In December 2016, Jaye “J.D.” Rosandick retired from College Library after 30 years of service providing security at UW-Madison. J.D. began his security career in 1987 working for the residence halls, and started at College Library as the evening security officer in April 1988. In the days before the library’s more liberal food policy, J.D. was often referred to as a “pop-cop,” someone who insured that no food or drink was consumed within the library.
While J.D. was known to many library staff members due to his long career at College Library, he was also appreciated and respected by many campus partners, including the UW Police Department, campus security officers, UW Transportation Services and SafeWALK programs, and the custodial services crews. Known for his “can do” attitude, problem-solving abilities, and deep commitment to the safety of students and staff, J.D. gave his full attention to resolving any issue, be it security or facility-related. He worked diligently to help students feel comfortable in the library, including finding ways for fun, such as donating large pumpkins for the annual “great pumpkin contest,” where students submit their guesses on how much the pumpkins weigh each Halloween.
J.D.’s career prior to working with the Libraries included serving in the U.S. Army from 1971-1974, (Charlie Co. 4th Battalion, 68th Armor Division, 82nd Airborne) with service in Vietnam for 9 months in 1971. J.D. went from jumping out of planes to helping build high-rise steel structures in Nebraska, power plants in Kansas, and working for Union Pacific Railroad, painting bridges and buildings. While working for the Libraries, J.D. continued to manage his own private painting business in south central Wisconsin and a number of rental properties in the area.
What is probably most appreciated by library staff and students is that J.D. truly cared about everybody, both during their time in the library or in their lives outside of the library. He provided significant assistance and counsel for students or staff facing serious security-related situations. In addition, he assisted patrons in the “tower” part of Helen C White with their security-related concerns as well as other libraries on campus, including the SLIS Library, Geography Library, and more. Beyond that, when bad weather was on the way, J.D. offered suggestions on being appropriately prepared. He was ready with advice, or happy to provide extra tools, for whatever needed fixing.
Appreciation for J.D. lasts for years, or even decades, as former students will stop by the library and ask to see him. One thing we know for sure: J.D. will be greatly missed. In his absence, security staff at Memorial Library and UWPD will be providing additional coverage for College Library. A search is underway for his replacement.