19 May 2006

DC Public Library Names Ginnie Cooper Executive Director

After a long period of interim leadership, DCPL has announced that Ginnie Cooper, currently Executive Director of Brooklyn Public Library, will begin her appointment in DC no later than August 2006. DCPL's site also has links to Ms. Cooper's background, a list of her experience and accomplishments, and glowing remarks from colleagues across the nation. The announcement alludes to the "fact" of a new central Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library built on the former convention center site, as well as renovation for the branch libraries:
Among Ms. Cooper's primary responsibilities as Executive Director will be to respond to citizen's request for improved library services and facilities. Neighborhood branches are slated for renovation or new construction and legislation for a new central Martin Luther King, Jr. Memorial Library built on the former convention center site is pending before the City Council.

A librarian since 1970, Ms. Cooper brings a clear vision of excellence in library services, as well as success in library management and fundraising to the executive director position. Throughout her career as a librarian, Ms. Cooper has experienced nationally recognized success in rebuilding library systems throughout the country.

[. . . .]

As head of the D.C. Public Library, Ms. Cooper will oversee program management and services for the entire library system in addition to managing the Library Transformation Initiative. Her announcement is symbolic of the library transformation efforts proposed as a result of Mayor Williams' Blue Ribbon Task Force to address the neglect and disrepair the D.C. Public Library System has experienced over decades of insufficient funding. In a positive step, the City council recently approved the FY06 Budget Support Act, which includes the allocation of $170 million in capital funding for the needed restoration of 20 branch libraries.

All in all, this sounds like a positive move for DCPL, though one must wonder why, much like the MPD, the leaders of our public services aren't coming from within the ranks.

UPDATE: See one of many updates to come here.

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