Susan Vita, chief of Special Materials Cataloging from December 1996 until she became acting chief of the Music Division in June 2005, has been appointed chief of the Library of Congress Music Division.
“Sue Vita came to the Music Division over a year ago as the interim chief. It was quickly apparent that she inspired staff, relied on their expertise to make decisions about future directions and brought fresh and creative approaches to the division's mission. Sue has already breathed new life and energy into the Music Division. I am delighted to appoint her to the permanent position,” said Associate Librarian for Library Services Deanna Marcum.
The Music Division holds more than 500 named special collections in music, theater and dance, with close to 20 million items, including the classified music and book collections, music and literary manuscripts, microforms and copyright deposits.
“The Music Division is facing several important challenges, including greater emphasis on the content of its Web sites, expansion of digitization efforts, a focus on improving access to the contents of our collection, an expanded outreach effort including new partnerships with outside institutions, renovation of the reading room and consolidation with the Motion Picture, Broadcasting and Recorded Sound Division reading rooms, and expansion of the concert series and its outreach possibilities. I look forward to working with the superb staff in accomplishing these important goals. Access and communication are paramount for the future of the Music Division,” said Vita.
During her tenure as acting head of the Music Division, Vita facilitated major initiatives such as the “Song of America” tour featuring baritone Thomas Hampson, the creation and launch of the new Performing Arts Encyclopedia and the release of Great Conversations in Music, a four-part television program celebrating Eugene Istomin and some of the world’s most renowned artists. She also was instrumental in the acquisition of the Alvin Ailey American Dance Theater Archive.
Vita has served the Library in various leadership roles, including chief of six different divisions or programs since she joined the Library in March 1976. Her first assignment was as chief of the Cataloging in Publication program, where she greatly increased the number of participating publishers. Since that time, she has also served as chief of the MARC Editorial Division, the Social Sciences Cataloging Division and the Whole Book Cataloging Project, which led to the complete reorganization of the 800-person Cataloging Directorate.
Since 1996 Vita has also been active in the Music Library Association and is currently serving as the Library of Congress representative to its Bibliographic Control Committee.