Barbara P. Ferry

Head, Natural and Physical Sciences Department

As the Head of the Natural & Physical Sciences Libraries at the Smithsonian, Barbara manages the services, collections, and staff of the libraries of the National Museum of Natural History, the Botany/Horticulture Library, the Anthropology Library, the Smithsonian Environmental Research Center Library, the National Zoological Park Library & Conservation Biology Institute, and the Smithsonian Tropical Research Institute in Panama.  Prior to the Smithsonian, she was the Director of the Library and Archives at National Geographic Society, where she and her team launched the National Geographic Virtual Library, a database of National Geographic publications, images, and videos for the library market. Barbara received the Special Libraries Association: Outstanding Achievement in Business Librarianship for her environmental scanning and competitive intelligence programs, as well as the Nielsen Norman Group Intranet Design Award. Barbara is a Founding Member of the University of Maryland's Future of Information Alliance. She has spoken at  local and national library events, focusing on library innovation, thinking strategically, and trends tracking.  In her early career she assisted reporters as a news research analyst at the Washington Post, and led a research team at Washington Information Group.