The South Carolina Library Association named Richland County Public Library's Executive Director Melanie Huggins as the 2012 South Carolina Outstanding Librarian at the end of October.
Huggins joined the Richland County Public Library (RCPL) in 2009 as Executive Director and is currently vice chair/chair elect of the Urban Libraries Council and President of the SC Association of Public Library Administrators. She has also served on the IMLS National Task Force to Define 21st Century Skills for Museums and Public Libraries and is an active member of the American Library Association and the Public Library Association.
"Melanie's passion for her work, vision for the future of libraries and dedication to our profession have made her a leader in South Carolina and beyond," noted RCPL Outreach Manager Georgia Coleman in her nomination. "Under her leadership, RCPL has refreshed its mission, enhanced the customer experience and brought the library back to the forefront of our community."
RCPL Board Member Bob Gahagan, who was instrumental in bringing Huggins to the library in 2009, was also honored as the 2012 South Carolina Outstanding Trustee.
Nominated for his more than eight years of dedication to RCPL's Board of Trustees, Gahagan is also a member of the library's Foundation Board of Trustees and has been influential in recruiting new foundation board members tasked with pursuing substantial, long-term funding for the library's capital needs.
"Bob is a gifted leader with the expertise and capacity to motivate and cultivate board members," said RCPL Executive Director Melanie Huggins. "His sense of humor, coupled with his inspiring dedication to the education and well-being of our community, is contagious to all who have the pleasure of serving under his leadership."
Lead by Huggins and board members like Gahagan, RCPL employs more than 400 full and part-time staff members and boasts community support from more than 1,000 volunteers, who contribute nearly 23,000 hours of service each year.
For more information about the library and its impact on the community, visit www.MyRCPL.com or stop by one of the 11 locations in Richland County.