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Showing posts from July, 2015

Run it like a library

I've been noodling the title of my book. First, it was "Who Needs Libraries?" But I thought that was too negative. Next, I thought, "The Public Library and the Public Good: A Renaissance." That was closer to what I wanted to do: write a book celebrating the significance of the institution I love, and using it as a metaphor for some larger issues. But now I'm thinking I'll call it, "Run It Like a Library: the Public Library and the Public Good." It's got a little more snap.
Anyhow, here's how I got there:
In 2007, I was stumping in the county for a mill levy increase. The intent was to raise sufficient funds to build three clearly needed libraries (in communities where growth was significant, and library use was high). As part of that public outreach, I spoke to a Republican breakfast club, easily one of the most conservative groups in the county.
I gave a little history: our library had moved from the worst-ranked library in the state in …