When everyone is capable of creating and distributing content, what can a library look like?
An answer might be found in Tennessee. Blessed with a progressive mayor who wanted to make the library his legacy in a city that made a serious public investment in a fibre network, the Chattanooga Public Library embraced the challenge of innovation, inspiration and community learning. They converted the library’s fourth floor into a beta space for the community, a creative place to prototype experiments.
Having recently returned to public library work, my librarian heart is filled with joy when I witness daily the interactions between people in an information-rich environment. To see people alone or in groups, with or without help from staff: browsing, reading, typing, thinking, relaxing, engaging, talking, working. Using every chair and computer in the library, finding the sunny corners or the quiet nooks, spending time or simply picking up or dropping off books. Multiple uses, a variety of people, and limitless possibilities.
My mother used to quote a Dutch saying: “There is a time to begin and a time to end, and now the time to end has begun.”
With mixed emotions, I am leaving my role as Director, Libraries and Literacy after seven years. I am excited to be taking on the role of Library Director for the District of North Vancouver, effective September 30. North Vancouver District Public Library is an outstanding library with a strong tradition of providing excellent service, and I look forward to working with the board and staff.
I thank all of you who supported me and the work of the branch — as well as everyone who worked in the branch — over the past seven years. Together, we have made an enormous difference in the sustainability of all libraries, helping to build a strong future. I’m proud of what we have accomplished as the ground shifted below our sensible-shoed, catalogue-carded feet!
In honour of this year’s winner of the Council of the Federation Literacy Award, BC’s Superintendent of Reading, Maureen Dockendorf, and I travelled this week to Powell River Public Library.
Powell River Public Library has been described as “the little library that could”. They exemplify the positive impact of collaborations and partnerships to support literacy throughout the community – engaging with a wider range of community partners to develop, deliver and support literacy programs for all age groups. Through collaboration, the library is able to offer a diverse selection of literacy-related activities.
Posted in Collaboration, Creativity, Leadership, Literacy, Partnerships, Public Libraries
Tagged Andy Law, Charlie Kregel, Council of the Federation Literacy Award, David Lankes, Maureen Dockendorf, Powell River
It’s been thrilling for me to be part of the Changing Results for Young Readers (CR4YR) initiative, a network of educators with a shared goal of improving life chances for children. CR4YR is making a big difference – not only in the lives of the kids, but also in the lives of those who are changing their approaches, and thinking about new ways of teaching and learning.
As Maureen Dockendorf, BC’s Superintendent of Reading and the inspirational leader of the initiative, says, “We’re all on this journey to keep learning, it never ends.”