Director David & Joyce Milne Public Library (Williamstown, MA)

The David and Joyce Milne Public Library in Williamstown, MA is hiring a new Library Director. The successful candidate is an innovative and collaborative leader with excellent communication, management, and relationship skills and proven ability to maintain focus and achieve desired outcomes. They will maintain and expand strong connections with the community on behalf of the library and ensure consistently effective and fiscally responsible execution of all day-to-day services, programs, and operations for the David and Joyce Milne Public Library. For a full description of the position visit

Located in Northern Berkshire County, Massachusetts and bordering both Vermont and New York, Williamstown is a unique community of 7,500 residents and home to numerous cultural and educational institutions including the Clark Art Institute, the Williamstown Theater Festival, and Williams College. There is a constant blend of people, events, and ideas contributing to a community life that makes Williamstown unique in the region. The library is committed to serving a diverse, multicultural, and engaged community of patrons and active partners. The town center and surrounding neighborhoods provide a diversity of housing and businesses. Outside the town center and nearby areas, Williamstown quickly becomes more rural in its character, especially as it is nestled in the valleys between steep wooded hillsides.

The library is preparing to celebrate its 150th anniversary, a moment to honor and affirm the outsized role it has played in Williamstown’s growth and development as well as the enduring power of public libraries. It provides residents with essential services and resources through a variety of programming, diverse print and electronic resources, and knowledgeable staff. Highlights include robust programming for children and adults, recently-renovated spaces for teens and community gathering, and outstanding support and goodwill from an active and engaged Friends of the Library group.


Working under the direction of its Board of Trustees, the Director’s areas of responsibility include:

  • inspirational management and professional development of staff
  • understanding and maintaining a strong sense of our community, and applying that knowledge to consistent and effective outreach
  • energetic visioning, planning, and execution for short and long term needs, strategic directions, and sustainability, including facilities
  • promoting and ensuring equity, diversity, and inclusion as fundamental values of the library
  • effective oversight of collection, program, and service development
  • advocacy for the library and its programs with town officials and constituents

The Director communicates and collaborates with the Board of Trustees, the library staff, the Town Manager, a very active and engaged Friends of the Library, our community partners, the general public, and regional, state, and national library organizations and cooperatives.


 3 – 5 years of experience in administration or management in a library, non-profit, or other cultural institution, including supervisory experience, is required. A bachelor’s degree is required and a master’s degree in library science from an ALA-accredited library school is highly preferred. The Board of Trustees, at its discretion, will consider an alternative combination of formal education and work experience. The ideal candidate will have experience with libraries or other cultural institutions, community relations, partnership development, training and development of staff, and long-term planning. The Director will be key to achieving the goals and objectives of the library’s strategic plan (see ) and be a team leader who will serve as the face of the library.


The hiring salary range is $70,000 – $80,000 dependent on experience and qualifications, with an excellent fringe benefit package, including applicable relocation costs.

Further information and to apply

For further information, contact To apply, send a cover letter and resume to that same address. Applications will be reviewed until the position is filled. For optimal consideration, please submit by December 31, 2023.

Vermont Library Association Marks Banned Books Week, Oct. 1-7

In 2023, Banned Books Week is no longer a warning about what might happen if censorship goes unchecked, but what is happening.

Libraries and schools around the country are under attack, including violence and threats of violence, for providing reading materials and a safe space to enjoy them.

Banned Books Week celebrates the freedom to read, and spotlights attempts to censor books in libraries, schools, and bookstores.

The American Library Association (ALA) maintains lists of books that have been targeted for removal or restriction in libraries and schools. By focusing on these efforts across the country, Banned Books Week draws national attention to the harms of censorship. The theme for Banned Books Week 2023 is “Let Freedom Read.”

The ALA reports that “in a time of intense political polarization, library staff in every state are facing an unprecedented number of attempts to ban books. ALA’s Office for Intellectual Freedom documented 1,269 demands to censor library books and resources in 2022, the highest number of attempted book bans since ALA began compiling data about censorship in libraries more than 20 years ago.”

That total was almost double the 729 challenges reported in 2021. The ALA said 2,571 unique titles were targeted, also a record, and that most of them were by or about LGBTQIA+ people, and / or Black, Indigenous, and people of color.

“The right to determine what we read and think is critical to our free and democratic society,” said Oceana Wilson, President of the Vermont Library Association. “It is imperative that we recognize that the consequences of banning books go far beyond withdrawing an individual book from circulation. These efforts represent a threat, involving the erasure of both people and history, to the foundation of American democracy.”

Most of the concerns expressed by Vermont librarians to date have been in terms of self-censorship; that is, libraries opting not to provide certain materials or programs out of fear of being targeted for abuse. Only by a unified effort can we stand strong to provide our readers and visitors the rich, varied, and welcoming content that they have the First Amendment right to read.

Resources for your library are available at the links above, at Banned Books Week Promotional Tools, and at Unite Against Book Bans.

Please reach out to the Intellectual Freedom Committee of the Vermont Library Association if you need help with Banned Books Week or any other censorship issue. Email Intellectual Freedom Committee chair Randal Smathers at or at

Statement of Support for Toussaint St. Negritude and Bryn Hoffman of Cobleigh Public Library

The Vermont Library Association (VLA) stands with Vermont Humanities Program Officer Toussaint St. Negritude and with the Cobleigh Public Library, who were targeted by protesters on Saturday, June 10. VLA supports the freedom to speak without oppression or fear.

VLA recognizes that St. Negritude, who was leading an LGBTQ+ Pride poetry reading at Cobleigh Library in Lyndonville, was the direct target of the small group of protesters because of his identity as a gay Black man.

