that the entire TU community will see McFarlin as a comfortable, reliable, and indispensable portal for accessing information from anywhere in the world.”

Learn more about all of the resources at TU’s McFarlin Library today!