Outstanding Service Award

Photo of Joan Metzger

Joan M. Metzger

Books are an important chapter in Joan Metzger's life.

The assistant university archivist in the Regional History Center for more than a decade comes to work early each morning to support the Friends of NIU Libraries. She stocks and operates the group's book sale truck in the main lobby, collecting the money and preparing the next day's transactions – an effort that has pumped more than $25,000 into an NIU Foundation account in the last three years.

Metzger also authored a book that makes a significant contribution to sources available on the Civil War. In 2004, Heritage Books published “The Griffith Letters: the Story of Frank Griffith and the 116th New York Volunteers in the Civil War.”

Her responsibilities include logging new inventory, updating electronic records and helping the more than 3,000 annual researchers and others, including reporters, who access archived documents and photographs.

“She is old school,” said Glen A. Gildemeister, director of the Regional History Center. “Rarely misses a day, always comes in early, works hard every day, does her work with enthusiasm and a smile, learns new skills often, is not discouraged by difficult people and works well as a part of a team.”

Metzger, who holds an NIU master's degree in library science, also is involved in Habitat for Humanity, St. Mary Church and the Huskie Hoop Troop in support of NIU women's basketball. She also helps to judge a yearly history competition for area high schools.