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Thursday, February 10, 2011

A Career at the ORL...

The ORL is blessed with an amazing team of staff, many of whom have been with the organization for decades. Here, a veteran community librarian - Carol Stratton from Falkland - shares her reflections on over 28 years with the ORL...

My career with the ORL began in May 1982 as an on-call staff member at the Falkland Branch, and I later joined the Vernon Branch part-time in Children’s Services and Circulation. Thanks to an accommodating schedule I was able to work at both locations until 1987 when I became a full-time staff member in Children’s Services in Vernon. At that time the branch was sharing space with the Vernon Museum in, shall we say, cramped quarters.

We all survived the physical move into the new Vernon Branch in June 1989, where it is currently located. A few years later came automation – switching from a card-based system for cataloguing and tracking the ORL’s collection to a computer-based system. What a learning curve!

I have many great memories of reading stories to children and doing puppet shows with Maureen, Jan, and Tom, and promoting Summer Reading Clubs every year. It was fun to wear special book-based character costumes for special events at the library and in school, such as Penelope Puffin, Wormsworth, Peter Rabbit and Little Bear - lovely to wear when the weather was cool but dreadfully hot in the summer!

In 1997, I moved on into full-time reference work at the Information Desk and enjoyed serving the public immensely. I never heard a stupid question, as I believe that if you need to know something it is your right to have the answer in a professional and timely manner.

Having driven back and forth to Vernon from my home in Falkland for more than 18 years, I was ready for a change when the Falkland Community Librarian position was posted in late 2001.  So, the recycled Community Librarian returned to part-time work in February 2002 back in Falkland where it all began!

My retirement this past October has begun a new chapter in my life - 
one that no longer involves the day-to-day with the ORL although I still go to library often. How could I live without books?

Thank you, Carol - you've been a great asset to the ORL these many years and all the best for a happy, fulfilling retirement.

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