Estorino to be interim library leader

May 5, 2022

María R. Estorino will be interim vice provost for University libraries and University librarian effective May 16, 2022. Her appointment prepares the way for a smooth transition ahead of the departure of Elaine L. Westbrooks at the end of the month. Estorino has been associate University librarian for special collections and director of the Louis Round Wilson Special Collections Library since 2017.  

Maria Estorino

María R. Estorino will become interim vice provost for University libraries and University librarian at UNC-Chapel Hill, effective May 16, 2022. (Photo by Jeyhoun Allebaugh/UNC-Chapel Hill)

“The University Libraries are intellectual and creative centers that are integral to our campus and community. Sustaining and even increasing our momentum during this transitional moment is a priority for me and for the dedicated staff of the University Libraries,” said Estorino. 

During her time at Carolina, Estorino has been instrumental in expanding and transforming the work of special collections. She has co-authored or advised on numerous grant and gift proposals, including a successful recent proposal to the William R. Kenan, Jr. Charitable Trust for a new $2 million endowment and challenge match. She has also helped to secure major new collections, such as the entirety of the Florence Fearrington rare book collection valued at more than $6 million. 

One of Estorino’s signature initiatives at Wilson Library has been the development of a vibrant fellowships program to support undergraduates, graduate students, and faculty and community researchers in their scholarly and creative uses of Carolina’s special collections. 

Estorino has been a strong voice for the University Libraries Reckoning Initiative and for the Library’s commitment to inclusion, diversity, equity and accessibility. Under her leadership, for example, Wilson Library staff have advanced efforts to review and update descriptions of library materials with more accurate and inclusive language. Special collections units have also deepened their engagement with communities that have historically been underrepresented in rare and archival collections. 

Estorino has furthered partnerships across the University community. She has spearheaded the Library’s collaboration with the College of Arts & Sciences on the Southern Futures strategic initiative that works toward a more diverse and inclusive American South. She is a member of the Campus Arts Council and the advisory board for the Research Labs of Archaeology, and she serves ex officio on the UNC Press Board of Governors. In the community, she serves on the Strategic Planning Steering Committee for the Chapel Hill-Carrboro Schools and was on the board of Orange Literacy.  

Before coming to Carolina, Estorino was vice president of museum collections at HistoryMiami Museum in Florida. Prior to that, she spent 14 years in positions of increasing responsibility at the University of Miami Libraries, concluding in 2013-15 as the Esperanza Bravo de Varona Chair of the Cuban Heritage Collection.  

To make an appointment with Estorino, contact the Library Administrative Office at (919) 962-1301. Estorino tweets from @mariaestorino.