Professor Emeritus Michael Buckland was honored with induction into the California Library Association’s Hall of Fame on May 13, 2021, along with Library School alumnus Hiroshi Kashiwagi (’66).
The California Library Hall of Fame honors the historical significance and lifetime achievements of the many librarians, library workers, and supporters who have helped promote and improve library services in California. The award is given to individuals who have made a historically significant and sustained contribution to the improvement of California libraries.
Professor Buckland has spent a long career in university libraries. “When I completed high school I did not know what kind of work I wanted to do. But I believed that libraries were socially beneficial and, I supposed, congenial places to work. So I decided to become a librarian until I found something more interesting to do — and that is still my position,” he said.
Buckland has served on the faculty of the School of Information since 1976 and was the dean of the school from 1976 to 1984; during his deanship, he oversaw the renaming of the school from the School of Librarianship to the School of Library and Information Studies. From 1983 to 1987, he served as the assistant vice president for library plans and policies for the nine-campus University of California system. He is well-known for his seminal article “Information is a Thing,” published in 1991, which still appears on library school reading lists today. His most recent book, Ideology and Libraries: California, Diplomacy, and Occupied Japan, 1945–1952, was published in 2020.
Buckland and Professor Clifford Lynch continue to lead the I School’s Friday afternoon Information Access Seminars, which they launched in 1991 and are open to the entire community. “I have been fortunate to have been a librarian in California,” Buckland said. “And for me to be included in the distinguished company of the California Librarians’ Hall of Fame is a very special and pleasing honor.”
Hiroshi Kashiwagi (1922–2019) was interned as a young adult during World War II at the Tule Lake concentration camp and went on to become a writer, actor, and librarian. According to the CLA, he was a leading voice in protesting the unconstitutional imprisonment of Japanese Americans during WWII, about which he wrote seven plays and four books.
Kashiwagi was a 1966 graduate of the UC Berkeley School of Librarianship and found employment in the San Francisco Public Library System that same year. Before his retirement in 1987, he worked as a reference librarian in literature, Japanese language materials, science and government documents, and as a branch manager. He started what is now the largest collection of Japanese language books on the West Coast at the Western Addition Branch Library. In June 2010, a plaque was placed by the San Francisco Public Library Commission at the Western Addition Branch honoring his work as a librarian.