PLA president-elect to spotlight the value of libraries

Contact: Kathleen Hughes

PLA Manager, Communications

For Immediate Release

June 21, 2005

PLA president-elect to spotlight the value of libraries

CHICAGO - Susan Hildreth, state librarian of California, will focus on communicating the value of libraries and will support a wide variety of efforts to make libraries a relevant part of life in the 21st century, during her term as president of the Public Library Association (PLA), which begins in July 2006.

“I am very honored to serve as the president-elect of the Public Library Association. I look forward to serving with Dan Walters (2005-06 PLA president), and other PLA leaders to continue the great services and programs of the association,” said the incoming vice-president.

Hildreth has been an active and enthusiastic American Library Association (ALA) member since 1990. She has served on the Board of Directors for PLA and currently serves on ALA Council. In the past she has served as chair, or as a member, of several high-profile PLA, LAMA (Library Administration and Management Association), and ALA (American Library Association) committees. Currently, she serves as a member of the PLA @ Your Library Task Force; the ALA Brey-Casiano Presidential Advisory Committee; and the ALA Chapter Relations Committee. She also is a member of another ALA division, ASCLA (Association of Specialized and Cooperative Library Agencies).

Along with her ALA responsibilities, Hildreth is active in other professional groups, including COSLA (Chief Officers of State Library Agencies) and the California Library Association (CLA), which she served not only as president, but also as treasurer. She also served on the 2000 Bond Task Force, an effort that led to the passage of Proposition 14 (Proposition 14 is the Reading and Literacy Improvement and Public Library Construction & Renovation Bond, which authorized $350 million to provide up to 65 percent of the funding for construction or renovation of local libraries). Hildreth also was a library delegate to the White House Conference on Libraries in 1991.

She was appointed state librarian of California in July 2004. Before her appointment she served as city librarian of San Francisco, where she received the prestigious Managerial Excellence Award from the San Francisco Municipal Fiscal Advisory Committee, in October 2000. Prior to her tenure in San Francisco, Hildreth was the planning consultant for the Library Development Services Bureau of the California State Library. As a consultant, she advised public libraries throughout the state in strategic planning, funding and governance issues.

From 1991 to 1996, Hildreth served as the deputy director for Support Services for the Sacramento Public Library and was responsible for fiscal, personnel, and facilities services for the library system. She was the county librarian for the Auburn-Placer (Calif.) County Library from 1989 to 1991 and the library director for the Benicia (Calif.) Public Library from 1984 to 1988. Hildreth also worked for the Yolo County Library in both Davis and Woodland (Calif.) from 1980 to 1984 and the Edison Township Library System in New Jersey from 1973 to 1978.

Hildreth graduated cum laude from Syracuse University and holds a master's degree in Library Science from the State University of New York at Albany as well as a master's degree in Business Administration from Rutgers University. PLA is a division of the American Library Association. For more information, please phone 1-800-545-2433,ext. 5PLA.