As trustees of the Library, we are entrusted with one of the best libraries in the Commonwealth.  We have great staff and a charming, historic facility that was extensively renovated in 1999. But that does not mean that we as trustees don’t have to work to ensure the future of the Library is secure. We are always looking at ways to improve the Library and to make it sustainable. One key tool in planning for the future is the strategic plan that we prepared in 2013. Our strategic plan focuses on several objectives for the Library.

First, we wanted to improve the communications about the Library. For example, this is why you are reading this article right now. It is part of our overall effort to improve our communications to you about Library. But the best communication is two ways. For that reason, we are also seeking your stories about the Library. We know that there are lots of great stories about the Library. By recording these stories, we hope to create an even stronger connection between the Library and our patrons. It also helps us understand what you value about the Library.

Second, we believe it is timely to evaluate how we use the space within the Library. When the Library renovation was completed in 1999, the world was a much different place.  We are working with architects to come up with ideas on how the Library space can evolve to meet the 2015 and beyond demands of our patrons. At the same time, it is important that we maintain those aspects of the Library that our patrons value. Those surveys and community meetings in which you participated in 2013 helped us to understand what you value and what you need. Your stories are an on-going source of feedback. Soon, you will get a further chance to provide reaction on some ideas to the change the way we use the Library’s space. I think you will be excited about how we could refigure our space to provide many new opportunities at the Library.

Finally, we have been working hard to keep the Library fiscally sound. Asking for money is not my idea of a good time. But it is much easier to ask on behalf of an institution that I believe in so strongly and that is recognized by you as an essential community service.

In 2018, it will be time to create a new strategic plan for the Library.  But I am confident that the next strategic plan for the Library will be built upon a foundation that is even stronger because of the actions we have taken under our current strategic plan.

Larry Castner, Board Member

The Future of the Sewickley Public Library