Top Ten: county libraries

Joyce Estes presents Glenda Ondracek with a bouquet at the library opening. Photo available for purchase

Joyce Estes presents Glenda Ondracek with a bouquet at the library opening.

Lois Swoboda
Published: Monday, December 30, 2013 at 14:09 PM.

It has been a turbulent year for the county library system with a new building dedicated and a change of leadership.

 In March, controversial correspondence from Library Director Glenda Ondracek to Carrabelle Branch Manager Tonia Chisolm led the library advisory board to ordered conflict resolution training for the entire library staff including volunteers.

The incident triggering the decision occurred at the April 16 county meeting. During a report on the status of the new Eastpoint library building, Commissioner Noah Lockley asked library board member Anna Carmichael about working conditions at the libraries after receiving copies of the letters from newly elected commissioner William Massey.

Retired Postmaster Judi Stokowski of Apalachicola led the training sessions.

In September, Ondracek informed the board she would retire on Oct. 31 and the search began for a new library director.

Sondra Furbee, of Apalachicola, Christine Hinton of St. James and Kate Aguilar of St. George Island were tapped to assess candidate s for the position and make a recommendation to the county board.

On Nov. 19, Library Board Chair Denise Butler recommended Anne Birchwell, who was already employed full-time as an assistant librarian, for the position. Commissioners voted unanimously to accept the recommendation and Birchwell began her new duties on November 25.

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