During a career in library service that started in school libraries and moved to one of Oklahoma’s largest multi-county library systems, Anne Masters has seen libraries adapt to a world of ever-changing technology and the needs of readers.
What hasn’t changed with her or the people she works with is their desire to provide the service those readers need in a changing world.
“The library-related skills are important, but working with people is the biggest thing,” Masters said. “You can be successful at the technical part of libraries but if you can’t also work well with people, it doesn’t work.”
The Executive Director of the Pioneer Library System since 2007, Masters has announced her retirement, effective in January 2017. She has invited members of the community to a reception on Sunday afternoon, Jan. 15, at Norman Public Library West, 300 Norman Center Court.
And Norman West is a great place to start in a look back at Masters’ time with PLS. The building is the first owned by the library system, purchased in 2011 after work by Masters and her staff and approval by the PLS Board of Trustees. The former Borders Bookstore has served as a hub of activity on the busy west side of Norman, as well as a central location for PLS administrative offices.
Masters’ tenure leading PLS also has seen the organization open a new library in Blanchard in 2010 and add a 10th branch in Southwest Oklahoma City in 2011 before Norman West opened in late 2013. A 12th library is on the way, with Norman East slated to open in 2018, part of the Norman Forward plan passed by Norman voters in October 2015. A new Norman Central will open in 2019.
“We have worked to stay current. Being Pioneers, I think we have been ahead of a lot of libraries in implementing a lot of things in service to our customers and in technology options; our new Brand Promise is perfect for us, 'Pioneering tomorrow’s library,'” Masters said.
“With the millage in 2008, we were able to increase our hours and our collection size; all libraries are now open on Sunday afternoons year-round and our collection has grown substantially thanks to the voters in our three counties.”
Also during Masters’ time as Executive Director, the Pioneer Library System Foundation was formed in 2009. It serves as a nonprofit charitable organization supporting literacy and learning throughout PLS communities. As Executive Director, Masters has been an ex-officio member of the Foundation Board since its formation.
In honor of her retirement, the Foundation is encouraging members of the community to consider donating to an endowment being established. Masters is making a sizable donation herself to begin the process, and the Communities Foundation of Oklahoma will match gifts by donating an additional $5,000 if the Foundation reaches its goal of $25,000 by Dec. 31, 2016.
Masters followed Bill Lowry and Mary Sherman in becoming just the third Executive Director in the history of the system, which was founded in 1957.
More than four tons of food is on its way to families in need this holiday season, thanks to the Pioneer Library System's Food for Fines campaign. The program gives readers, who may have had a little trouble getting their library materials checked in on-time, the chance to make at least some of their fines go away with the donation of a non-perishable canned or boxed food items.
The 11 PLS libraries collected a total of approximately 8,200 pounds of food, which comes to more than 4 tons. It will go to food pantries around Cleveland, McClain and Pottawatomie counties during the holiday season.
The total marks a large increase over last year when donations topped the three-ton mark. So far around 33 tons of food have been donated since the "Food for Fines" campaign began in 2005.
Organizations that will receive this year's donations are:
Blanchard – Blanchard Lions Club, for their Christmas food baskets
McLoud – First Baptist Church of McLoud
Moore – Brand Senior Center
Newcastle – Veterans Corner
Norman Central, Norman West – Salvation Army of Norman
Purcell – McClain County Christmas Connection
Shawnee – Salvation Army of Shawnee
Southwest Oklahoma City – Moore Public Schools Food Pantry and Moore Food Resource Center
Tecumseh – Highland Church of Christ
The holidays are upon us again, and a question we hear often at the library is, "What's the best [fill in gadget/ technology/ item name]?" We'll let you in on a librarian secret: we use our Consumer Reports database to answer these questions, and you can too!
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If you're looking for the best eReader, television, car, or just about anything, grab your library card number and PIN, and Consumer Reports can help!
What a joyous season it is! Guess what day it is again? Gingerbread Decorating Day! On December 10, we encourage everyone of all ages to continue the classic holiday tradition. Building a gingerbread house can bring the hold family together. Each person can place their favorite treat onto the gingerbread house and the results and memories of this will be special.
Want to bake your own pieces to make a gingerbread house? Here's a DIY Gingerbread House from Lori Guerrini from Ladybug Magazine (Powered by EBSCOhost Primary Search)
Ingredients 16 cups all-purpose flour 4 tsp. ground cinnamon 4 tsp. ground ginger 1 tsp. ground nutmeg 1 tsp. salt 1/4 tsp. ground cloves 1 1/2 cup butter-flavor shortening 2 cups firmly packed dark brown sugar 3 1/2 cups dark corn syrup
- In a large bowl, mix together 8 cups flour, cinnamon, ginger, nutmeg, salt, and cloves.
- In microwave, melt the shortening, brown sugar, and syrup together. Stir until smooth.
- With mixer at low speed, gradually add syrup mixture to flour mixture. At medium speed, beat in 4 additional cups flour. Mix b the remaining flour by hand with a wooden spoon. The dough should be firm but not sticky.
- Divide dough into 4 parts. Roll out immediately or wrap in plastic wrap and refrigerate. (May be refrigerated up to 1 week. Let dough come to room temperature before rolling.) Helpful hint: if dough is too dry, microwave for a few seconds.
- Make pattern pieces out of cardboard. Roll dough 1/4" thick and cut around pattern pieces with a sharp knife or x-acto knife. Dust pattern pieces and working area with flour as needed so dough doesn't stick.
- Carefully transfer each piece to cookie sheet and bake at 350 degree for 8-12 minutes or until edges are golden brown. Let cool before using.
Use icing as glue to hold the gingerbread house together as well as for decorating.4 large egg whites at room temperature 2 pounds confectioners sugar 1 tsp. cream of tartar
- Mix all ingredients until smooth.
- Apply icing to edges of pattern pieces and glue the pieces together. Helpful hint: use soup cans to prop the walls until icing sets.
- Use the icing as adhesive to add candy or other decorations.
Want some more gingerbread house ideas? Check out our catalog!