2010 Librarian of the Year on the Library of the Future

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Library shelf Library shelf (Swamibu/flickr)

Libraries around the country are falling victim to the weak economy. Suffering from budget cuts, many are in danger of closing. But in Louisville, Kentucky, the public library system is growing. 

Its director, Craig Buthod, has reinvented the libraries into community education centers for all generations and developed a program that combines student IDs, bus tickets and library cards, getting Louisville kids to check out 3,000 books a day. We talk with Buthod, 2010 Librarian of the Year, about the future of libraries in the digital age. 

Guests:

Craig Buthod

Produced by:

Kateri A. Jochum

Comments [4]

Mary Blieka from Queens, NY

I graduated from St. John's University with an MLS a year ago. One assignment a professor gave us was to locate another institution in our community that fulfilled any or all of the same or similar functions as the public library. For information, free entertainment, free use of technology, computers, fax machines, audio books, language cassetes, databases, and free advice from an information professional (librarian) nothing exists that remotely resembles the public library. It's the most democratic of institutions, one that would be sorely missed and leave a great void if taken away.

Jun. 15 2011 09:40 AM

Jon H --
As someone who grew up in Pittsburgh, PA, I am very familiar with Andrew Carnegie's accomplishments and failings (he made his fortune there and built his first public library nearby in Homestead, PA [after he cruelly ordered the Homestead Steelworkers strike suppressed with lethal force].
But Carnegie only popularized and enabled the spread of public libraries. In actuality, the enlightened citizens of Boston, Mass, founded the first public library in the U.S. in 1848 so they deserve the lion's share of credit. The BPL's charter is a wonderful document which sets down the fundamental principles that still guide public libraries everywhere today.
http://www.bpl.org/general/history.htm

Jun. 15 2011 09:05 AM
Jude from Salt Lake City, UT

The public library mean community to me. When I move to a new location its always one of the places I seek out like the post office. Both Salt Lake City (which is home to the 2009 Library of the Year) and Salt Lake County are both building new libraries this year. Libraries are vibrant focal points in this valley offering a wide range of services and activities that appeal to people across all social and economic strata. this month the Salt Lake Library plaza and the city County building across the street from it has already been home to Pride Fest which saw over 30,000 people attend it and will feature the Utah Arts festival next weekend which will attract an equal number of people The Library Plaza is also home to the radio station KCPW that I listen to the Takeaway on. And that doesn't even begin to touch on all the wonderful services that are offered once I walk in side the doors. Give me my libraries!!!

Jun. 15 2011 08:38 AM
Debbie Randorf from Brooklyn, NY

Hello, you don't need to physically visit the library to use the library!! Obviously you have not streamed a video or downloaded an ebook from your local library!!

As one sage put it, the cocktail and the circulating library are the greatest American contributions to Western civilization.

Jun. 15 2011 08:28 AM

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