Dr. Charles R. McClure, Krafft (formerly Eppes) Professor of Information Studies and founder and Director of the Information Institute in the School of Information (iSchool) at the College of Information, Florida State University (FSU), retires in January 2021. McClure served in these positions for almost 21 years.
Previous to his tenure at Florida State University, he was a Professor at the School of Library and Information Science at the University of Oklahoma, and then earned the rank of Distinguished Professor at Syracuse University, School of Information Studies (one of only eight so named at the time). McClure also served as President of Information Management Consulting Services, Inc. He completed his PhD in Information Studies at Rutgers University, earned a master’s degree in Library Science at the University of Oklahoma, a second master’s in American West History, and his BA in Spanish both at Oklahoma State University.
As Director of the Information Institute, a research center at FSU, he worked with a number of colleagues successfully bringing some $11 million into the Institute in external research funding – in addition to the research funding he received at the University of Oklahoma and Syracuse University. These projects addressed topics such as planning and evaluation of information services; federal information policies; impacts and deployment of broadband; use of information services; deployment and economic impact of telecommunications; provision and assessment of digital services; and more.
Some of the agencies that funded these research projects include the National Science Foundation, the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation, the U.S. Institute of Museum and Library Services, Florida Department of Economic Opportunity, the U.S. National Commission on Library and Information Science, the Coalition of Networked Information, the U.S. Office of Management and Budget, and numerous other Foundations and local, state and Federal government agencies.
McClure was a prolific producer of books, refereed articles, conference papers, and research reports – with some 50 authored or co-authored/edited books and literally hundreds of other published articles, reports, etc. He was also a frequent speaker and workshop leader at various professional associations. During his career he regularly was listed as one of the most cited researchers in library/information science. In 2019 the Library and Information Technology Association selected him to receive the Frederick G. Kilgour Award for Research in Library and Information Technology for his work in telecommunication and information policy research.
Over his career, McClure received numerous awards for his research and teaching from such professional associations as the Association of Library and Information Science Educators, the American Library Association, the Library Research Roundtable, the Defense Technical Information Center, and the American Society for Information Science and Technology. He was also recognized as a Distinguished Alumnus from the University of Oklahoma and Rutgers University.
When asked about his accomplishments over a 43 year career in academia McClure responded that he was most proud of the various students, and especially the doctoral students he directed and taught at the University of Oklahoma, Syracuse University and Florida State University. “Many of these students have gone on to be lead researchers, teachers, and administrators in schools of library/information science, in government, various libraries, and in the private sector.” He was also proud of his broadband research that contributed to increased users of broadband Internet – especially in rural areas.
McClure said he has enjoyed his career in academia and thanks all the people with whom he has had the pleasure of working and meeting. He looks forward to continuing his activities in influencing Federal information policy issues, taking a more active role in a range of environmental issues, assisting his Master Gardener wife, Vicky, with her various projects, and improving his birding skills.