Another Major Donation to the Library

The Library had a special reason to be thankful during Thanksgiving week, when economist and author David H. Levey donated 55 boxes of academic books to our collection.

Mr. Levey, who is Chairman of the Lehman College Foundation, was persuaded to donate the approximately 1,600 volumes to the York Library by his daughter, Dr. Tania Levey of York’s Social Sciences Department (Sociology program).

Mr. Levey studied at the University of Chicago and Harvard University, and taught Economics at Yale University, The New School for Social Research, and Wayne State University.  He was Managing Director for Country Risk at Wells Fargo Bank in San Francisco prior to becoming Managing Director of the Sovereign Risk Unit at Moody’s Investors Service.  Mr. Levey has been a contributor to Business Week, and his 2005 article (“The Overstretch Myth”) was published in Foreign Affairs.

Fortunately for the Library, Mr. Levey amassed a wide-ranging book collection that included the subject areas of American History, World History, Literary Arts, Social Sciences, Economics, Religion, Philosophy, the Natural Sciences, and Mathematics.  The vast majority of the volumes were imprints of University Presses, the condition of all titles was mint, and the date of publication was rarely prior to 1998.  Approximately ten percent were fiction, and even those were as diverse as the academic monographs, including The Kite Runner by Khaled Hosseini (who appeared in a cameo role at the end of the 2007 film version); A Certain Age by Tama Janovitz about American (New York) conspicuous consumption; The Final Solution by the Pulitzer Prize-winning Michael Chabon; and Edward P. Jones’ The Known World, which is not as poetic as the recent Toni Morrison book, A Mercy, but is a great piece of literature holding back nothing in its story of a former slave in antebellum Virginia.

This was an absolutely wonderful collection of books that will enhance the quality of the York College Library collection.  At a time when New York State’s financial problems provide much uncertainty about the Library’s budget, it is especially gratifying to receive support and donations of good-quality current academic books in excellent condition – especially from someone affiliated with one of our sister CUNY colleges!

Many thanks to our colleague Tania Levey for helping to arrange this donation.  And thanks to George Fellows, James Smith, Tim Lane, and the Laborers for transporting the many boxes from the Loading Dock to the Library.


Dan Cleary is Instructor & Science Librarian, and John Drobnicki is Professor & Chief Librarian, in the York College Library.

by Daniel E. Cleary and John A. Drobnicki

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