Meet Stephanie Chase, ALA Division Councilor
I have been a long-time advocate for readers' advisory and services to virtual patrons, and have funneled those passions into organizations and projects that support that work, helping found the Green Mountain (Vt.) Library Consortium, a statewide library organization providing digital collections and partnership opportunities to 150 member libraries. I was also a founding member of, and now serve as chair of the Steering Committee for, LibraryReads, the nationwide library staff picks list. I am currently the director of the Hillsboro Public Library in Hillsboro, Ore. Prior to Hillsboro, I coordinated service strategies to libraries for BiblioCommons and was the Director of Library Programs and Services for The Seattle Public Library. I also worked for the Multnomah County (Ore.) Library and served as the director of several libraries in Vermont and New Hampshire.
Why I wanted to serve on the PLA Board
To me, public libraries are essential to creating and sustaining a healthy, connected, vibrant community. Public libraries connect friends and neighbors, serve those in need, help people find a book they will love, inspire children to a lifelong love of reading and learning, and much more. Public libraries are active, vibrant spaces full of treasures just waiting for people to discover them, and I want to help staff and libraries in all kinds of communities—big and small—celebrate those spaces.
My vision for the future of public libraries
I want libraries to be the heart of vitality in every community, with leaders who know what the public's needs are and are flexible enough to not only be "at the table" but to determine what "meal is going to be served." I want stakeholders, community members, library users, donors, and elected officials to fully understand and appreciate public libraries.
My favorite book
When pressed for an answer, I will say my favorite book is Outlander by Diana Gabaldon, because it can be just about whatever genre I want it to be when I pick it up. But really, my favorite book is probably the one I am reading at the moment, because life is too short to not read good books. I keep a reading list online at www.goodreads.com/acornsandnuts.
Somewhere I love to frequent in my community
There is a restaurant and bar in my neighborhood I love, called Swift & Union. I love it because the staff know me, and my family, and treat us like regulars. It's a comfortable spot, with great food and great wine, and, most importantly, a great feeling of welcome.
Photo: Stephanie Chase pays homage to the Harry Potter literary and film series by posing with a "Golden Snitch."