Author Archives: Brad Ward

Clay County Public Library

The Clay County Library System is comprised of a Headquarters Library at Fleming Island, and four branches spread throughout the county – Keystone Heights, Middleburg, Green Cove Springs, and Orange Park.

Located southwest of Jacksonville, Clay County has seen tremendous growth since the original Headquarters Library opened in Green Cove Springs in 1970. Our newest location, the Headquarters Library at Fleming Island, celebrated its Tenth Anniversary in 2015.

Each Branch has its own unique identity, and seeks to serve its community with a blend of traditional library services, innovative new programs, and outreach into the community.  The County circulates approximately  670,000 volumes per year, has 73,000 Library card holders out of a population of  200,672, had more than 26,386 attend  some 798 year round and summer programs, and over 2,663 people attend various programs for adults.

To meet the changing needs of our patrons, the Clay County Library System has launched a thought provoking initiative re-evaluating collections and spaces. Our goal is to update, improve, and launch new services, new looks that create fresh appeal to patrons at all of our locations and do it with limited funds.

It is a work in progress.  We recently added E-Books through Axis 360. Our NEFLIN Innovation grant provided a mobile computer Lab that has allowed branches without a fixed Computer Lab to also offer hands on computer training as well as adult and youth hands on programming. We launched a system wide newsletter, Facebook page, and an online program calendar that advertises and promotes programming at each branch.

What lies ahead? Along with a continued commitment to embrace change comes a continued emphasis on the importance of professional principles:  promoting a love of reading and learning to all our patrons, assuring equal service to all and reaching out to our community to become better community partners/centers.

Coming soon: A new Wi-Fi Café at our Orange Park location; a conference room for patron use at Green Cove Springs; additional computers in the Computer Labs at Green Cove Springs, Keystone Heights and Middleburg, and a much needed updated system of PC printing at every branch.


Columbia County Public Library

CCPL has three locations, the Main Library in Lake City, the West Branch Library west of I-75 in Lake City, and the Fort White Branch Library in Fort White. In 1959, the Lake City Women’s Club asked the Columbia County Commissioners to fund a public library and they did so that year, with the library becoming part of the Suwannee River Regional Library. On October 1, 1979, the library became a single county public library and left the SRRL. The library is a department of Columbia County Government and the Library Director reports to the Assistant County Manager. There are currently 25 employees spread over the three locations; four have MLS degrees and one is currently working on her MLS.

Recently, CCPL was selected as one of only eleven public libraries in Florida to participate in a pilot project with the Career Online High School. There are twenty scholarships to be awarded before the end of March and Glennis Pounds, Adult Literacy and Volunteer Coordinator is the Project Manager. Students will earn their high school diploma and a career certificate.

The Friends of the Library provides funding for all children’s and adult programs. Since 2008, CCPL has had a very successful Florida Author Series bringing authors from all over the state to Lake City. The Friends recently purchased a new van and SUV for library deliveries, outreach services, and transportation for staff to training sessions. Children’s programs include story times for various ages, special craft programs, and the Summer Reading Program. The Friends of the Library and the North Florida Art League collaborate each year on a juried art show held at the West Branch Library (2015 was the 9th annual show). They also partner to offer free art classes for children ages 10-14 in the summer.

CCPL recently migrated from Rooms to Enterprise (SirsiDynix) and has a new website. It has a familiar look, but incorporates new features to make patron searching easier.

The Library Director writes a monthly column in the Lake City Reporter called At the Library where upcoming programs are promoted and usually tied to the collection.

Please stop at the Library if you are in Lake City. The Main Library is open 7 days a week.

Three Rivers Regional Library System

From 1960 until 1995, the Dixie, Gilchrist, and Lafayette County Public Libraries were members of the Suwannee River Regional Library System. In 1994 a Task Force began meeting to explore the advantages of dividing the six-county system into two three-county systems. It became obvious that the benefits of dividing the region far outweighed the negatives. Plans were made to formally split into two separate systems at the conclusion of the 1994-95 fiscal year.

A regional library office was established in Mayo, the county seat of Lafayette County. A contest was also held to choose a name for the new library system, and “Three Rivers Regional Library System” (TRRLS), was selected from more than seventy-five entries. Three Rivers represents the names of the rivers that border the three counties: the Santa Fe, Steinhatchee, and Suwannee. TRRLS officially began service to the citizens of Dixie, Gilchrist and Lafayette Counties on October 1, 1995. Taylor County was added to the System in August 2011.

