Wilson Library Special Collections has a new director, Maria R. Estorino. Estorino appointed Associate University Librarian for Special Collections and Director of the Louis Round Wilson Library, effective January 1, 2017, will provide leadership and administration of one of the nation’s leading university special collections. The Wilson Special Collections Library consists of five distinguished research collections, which together hold more than 800,000 books, including 300,000 rare and unique items, along with 26 million manuscripts, and 3 million photographs, films, artifacts, and non-textual items.
Estorino will manage Wilson Library’s budget and a workforce of 50 librarians, archivists, and support staff, plus student assistants. She will guide and implement strategy for special collections; advocate for and raise awareness of UNC’s special collections; lead efforts to update and enhance the building; and engage in a major University capital campaign.
“UNC students, faculty, and scholars all over the world will be well served by the vision and passion that Maria brings to the Wilson Library,” said interim University Librarian Carol Hunter. “Our outstanding special collections staff will also thrive under her energetic leadership and guidance.”
“Wilson Library presents a unique mix of deep and historic collections, a knowledgeable and committed staff, and a university with a long history of public service and trust,” said Estorino. “I look forward to working with the Wilson team and with the community so that, together, we can set a collaborative and inclusive course for special collections in the 21st century.”
Estorino was most recently vice president of museum collections at HistoryMiami Museum, in Miami, Florida. Before that, she spent 14 years in increasingly responsible positions at the University of Miami Libraries, concluding in 2013-15 as the Esperanza Bravo de Varona Chair of the Cuban Heritage Collection. She has also held librarian and archivist positions at the Miami-Dade Public Library System, the Massachusetts Historical Society, and the Northeastern University Libraries.
Estorino has written and presented widely about collecting and preserving Cuban and Latino heritage materials, and is a member of the advisory board for the journal Cuban Studies. She was the program director and subsequently principal investigator for “Enhancing and Expanding the Reach of the Cuban Heritage Collection,” a $2.4 million grant from the Goizueta Foundation, and she has provided professional consultation services to numerous museums and archives.
Estorino holds an M.S. in library science from Simmons College; an M.A. in history, with a certification in public history, from Northeastern University; and a B.A. in history from Loyola University in New Orleans.