Ann Plazek has long believed in going where non–library users are. She developed her passion for outreach as a young page riding along on bookmobile runs, honed it as bookmobile supervisor at Medina County District Library (MCDL), OH, and today excels at it as the library’s outreach services manager. “I love opportunities to…let the community know how much has changed in the last ten years,” she says, using regularly scheduled Pop-Up Libraries to do just that.
Recently named director of community engagement at the Queens Library (QL) and former outreach coordinator, Kim McNeil-Capers describes her role as “a human bridge of connectivity”—to customers, external and internal stakeholders, community organizations, government officials, and more. Her outreach programs have served over 10,000 people annually, including incarcerated patrons and those living in housing projects.
On July 26, New York Public Library (NYPL) launched the first permanent public library location at Rikers Island, East Elmhurst, NY, New York City’s main jail complex and one of the world’s largest correctional institutions. NYPL’s Correctional Services (CS) team has been providing library services at Rikers Island since 1984, currently operating five satellite libraries throughout the complex’s ten jails, but the new 1,200-volume library at the Rose M. Singer Center (RMSC) is the first to occupy dedicated space. Decorated with posters and vibrant, comfortable furnishings, the library is open for six hours every Tuesday, serving half of the facility every other week. Inmates may check out two books at a time for two weeks.