Guy Grady Garrison, 85, of Radnor, professor and dean emeritus at the iSchool, Drexel's College of Information Science and Technology, died Monday, May 13, of heart failure at his home.
"Since joining the college as professor and dean in 1968, Dr. Garrison was an integral leader, mentor, and friend of the Drexel community," the university said in a statement on its website.
He served as dean for 19 years, until 1987, when he became the first Alice B. Kroeger Professor. He retired in 1992.
During Dr. Garrison's years as dean, the college diversified its faculty, strengthened its research efforts, and changed its name to the School of Library and Information Studies. In 1984, the school created a bachelor of information systems degree.
"In retrospect, the successful launching of the B.S. degree was the event that did most to establish the enlarged academic foundation on which the college stands today," the school's statement said.
Dr. Garrison's other achievements included renovation of the Rush Building, dedication of the Alumni Garden in 1981, and creation of the Sigma Chapter of Beta Phi Mu at Drexel in 1969.
Dr. Garrison was a life member of the American Library Association. In 1992, he received its Beta Phi Mu Award for distinguished service to library and information science. Beta Phi Mu also started a scholarship in his name that is awarded to an outstanding master's student.
Born in Akron, Ohio, he earned a bachelor's degree in English from Baldwin-Wallace College, a master's degree in information science from Columbia University, and a doctorate in information science from the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He moved to the Philadelphia area in 1968.
In recognition of his service and his contributions to the field of information studies, Drexel conferred upon Dr. Garrison the degree of doctor of humane letters, honoris causa, during its 2011 commencement ceremonies.
In retirement, he served as president of the Friends of Tredyffrin Library and enjoyed travel, gardening, and opera. He was an active member of the Athenaeum of Philadelphia, where he established the Guy and Joanne Garrison Book Fund.
Surviving are his wife, the former Joanne Ruth Sergeant; a daughter, Anne; a granddaughter; a brother; a sister; three nieces and three nephews.
The iSchool will host a memorial service at 11 a.m. Thursday, June 13, in Behrakis Grand Hall on Drexel's Main Campus. To RSVP, visit www.ischool.drexel.edu and click on the article about Dr. Garrison under "News."