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Follett Corporation is new University Bookstore vendor

| Gary Johnson

Photo caption: Follett Corporation, based in Westchester, Illinois, was selected as the University Bookstore’s vendor after a competitive bidding process.

Follett Corporation, the largest campus retailer in North America, has been hired to operate the University Bookstore and provide course materials and general merchandise to University of Wisconsin-Eau Claire students, faculty and staff.

Follett operates more than 1,100 campus stores and 1,250 e-commerce campus store websites. The company operates bookstores on all but one of the UW System’s 13 campuses.

“Follett has a strong reputation in the UW System and around the country,” says Grace Crickette, UW-Eau Claire vice chancellor for finance and administration.

The transition process to Follett is underway with an official contractual start date of July 19.

Follett, based in Westchester, Illinois, was selected as the bookstore’s vendor after a competitive bidding process that included Barnes & Noble, the company that has operated the bookstore since 2001.

Crickette acknowledged the two-decade collaboration between UW-Eau Claire and Barnes & Noble.

“We are incredibly appreciative of our 20-year relationship,” Crickette says. “Since 2001, we have valued our partnership, as Barnes & Noble was pivotal in introducing UW-Eau Claire’s textbook rental program as we know it today.”

UW-Eau Claire’s Request for Proposal Committee members, who all have expertise in textbooks, met for six consecutive weeks to examine technical and programming criteria and score proposals from applicants. UW System officials scored the financial portion of the application.

Members of the UW-Eau Claire committee were: Dr. Lisa Quinn-Lee, associate professor of social work; Jill Markgraf, McIntyre Library director and professor; Peter Weeks, Learning and Technology Services developer/IS comprehensive services specialist; Kristin Schumacher, director of University Centers; Roberta Christiansen, University Centers assistant director of business and finance; Rachel Brogelman, University Centers financial specialist; and Laura Holden, manager of the UW-Eau Claire – Barron County bookstore.

Faculty and staff are encouraged to take a bookstore survey by June 11 to provide input into ways to improve operations.