Do you remember Oneida?

In Monday evening, May 2, 2008, at the 38th ACURIL’s Annual Conference, at the Grand Ballroom of the Rose Hall Resort, in Montego Bay, Jamaica, in a most calid ceremony, ACURIL paid homage to Mrs. Oneida Rivera de Ortiz, for her services to the organization as Executive Secretary 1971-2008.

Mrs. Adele Merritt Bernard, ACURIL President, chaired the ceremony. Past Presidents Jean Wilfrid Bertrand (Haiti), Astrid Britten (Aruba), Stephney Ferguson (Jamaica) and Lucero Arboleda de Roa (Dominican Republic), representing the French, Dutch, English and Spanish speaking area members of the organization, commended Mrs. Rivera de Ortiz’s work and expressed their sincere appreciation for her commitment and dedication throughout the years. Best wishes for success and happiness in the future were expressed.

A special presentation entitled Mrs. Oneida Rivera de Ortiz, from Executive Secretary to Executive Director 1971-2008: Do you remember? was made by ACURIL’s CARIBBEANA Team : Yadira Avendaño-Avendaño, Cindy Jiménez-Vera, Arelys Fernández-Troche and Yumarys Polanco-Almonte, through a podcast and a slideshow. [Listen to podcast  – interview of Oneida Rivera de Ortiz, made by Yadira Avendaño-Avendaño [Spanish version] 

In a most emotive response, Oneida Ortiz expressed herself as follows:

My dear ACURILEAN friends. All that I can say is Thank you. I express my gratitude to ACURIL for so many good “things” I have received from ACURIL during all these years I have dedicated to this Association. Among those, just to mention some, I had the opportunity to meet and forge friendship with so many colleagues. I can say that I have friends from all the archipelago. I have learned about the profession far beyond if I had taken courses in comparative librarianship, to know about cultures, historiography, and folklore of the Caribbean; and particularly about one of my hobbies, cooking, since I learned about Caribbean cuisine.

I cannot forget that during my days of extreme sorrow, ACURIL and Acurileans helped me emotionally. I am deeply thankful.

My satisfaction and my privilege is to have contributed to the growth and development of our dear ACURIL from newborn in 1969 to its adulthood, to see most of our goals fulfilled. It is to the young generation to keep it growing further, to evaluate and seek new objectives so that ACURIL will always be the Star of the profession in the Caribbean.

May God bless you all and guide our Association to be that Star in this era of challenges to our information profession. ACURIL will always be in my heart and in my memory, and who is ACURIL? You are.

ACURIL, My gratitude again and love to all.

A bouquet of flowers, an album with different expressions of friends, and other gifts were given to Oneida by Executive Councilors Carmen Santos-Corrada and Barry Baker. Tokens of appreciation were presented by ACURIL president Merritt Bernard and past president Pedro Padilla-Rosa. A special reception followed where Acurileans expressed their respects.

It is with deep sorrow that we let you know that Oneida passed away on Friday, November 12, 2010.

With kindest regards,

Luisa Vigo-Cepeda, Ph.D.
Executive Secretary / Secretaria Ejecutiva
Association of Caribbean University, Research and Institutional Libraries (ACURIL)/
Asociación de Bibliotecas Universitarias, de Investigación e Institucionales del Caribe/
Association des Bibliotheques Universitaires, de Recherche et Institutionnelles de la Caraibe
c/o Graduate School of Information Sciences and Technologies,
University of Puerto Rico
P.O. Box 21906, UPR Station
San Juan, PR  00931-1906
Tel. 787.763.6199 ; Fax 787.764.2311

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