Balay, Robert 1930-

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BALAY, Robert 1930-


Born October 6, 1930, in Wichita, KS; son of Loren (a heating-refrigeration specialist) and Gladys (Crites) Balay; married Harriette Anderson (a homemaker), December 23, 1961; children: Christopher, Anne, Jean. Education: Macalester College, B.A., 1952; University of Minnesota, M.A., 1954; Columbia University, M.S.L.S., 1959. Politics: "Democrat/Independent/Liberal."


Office—Choice, 100 Riverview Center, Middletown, CT 06457. E-mail—[email protected].


Grumman Aircraft Engineering Corp., Bethpage, NY, assistant librarian, 1959-62; General Precision Aerospace, Little Falls, NJ, senior librarian, 1962-64; Wayne State University, Detroit, MI, assistant science librarian, 1964-68, adjunct instructor in library science, 1966-67; Yale University, New Haven, CT, head of library reference department, 1968-86; Choice, Middletown, CT, reference editor, 1986—. Military service: U.S. Army, 1954-56.


Mountain Plains Library Association, Center for Great Plains Studies.


(General editor) Guide to Reference Books, American Library Association, 10th edition supplement, 1992, 11th edition, 1996.

Early Periodical Indexes: Bibliographies and Indexes of Literature Published in Periodicals before 1900, Scarecrow Press (Lanham, MD), 2000.


A bibliography of materials for the study of the Great Plains, tentatively titled Prairies and Plains.


Robert Balay told CA: "My publications are primarily of interest to the library profession, although I hope readers in other fields will find them useful. Guide to Reference Books is one of the best-known publications in the profession, and I had the luck to be in the right place when the editorship fell vacant. I developed the ideas for other publications during the course of working with readers in various libraries and at Choice magazine.

"I have tried my hand at what I regard as the highest profession, the writing of fiction, but without any success whatsoever. Writing fiction is of a much higher order of difficulty than any other writing, with the possible exception of poetry, and its principles elude me."



Booklist, May 1, 1996, review of Guide to Reference Books, p. 1526.

Library Quarterly, July, 2002, Haynes McMullen, review of Early Periodical Indexes: Bibliographies and Indexes of Literature Published in Periodicals before 1900, p. 388.