UW iSchool mourns passing of Dr. Eliza T. Dresang

On April 21, 2014, the iSchool community lost Professor Eliza Dresang, a respected friend, colleague, teacher and community member. Eliza held the endowed Beverly Cleary Professorship in Children and Youth Services.

"Our hearts ache with the loss of our dear friend and colleague,” said iSchool Dean Harry Bruce. “Eliza had a calling to serve young people. She knew she could make the world a better place for children.  She was an outstanding researcher and a master teacher. She led us and inspired us with her intelligence, creativity, grace, charm and deep commitment. We loved her. Our grief is overwhelming".

Eliza Dresang was a champion of children’s literature and digital resources. Her research, teaching, and service focused on the information behavior and resources of digital youth. She earned her Ph.D. in Library and Information Studies from University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1981, and her Masters in Library Science from University of California, Los Angeles. She came to the iSchool in 2008 from Florida State University.

She was widely known for her 1999 book, Radical Change: Books for Youth in a Digital Age, which helped countless librarians and teachers better understand and evaluate literature created for computer-savvy children. Her most current research, Project VIEWS2, funded through the Institute of Museum and Library Services, and in partnership with the Washington state public libraries and schools, focused on measuring early literacy outcomes for children from birth to entering kindergarten.

Dr. Dresang chaired the Newbery Award, Pura Belpré Award, Batchelder Award, and the Notable Children’s Books committees, and served on the Jane Addams Children’s Book Award, Caldecott Award, Great Websites for Children, and Notable Audiobooks committees.

The thoughts and prayers of the iSchool community are with Eliza’s family.

We invite all those who join the university in mourning her loss to share their remembrances at eliza.ischool.uw.edu