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  • Wednesday, August 17, 2022 8:18 AM | Anonymous

    AARP Mississippi announced four organizations throughout the state are receiving 2022 Community Challenge Grants --- part of the largest group of grantees to date. The program so far has provided $3.4 million to 260 organizations nationwide. Grantees will implement quick-action projects that help communities become more livable in the long term by improving public places; transportation; diversity, equity, and inclusion; digital access; and civic engagement with an emphasis on the needs of adults aged 50 and over.

    Library Director Patsy C. Brewer stated that the grant will help purchase 11 Grand Pads, a tablet designed for older adults. The devices will then be used in computer classes and available for check out, just like traditional library books. Library staff members will provide tech support.”

    "AARP Mississippi is committed to working with communities to improve residents' quality of life through tangible changes," said AARP Mississippi State Director Kimberly L. Campbell, Esp. "We are proud to collaborate with this year's grantees as they make immediate improvements in their communities to jump-start long-term change, especially for Mississippians 50 and over."

    AARP Community Challenge grant projects will be funded in all 50 states, Washington, D.C., Puerto Rico, and the U.S. Virgin Islands. True to the program's quick-action nature, projects must be completed by Nov. 30.

    The grant program is part of AARP's nationwide Livable Communities initiative, which supports the efforts of cities, towns, neighborhoods, and rural areas to become great places to live for people of all ages.

    Since 2017, AARP Mississippi has awarded 11 grants through the program to nonprofit organizations and government entities across the state.

    A total of 260 grants were funded among the 3,200 applications that were received nationwide, and only four grants were funded in Mississippi this year.

    Submitted By:

    Patsy Brewer

    Library Director

    Waynesboro-Wayne County Library

  • Wednesday, August 17, 2022 8:13 AM | Anonymous

    Joyce M. Shaw received the USM Excellence in Librarianship award in May 2022.

    Joyce M. Shaw (MA, MLIS) is Head of Gunter Library at the Gulf Coast Research Laboratory (School of Ocean Science and Engineering) and a Southern Miss University Libraries professor. Since 2011, she has hosted the popular public program, GCRL Science Café.

    In 2012, she co-authored “Ocean Springs,” a part of the Images of American series.

    She is chair of the Mississippi Library Association Special Libraries Section and Atmospheric Science Librarians International, a member of the executive board of the USM-AAUP chapter, and a new member of the Gulf Coast Faculty Council. She is a Past-President and current member of the Rotary Club of Ocean Springs and an associate member of the North Bay Civitan Club. Over the last 26 years at Gunter Library, she has mentored 18 undergraduate students, 7 graduate students, and 2 tenure track librarians. She enjoys volunteering and collecting Matchbox and Hot Wheels toy work vehicles, especially concrete mixers.

  • Friday, March 25, 2022 9:00 AM | Anonymous

    Stephen Parks, State Law Library of Mississippi, has been appointed to a Task Force by the United States Government Publishing Office, GPO. The Task Force will study the feasibility of an all-digital Federal Depository Library Program, FDLP.  The Task Force’s official charge is to “determine whether an all-digital FDLP is necessary, and if so, define the scope of an all-digital depository program and make recommendations as to how to implement and operate such a program.”  Comprised of 23 members, the Task Force includes members representing the Depository Library Council, the Depository Library Community, Federal Agencies, and library associations.  The Taskforce will deliver a final report to GPO Director Hugh Halpern by December 2022. 

  • Friday, March 25, 2022 9:00 AM | Anonymous

    Dr. Lis Pankl has been appointed Professor and Dean of Libraries at the Mississippi State University Libraries.  Dr. Pankl holds a PhD in Geography from Kansas State University, a MPA from the University of Utah, a MSLS from the University of North Texas, a MA in English from Abilene Christian University, and a BA in English from Washington State University.  Her research interests include higher education administration, organizational development, strategic planning, academic libraries, and critical/cultural geographies. 

    Submitted by: 

    Dr. Deborah Lee 
    Professor & Associate Dean, Public Services 
    Mississippi State University Libraries 

  • Friday, March 25, 2022 9:00 AM | Anonymous

    The Jackson-George Regional Library System will say a tearful goodbye to long-time Assistant Director and librarian Alisa St. Amant as she retires January 31, 2022. Alisa will retire after serving a total of 14 years as a librarian with the Library System which began at headquarters in 2008. The library system staff and Friends held a retirement reception in her honor and presented her with a Gold JGRLS library card. The presentation was made by Angela Stewart, JGRLS Library Director.

    Alisa has worked in libraries since high school, working for the Library of Hattiesburg and later received her Bachelors. She earned her MLS from the University of Southern Mississippi and worked for several library systems in the state including the Madison County Library System, Lamar County Library System and First Regional Library System. Alisa said, “I have stretched myself beyond anything learned or even discussed in library school several decades ago. I will fondly remember my staff and administration along with my years with this system.  I greatly appreciate all the help over the years and that of the administrative staff, my co-managers and co-workers.”

    For more information about the Jackson-George Library System and branch libraries visit online at www.jgrls.org. 

    Submitted by: 

    Rex Bridges 
    Public Relations & Marketing Manager 
    Jackson-George Regional Library System 

  • Friday, March 25, 2022 9:00 AM | Anonymous

    Meg Wang, also known as Chu-Ping Wang, joined the Mississippi State University libraries as Assistant Professor/Electronic Resources Cataloger in November 2021. Wang has 15 years of collection management and digitization experience in libraries, archives, and museums. Wang is responsible for cataloging ETDs, E-Books, online government documents and streaming videos. She also is the bibliographer liaison for the College of Business and the Department of Agricultural Economics. Meg received her B.A. in Library Science from the National Taiwan University, her M.A. in Museum Studies from the University of Leicester (UK), her M.Sc. in Conservation for Archaeology and Museums from the University College London (UK) and her M.L.I.S. from the University of Southern Mississippi. 

