Janet Mary Riley: The Library, the Law, and Loyola
Janet Mary Riley in her Army Library Service uniform the she wore when she was Camp Librarian at Camp Plauché (June 1943-June 1945), Harahan, LA, and when she was Camp Librarian at La Garde General Hospital, New Orleans (June-Dec. 1945).
Janet Mary Riley worked in numerous librarian positions before being hired as Law Librarian at Loyola’s Law School, she worked as a public librarian at the New Orleans Public Library, as an Army or “Camp” Librarian at Camp Plauche in Harahan, Louisiana and at LaGarae General Hospital in New Orleans.
“We take vows of poverty, chastity, and obedience, but we don’t live like nuns. We don’t live in community; we don’t have a common apostolate. It’s an important part of my life.”
--Janet Mary Riley, “I Found it Very Difficult to Be Heard” from Generations: A Century of Women Speak About their Lives
Janet Mary Riley was the first female professor at Loyola’s Law School. She began by teaching Legal Bibliography while she was the school’s Law Librarian and working on her law degree. She joined Loyola's law faculty fulltime in 1956 and stayed for 30 years.
“The students were another question. When I was teaching nothing but legal bibliography, the students were a little surprised that a woman was teaching, but they would know that I was the librarian, so that was not so difficult. But when I started teaching substantive law courses, this predominantly male student body – at the beginning it was almost totally male – were really shocked. They did not come to law school expecting to be taught by a woman.”
-- Janet Mary Riley, “I Found it Very Difficult to Be Heard” from Generations: A Century of Women Speak About their Lives