The Brookings Public Library was accredited by the South Dakota State Library in 2012 as an Exemplary Library, under a new system of tiered accreditation.   Libraries applying for the accreditation are evaluated on governance, administration, access, collections and resources, funding, staffing, technology, and public relations.
Those criteria sound like quite a check list, and they are.  What isn’t always measured in these types of list are the “rest of the story”.  The human touch that comes from exemplary customer service, from spending a little longer in making sure the child or the adult has the book or the information they want, in planning programs to interest, excite, and challenge.  It’s trying very hard to keep up with what’s happening in technology and its various devices and apps so we can assist those who might struggle a bit.  It’s being told by parents how much their children enjoy coming to the puppet shows, participating in the summer reading program, and experimenting with science at our family science nights.  It’s making a difference in people’s lives.  Those things just don’t show up on a checklist.
Just as one good player doesn’t make a winning team or one good book make a library, I’ve had the best Library Board and staff a director could want.  I have the support of my city manager, and also the support of the community and of our funding bodies, particularly the City of Brookings, and also Brookings County and the Friends of the Library.  Everyone plays a role and we and you all benefit in this success.  So thank you all for helping us be designated as an exemplary library.  We’ll try very hard to continue to earn that praise.