Director's Message - Winter 2007-08

Posted: Saturday, December 1, 2007, 8:41 am

Happy holidays! I can't believe another year is about to draw to a close. 2007 will go down in history as the year Worthington Libraries received the national Library of the Year award.

It's been such an exciting time—celebrating with the community and hearing from colleagues across the state and country. It's wonderful to have all we do to serve patrons at the local level validated and recognized at the national level. Plus, being featured on the cover of Library Journal (which is read by librarians everywhere throughout the world) was just plain cool!

Although it's hard to rival a year which brought the Library to the attention of the entire nation, next year will be anything but dull. When 2008 draws to a close, Worthington Libraries will boast a new branch library, two renovated buildings and a completely redesigned web site. It will also be the final year for our 2005-2008 Strategic Plan. We'll prepare a final report on that document and look forward to charting a new course for the Library with the help and participation of the community.

Behind-the-scenes work for the Worthington Park Library, which will be located in the Worthington Park Shopping Center at 1389 Worthington Centre Drive, is progressing rapidly. Wendy Rawson, the library's manager, and Debbie Zimmerman, the lead children's librarian, are working to select everything from furniture to books and other items for this facility, slated to open in spring 2008. Wendy and Debbie have attended several community events in the Worthington Park area, and residents are very excited about the new library. We can't wait to have it open!

If you've visited either Old Worthington Library or Northwest Library within the last few months, you know renovations are well underway at both buildings.

On November 7, we temporarily closed the lower level of Old Worthington Library. To ease the transition, public computers and several stacks of nonfiction books were moved upstairs. While closed to the public, library staff is still permitted to access the lower level and can retrieve items requested by patrons—either in person or through online reservation. When the lower level reopens in early February, visitors will be greeted by a smaller reference desk, more computers and three new group/quiet study rooms.

The addition to the circulation department at Northwest Library is moving forward as scheduled and staff is handling the change—including the relocation of all offices to various rooms and spaces throughout the Library—with considerable aplomb. The drive-up window is expected to be completed soon, making it easier for busy people to pick up and return their items.

In the midst of all of this physical change, we're also working on renovating the library's digital home. Several months ago, we hired Kara Reuter as our web applications supervisor. Kara has a PhD in Library and Information Services from the University of Maryland. She is working with our digital library team and the community to redesign and restructure the library's web site to make it more accessible and user-friendly. We'll unveil our new web site sometime next year.

We ask for your patience and understanding as we work to complete these projects. When the dust finally settles on 2008, we know you'll be even more enthusiastic about using and enjoying your Worthington Libraries.

— Meribah Mansfield

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