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Molly Molloy Receives New Mexico Library Leadership Award

Date: April 9, 2012

CONTACT: Jeanette Smith, NMSU Library, (575) 646-7492,

Molly Molloy

New Mexico State University Librarian Molly Molloy received the New Mexico Library Leadership Award from the New Mexico Library Association during the association’s annual conference in Las Cruces.

The conference was held April 11-13 at the Las Cruces Convention Center.

Since 1992, Molloy has served as the Latin American and Border Studies Librarian at the NMSU Library.  She provides reference and instructional services, develops the Library’s collections in her assigned areas and works closely with faculty and students conducting research on border issues and/or Latin American studies.

Molloy’s advocacy of border issues has extended far beyond her professional job duties, while these professional duties have informed and have given shape to her activism.  She has been tireless in her efforts to share information and to encourage critical thinking about the complex realities of border life and to seek fairness and justice for individuals whose voices are frequently missing from the larger national debate.

Before coming to NMSU, Molloy wrote and edited bilingual publications sharing news about Nicaragua, and learned about the complexities of immigration issues as a paralegal and document counselor in Louisiana and California.  After beginning her career as a librarian, Molloy recognized the power of the Internet as a tool for sharing information and fostering what she deemed “communities of affinity” through which geographically dispersed people could come together around issues of common concern.

In the early 1990s, Molloy developed online guides for Latin American and Border Issues (, which became popular among scholars and community residents.  Her Web guides receive 10,000 to 15,000 hits each month, receiving well deserved national and international acclaim. 

A more recent effort to share information about social justice on the border is found in Molloy’s work on the Frontera email list, a border news service she created several years ago which has nearly eight hundred subscribers.  Molloy’s work on the Frontera list is highly valued by her readers.  University of Puerto Rico professor Victor Federico Torres applauds Molloy’s efforts, saying that the Frontera news list is “the most comprehensive, up- to-date source of narco-related violence on the U.S.-Mexico Border.”

Many articles are provided and/or translated by Molloy herself.  She is unstinting in her efforts to provide journalists and other list subscribers with the best data sources available to help them understand and convey stories about current border events. Her work on the list has informed articles that have appeared in publications including the Houston Chronicle, the Wall Street Journal and In these Times.

Interviews with Molloy have appeared in the New York Times, the Nation, the Guardian and the Observer as well as the nationally-syndicated radio program, Democracy Now and National Public Radio’s Hearing Voices series on Ciudad Juárez.  These articles and interviews have all highlighted the significance of Molloy’s work, and have clarified and provided context to the complex and bloody situation on the border that many in the United States do not understand.

Recently Molloy collaborated with journalist Charles Bowden and filmmaker Gianfranco Rosi on the award-winning documentary The Sicario—Room 164.  This film, which premiered at the Venice Biennale in September 2011, continues to garner praise.  The film provides a first-hand account of the life of a hit man for the Juárez cartel, and it was also the basis for the book, El Sicario: The Autobiography of a Mexican Assassin (Nation Books, 2011), which Molloy translated and edited with Bowden.

Molloy inspires New Mexico librarians by example, going each day beyond her daily duties by tracking and document the daily murders in Ciudad Juárez.  The list of the dead that Molloy keeps signifies that someone cares enough to make sure these victims have a voice and that their deaths will not go unnoticed.  Molloy provides access to information from the borderland that would otherwise be lost because of its limited distribution outside of her Frontera list.  She provides an invaluable service not only to today’s border researchers but to those of the future.  

For more information, contact Molloy at (575) 646-6931 or  For more information on the conference, visit


April 9, 2012 Categories: News Molly Molloy Receives New Mexico Library Leadership Award