Thursday, September 03, 2015

New Staff at BPL is Dedicated to Quality Service

When you are the largest public library system in the state, things can often get quite busy. As the year 2014 came to a close, staff at the Birmingham Public Library (BPL) was so excited about the upcoming 2015 calendar year that they barely had time to welcome new colleagues who have been hard at work now for several months. With 19 locations and 302 employees, it is important to recognize new staff; staff achievements and to celebrate staff promotions. Since system staff is only able to gather once a year for training and fellowship, regular staff blogs will now be in place to share updates at least once a month—putting names with new faces where possible. BPL celebrates achievements and welcomes new staff working in the system from November 2014 through July 2015.

New Librarians

Cynthia “Cyndi” Roeder Barnett is a native of Sioux City, Iowa where she lived until 2005. She attended North High School in Sioux City; Wartburg College in Waverly, Iowa; and the University of Alabama School of Library and Information Studies. Before beginning her tenure at BPL on March 9, 2015, Cyndi worked for libraries in Iowa, Tennessee, and Alabama in cataloging, acquisitions, and public services. Currently, she is a librarian in the Catalog Department of the Central Library and according to Cyndi, she is “married to an amazing man named Bill Barnett.”

Laura Gentry claims no hometown as she has lived in six different states scattered across the South and part of the SEC Conference. She graduated from Arkansas’ Ouachita Baptist University where she majored in history
and secondary education. Laura went on to receive a Master of Arts in History from the University of Alabama, as well as a Master of Library and Information Science and a graduate certificate in Records and Information Management from Wayne State University. In terms of her job history, shehas been a high school teacher, bank teller, camp counselor, fast food cashier, and ran her own research business. Prior to becoming a librarian in the Southern History Department of the Birmingham Public Library, she has worked in the Social Sciences Department at the Central Library, two archives and special collections libraries, and an academic library. In her current position, she is responsible for outreach and digital projects and is passionate about digital preservation. When not working at the library, Laura enjoys spending time with family, friends, and her cat, Joy; watching classic movies; and cheering for the St. Louis Cardinals.

Lance Simpson is the System Teen Librarian for BPL. His home town is Trion, Georgia, a tiny cotton mill town in the foothills of the Appalachians. Lance graduated from Trion High School in 2005 and received a Bachelor of Arts in English and Spanish from Berry College in Rome, Georgia. He later attended the University of Alabama and received a Master in Library and Information Studies. Prior to working at BPL, he worked for the Social Security Administration and the Tuscaloosa Public Library. He is married to a fellow librarian, Becky McDaniel, and together they undertake all sorts of adventures with their dog, Sprocket.


Other team members who are recent graduates, newly hired, promoted, or transferred into new positions since November 2014 through July 2015:


Central Library
  • Celia Alison applied for a part-time Library Assistant II position in the Southern History Department of the Central Library. She was transferred from the Springville Road Regional Branch Library effective November 15, 2014.
  • Thomas Flute received an Associate’s Degree in Criminal Justice from Lawson State Community College in May 2015. He is a full-time Security Officer at the Central Library.
  • Jennifer Hancock was promoted to a part-time Library Assistant III position in the Business, Science and Technology Department at the Central Library on November 1, 2014. She previously worked in the same department as a part-time Library Assistant I.
  • Bethany Mitchell began her duties on December 1, 2014. She is a part-time Library Assistant III in the Arts, Literature and Sports Department.
  • Francesca Scott joined the BPL team on March 9, 2015. She is a part-time Library Assistant I working in the Page Room.
  • Alexa Simpson began working for BPL on November 17, 2014. She is a part-time Library Assistant I in the Fiction Department at the Central Library.
  • Kiara Smith received a B.S. Degree in Psychology from the University of Alabama at Birmingham in May 2015. Kiara is a part-time Library Assistant I working in the Page Room at the Central Library.
  • Kimberley Wiley began her duties on February 9, 2015. She is a part-time Library Assistant I working in the Business, Science and Technology Department at the Central Library.
  • Jamilah Woods has been one to watch since moving to the Central Library after working as a Jefferson County Library Cooperative (JCLC) employee for many years at the Powderly Branch Library. She has transferred from a Library Assistant III position in the Computer Commons to serve as the Personnel Assistant in Administration.
  • Brian Young accepted a part-time Building Service Worker position on November 15, 2014 at the Central Library with more hours. His previous experience as a Building Service Worker was at the Inglenook Branch Library.

Eastern Region
  • David Camp joined the BPL team on March 9, 2015. He works as a part-time Library Assistant II at the Springville Road Regional Branch Library.
  • Patricia Douglas began her duties with BPL on January 12, 2015, as a part-time Library Assistant II at the East Lake Branch Library.
  • Whitney Garner has been on the move since beginning her tenure with BPL in 2012. She first worked as a Library Assistant I at the North Birmingham Regional Branch Library before being promoted to a part-time Library Assistant II at the Springville Road Regional Branch Library.
  • Whitney was promoted to a full-time Library Assistant III in the Youth Department at the same location on November 15, 2014.
  • Cierah Greene joined the BPL team on February 23, 2015. She is a part-time Library Assistant II at the Springville Road Regional Branch Library.
  • Tracy Hill began her duties on December 15, 2014. She is a part-time Building Service Worker at the East Lake Branch Library.

Northern Region
  • Steven Brogdon accepted a position with more hours as a part-time Security Officer at the Pratt City Branch Library. He began his time at BPL at the Central Library.

Southern Region
  • Reeshawna Caddell was promoted to a part-time Library Assistant III position at the Eastwood Branch Library on November 29, 2014. She previously worked at the same location as a Library Assistant II.
  • Cornelius Lee was promoted to a part-time Library Assistant II at the Eastwood Branch Library in February 2015. He previously served as a Library Assistant I at the North Birmingham Regional Branch Library.
  • Eve Parker was promoted to a full-time Library Assistant III position in the Youth Department at the Avondale Regional Branch Library on November 1, 2014. She previously worked as a part-time Library Assistant III at the same location.

Western Region
  • Mauresha Hawkins began working at BPL on November 17, 2014. She is a part-time Library Assistant I at the West End Branch Library.
  • Christina “Joan” Inman was hired by BPL on December 15, 2014. She is a part-time Library Assistant III in the Literacy and Outreach Office at the Five Points West Regional Branch Library.
  • Toni Powell began her duties with BPL on December 26, 2014. She is a part-time Library Assistant II assigned to the Powderly Branch Library.

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