Kristen Eshleman came to Trinity College in July as vice president for Library and Information Technology Services (LITS). As a key member of the college’s senior administration, she provides leadership of the merged LITS organization and collaborates with fellow cabinet members, faculty, staff, and students to advance Trinity’s strategic goals.
Eshleman joins the Trinity community from Davidson College in North Carolina, where she worked for two decades. She most recently served as director of innovation initiatives, with responsibility for operational leadership of innovation strategy, process, and projects for the college. Previously, Eshleman served as director of digital learning and innovation, director of instructional technology, and instructional technologist in the humanities. Prior to her tenure at Davidson, she worked in two start-ups.
Eshleman holds a bachelor’s degree from the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and a master’s degree in social anthropology from the London School of Economics. She has written numerous articles on topics such as complexity, innovation, and change management in higher education for Inside Higher Ed, EDUCAUSE Review, and other outlets, and she co-authored, with Joe Eshleman, Richard Moniz, and Karen Mann, the 2016 book Librarians and Instructional Designers: Collaboration and Innovation.
She also has been active in service to Davidson and higher education. In 2017, she led a project at Davidson to develop an inclusive, transparent, and collaborative innovation management framework and more recently chaired Davidson’s Innovation Council. She previously served as a member of the EDUCAUSE Annual Meeting Program Committee, the Partnership for Liberal Arts Collaboration and Exploration Steering Committee, and the Liberal Arts Consortium for Digital Innovation (LACOL) Advisory Council, where she helped launch the Undergraduate Network for Research in the Humanities. She was part of a team that won an $800,000 grant from The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation to establish a curricular model for digital studies, and she is co-founder of HAIL (Harvesting Academic Innovation for Learners), a community of leaders from all areas of higher education advancing institution-led innovation.
Trinity President Joanne Berger Sweeney, in a May announcement to the community, noted, “The search committee and I were impressed by Kristen’s agility and breadth, her ability to lead diverse teams collaboratively, and her passion for the liberal arts. She has a proven track record of designing inclusive processes to empower others to innovate. We know she will bring her vast talents to bear in leading digital transformation at Trinity and ensuring our library is an intellectual hub for the campus.”