Felicia A. Smith, MLIS, is the inaugural Racial Justice and Social Equity Librarian at Stanford Libraries. Felicia’s primary focus is on Stanford Libraries’ database called KNOW Systemic Racism (KSR). She is responsible for outreach to faculty and students interested in issues of race, ethnicity, and social equity across all departments, schools as well as the Equity, Community, Leadership (ECL) centers. Felicia is responsible for collection development of research materials in all formats that support the research and teaching needs of scholars working on those issues. She works with other bibliographers to identify publishers and data sources that expand the breadth of Stanford’s collections.
In solidarity with the Black Lives Matter movement, Felicia is creating a KNOW Systemic Racism (KSR) database. This will enable users to discover factual data about interconnected systems that pose threats to people of African descent in the United States that have been shaped by racist policies and practices of institutions across decades. It will also help people take action against these threats by knowing their rights and finding, evaluating, and connecting with government agencies and community groups that address systemic racism.
Felicia was also the visionary for an exhibit titled, Say Their Names – No More Names. This forget-me-not exhibit highlights 65 names of recognizable victims who represent larger groups of lesser-known victims. This exhibit includes the names of 330 victims and 3 admitted cases of governmental systemic racism. This exhibit aspires to make the unknown victims - known.
Felicia believes that as an African American librarian, she is charged with the awesome responsibility of being a keeper of the light and protector of our shared memories. Felicia believes that before we as a society can “Know Justice” we must interrogate the injustices and right the wrongs of society, and only then will we “Know Peace.” Articles about Stanford Libraries' Say Their Names – No More Names exhibit were published by Stanford Report and The Stanford Daily.
Please visit the aforementioned exhibit at https://exhibits.stanford.edu/saytheirnames
In addition to her numerous national and international presentations, Felicia has published several peer-reviewed articles as well as a book, Cybrarian Extraordinaire, detailing her highly successful and unique approach to library instruction. Felicia created a program that taught Information Literacy using Kindles for inmates in a Juvenile Jail. Previously, Felicia was as a Criminal Defense Private Investigator in Chicago, Illinois, specializing in homicide and narcotics. Her motto is, "I make the unknown, known."
Felicia received a Master of Library Science degree, from Dominican University and a Bachelor of Arts in Communications from the University of Illinois at Chicago. Her past positions include serving as the Latino Studies Subject Specialist as an Assistant Librarian, at the University of Notre Dame.
Current Role at Stanford
Racial Justice and Social Equity Librarian at Stanford Libraries.
Honors & Awards
Black Community Service Center (BCSC) Community Service Award Nominee, Stanford University's Black Community Service Center (BCSC) (May 28, 2021)
Education & Certifications
Bachelor of Arts, University of Illinois at Chicago, Public Relations/ Communications (1994)
MLIS, Dominican University, Master of Library Science (2004)
Service, Volunteer and Community Work
People of Color in Technology Advisory Group, Stanford University (8/30/2019 - Present)
IDEAL IT is a CIO Council-sponsored program that promotes and advances the Stanford Presidential IDEAL initiative within the IT Community at Stanford. IDEAL stands for Inclusion, Diversity, Equity and Access in a Learning Community, and is a cornerstone of Stanford’s diversity initiatives. The sub-programs that make up IDEAL IT reflect our commitment to providing opportunities where individuals with diverse backgrounds can collaborate, grow, and excel across different functions and disciplines. POC-IT is one of those sub-programs or Affinity Groups. Stanford POC-IT is a university-wide program that advances representation, engagement, and support for people of color in technology roles.
‘Say Their Names — No More Names’ Black Lives Matter Exhibit, Stanford University (September 4, 2020 - Present)
Rise Up for Asian Americans and Pacific Islanders (AAPI), Stanford University (May 10, 2021 - Present)
Felicia Smith helped create Rise Up exhibit in 2021. Similar to the Say Their Names exhibit, in 2020, Stanford Libraries wanted this effort to be a beacon of hope to all those in the AAPI community who ever felt like they did not belong or did not matter.
- Loving Libraries – Stanford University Library’s Paid Summer Internships.” Fostering Student Success: Academic, Social, and Financial Initiatives ALA Editions. 2022: 125-135
- Putting Ass in Library Class Teach Library and Information Literacy With a Sense of Humor: Why (and How to) Be a Funnier and More Effective Library Instructor and Laugh All the Way to Your Classroom Curious Academic Publishing . 2021: 43–53
Virtual Reality in Libraries is Common Sense
Library Hi Tech New
2019; 36 (6): 10-13
View details for DOI 10.1108/LHTN-06-2019-0040
- Information Literacy Instruction using Virtual Reality Beyond Reality: Augmented, Virtual, and Mixed Reality in the Library ALA Editions. 2019: 87–98
Linguistic Diversity in Libraries
2018; 143 (11): 17
View details for Web of Science ID 000446647800007
- Evaluating the Options for Virtual Reality in Literacy Instruction Computers in Libraries 2018
- Artificial Intelligence & Malicious Steganography Computers in Libraries, 2018
- Should Libraries Even Consider Hacking Back If Attacked? Computers in Libraries 2017; 37 (1): 14-16
The Amazing Library Titles Race
2015; 140 (15): 20
View details for Web of Science ID 000361422700016
In Praise of Helicopter Librarians
2012; 137 (18): 42
View details for Web of Science ID 000310865800012
- Cybrarian Extraordinaire : Compelling Information Literacy Instruction Libraries Unlimited. 2011
- Freedom Readers in a Juvenile Correctional Facility Librarians as Community Partners: An Outreach Handbook ALA Editions. 2009
- Perspectives on . . . The pirate-teacher JOURNAL OF ACADEMIC LIBRARIANSHIP 2007; 33 (2): 276–88
J.A.W.S. -- A Historical Perspective
The Journal of Electronic Publishing
2007; 10 (2)
View details for DOI 10.3998/3336451.0010.209
- Games for Teaching Information Literacy Skills. Library Philosophy and Practice 2007; 9 (2)