SLIS Alumna McLain Receives Alumna of Distinction Award


Wendy McLain, Manager of Enterprise Content & Records Management at Valero Energy Corporation, is the School of Library & Information Science recipient of the Alumna of Distinction Award.

McLain graduated from SLIS with her Masters in Library & Information Science in 1990. In January, she was elected President of The Institute of Certified Records Managers (ICRM). She has worked for Amedisys Home Health & Hospice, Jacobs Engineering, the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality, and Exxon Mobil.

McLain received the Alumna of Distinction Award at the Hall of Distinction, held Friday, April 1, 2016 at the Lod Cook Alumni Center.

Her fondest memory of her time at LSU is the “the support and encouragement the SLIS faculty gave me as a student interested in a non-traditional MLIS experience.”

Former Director Beth Paskoff introduced Wendy to special libraries, and former Professor Michael Carpenter told her that it was okay “being a little different” and that “I had broken the mold” of the typical library student.

“I have embraced that freedom to be different in my career choices and continue to push boundaries and look for non-traditional ways of doing things,” said McLain. “I am grateful the faculty supported and nurtured my interests.”

“The School of Library & Information Science prepares information professionals to succeed in library and information jobs locally and internationally,” said McLain. “On a personal level, it was my experience that SLIS educated me, supported me, and encouraged me at a critical time in my professional development. But the bigger and more far-reaching impact was that the faculty modeled that behavior so that their mentee became the mentor for others. Never doubt that your faculty and staff has deep and lasting impact far beyond your classrooms.”

One of her greatest professional accomplishments is her work with the Records Management team that she built for the Louisiana Department of Environmental Quality. The original team of a librarian, an archivist, a mass communication student, and techie, grew to include several more MLIS students and graduates. The team “overcame the DEQ’s negative reputation for poor recordkeeping,” imaging more than 25 million pages, built an Electronic Document Management System, and published it on the Internet. They also created a HODCustomer Service Center staffed with MLIS graduate students who created a knowledge base (wiki) to answer incoming questions and operated the DEQ Technical Library for employees.

McLain has been an active volunteer with SLIS for more than 12 years.

Her advice to recent alumni is, “Publish, Participate, and Party. Publish – learn something so well that you write about it and share it with others. Participate – be active in your workplace, professional associations, and community. Party – cultivate professional connections, develop friendships, and celebrate together!”

Wendy is married to John McLain, also a SLIS alumnus, 1987, and they have two children.

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2016 honorees included:
Cate Heroman, Alumna of Distinction | School of Education
Wendy McLain, Alumna of Distinction | School of Library & Information Science
Wally McMakin, Alumnus of Distinction | School of Kinesiology
Ronnie & Allyson Morris, Philanthropy Award
Lieutenant Herbert “Tweety” Anny, Baton Rouge Area Violence Elimination (BRAVE) Leader, Community Partner | School of Social Work
Mayor Holden’s Love Our Community Summer Youth Employment Program, Community Partner | School of Leadership & Human Resource Development
Cub Club, Community Partner | University Laboratory School


About SLIS
The LSU School of Library & Information Science prepares individuals for positions of responsibility in the field of library and information service and strives to contribute to the advancement of knowledge in the field.

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About CHSE

The College of Human Sciences & Education (CHSE) is a nationally accredited division of Louisiana State University. The College is comprised of the School of Education, the School of Leadership and Human Resource Development, the School of Kinesiology, the School of Library and Information Science, the School of Social Work, and the University Laboratory School. These combined schools offer 8 undergraduate degree programs and 18 graduate programs, enrolling more than 1,900 undergraduate and 977 graduate students. The College is committed to achieving the highest standards in teaching, research, and service and is continually working to improve its programs.

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