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Hickory Public Library employee selected for institute

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HICKORY — Hickory Public Library announced that Deana Jones with the Ridgeview Branch Library has been selected to join the Association for Rural and Small Libraries (ARSL) Outstanding in Their Field Leadership Institute as part of the 2021-2022 cohort.

Jones was chosen from among 180 applicants through a multistage selection process that included evaluations by selectors from across the country. She is the only participant selected from North Carolina for this cohort.

Beginning in August 2021, this group of 30 library professionals from around the country will engage in residential, online, and conference experiences spanning 18 months to deepen their understanding of and commitment to professional values while they gain practical managerial skills.

ARSL’s Leadership Institute is unique because its students are selected from only small and/or rural libraries. Often these are “accidental librarians” who have no formal education in librarianship (in the form of a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science) and few local resources for library-specific professional development. These folks came into their leadership positions from a wide variety of backgrounds and may already be in a position of authority, or they may be looking ahead to a transition of power within their organization.

Jones first started working for Hickory Public Library as a part-time library assistant in December 2000 and has served as a full-time library assistant since January 2003.

“We are proud of Deana for being selected to join the ARSL Leadership Institute and are excited to see her expand her professional capabilities and grow as an institutional and community leader,” said Hickory Public Library Director Sarah Greene.

Key priorities for this institute are to develop strong rural and small library leaders, give them tools to strengthen the communities they serve, and empower them to add their voices to national conversations about libraries.

As the premier organization representing rural and small libraries, ARSL recognizes the uniqueness of these libraries and is committed to providing professional development that builds capacity and excellence within this community of practice. This program is funded by a grant from the Institute for Museum and Library Science.

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