The role of the regional library is to support the member libraries in all aspects of public library service. This includes acquisition of materials, cataloging and technical processing, continuing education and training, library programming, computer and networking applications, and outreach services. The Three Rivers Regional Library System has a nine member governing board appointed by the four counties.

Interesting fact about the libraries:

Gilchrist County Public Library used to be housed in a building that had served for many years as a funeral home. The staff swore it was haunted.

The Lafayette County Public Library and the Dixie County Public Library were both started by local Woman’s Clubs.

The Lafayette Library was housed for many years in the old courthouse which was rumored to be haunted and many of the staff were scared to work alone. The light switch was located in the back of the building which meant a long walk in a dark room to leave each day. That walk was usually a sprint.

Taylor County Public Library was once housed in a building that had served as the County Jail where executions were carried out. As expected, no one wanted to be alone after hours in the building.

Springer eBook Collections

Springer eBooks collection – Composed of 13 subject collection. Springer is the world’s largest STEM eBook publisher known for our flexibility and progressiveness. We publish over 6,500 books a year! Almost 93% of academic libraries in the US use our eBooks! Pick the best collection for your library!

Springer eBook Subject Collections 2015 2010-2014 2005-2009
Behavioral Science 140 349 192
Biomedical & Life Science 590 2,330 1,664
Business and Economics 475 1,556 1,110
Chemistry & Materials Science 270 1,119 802
Computer Science 1,150 4,880 3,814
Earth & Environmental Science 360 1,253 872
Energy 105 230 n/a
Engineering 925 3,423 2,138
Humanities, Social Science & Law 840 2,701 1,315
Mathematics & Statistics 545 2,209 1,648
Medicine 765 2,633 1,761
Physics & Astronomy 380 1,451 1,210
Professional & Applied Computing 205 803 593
Total Number of Titles 6,750 24,937 17,119

•       Purchase by the subject. Each collection includes everything—reference works, monographs, textbooks, book series—published within a subject area during a copyright year. Backlist content is further discounted!

  • No DRM. That’s right, absolutely no restrictions on use. Offer users unlimited downloading, usage, printing, and even ILL. Somehow we’re still in business!
  • Ownership with archival access. All collections are a one-time purchase.
  • Unlimited Access. Everyone in the school can download the same chapter at the same time every day. It would be really weird. But the point is you can
  • One platform for all content. Most students don’t care how we’ve decided to package the content; they want the info they need when they need it. We try not to stand in their way so we’ve put it all in one place.
  • One platform for all devices. Tired of the Kindle vs. iPad debate? Who cares?!? Responsive design has put an end to the debate!
  • OCLC MARC records included with purchase. We all know that if users can’t find eBooks, they may as well not exist. We also know we’re not as good at cataloging as catalogers. So we’ve left it to the experts.
  • Print on demand option. Stodgy old professors can have their cake and eat it too. Almost all titles are available in print for $25.95

In many cases the cost per title is under $5! Springer has special small school pricing and each quote is customized to the need of each institution, for custom quotes and question please contact  Have the school reach out to me and mentioned that they saw the discount on the NEFLIN website and I will apply the following discounts;

1 Collection – 5% off

2 Collections – 10% off

3 Collections – 15% off

4+ Collections – custom discount! Please contact

Ariana Bian

Springer Science+Business Media

Account Manager

Library Sales US

233 Spring Street|New York, NY 10013 |USA

Office: (212) 815-0246

Cell: (646) 226-6343

FLA Meet-Up

Please join us for an informal gathering to network, share and have fun!

Join us on Friday, April 10 6:00 – 9:00 pm
Taps Bar and Grill
1605 County Road 220, Fleming Island, FL 32003

Directions from I-295:
Take Exit 10 south on US17/Park Avenue about 6 miles and turn right on CR220.
Taps is on left near Home Depot.

No registration.  Membership in FLA not required.

Eat, drink, talk to other local library people! (all expenses on your own)

Have fun connecting with colleagues!

Questions? Contact Patty Morris, FLA Region V Director, 386-754-4391

Technology Roundup

To me the definition of a good Tech-Talk tip is one that I referred back to at some point (maybe even more than once).  The following all fall in that category, and I am not even mentioning the tips that cover Word, Excel or PowerPoint.

Clearing Auto-Fill

Compress PDFs

Free eBooks

Now Using Windows 7 or 8?

