Dawn Wittman 2012 Idaho Librarian of the Year

by Sue Walker

ILA’s 2012 Librarian of the Year has contributed to both her community and the larger library community for many years. She recently retired as library director of a city library which colleagues and Board members report she transformed during her thirteen year tenure. The quantity and quality of collections, programs for all ages, use of technology and library visibility all greatly increased as a result of her leadership-so much so that the library outgrew its facility.

Not to be deterred, she took on the daunting job of attaining a library building that matched her vision that “libraries change lives.” Along the way she inspired the creation of a Friends of the Library organization, a Library Foundation, and a Campaign Cabinet which worked with the City Council on a five year business plan that used a private/public partnership to acquire a new library facility.  While the library was not a reality when she retired, plans to move into it in 2013 are well underway.

In addition to her leadership at the library, she is a long standing member of the Idaho Library Association, the American Library Association, and has served on various city, state, and regional boards.  She has served on many committees which support library services for the entire state such as the Idaho Commission for Libraries LiLI Advisory Council and the Talking Book Service Advisory Committee.

The Lewiston City Library Board of Trustees describes Dawn Wittman this way: “Those who know Dawn know she is small, but she is mighty.  She has the vision, determination and wherewithal to turn a dream into reality.”  Delitha Kilgore, Lewiston Library Foundation President commented, “her life has been one of “balancing many balls” in a very energetic and successful way. Her love of the library and the pleasure in providing services is infectious.”

We are delighted and proud to recognize Dawn Wittman as the 2012 Idaho Librarian of the Year.

Sue Walker, ICFL Library Consultant.

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