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Niles District Library Earns 2015 State Librarian's Excellence Award

October 5, 2015

LANSING – The Niles District Library (NDL) has earned the 2015 State Librarian's Excellence Award for its superior customer service, State Librarian Randy Riley announced today.

Riley presents the annual award, including a prestigious trophy and $2,000 in privately-donated funds, Friday, October 30th at the Michigan Library Association's annual conference in Novi.

"Year after year, Michigan's libraries consistently expand services and find new ways to serve their communities," Riley said. "The 2015 nominations demonstrate how creative, impactful and diverse libraries are across the state. Michigan libraries of all types are successfully focusing on what is unique about their communities and are successfully tailoring services to meet those evolving needs."

The Library of Michigan Foundation and Library of Michigan (LM) present the State Librarian's Excellence and Citations of Excellence awards each year to highlight the importance of services provided by Michigan's libraries.

This year’s Citations of Excellence went to the Jackson District Library and Marcellus Township Wood Memorial Library in Cass County. Each library receives a trophy and $500 as a Citation of Excellence winner.

The State Librarian's Excellence Award is sponsored by Roger Mendel and his late wife June Mendel. The Citation of Excellence Awards are funded by Martin L. Gibbs in memory of his late wife, Carole Sorenson.

“Our community always has appreciated the library. I see the extraordinary work my co-workers do every day. Working with so many amazing people is an inspiration and an honor,” said Niles District Library Director Nancy Studebaker. “They are constantly looking for new ways to serve and make our library even more valuable to our community. To have their efforts recognized by our State Librarian and by the statewide library community is a tremendous honor.”

NDL staff regularly are involved in all aspects of their community. By working proactively and collaboratively with local government and nonprofit organizations on a range of initiatives, staffers have made a positive impact on local patrons and residents.

NDL’s approach to establishing meaningful partnerships in the community should serve as a model for other libraries, local governments and community organizations, Riley said.

Some NDL programs and partnerships include:

• The Special Editions program targeting services to the special needs community

• Hosting the Midwest Historical Archaeological Association Conference

• Offering financial literacy courses

• Hosting ComicCon events

• Promoting the Niles Reads program

• Teaming with the Salvation Army’s food program

• Developing the Read and Return book program that distributes library books to the community

State Librarian's Excellence Award evaluation factors are:

Demonstrating that the library provides superior service to its customers and community in a cost-effective manner, with a can-do attitude; always delivering on promises; and fulfilling the library's commitment to high standards of customer service.

In earning Citations of Excellence, Jackson District Library (JDL) and Marcellus Township Wood Memorial Library also are recognized for a devotion to customer service.

The JDL is actively involved in moving the community forward through initiatives aimed at education, career development, health improvement, economic and workforce development, and human services. Staff promotes Jackson and champions financial stability across the community.

Marcellus Township Wood Memorial Library is a Class II library located in Cass County. It successfully has positioned itself as a community-gathering and learning place. In the past year, it has increased programming from nine to 25 events to better serve patrons. Marcellus successfully used its 120th anniversary to highlight community members, and find new ways to interact with them. Connecting with the community is a priority, and it shows. In its 120- year history, voters have supported every millage request that has been requested by the library board.