(KCPW News) The Salt Lake City Public Library is running low on potential board members as four of the nine seats will soon be vacant. Board member Helen Rollins says it’s unusual to have so many openings and such a short list of people to choose from. She says the board hopes to attract a fresh set of candidates for these spots and for future openings.
“We want people who are passionate about reading and about libraries,” Rollins says. “And then we want people who can mobilize community so that they represent a group of patrons or an area with their wishes and desires.”
The library board makes decisions that impact a wide variety of services, from dealing with complaints about controversial book selections to hiring the library director and picking out designs for new buildings.
And with two new libraries being planned for the Capitol Hill and Glendale neighborhoods, Rollins says it’s important the board also attracts diverse candidates that represent different age groups, socio-economic backgrounds and minority groups. She says currently there are no minorities on the board.
“We don’t want to build a library in Glendale where we haven’t heard from the Hispanic community, from the Southeast Asian community,” Rollins says. “So that we, again, build a library that they want, not one that we prescribe for them.”
Library board terms are for three years with a maximum limit of two terms. Board members are appointed by the mayor.