Diana Hunt King and Patrick Spain: Two valued Visiting Committee leaders

This summer Diana Hunt King decided to resign as Chair of the Visiting Committee to the Library after 12 years of leadership, beginning in 2003. The Library expressed its gratitude to King, who has been an important and active member of the Visiting Committee since 1996.

“Over the years, Diana has offered valuable guidance to Library leadership, played a key role in relationship building and fundraising, and has lent unwavering support to the Library’s endeavors,” said Brenda Johnson, Library Director and University Librarian. “As a life member of the Visiting Committee, Diana also has become well known—and so very well liked—by the Library’s family of bibliographers and staff. Everyone at the Library extends their deepest gratitude to Diana.”

Patrick J. Spain, BA’74, accepted an appointment to be the new Chair of the Visiting Committee in July. He first joined the Visiting Committee in 2014 and has been an active supporter and friend to the Library for more than two decades.

Spain has worked in the technology industry since 1979 and is a serial entrepreneur. He co-founded, and served as long-time chairman and CEO of Hoover’s, Inc., transforming the company from a small book publisher in 1992 to a profitable, publicly traded online business information services company in 2002. Hoover’s was sold to Dun & Bradstreet in 2003. Spain was the founder, chairman, and CEO of HighBeam Research, an online research service for small businesses, which he sold to Cengage Learning in December 2008. He co-founded and serves as executive chairman of Newser, a news filtering and summarization service with an audience of over six million readers each month. And three years ago, Spain co-founded and is Chairman and CEO of First Stop Health, a company dedicated to utilizing telemedicine and advocacy to revolutionize the patient healthcare experience in America.

In addition to the Visiting Committee to the Library, Spain serves on the boards of Owler, Occasion, Community Health, and Opportunity International. He has an active interest in digitizing older printed information to make it available to a wider online audience. He has supported efforts at Beloit College to digitize the Nuremberg Chronicle and at the University of Chicago to digitize the Chicagoan. Spain has a Bachelor of Arts degree in Ancient Roman History from the University of Chicago and a law degree from Boston University.