Alexis A. Antracoli, an experienced historian, archival expert and diversity, equity and inclusion champion, has been named director of the University of Michigan’s Bentley Historical Library.
The Board of Regents voted Feb. 16 to approve Antracoli’s appointment, which takes effect May 1 and runs through June 30, 2028.
“Ms. Antracoli combines an academic background in American history with extensive experience in archival and library policy creation, digital curation programs, and manuscript acquisition,” said Laurie McCauley, provost and executive vice president for academic affairs, who recommended Antracoli.
“She is an information expert of the highest caliber whose dedication to our values makes her the perfect steward of the Bentley Historical Library. I’m confident Alexis will lead the Bentley Historical Library to achieve its goal.”
Antracoli’s appointment follows a national search conducted by a search advisory committee led by Michael Solomon, Rackham Graduate School dean and vice provost for academic affairs. She will succeed Nancy Bartlett, who has served as interim director since September 2022.
“I am delighted that Alexis Antracoli will lead the Bentley Historical Library in its next phase,” Solomon said. “Dr. Antracoli’s research accomplishments in archival science and leadership experience in library collections are an excellent match with the Bentley’s mission to serve our state and university.”
Antracoli received a Bachelor of Arts degree from Boston College in 1997, a Master of Arts degree in history from the University of Connecticut in 1999, a Ph.D. in American History from Brandeis University in 2006, and a Master of Science degree in information, with a specialization in archives and records management, from U-M in 2011.
“I am thrilled to be returning to the University of Michigan to serve as the Bentley Historical Library’s next director,” Antracoli said. “The Bentley has a long history of excellence and leadership in the archival profession, and I am honored by the opportunity to work in collaboration with a diverse group of colleagues at the Bentley and across campus in order to best lead this stellar library forward.”
Antracoli began her career as an assistant professor of history at St. Francis University in 2006. In 2009, she began her archives and library experience processing archival collections at the Bentley. In 2010, she interned in digital preservation, and then became an assistant archivist.
Antracoli became a records management archivist at Drexel University in 2011 and also was an adjunct instructor within the university’s College of Computing and Informatics.
She joined the Princeton University Library in 2015 as an assistant university archivist for technical services and became assistant university librarian for special collections, technical services, in 2020. She also provided leadership and strategic direction to the archival description and processing team, while supervising the collection services team.
From 2019-20, she also supervised the Graphic Arts, Numismatics, and Cotsen Children’s Library units of Special Collections. Beginning in 2019, Antracoli acquired American history manuscripts within the University Library, and implemented new technology projects.
While at Princeton, Antracoli was a part-time lecturer in the School of Communication and Information at Rutgers University, New Brunswick, and was an adjunct instructor in the New York University Department of History.
Antracoli’s career also includes a commitment to advancing diversity, equity and inclusion within the field.
She led the inaugural Princeton University Library diversity and inclusion working group, which resulted in the creation of a Princeton University Library diversity statement, with recommendations for a permanent diversity and inclusion steering group.
She also collaborated with Princeton archivists, an outside consultant and colleagues from historically Black colleges and universities to develop the Archival Research and Collaborative History Program, which introduces students to the archival field and the importance of diversity in the archival profession.
In 2020, she received the C. F. W. Coker Award for Description, Society of American Archivists, for Anti-Racist Description Resources. She has published articles on web archiving and inclusive and reparative description practices.
She also is part of the Society of American Archivists, Mid-Atlantic Regional Archives Conference and the Delaware Valley Archivists Group, including serving in numerous leadership positions.