Employment & Work Stories

Texas Library Director Dumped...Explanation TBA

Here's a preview of a story that's still in the works: Nancy Clarke, director of the Sam Fore Jr. Wilson Cty Library in Floresville, Texas was terminated by the county commissioners, but we won't know why until tomorrow.

Strange teaser from the Wilson County (TX) News:

The Wilson County Commissioners Court soon will have to begin the search for a new head librarian for the Sam Fore Jr. Wilson County Public Library as a result of their unanimous Aug. 10 vote to terminate Head Librarian Nancy Clarke’s employment.

The vote followed a nearly 90-minute executive session, in which County Judge Marvin Quinney and commissioners Albert Gamez Jr., Leonard Rotter Jr., Bobby Lynn, and Larry Wiley discussed a grievance brought against Clarke by a library employee.

Gamez made the motion to “terminate Nancy Clarke’s employment effective today, based on what we heard in executive session,” which was seconded by Rotter.

Afterward, Quinney said he was unable to comment about the nature of the grievance or about what the commissioners heard from witnesses who gave statements during the executive session.

For more on the commissioners court meeting, read the Aug. 12 print edition of the Wilson County News.

new Facebook group: Library Layoffs

Library Layoffs on Facebook:
"To show support for those laid off or to post your story or to network and find where the jobs are right now."

I'm currently the sole member, so I'm a little lonely. Please join. I made a mix tape if you want to hear some music when you get there. You like Styx?

No, seriously, I don't know if there's a need for this, but we're seeing layoffs in nearby cities and counties, so I made the group. But groups are only as good as the people who join, so think about it. Thanks.

Library Day in the Life...

What do librarians do all day? You probably know, but others would like to know as well. Why not participate in the Library Day in the Life project?

1.Post your activities on your blog, or if you don't have a blog, start one at p b wiki (it's free)!
2. Add your name, your job title (so we can see what you do at a glance) and a link to your blog.
3. Start blogging.
4. Tag your posts with librarydayinthelife.
5. After your first blog post come back and edit this page to change your blog link to a link to your tagged posts.
6. Add your Flickr photos or videos to the Group on Flickr.

Thank you to Bobbi Newman for this wonderful idea! You can read the post that inspired librarydayinthelife on Bobbi's site Librarian by Day.

...and thanks to Trevor A. Dawes for the tip!

A Suspension Reversed in Louisiana

The problem started on May 29 when Bayou Library Branch Manager Patrize Stuart received a call letting her know that there was a discrepancy of one hour between her sick leave sheet and her time sheet, both of which she signed.

Stuart had sick leave for four hours on May 20 while her pay sheet stated she only used three hours. LeBouef changed Stuart’s time sheet to reflect the sick time. Stuart was later suspended by her boss.

A Lafourche Parish councilman’s (Jerry Jones) intervention in the suspension resulted in a special meeting of the Library Board Monday, after which the suspension was overturned.

But Lafourche Library Director Susanna LeBouef has questions whether councilman Jerry Jones, who said he was involved only as a private citizen, overstepped his authority by becoming involved in a personnel matter.

“I never could figure out how you were involved in this,” LeBouef said to Jones at the meeting of the Library Board of Control on Monday. “You have the authority to investigate but you also have a process and that process is not just picking up the telephone and interrogating the administrator of a political subdivision.” Houma Today.

Fired For Too Much Leave

The former head of children's programs at the Stonington (CT) Free Library is suing the library, saying officials fired her in part because she was the victim of domestic violence.

Heather Gillies, who worked at the library from 2001 until 2007, has filed the suit in New London Superior Court. She is asking the court to reinstate her to her former job and for the library to pay her lost wages and benefits as well as damages and attorneys' fees. She has also asked the court to order the library to stop discriminating against her.

According to The Day, the lawsuit maintains that library officials consistently praised Gillies as the children's librarian and assistant director. The suit details the time from Dec. 1, 2006, when Gillies took the first of several approved leaves, until March 30, 2007, when she was fired.

Identity Theft at the Library of Congress

Report from The Washington Post:

A 35-year-old Southeast Washington woman was sentenced to 2 1/2 years in federal prison for using the purloined identities of Library of Congress employees to purchases nearly $40,000 in goods.

Federal prosecutors said Labiska Gibbs enlisted a relative, a Library of Congress worker, to access an internal database and give her the names, birth dates and Social Security numbers of at least 10 employees, prosecutors said. Gibbs used that information to open credit accounts at retailers, including Target and Victoria's Secret. In court papers, Assistant U.S. Attorney Glenn S. Leon said Gibbs made a living selling gift cards she fraudulently purchased.

Gibbs's second cousin, William Sinclair Jr., 27 (who worked in HR at the LOC), was sentenced to three years of probation for his role in the scam. Prosecutors said Gibbs approached Sinclair and that he did not receive any money for his participation.

Brush Up on Your Social Networking People


From Social Signal, a sign of the times (thanks to David Lee King for the suggestion).

Top library jobs restructured in Tulsa

The Tulsa City-County Library system has restructured its top leadership positions by eliminating daily management duties for its chief executive officer, who will continue receiving the same compensation package and work from home up to two days a week.

The library commission approved moving library and business day-to-day operations from Chief Executive Officer Linda Saferite to Chief Operating Officer Laurie Sundborg.

The move has raised questions among library staff while apparently affecting employee morale, according to interviews conducted by the Tulsa World.

Top Interview Questions...What Would You Ask?

ALA Director for Membership Development John Chrastka is preparing a search for a new Director of the Berwyn (IL) Public Library. He posed the following question to facebook users: "What is your best interview question for potential new library directors?" Responses were unusually creative and even entertaining...

Jaime Corris Hammond - One of your librarians has stolen one of your other librarians' pie. What do you do?

Rose Mungovan Hoffman - Why do you think YOU are the *best* candidate for the job?

Eric Odeen - A plane full of librarians crashes on the US-Canada border. Where do they bury the survivors?

Nick Buron - Putting aside how staff is allocated now, what is the best way to allocate your staff to serve the public.

John Amundsen - What is your favorite Replacements song? If they reply, "Bastards of Young," hire him or her immediately, on the spot.

Lori Reed - How do you balance the need for competing priorities in this economy where library budgets are being slashed?
and - Do you think it is beneficial for a director to work the circulation desk?

Daniel Kraus - "What kind of puppy are you going to give me?"

Janet Swan Hill - How soon can we put a masseuse on staff?

Liz Danforth - "Express your views on the comparative role of paraprofessionals and professionals."

Bruce Alan Wilson - How are you going to explain to the mayor and city council (or the county commission, or whatever body funds the library) why the library needs more money in these tough economic times? -- Read More

Final Four in Sacramento

Four unnamed finalists have been chosen to contend for the Directorship of the Sacramento Public Library reports the Sacramento Bee.

The new director will replace Anne Marie Gold, who resigned amid controversy Dec. 1 after seven years on the job. During Gold's tenure, staff morale plunged and three people were charged with felonies in an alleged overbilling scheme that is still winding its way through Sacramento Superior Court. A grand jury investigation alleged mismanagement and suggested she be fired. The board ultimately paid $25,000 in return for Gold's resignation and a promise she not sue.

Interim library chief Phil Batchelor, a seasoned expert at turning around troubled agencies, was hired for $139,930 over seven months to stabilize the system and help find a permanent head.

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