What’s the Deal with Hashtags?

Windows Shortcuts

Access the Tech-Talk archives by logging in to the Tech-Talk site as follows:

Username: floridalibrarystaff
Password: viva500

Out of My Comfort Zone

Colorful butterfliesShadow the spiderBeetlesphoto

I recently went on a site visit to meet Beverly Pope at the Florida State Department of Agriculture and Consumer Services Division of Plant Industry Library in Gainesville.  They help scientists study the insects that affect crops in Florida.  Agriculture is 2nd only to tourism in importance and impact on Florida’s economy.  This department’s work is critical to the economic health of Florida and the physical health of our nation.

I had been told that they had a large bug collection.  Honestly, I am generally afraid of bugs.  But when I decided to make this site visit I believed (incorrectly) that they would all be dead and nicely laid out in plastic cases.

For me NEFLIN is about getting out of your comfort zone and trying new things, pushing your boundaries.  So I contacted Beverly to set up the visit, that’s when she asked if I wanted a tour of the rearing facility.  Hmm…rearing facility?  Could that possibly be what it sounded like?

Yes it was.  And to my credit I was in for a penny in for a pound.  An opportunity presented itself and I decided to go for it.

Beverly showed me her library and we discussed her collection in depth.  She showed me some beautiful century old hand drawn picture books of various insects.  She told me about her issues with serials and what’s it’s like to work in this small, specialized library.  She shared with me the career path she had taken and how she ended up in such an interesting place.

I really enjoyed opening some of the hundreds of drawers containing categorized specimens of every kind of insect I could think of – from butterflies to beetles, spiders to pseudo scorpions. The variety of colors, shapes and sizes were fascinating. I could have spent a week studying their contents.  I was so captured by their beauty I forgot to be scared.

Beverly took me around and introduced me to some of her friends.  These scientists are experts in their fields.  (None of them use the word “bug.”)  They are deeply devoted to their work.  They were very friendly and seemed to enjoy showing me their projects.  I watched fruit flies dive bomb fire ants injecting them with eggs that will eventually kill them.  I met Shadow, one of 14 live tarantulas in one office.  Beverly gets a nomination for bravest librarian for holding Shadow.  (I could not promise I wouldn’t drop her so I elected to take pictures instead.)

As I said goodbye I reflected on my visit.  I learned a lot about the library and the department as a whole, but I also got a chance to challenge my fear and was rewarded by finding the beauty of the natural world in an unexpected place.  That was a gift.

scorpions Big butterfliesbutterflys  Katydid

Join Us in Saying “Thank You”

The 2014-15 Legislative session ended with major increases in funding for both the MLCs and Public Libraries.

This message below from Barbara Gubbin, FLA Legislative Committee Chair provides the information needed to join us in writing our Governor and state legislators to thank them for their generous support of libraries.

“Governor Scott has signed the state budget and two key items for Florida libraries have seen major increases in funding – State Aid for Public Libraries and funding for our Multitype Library Cooperatives.  State Aid funding increased by $5.1M to $ 27,409,823 and MLC funding saw a $500,000 increase to $2M.  Public libraries will soon be hearing from the State Library about their State Aid grants for the upcoming year and we can anticipate attractive increases for many of them.

Please take time now while it is still fresh on your mind to drop a note of thanks to your local senator(s) and representatives for their support.  If you can I recommend you tell them in that note what you plan to do with the funds you will be receiving and the kind of difference your state aid grant makes to the services you can provide to your community.  And invite them to join you at your library this summer for an event – to read to children, give out reading prizes, participate in a celebration or a workshop.  Let them see the tremendous variety of  people who use our libraries and the many ways they benefit from the investment our state is making in those libraries.  Whether you are a librarian or a trustees, or a Friend, or a user and supporter – all of us need to join together to say a big thank you.  (And if you are a librarian please ask your Friends, trustees and supporters to join in your thanks). And while you do that please do not overlook a thank you to the Governor and Secretary of State Ken Detzner as well for their work on our behalf.”


NEFLIN Welcomes Dale Collum

Dale Collum has officially started as Director of Three Rivers Regional Library. For the last 14 years he was Director at the Uinta County Library in Evanston, WY. He has a BA from Auburn University and an MLS from Florida State University. He has worked in libraries for 22 years including Palm Beach County and Montgomery City/County AL and Pierce County, WA.