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February 18, 2014

Public library welcomes interim director

MILLEDGEVILLE — The Twin Lakes Library System’s Board of Trustees and staff welcomed the new interim library director Monday as he kicked off his first official day.

“It’s been a very busy day,” said Stephen Whigham, the new interim system director. “I have to compliment the staff here; they’re excellent. They’ve been so helpful in telling me about their department and getting me up to speed about the organization.”

Whigham, 64, worked as the library director for the Ocmulgee Regional Library System for seven years before retiring in 2012. The Eastman native received a history bachelor’s degree from Georgia Southern University before earning a master’s degree in library science at the University of South Carolina.

“I’ve worked in libraries for almost 30 years total. Eight of those years were at the Federal Reserve Bank of Atlanta research library and the rest in public libraries,” he said. “I’m a believer in what the public library does, which is to provide library services varying from checking out books and e-books to computer services. The public library is everyone’s library, and I want to help [this library system] keep carrying on in the good tradition they’ve been providing library services to Milledgeville and Baldwin County.”

Former library Executive Director Barry Reese and Assistant Director LaToya Davidson both turned in their resignations in early January. Their last official day at work was Saturday, Feb. 8. With limited funding provided by the state, the assistant director position will not be filled.

The eight-member board is still in the midst of filling the full-time executive director position while utilizing the services of Georgia Public Library Service. The national search will continue through early April.

“The search to fill the position is already advertised and we have two applicants so far; that’s very encouraging for us. It will probably be around April before we start doing interviews,” said Kathy Groseclose, secretary on the library board. “[Whigham] will be serving us 49 percent since he is recently retired. We hope to have someone else on board by the summer.”

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