University Honors Alumnus for Contributions to the Odum Library

October 21, 2010

University Honors Alumnus for Contributions to the Odum Library

VALDOSTA -- Valdosta State University Odum Library Archives named its reading room in honor of the late William (Bill) Mobley IV. During the Oct. 1 ceremony, the 1953 graduate of Valdosta State College was remembered for his generosity, service and devotion to his alma mater.

An avid reader, who enjoyed history, music and the arts, Mobley spent 35 years working as the principal evaluations officer and curator of the Library of Congress Archives. It was during this time that he became involved with the Library of Congress Surplus Book Program.

According to Odum Library Director Dr. George Gaumond, Mobley was appointed as an authorized representative of the university to select surplus books from the Library of Congress and have them shipped to the Odum Library.

During a period of 20 years, Gaumond conservatively estimates that Mobley selected more than 10,000 books with an approximate value of $750,000. In addition, he donated more than $90,000 in books from his personal collection.

“Being a librarian himself, he understood the needs of an academic library,” Gaumond said. “Bill also liked to go to museum art shows and would purchase books that showcased the exhibit -- often these books cost several hundred dollars.”

Gaumond said he and Mobley enjoyed a professional relationship and friendship for more than 20 years.
“He grew up in Valdosta and would visit often. He was a very gregarious person; he talked to lot of people on campus -- but with each visit he made you feel as if he were here to visit with only you,” Gaumond said. “He made people feel very special.”

Alumni Director John Trombetta met Mobley and his wife, Roseanne, in 2009 when they attended the first Order of the Red and Black dinner.

“Bill had so much knowledge about VSU and the community, I greatly enjoyed his visits,” Trombetta said. “He had a real passion for his work and profession. I appreciate his generosity to the Odum Library and his contributions will continue benefiting our students for many years.”

The Bill Mobley Memorial Library Fund has been established at VSU. To contribute to this fund contact University Advancement at 229-333-5939.