What is a BellCow?

Definition: bell cow

a cow, esp. the lead cow of a herd, having a bell attached to a collar around its neck so that the herd can be located easily.

1855–60, Americanism
source: dictionary.com

How it began….

After spending 15 years in higher education and non-profit IT management, and on the brink of the web explosion, Dawne Tortorella founded BellCow in 1995 as a technology company dedicated to leadership and learning. Little did we know how learning, communication and organizations would be transformed by the web – lessons are still being learned.


We concentrate on collaboration, learning and technology.  Our model is simple.  We are part of your team implementing projects and solving problems.  The common threads – mentoring tech staff, strategic use of technology, information management, innovation, and social learning.


Current projects include:

  • L2 – Library Learning, Illinois’ statewide continuing education system for library staff
  • WebJunction Illinois
  • Broadband Internet Use in Illinois Libraries
  • Online course development for LibraryU
  • Research in organizational development and social learning
  • various web-related projects and support
©2010 BellCow Inc.