NWU Member to be Library Hall of Famer

The Special Libraries Association will bestow its highest honor on NWU DC member Larry Guthrie for serving more than two decades as a law librarian; the organization will induct Guthrie into its hall of fame June 19 at its annual conference in Phoenix, AZ.

“I was thrilled at the news and thought of the numerous inspiring librarians who encouraged me from the beginning, especially Dr. Elizabeth S‎tone and Charles Boyd, a former Green Beret in Vietnam who said that he ‘traded a rifle for a Reference book,’ ” Guthrie recalled.

Guthrie serves as the global interlibrary loan librarian at Covington & Burling, where he’s worked for 22 years.

While Guthrie now lives in the DC area, he hails from Oklahoma. He was inspired to become a law librarian by his neighbor Joseph Mark Lauinger, who was killed in Vietnam. Georgetown University named the Lauinger Library after him, and Guthrie studied there daily as an undergraduate.

“Becoming a law librarian in Washington seemed to be a natural path, since so much of this city revolves around law making,” Guthrie said.

“I would encourage law librarians to utilize all of their areas of interest into their practice of law librarianship,” said Guthrie, who serves on the History and Heritage Committee of the National Press Club.  

“For me it was a love of writing from my days as editor of my high school newspaper,” he added.

Guthrie went on to write about musician Woody Guthrie for This Land Press, the Tulsa World, and The New York Times. (Both author and are related to the Guthries of Okemah, OK.) He earned a second master’s degree is in applied psychology.

“Librarians, like journalists, have to be good listeners to identify what their patrons are really saying. Further, librarians…often‎ offer a momentary break from a lawyer’s busy day, as well as direct them to reference sources.”

Keep an eye on the Special Libraries Association blog for more details about the award in the coming weeks.