July 23, 2007
Director, Communications & Public Information
Board Elects Officers
The Massachusetts Board of Library Commissioners elected officers on Thursday, July 12, 2007, to serve for FY2008. Re-elected Chairman was Dr. Em Claire Knowles of Medford; re-elected Vice Chairman was George T. Comeau, Esq., of Canton, and re-elected Secretary was Katherine K. Dibble of Boston.
"Massachusetts libraries are an essential piece of our communities. Behind every public library working to serve its community is a network of libraries supporting each other,” says Dr. Knowles. “These libraries work together by sharing resources and information. Even during the hours when the library is closed, dedicated librarians are providing 24/7 information. For example, www.MassAnswers.org - an online, around the clock reference service for Massachusetts residents - can help students access library resources after hours to answer homework assignments just as easily as it can help a parent, or any caregiver, find library resources to help answer business, parenting, retirement, or medical questions.”
“We are most grateful for the support that the Board and Massachusetts libraries have received this year from Governor Deval Patrick, Lt. Governor Tim Murray, and the Legislature. Their support has allowed libraries to serve the diverse needs of our communities, and I encourage everyone in Massachusetts to use their library to discover the many ways it can serve you."
Commissioner Knowles of Medford was first appointed to the Board by Acting Governor Jane Swift in 2002, and reappointed by Governor Mitt Romney in 2006. Commissioner Knowles is the Assistant Dean at the Graduate School of Library and Information Science at Simmons College in Boston. She currently serves on the Council of the American Library Association, Massachusetts Black Librarians' Network, and chairs the Tyson professional recognition committee of the Black Caucus of the American Library Association, as well as serving as a Design Team member of the Leaders of Tomorrow, a mentoring program of the National Black MBA Association. Originally from California, she has a BA from the University of California at Davis, a MLS from the University of California at Berkeley, a MPA from California State University in Sacramento, and a DA from Simmons College.
Commissioner Comeau was appointed to the Board by Governor Mitt Romney in 2004. He is a technology administrator and an adjunct professor at Suffolk University and also maintains a private law practice in Canton. He currently is Chairman of the Board of Trustees of the Canton Public Library, a member of the Executive Board of the Massachusetts Bay Transportation Authority Advisory Board, the Chairman of the advisory board of the Massachusetts Audubon Society Visual Arts Center, a member of the MassAudubon Council and Canton Historical Commission, and the President of the Friends of the Little Red House, Inc., in Canton. He has both a BS and a MPA from Suffolk University, as well as his JD from Suffolk University Law School.
Commissioner Dibble of the Roslindale section of Boston was appointed to the Board by Governor Mitt Romney in 2005. Commissioner Dibble has had a long career with the Boston Public Library where she began in 1966 at the Hyde Park Branch. Through the years she worked as an adult, library loan and research librarian. Most recently she was the Director of Public Services from 1999 to 2003 when she retired. Among her professional memberships are the American Library Association, Association of College and Research Libraries, and City-Wide Friends of the Boston Public Library. She has also served as President and other capacities with the Boston Chapter of the Women’s National Books Association, as well as a Trustee of the French Library and Cultural Center in Boston, and is currently a Board Member of the Boston Women’s Heritage Trail. A graduate of Yankton College in South Dakota, she has her Master of Library Science from the University of Wisconsin Graduate School of Library Science.
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.