Bridget Bower, Ithaca College Archivist, retires

By Karin Wikoff, July 5, 2021

Bridget Bower, College Archivist, is retiring after 33 years of service to Ithaca College.

Bridget was Ithaca College’s first archivist.  She was originally hired in 1988 to organize records to help with the 1992 Centennial; her work resulted in rich historical background for that event.  She took the exam to be a Certified Archivist the very first year it was available and has been a CA ever since. 

Our first archival space was a cage on the 3rd floor of the library.  The collection was moved twice; Bridget worked in the current location on the 5th floor of the library for 20 years. The College Archives and Special Collections now has around 2,300 boxes and at least 200,000 digital objects. The Rod Serling Archive was transferred to the College Archives from the Park School in 1997.

Bridget served on various committees including 4 or 5 terms on Faculty Council, ICNL Committee, one of the strategic plan committees, and the Centennial Committee. She has been an officer of the New York Archives Conference for almost 30 years.  She served on the SCRLC Digitization Advisory Committee since its founding.  She has been a manager/co-manager of the Digital Commons (our Institutional Repository) since 2015.  She also spent 25 years working as a reference librarian and as a departmental liaison to History, as well as to Philosophy and Religion for a few years.  She served on the initial IC Web Team, including coding the early website; she also populated the first edition of the site index.

Bridget would particularly like to express her appreciation to the researchers who came to explore the collections: “Your questions were beyond any that I could have imagined and you generously shared the results of your research with me.  I have truly valued the people who use the collection, but also the people who have deposited or transferred their records to my care.”

Those of us who have worked with Bridget would like to express our appreciation for her many years of service, for her expertise in assessing, handling, and preserving archival materials, for her deep knowledge of the collections, and for her passion for the work.  We wish her much happiness in this new phase of her life; she will be missed.