As I write this, my first official message as the new director of Worthington Libraries, I'm waiting for a moving van that will help me relocate from Valdosta, Georgia, where I've lived and worked since 2007, to my new home in Worthington.
I am anxious to begin the next phase of my career and looking forward to meeting the library staff and getting involved in the Worthington community. Actually, "chomping at the bit" is probably a more accurate description of how I feel!
Worthington is an amazing community, and Worthington Libraries is one of the best library systems in the country. I am thrilled and honored to follow in the footsteps of Meribah Mansfield, who did such a tremendous job of moving the Library forward during her nearly 19 years as director. Her legacy of a first-rate staff, innovative services and warm, welcoming libraries is something I will strive to continue and develop further.
Some of you might know that I worked at Worthington Libraries for 12 years, from 1995-2007, before moving to Georgia to serve as director of the South Georgia Regional Library system.
Although the culture and setting were unique to South Georgia, as director there I faced many of the issues that are common to libraries everywhere. I believe my experience as a library director in Georgia has prepared me well for dealing with both the opportunities and the challenges of managing Worthington Libraries.
Worthington Libraries has a long history of community involvement and dedication to community collaboration. I plan to maintain the library's partnerships with key organizations like the Worthington Schools and City of Worthington and look forward to forging new community ties.
I also plan to continue the library's commitment to careful stewardship of taxpayer dollars. Worthington School District residents are incredibly supportive of the Library, and I pledge to preserve their trust by listening and responding to their library service needs.
Library funding will be an ongoing challenge for our library system and libraries across the state as funding declines and use increases. I know how to manage a library on a tight budget and am confident in my ability to maintain quality service during times of reduced revenue and to make difficult decisions.
Even with (or perhaps, because of) funding challenges, we now have a tremendous opportunity to redefine and position libraries for the future. While technology may drive many future changes, people and what they need from their library will always be the guiding force behind service decisions.
I look forward to hearing your thoughts on the future of public libraries or any other topic! My door is always open, and I welcome patrons to call (614-807-2601) or e-mail me (firstname.lastname@example.org) comments and questions. I'm looking forward to meeting and getting to know as many of you as possible in the months and years to come!
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