Posted: June 22, 2021
Prior to being named the director of the Eldora Public Library, Joan worked as a para-educator. During her last few years as a para-ed- ucator, she was transferred to operate the school’s library where she did everything in her power to promote literacy. She knew by heart the books that each child was checking out. She built the selec- tion in the library around the student’s interests. The students loved talking to her about the books they were reading and which books they were looking forward to reading next. Joan would come to the classroom and do a read aloud connected to the lesson for the day and was always a positive and encouraging coworker. This carried over to her new role at the Public Library. Joan is just as important in building literacy in our community as ever before! She has turned the public library into such a fun and inviting place that the children in the Eldora community love to visit. She continues to go the local elemen- tary school and read to classrooms. She has also begun offering book clubs to promote literacy. Joan has a knack for writing grants. She has helped the library receive grants to further promote literacy activities. Joan started offering story walks throughout the Eldora community. She received a grant to purchase items to make the story walk more durable through Iowa’s weather. She began offering curbside pickup right away when the pandemic started. It was important to her to keep books in the hands of the com- munity. Joan and her staff continue to create a community of care and learning for all patrons. Joan is very professional and passionate about the Eldora Library’s future and all the libraries in Hardin County. Her desire to promote literacy extends well beyond her own library and community. Joan’s tireless efforts to keep young children and adults reading has certainly been noticed by the community. Her passion for literacy is evi- dent in everything she is a part of and that is the reason she was selected as this Year’s Celebrate Literacy Award Winner.