$1M estate gift expands training opportunities for WVU Libraries staff

A recent estate gift to West Virginia University Libraries in honor of a WVU graduate and longtime librarian will provide extensive annual training and development opportunities for library staff.

Following the passing of Shawn T. Carmack in October 2023, the Norma Mansberger Carmack Library Endowment at WVU received a bequest of $1,162,712 from the Shawn T. Carmack Irrevocable Trust.

Norma Mansberger Carmack, Shawn’s mother, was born in Morgantown in 1930 and graduated from WVU in 1952 as a member of Phi Beta Kappa honor society.

Following her graduation and marriage to Ted Carmack, Shawn’s father, Norma moved to San Antonio, Texas, and went on to work for the Ft. Sam Houston Library while obtaining her master’s degree in library science from Our Lady of the Lake University.

For the next 25 years, Norma worked at Trinity University as a government documents librarian while serving as a member of the Friends of the San Antonio Public Library as the president of the Oakwell branch.

Throughout their time in San Antonio, Norma, Ted and Shawn all kept West Virginia University and WVU Libraries close to their hearts. In August 2006, the Norma Mansberger Carmack Library Endowment was established, providing needed financial resources to support the greatest needs of WVU Libraries.

The latest gift from the Shawn T. Carmack Irrevocable Trust serves to not only honor Norma, but also to aid the libraries at her alma mater that helped shape her future and the future of her family.

“This gift certainly carries the hallmark of a librarian giving it,” WVU Dean of Libraries Karen Diaz said. “To provide a dean with the ability to meet the most pressing needs is transformative. Right now, our most pressing need is to support the professional development and engagement of our librarians.”

With this latest gift, the staff at WVU Libraries will engage new training and development opportunities that will help them better serve WVU students and the West Virginia community.

“Our field changes rapidly and it is essential we can support their continued growth and expertise,” Diaz said. “I am so happy to have the ability to do this at this time. I know the Dean of Libraries 10 years from now will likely have a new pressing need. Norma’s gift will be just as valuable to that person at that time.”

The bequest from the Shawn T. Carmack Irrevocable Trust was made through the WVU Foundation, the nonprofit organization that receives and administers private donations on behalf of the University.

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