Walter Walker

Message from the President
June 13, 2020

Dear LMU Community:

I am saddened to share that Walter “Cat” Walker, head of cataloging and an associate librarian for the William H. Hannon Library, unexpectedly passed away on June 11, 2020. He was 63 years old.

Mr. Walker was hired at LMU in 1996 to assist with processing the Charles Von der Ahe Library's quickly growing media collection. In 2004 he became the head of cataloging, where he led the efforts to make library holdings accessible to students, faculty, and staff, through clear and consistent public cataloging and classification during a period of significant growth in the library’s physical and electronic collections.

He served as a member of the Hannon Library Planning Steering Committee in advance of the Hannon Library opening in 2009, developing criteria for use of the new library's basement storage system and facilitating the transfer of hundreds of thousands of periodicals and books to the new space. As a member of the Library Promotion Committee and numerous search committees, Mr. Walker was a steadfast figure in the hiring and professional development of LMU librarians.

Mr. Walker served the university on the Faculty Senate (1999-2004), the Faculty and Staff Gay/Straight Network, now the LGBTQ Faculty and Staff Network, and by cataloging books for the Jesuit Residence Library.

He was an active member of the American Library Association since 1990, supporting the profession nationally through service and scholarship. Mr. Walker was director-at-large for the ALA’s Rainbow Round Table, where he helped develop a series of annotated bibliographies on LGBTQ resources. He was also a member of the editorial board of the Homosaurus, an international-linked data vocabulary of LGBTQ terms that supports improved access to LGBTQ resources within cultural institutions. Mr. Walker contributed major revisions to the International Thesaurus of Lesbian, Gay, Bisexual, Transgender, and Intersex Terms over the current summer. His work with the Association for Library Collections and Technical Services’ Online Audiovisual Catalogers and the Program for Cooperative Cataloging helped establish cataloging standards and guidelines that are used by librarians across the globe.

Mr. Walker, a native Angeleno, was a volunteer at ONE National Gay and Lesbian Archives at the USC Libraries for 25 years, serving as board member (1999-2002) and chair of the library committee (2000-2003). He was a founding member of ACT UP/L.A., organizing and participating in demonstrations in response to the AIDS crisis.

Mr. Walker earned his M.L.S. from UCLA in 1990 and his B.A. in psychology from UC Santa Barbara in 1979.

Please keep Walt, his spouse, Patrick, his siblings, and his many friends and colleagues in your prayers.


Timothy Law Snyder, Ph.D.