Christopher Lyons

Photo of Christopher Lyons

Christopher Lyons

McGill Library
2004 - Present '

Chris Lyons has been an integral part of the Osler Library of the History of Medicine for over a decade — joining as a Liaison Librarian in 2004 before being appointed as the library’s head in 2012. In December 2015, after a unanimous vote of endorsement by the Board of Curators, Chris received the prestigious title of Osler Librarian. In 2017, Chris was appointed the Head of Rare Books and Special Collections.

Chris’ enthusiasm, knowledge and appreciation of the materials and their beauty is infectious. With his help, the Osler Library and Rare Books and Special Collections have grown to be much more than simple collections of rare books and material. Over the years, Chris has initiated some of the most innovative digitization projects, including a collaboration with the United States National Library of Medicine and the Chesney Archives of Johns Hopkins University, to digitize material by and about William Osler for the National Library of Medicine’s “Profiles in Science” project. Chris’ tireless outreach efforts are paying off — McGill’s unique and rare collections are now being viewed by thousands of people each month and are a treasure trove to scholars, practitioners and students.

Chris has also been instrumental in developing and managing numerous outreach projects that bring the international scholarly community to Osler, and now Rare Books. From the Dr. Dimitrije Pivnicki Award in Neuro-History to the Osler Library Travel Grant program, and most recently the Michelle Larose-Osler Library Artist-in-Residence Programme, Chris made it his mission to promote McGill as a world-class centre for the study of primary materials. Osler once said, “We are here to add what we can to, not to get what we can from, life.” Chris Lyons has embodied this motto from day one, adding a breadth of passion and experience, and breathing life into McGill’s unique treasures.

Nominated by a colleague at ROOAr