Penn State Law professor of legal research receives service award

Rebecca Mattson recently received the prestigious award from the Research Instruction and Patron Services Special Interest Section of the American Association of Law Libraries

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Rebecca Mattson, head of faculty and research services and professor of legal research at Penn State Law in University Park, was recently awarded the prestigious 2024 Service Award by the Research Instruction & Patron Services Special Interest Section (RIPS-SIS) of the American Association of Law Libraries (AALL).

The RIPS-SIS Service Award honors a RIPS-SIS member who has made outstanding contributions in areas of section activity and professional service, and is voted on by the RIPS-SIS Grants Committee. Nomination criteria for the award include excellent leadership, notable service, section participation, and mentoring.

Mattson joined RIPS-SIS a decade ago when she began at Penn State Law and has since held various leadership positions within the section, including serving as chair in 2022. In 2019, she founded and organized the Teaching the Teachers’ Conference for Law Librarians, an opportunity for law librarians to come together to learn best practices for teaching law students. The conference has since grown and developed into an opportunity for law librarians to learn from each other and from experts in the field at either the main conference or the beginner’s bootcamp, which alternate each year.

Mattson said she was surprised, but equally excited, to receive this year’s award.

“I am really honored to get it,” she said. “Past recipients of the Service Award are people I’ve worked closely with and whose work I admire. I’m so happy to join their ranks. It means so much to have my work recognized in this way.”

At Penn State Law, Mattson provides leadership within the H. Laddie Montague, Jr. Law Library in planning and implementing scholarly support and research services. She manages a robust pool of library research assistants and provides annual training for faculty research assistants. Additionally, she manages the Penn State Law eLibrary, the law school’s faculty scholarship repository, as well as the Penn State Law Legal Research Paper Series, and provides enhanced support for faculty scholarship and research. As the administrator of the eLibrary, she is the primary library liaison with law school journals, assisting in training, website development, and publication. In addition, Mattson teaches Legal Research Tools and Strategies, the legal research course for first-year law students, and Researching Administrative Law, an upper-level research course.