May 4, 2001
Director, Communications & Public Information
Robert L. Anderson of Middleborough and Commissioner Robert D. Hall, Jr. of Needham honored
BOSTON: The Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners (MBLC) is pleased to announce that Robert L. Anderson of Middleborough and Commissioner Robert D. Hall, Jr., of Needham, and Special Assistant, Massachusetts Department of Veterans' Services, were honored at the May 3rd Board Meeting with commendations for their service to libraries throughout the Commonwealth.
Mr. Anderson, a trustee of the Middleborough Public Library for 40 years, will also be honored at a Testimonial on May 11th. During his long tenure, he served as President of the Trustees of the Middleborough Public Library, and a member of the Library Building Committee during its addition and renovation in 1992. A World War II and Korean War veteran, Mr. Anderson was an Assistant District Attorney, District Attorney and Presiding Justice of the Fourth District Court of Plymouth County. He has also served as a member of the Middleborough School Committee and as a member of the Board of Selectmen.
Mr. Hall is presently the longest serving member of the Board, nearing the completion of his 10th year as a member. Governor William Weld first appointed him to a five-year term in 1992 and Governor Paul Cellucci re-appointed him to his second term in 1996.
Mr. Hall was elected Chairman of the MBLC in FY95 and was reelected in FY96. Under his stewardship as Chairman, he initiated the tremendously successful Trustee Visit Program, and increased the visibility and profile of the MBLC. It was also under his chairmanship that the Strategic Plan for the Future of Library Services in Massachusetts was enacted and received its initial funding. The Massachusetts Public Library Construction Program was also re-authorized by the General Court during his tenure as Chairman, providing $45 million in grants to cities and towns for public library construction and renovation purposes.
Before being appointed to the MBLC, Mr. Hall was a 22-year veteran of the Needham Public Library's Board of Trustees where he successfully campaigned for handicapped accessibility with the Needham library becoming one of the first in the state to be handicapped accessible.
The Board of Library Commissioners (mass.gov/mblc) is the agency of state government with the statutory authority and responsibility to organize, develop, coordinate and improve library services throughout the Commonwealth. The Board advises municipalities and library trustees on the operation and maintenance of public libraries, including construction and renovation. It administers state and federal grant programs for libraries and promotes cooperation among all types of libraries through regional library systems and automated resource sharing. It also works to ensure that all residents of the Commonwealth, regardless of their geographic location, social or economic status, age, level of physical or intellectual ability or cultural background, have access to essential new electronic information technologies and significant electronic databases.