VLA denounces the behavior of anyone who would condemn, abuse, or attack another person because of who they are. It is vital to actively stand in support of members of Vermont’s BIPOC and LGBTQ+ communities.

Cobleigh Library plays a central role in the Northeast Kingdom by providing a meeting space, books, and many other community resources, and it strives to be a safe, welcoming environment for all. VLA also understands that the protest makes it harder for the library to do this vital work, as it was intended to intimidate patrons, staff, and presenters, and thereby chill the types of programming the library offers. We support Librarian Bryn Hoffman in their efforts to ensure that everyone is free to read, access information, exchange ideas, and speak freely at Cobleigh Public Library.

Executive Board
Vermont Library Association
July 12, 2023

August 5th Storytime heads up

Black and white photograph of a woman reading to a group of children outside

NYPL lantern slide of story hour c. 1910

Vermont libraries should be aware of a coordinated, nationwide series of story hours planned for Aug. 5.

They are being organized by author, conservative speaker and former child actor Kirk Cameron and BRAVE Books, a Texas-based publisher whose mission is “to help parents instill a love of truth in their children so that the children will withstand harmful progressive influences.”

We don’t know of any events scheduled for Vermont yet, but there are a few simple tips to keep in mind:Read more

Registration Closed – The conference is full!

Be The Place: Libraries Are for Everyone

Registration has closed for the 128th Vermont Library Conference, a joint event bringing together the Vermont School Library Association (VSLA) and the Vermont Library Association (VLA) for a full day of learning, networking, and celebrating all things library. The theme, “Be the Place: Libraries Are for Everyone,” reflects the shared goal for all librarians of creating inclusive, accessible, exciting, and sustainable spaces—whether in person or online.

VLA statement regarding VTSU library closures

The Vermont Library Association (VLA), representing more than 300 librarians, library staff, and trustees in public, school, academic, and corporate libraries, is calling on the leadership of the Vermont State University (VTSU) to reverse their decision to close the physical libraries on its campuses.

The move to “all-digital” libraries announced on February 8 will hurt students, faculty, staff, and the rural communities in which the VTSU campuses are located.

The students of the VTSU deserve access to robust library collections and services. This includes face-to-face and online services, such as reference and course support, and collections in digital and print formats.Read more

VLA President’s Letter

Librarian Kelly McCagg

President’s Letter by Kelly L. McCagg

Personally, as an introvert that tends to get hyperfocused, I am always working to improve my communication skills. I think we as an organization need to make enhanced communication a goal in order to grow participation and heighten the level of benefits one reaps from being a member. With that in mind, I would like to take a moment to make you aware of some upcoming opportunities.

There is exciting news from NELLS (New England Library Leadership Symposium)! First, the application period for Tier II: Mid-Career Leadership is now open. This is what was historically known as NELLS, prior to the growth of the program. This year’s retreat is being held in Stowe, Vermont from April 24th through April 27th. The application can be found here, and is due by February 17th. All applicants must be members of NELA (don’t worry, there will be more information about this, just keep reading).

If you don’t qualify for this round, or if you have already graduated from the program, maybe you would be interested in serving as a mentor. Vermont will have the opportunity to send one mentor to participate in the program, with hotel and meals covered by NELA. Per NELA: “Mentors should be comfortable facilitating small group discussions about topics such as conflict management, community building, strategic planning, resilience, diversity, and addressing modern issues in libraries from a leadership perspective. Mentors will help foster an open, safe environment for cohort members to explore ideas and ask questions.” If this sounds like your cup of tea, stay tuned for more information.

I’m so excited that we and the Vermont School Library Association (VSLA) will be cohosting our annual conference this year on April 3rd. “Be the Place: Libraries are for Everyone” guarantees to be a great opportunity for all library workers to get together to learn, share, and grow. In order to make this conference more accessible, the VLA board voted to offer a limited number of stipends for those for whom attending would be an economic hardship, specifically library workers whose annual budget is less than $100,000. When registering please look for the button to apply.

Membership is what makes all these opportunities possible. By being a member of VLA you qualify for a discounted membership to the New England Library Association (NELA). For just $20 (Cedar level members can join for just $15), you will qualify for a deep discount if you ever attend a NELA conference or workshop; and it’s required if you want to attend any of the NELLS programs. Not sure if you are a member? You can check by logging in at, or contact VLA Membership Chair Erica Shott at

(This letter was first published in the February 2023 VLA News email newsletter, sent quarterly to Vermont Library Association members.)

VLA/VSLA Joint Conference Call for Proposals

Let’s celebrate! The Vermont Library Association (VLA) and the Vermont School Library Association (VSLA) are pleased to announce their joint sponsorship of a one-day conference in 2023, and we need YOU!

We are seeking presenters for:

“Be the Place: Libraries Are For Everyone!”

The conference will be held at Doubletree by Hilton in South Burlington on Monday, April 3, 2023. Proposals are due by Friday, Jan. 13, 2023. 

We are looking for presenters for a wide variety of sessions.

Read more

VLA Annual Meeting 2022

VLA Annual meeting 10-11 am - Wednesday June 2

Dear VLA Members:

The Vermont Library Association Annual Meeting will be held from 10 – 11 a.m. on Wednesday, June 8, 2022, on Zoom.
You can register at this link.

For those unable to attend, you can request an absentee ballot by clicking this link.

Here is the agenda:

  • Call to Order
  • Approval of Minutes from 2021 Annual Meeting
  • Budget Report
  • Election of Board Members
  • Reports from Working Groups, Roundtables, etc.
  • Proposed changes to membership structure
  • Remarks from the State Librarian Cathy Delneo
  • Remarks from VLA President-Elect Kelly McCagg

Mike Roy
President, Vermont Library Association