From the Director

A New Year

As the New Year begins, the library is already busy making investments in the future. By its very nature, a library is a place where the future is always present and some of our investments are immediately obvious, others may be less so. As we look to the future, we’re inspired by former NASA astronaut, Dr. Mae Jemison. Many of you may already know that Dr. Jemison was the first woman of color to become a NASA astronaut and to go into outer space. But did you know that since leaving the astronaut corps, she’s continued her work as a scientist, educator, innovator, and visionary? Among other projects, Dr. Jemison is a founding member of the 100 Year Starship initiative to assure human interstellar space travel to another star within the next century. You’ll be able to hear Dr. Jemison herself speak about her work on this project and in other fields when she visits our community on March 9 as part of the library’s newly formed Foundation Series. Check out the library’s website,, for details about Dr. Jemison’s visit.

We’re ever conscious of finding ways to gain efficiencies and save money. This past November, work was undertaken to replace the library’s old air conditioning chiller plant (installed in 1974 when the BG building was built) and its accompanying condensing unit (installed in 1994). The new system, while smaller, will cool the library more effectively and need fewer service calls. Another building-related improvement in the Bowling Green library is the recent installation of a water bottle filling station in the main hallway. The BG filling station, along with the filling station installed in the Walbridge library during its 2017 renovation project, will help reduce plastic waste.

The library is also making larger investments in its acquisition of eBooks and digital content to serve the growing demand by local readers. At the same time, WCDPL is also increasing the budget for new print books, since that demand remains strong.

Finally, you need look no further than the pages of this magazine for examples of the ways in which library staff—especially our youth services staff—spend every day investing in our most precious resource—our children. From 1000 Books Before Kindergarten to storytimes and STEM programs to author/illustrator visits, the library remains a place where tomorrow is nourished today.

See you at the library,

Michael Penrod



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