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Subject: A Death

A Death

From: Connie McCabe <c-mccabe<-at->
Date: Sunday, December 15, 2013
On December 10, 2013 the photograph conservation field lost Steven
T. Puglia, an outstanding colleague and dear friend. Steve was the
Digital Conversion Services Manager in the Office of Strategic
Initiatives at the Library of Congress, and led the still image
working group of the Federal Digitization Guidelines Initiative
(FADGI). He was well known to and respected by members of the AIC
Photographic Materials Group, Electronic Media Group, and the
International Standards Organization Technical Committee 42 -
Photography, and preventive conservation professionals working in
libraries and archives. He was a critical conduit between
conservators, preservation managers, and the information technology

A remarkable and dignified fellow with unparalleled technical
expertise and artistic talents, Steve was a quiet but extremely
effective leader with extraordinary diplomatic skills. He was
internationally recognized for his legendary cost-benefit studies
and recommendations for the reformatting of photograph collections,
which provided museum and library administrators with the
information required to make sound and informed preservation
strategies. He introduced new and better imaging techniques,
ensuring these methods were practical, cost-effective, and
consistently of the highest quality. Always inventive and pragmatic,
Steve understood and worked tirelessly to address the preservation
of--and access to--expansive photographic print and negative
collections. In doing so, he shared his knowledge generously,
inspiring and teaching generations of emerging conservators,
collection care professionals, and photographers about traditional
and borne-digital reproduction techniques. As Don Waters, program
officer for The Andrew W. Mellon Foundation, recalled, during the
1990s Steve was "one of the few at the time who had any experience
or data, which usually made him the most knowledgeable and
authoritative person in the room, a position that he used gently but
persuasively to move the field forward." In recognition for his many
professional contributions he received the prestigious HP Image
Permanence Award in 2009 from IS&T, and AIC's Special Recognition
for Allied Professionals in 2013.

Steve was beloved and admired by many across the United States and
beyond. Unflappable and always upbeat, he cared about people and the
feeling was reciprocal. His love and admiration for his wife,
photograph conservator Sarah Wagner, was profound. He will be dearly


Constance McCabe
Head of Photograph Conservation
National Gallery of Art
Washington, D.C.

                  Conservation DistList Instance 27:26
                 Distributed: Monday, December 16, 2013
                       Message Id: cdl-27-26-001
Received on Sunday, 15 December, 2013

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