Monday, March 22, 2010

New Library Director at Springfield City Library

Molly Fogarty, recently named the new Library Director for Springfield City Library, envisions a state of the art library system for city residents. With 2,000 people visiting the libraries each day, she knows that the library plays a key role in this community, both as a place for resources and as a community meeting place. Ms. Fogarty believes that branch libraries can be tailored to the interests of the neighborhoods in which they are located. In developing its next five-year plan, the Library will need input from the public. Plan to attend focus groups and complete surveys so you can tell us what you need from your Springfield City Library. With that goal in mind, Ms. Fogarty will be working with other City departments, neighborhood and civic associations, Branch Advisory Committees, and other community members to develop a first-rate library system for the City of Springfield!

Molly Fogarty started working for Springfield City Library in 1978, as the supervisor of the Brightwood Branch Library, and was promoted to the position of branch manager a few years later. Her four sons enjoyed attending library storytimes and taking part in Summer Reading Clubs for many years. In 1992 Ms. Fogarty was named Library Co-Director, and then became Assistant Director in 1994, working closely with former Library Director Emily Bader for over 15 years. Together they built numerous collaborations between the library and the community, while continuing to upgrade library buildings, inside and outside. Ms. Fogarty worked with project architects in planning and overseeing building renovation projects at the Indian Orchard, Mason Square, Pine Point, Sixteen Acres, and Brightwood Branch Libraries, as well as the Central Library.
Ms. Fogarty helped develop many unique programs and new services that have enabled our library system to thrive and make a real impact on Springfield residents. She has written and implemented numerous federal, state, and foundation grant proposals to gain funding towards that end. She is a graduate of UMass Amherst and received her Master of Library and Information Science from the University of Rhode Island. Ms. Fogarty supports education and lifelong learning and strongly believes that a welcoming, modern library system is key to Springfield’s future successes. “I am proud of my achievements at the Springfield City Library, making a positive impact on the community and individuals.”

In addition Ms. Fogarty has been active in the state and national library communities for over 17 years, involved in advocacy, planning, and budgeting. She was elected by members of the Massachusetts Library Association (MLA) to represent the interests and needs of Massachusetts libraries and residents for the American Library Association. She has chaired various committees and boards. Currently she is President of the Western Massachusetts Regional Library System, served as President of the MLA from 1999-2000, and has been a program presenter for the Massachusetts Library Association, New England Library Association, Public Library Association and American Library Association Conferences. As the Chair of the American Library Association Legislative Committee, which is responsible for federal, state and local legislative programs, Ms. Fogarty developed policy that opposes any legislation that infringes on the rights of immigrants to use library resources, programs and services.

In her spare time Ms. Fogarty enjoys traveling, loves the beach, the theatre and opera. She has been married to her husband Ed for over thirty years and is “proudest of my four sons, the wonderful young men that they are, their civic mindedness, their accomplishments so far, and what I know they will accomplish in the future.” As far as her favorite authors or books, she “enjoys reading novels by Alice Hoffman, Joyce Carol Oates, Kate Atkinson, Walter Mosely, Amy Tan, and John Grisham, plus those by local authors such as Eleanor Lipman, Suzanne Strempek Shea and Anita Shreve. I recently read In the Woods, by Tana French, and my favorite book that I have read over and over is The Joy Luck Club, by Amy Tan, because it reminds me of my relationship with my mother and my mother’s friends.”

Congratulations Molly Fogarty! We’re glad that Springfield City Library is a place for you. We look forward to helping you achieve your vision of a state of the art library system for this City.

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