  • Friday, March 25, 2022 9:00 AM | Anonymous

    The Board of Trustees of the South Mississippi Regional Library System are pleased to announce that, as of January 1, 2022, the library system will no longer charge late fines for overdue materials.

    Traditionally, late fines were charged to encourage patrons to return library materials in a timely manner so that they would be available for more patrons. However, in recent years, libraries across the nation have raised the argument that fines may create a barrier to patrons accessing services due to economic reasons. 

    When the Columbia-Marion County branch closed in December 2019 due to tornado damage, library staff were instructed to waive all late fines of materials currently out on loan. Then, in March 2020, when the entire library system participated in the mandatory pandemic shut-down, the rest of the library system began enforcing the same directive. Over the course of the next year and a half, as the Library fluctuated from complete closures to curb-side only, to restricted access, and finally re-opening fully, staff continued to waive fines.

    At their November 9, 2021, meeting, the Board of Trustee members reviewed data on fine collection for the five years prior to the pandemic and concluded that fines did not constitute a significant portion of the library’s revenue. “Our Board members were happy to eliminate any barrier to individuals in our community receiving the full array of services the library has to offer,” states Director Ryda Worthy. “We invite anyone who may have old late fees on their account to come see us, so that we can get their account active again.” The Library will continue to charge for lost or damaged items.

    The five members of the SMRL Board of Trustees are appointed by the Marion and Jefferson Davis County Board of Supervisors and serve a 5-year term. All library policies are adopted by the Board and are available to the public at each library branch location. 

    Submitted by: 

    Ryda Worthy 
    Library Director 
    South Mississippi Regional Library System 

  • Wednesday, December 22, 2021 8:48 AM | Anonymous

    The University of Mississippi Libraries will host Americans and the Holocaust, a traveling exhibition from the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum that examines the motives, pressures and fears that shaped Americans’ responses to Nazism, war and genocide in Europe during the 1930s and 1940s.

    Americans and the Holocaust will be on display at the University Libraries’ J.D. Williams Library along with a series of related special events, from December 1, 2021 to January 14, 2022.

    More information about the exhibit is available at: https://exhibitions.ushmm.org/americans-and-the-holocaust

    Submitted by:

    Adam Clemons

    Research & Instruction Librarian, Assistant Professor

    University of Mississippi

  • Wednesday, December 22, 2021 8:45 AM | Anonymous

    The Hancock County Library System welcomed new Executive Director John Brdecka on September 13, 2021. Hancock County Library System serves roughly 46,000 residents on the coast from its five outlet locations in Bay St. Louis, Kiln, Diamondhead, Waveland, and Pearlington. Brdecka is an Illinois native, hailing from the Chicago area. Brdecka completed his MLIS at Dominican University in River Forest, Illinois. He brings sixteen years of experience to the position, making the leap from academic to public libraries after working in various positions at Northwestern University, most recently as Interim Associate University Librarian for Resource Delivery and Management. Brdecka will oversee HCLS’ thirty-two staff members.

    “I’m fortunate to be in the position to work with so many passionate people who eat, drink, live for the communities they serve and I look forward to working with them to move this library system forward,” said Brdecka.

    John Brdecka was recently featured in the local news article for the Sea Coast Echo detailing his background and influences. Brdecka also provided input for an article in American Libraries on the challenges libraries face in recovering from severe storms. Hancock County Library System suffered only minor impacts from this season’s Hurricane Ida. The library was able to provide services to evacuees in the wake of significant damage to neighbors in Louisiana.

  • Wednesday, December 22, 2021 8:37 AM | Anonymous

    Jackson-George Regional Library System Board of Trustees
    Pictured are (left to right) George Sholl, Belinda Dammen, Angela Stewart (director), Metty Ryals, Carol Lewis-Jones (board chair), Evelyn Read (vice-chair), and Nancy Jo Maples. Not pictured, Susan Agnelly.

    The Jackson-George Regional Library System Board of Trustees welcomed new Library System Director Angela Stewart at the October 2021 meeting. She was promoted from the Pascagoula Public Library where she served as branch manager. Stewart was also the Gautier Public Library manager before being promoted to the main library in Pascagoula.

    “I am incredibly happy to be selected as library system director,” said Mrs. Stewart. “I feel fortunate to be able to work with such a capable group of people who are totally committed to public service. I look forward to working with all the libraries and communities we serve.”

    After working on air for 15 years, including as a radio announcer on K99 and Magic 93.7 FM, Angela decided to change her career path. In July of 2001, she was hired as a library clerk at the Vancleave Public Library and became very interested in Library Science as a career. Stewart is a longtime Gautier resident and a 1984 graduate of Pascagoula High School. She received her Bachelor of Library Science in 2013 and her Master of Library and Information Science in 2017 at the University of Southern Mississippi.

    Jackson-George Regional Library System also announced a change for the Pascagoula Public Library by selecting Jeanne Damiano as branch manager. Damiano takes the position that was previously held by Angela Stewart who is now the new Library Director for the system. Damiano was previously the JGRLS Collection Management Services coordinator in Administration. She previously served as branch manager for the Lucedale, Ocean Springs, and Vancleave Public Libraries.

    Damiano graduated with a BA in Library and Information Science and minor in English from Southern Mississippi in 1997 and received her MLIS in 1999. She also received the 1999 Anna M. Roberts Award for scholarship, service, and professionalism.

    For more information about Jackson-George Regional Library System, visit www.jgrls.org.

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