Glenn Brudvig, Director of Libraries at Caltech from 1983-1995

Glenn Brudvig, Director of Libraries at Caltech from 1983-1995, passed away on January 26th in North Oaks, Minnesota.  He was 75 years old.  Glenn brought many positive changes to the library during his 12 years as the director, a period of radical change as information technology increasingly influenced library operations. 


Glenn Brudvig during his tenure as Director of Libraries at Caltech.

Glenn’s impact on Caltech began with bringing the engineering branch libraries, their staffs and budgets under central control.  Up to that time, each of those branches had reported to the option administrator.  This change resulted in some organizational challenges, and library services were both strengthened and more consistently delivered and funded under his direction.  It was also during this time that the library’s operations were automated through the purchase and implementation of the online catalog and its supporting modules. 

In particular, many Techers will remember TOC/DOC, the library’s document delivery service, that was launched in 1988 under Glenn’s administration.  It was Glenn’s vision that a scientific research community should have easy access to the journal article literature and that library’s should make their journal article holdings more visible. He used to say that the library’s catalog should consist of journal article data just as much as book data.  Today we would call it mining the hidden web.  The original TOC/DOC database content was tailored to the Caltech Libraries’ journal subscriptions, a concept that was revolutionary in library services at the time. 

Though the Sherman Fairchild Library was completed after his retirement, it was Glenn’s foresight and groundwork from the 1980’s, in developing a program for a much needed consolidated engineering library along with his persistence that set the stage for the successful building project. 

After retiring as the Director of Libraries at Caltech, Glenn moved back to North Oaks, Minnesota.  Glenn earned his B.S. Ed. from the University of North Dakota in 1954 and his M.A. in 1962 from the University of Minnesota.  Glenn was also a Korean War Veteran.  Funeral services were held at the Christ the King Lutheran Church in New Brighton, MN and at Sundahl Lutheran Church in Aneta, ND. 

Glenn is survived by his wife of 53 years, Myrna; sons, Gary of Orange, CT, Lee of Rome, Italy, James of Andover, MN; daughter, Kristin Kenessey of the Netherlands; 5 brothers and 9 grandchildren.