Heather Silva recently joined the UCSB Library in the role of Senior Director of Development. No stranger to UCSB, she previously worked with Arts & Lectures for 15 years before she joined the Library team.

Her role at the Library allows her to continue to draw upon what she learned while earning her Master’s degree in Art History and Museum Studies at the University of Southern California, where she fine-tuned her interest in collections and archiving. 

We’re excited to have Heather on board and we asked her a few questions about her new role. Check out her responses below and feel free to reach out to her with any questions about the Library or even just to meet up for coffee by emailing heathersilva [at] ucsb [dot] edu or calling (805) 893-5732.

What do you do as Senior Director of Development?

My role is to be an enthusiastic ambassador of the Library and all of the services it provides the UCSB campus and Santa Barbara community. The Library is a dynamic and constantly evolving organization for various people: For students, the Library is a place to learn, study, be curious, and socialize. For faculty, the Library is a stalwart resource of inquiry and research to support innovation and scholarship. For the community, the Library is a portal into lifelong learning and engagement. And for collectors, the Library is a repository of important historical items that deserve to be preserved and accessed by many. As Director of Development, my job is to work with those who are passionate about supporting these services and to help them fulfill their philanthropic goals. 

What makes the Library an important part of campus?

Literally at the crossroads of campus, the Library is the center of information and learning at UCSB. It’s also a bustling place of activity! Each month, students and community visitors make more than 300,000 visits to the Library for critical services, like 24-hour study spaces, access to more than 3 million books and 400 online databases, and technologies that are essential for student success. The Library plays a vital role in making UCSB one of the top research universities in the country. 

What are some examples of how the Library provides a vibrant space for innovation and learning?

There are so many ways in which the Library is at the forefront of innovation and engagement, but here are just a few highlights:

The Interdisciplinary Research Collaboratory, located in the newly constructed section of the Library, is a hub for campus-wide, data-intensive research and teaching projects. 

The Pacific Views: Library Speaker Series features UCSB faculty and graduate students from diverse disciplines who share highlights from their current research, publications, or creative work. The talks are free and open to the public and are held in the Library's stunning 8th Floor Pacific View Room. 

Special Research Collections acquires, preserves, and makes accessible rare, valuable, or unique materials that support UCSB students, faculty, and research programs, as well as the scholarly community.

UCSB Reads is an award-winning campus-wide and community-wide “one book” program championed by the Library that is incorporated into the UCSB curriculum. This year’s featured book is Rising: Dispatches from the New American Shore by Elizabeth Rush.

Scholarly Communication positions the Library as a partner in furthering new opportunities for sustainable, peer-reviewed, open-access publishing and expanding the impact and visibility of UCSB faculty work by reaching new worldwide audiences.

What does the Library mean to you? 

For me, the Library is a place where learning and inquiry can be cultivated for living a better and more informed life, whether you are a current student, UCSB alumni or community member. I vividly remember the role the Library played in my own success as a student and am a fervent believer in its cause. Every day, I walk into the Library and see students working to fulfill their potential. That is really exciting! I hope that you will join me in becoming an ambassador of the Library by visiting us, engaging in our programs and supporting our organization. 

To read more about Library Development or to make a gift, visit www.library.ucsb.edu/give