Announcing the Dean of Libraries

Dean of libraries

Dr. Cindy Thompson has been appointed Dean of Libraries by UMKC Provost Jennifer Lundgren. Congratulations, Dean Thompson!

Since Dean Postlethwaite’s retirement in July 2020, Cindy has served as Interim Dean of Libraries while continuing to fulfill most of her duties as Associate Dean of Resources & Services, supported by Sandy Rodriguez as Associate Dean of Special Collections & Archives and Nara Newcomer as Interim Director of Library Operations. Cindy has worked at UMKC Libraries since 2006 in roles including Head of Resource Sharing and Director of Public Services, has served as chair of the UMKC Institutional Review Board since 2016, and as president of the Missouri Library Association for 2021.

“While serving as interim dean for more than a year, Cindy has demonstrated strong leadership, particularly in leading the libraries through the many challenges brought on by the COVID-19 pandemic…She has demonstrated her commitment to our diversity and inclusion values by fostering an organizational culture that encourages open dialogue and produces tangible outcomes.” – Jennifer Lundgren, UMKC Provost

Cindy is a longtime Missouri resident, attending William Jewell College as a first generation college student, earning a Ph.D. in Educational Leadership, Policy and Foundations with an emphasis in Higher Education Administration, and Public Affairs and Administration from UMKC, and a master’s degree in Information Science and Learning Technologies, with an emphasis in Library Science, from the University of Missouri-Columbia.

The Dean of Libraries provides leadership and vision for the Libraries as an academic unit and an organization providing support for the teaching, learning, and research missions of the university. In addition to serving as the head of the organization, the Dean fosters an effective, collegial, and inclusive working environment, develops the library budget, represents the University Libraries in campus decision-making, leads strategic initiatives, oversees Library-based research and community engagement, and engages in fundraising and relationship development in support of opportunities to grow the Libraries’ reputation resources, and impact.

Cindy’s long and varied experience at the UMKC Libraries positions her uniquely to fulfill these roles. Her strengths as an empathetic and collaborative leader, her comprehensive understanding of the technical and archival sides of the libraries as well as the public-facing ones, and a student-centered approach to library services ensure that the next steps for the UMKC Libraries will be aligned with the needs and spirit of Kansas City’s university.

Cindy balances her work with reading, traveling, and – as you know if you have ever been the beneficiary of her famous mini cupcakes – baking and experimenting with new recipes.

As dean, Cindy will continue her dedication to inclusivity, striving for equity, and developing the Libraries as a valuable resource for students, faculty, staff, and the community. Cindy’s enthusiasm and genuine positivity make her a valuable asset to the UMKC Libraries.

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Case dimensions: 5’ long x 30” wide x 9” high sitting atop 3’ legs

Glass exhibit table


The First Floor Gallery is located just inside the main entrance of the Miller Nichols Library.

Wall with exhibit content

Conference Room 325

Located on the Third Floor of Miller Nichols Library. For access, enter the library at the north ground floor entrance or the west first floor entrance. Then take the stairs or the elevator to the third floor..

Map of third floor of Miller Nichols Library