Lemley named director of OUWB Medical Library
An image of Trey Lemley
Lemley, who has seven degrees including a master’s degree in library/information science (MLIS) and a doctorate in jurisprudence (J.D.), joined OUWB effective Sept. 1.

Oakland University William Beaumont School of Medicine recently welcomed a new director for its medical library — Trey Lemley.

Lemley, who has seven degrees including a master’s degree in library/information science (MLIS) and a doctorate in jurisprudence (J.D.), joined OUWB effective Sept. 1.

In this role, Lemley is responsible for the operation of library services for medical school students, faculty, and staff, as well as continued development and oversight of the medical library program.

He’s looking forward to making a difference in the OUWB community.

“I hope that in a year people say that I’m very effective in my role, and show great leadership abilities,” he says.

Based on what the OUWB community has shown him so far, he says, Lemley fully expects to thrive.

“Everyone has been lovely,” he said. “Very kind, nurturing, and helpful.”

Doug Gould, Ph.D., professor and chair, Department of Foundational Medical Studies, says Lemley “is an ideal candidate to build our Medical Library Program,

“He has a rich and diverse academic background and a wealth of experience at a well-established medical school,” says Gould. “Upon chatting with him, folks will immediately recognize his professional and thoughtful demeanor — he is an excellent fit for OUWB.”

‘More degrees than a thermometer’

Lemley was born in Alabama, but his family frequently moved when he was younger.

When he was six years old, for example, they moved to Liberia, on the west African coast.

His father ran the railroad for Liberia Mining Co., a subsidiary of Republic Steel. They lived in Bomi Hills, which at the time was the largest iron ore mine on the African continent. When his father wrote a book about alleged government corruption, the family had to leave.

After a brief period in Atlanta, the family ended up in Indiana when he was nine years old.

Throughout it all, there was one constant that remains to this day: A love of learning.

Lemley is a graduate of the University of Texas at Austin, Indiana University Bloomington, and the University of Louisville. He has bachelor’s degrees in history, political science, and psychology, master’s degrees in library/information science (MLIS), music (organ performance), and political science, and a doctorate in jurisprudence from the Indiana University Bloomington School of Law.

“I like to say I have more degrees than a thermometer and the student loan debt to prove it,” he says with a laugh.

Lemley says he pursued the various degrees largely based on his personal interests in a wide variety of topics.

However, it was the MLIS that he says brought them all together.

“When I was 10 years old, instead of playing sports I would go to the library and peruse books,” he says. “When I was older, I realized that I spent so much of my life in libraries that maybe I should work in one.”

Lemley says he enjoys working in the library setting primarily because he likes helping students, and working with faculty. Concurrently, he is always learning new things, especially with regard to the continual evolution of the way people access library content.

“It’s very gratifying,” he says.  

Moving 1,000 miles away

Prior to joining OUWB, Lemley was at the University of South Alabama Biomedical Library, where he most recently served as head of Reference and Collection Development.

He started at the University of South Alabama in 2006 as a reference and research librarian at the assistant librarian rank and was granted tenure and promoted to associate librarian in 2012 and senior librarian in 2017.

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Throughout his 16-year career at the University of South Alabama, Lemley published extensively in peer-reviewed journals and textbooks. Among the proudest moments of his career, in fact, is co-authoring a paper published in the Journal of Academic Librarianship that examined if students study better in silence or with varying degrees of noise.

“When you have a paper that’s accepted by a leading journal like that it’s very exciting,” says Lemley.

Lemley also has been very active in service to numerous library organizations at the national, regional, and local levels, as well as to the University of South Alabama, and the Mobile, Alabama community at large.

He helped to develop the role of the embedded librarian in various nursing classes and served as a liaison to different departments in the College of Allied Health of the University of South Alabama. He has been active in supporting the research needs both of faculty and students in the health sciences.

In addition to his work in academic librarianship, Lemley is a professional musician, most recently serving as the director of music for the Cathedral Basilica of the Immaculate Conception in Mobile. He was an adjunct instructor of political science/criminal justice at the University of South Alabama, where he taught a senior-level course in international law, and he is a member of the State Bar of Georgia.

There are a few other things Lemley says he wants people to know about him.

“I think I’m very approachable, try to be friendly…and just try to be a good person,” he says.

He’s also “just very intellectually curious and always seeking out new experiences.”

“That’s a big part of the reason why I gave up a comfortable life in Alabama and moved 1,000 miles away,” he says with a smile.

For more information, contact Andrew Dietderich, marketing writer, OUWB, at [email protected].

To request an interview, visit the OUWB Communications & Marketing webpage.

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