Library Director's Acceptance Speech - NSLS Library of the Year

Library Director Tom Kern’s speech, accepting the
NSLS 2005 “Library of the Year” Award
at the NSLS Awards Banquet, March 18, 2005

Thank you, Sarah, for your kind words.

One of the best things about being named Library of the Year is that it honors and recognizes the efforts of the entire staff and library board as well as the support of the community we serve.  This honor provides a great forum for acknowledging and thanking everyone who has contributed to our success.

I think the key to our success has been collaboration and teamwork at many levels -- within our library, within our community, and within the NSLS network. 

I’d like to thank the North Suburban Library System for this award and for all they have done to facilitate our collaborative efforts.  NSLS is one of the most highly respected library systems in the country, and it’s a privilege to be affiliated with and honored by such an impressive network of libraries and colleagues.  NSLS makes all of our jobs easier and more effective. NorthStarNet has greatly enhanced our partnership with our community organizations.

I also want to acknowledge these various community groups who have supported library activities – especially the Friends of the Library who are represented here this evening.

I’d like to express our deep appreciation to the library’s board of trustees, who have played a vital role in our success over the years.  Knowing that we can count on their support and their willingness to work together as a team has made our collaboration more effective and enjoyable.

A big part of our community support comes from our families and friends.  The nature of our commitment is 24/7.  I’m glad to see so many spouses and partners here tonight, because I’m able to publicly acknowledge and thank them for their support and valuable contributions.  Personally, I can assure you that without the advice and encouragement of my wife, I would not be standing here this evening.  I’m sure that many of our staff and trustees feel the same.

The most essential element of the library’s success this year is our staff of 49 individuals, many of whom are here this evening.  This award is a tribute to their exceptional level of dedication, teamwork, effort, and service to the community.

Since we don’t have time to mention everyone individually, I’d like to point out that all of our staff and trustees are wearing a special commemorative pin which symbolizes our success.  I chose a star shape because, in my eyes, they are all stars.

In conclusion, I’d like to ask the staff and board members to please stand and be recognized for all their efforts and accomplishments which have resulted in the Wauconda Area Library being named the North Suburban Library System’s 2005 Library of the Year.