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State Librarian’s Excellence Award Hails Superior Customer Service

LANSING – Superior customer service to its community was recognized in the selection of the 2022 State Excellence Award by the Library of Michigan Foundation and the Library of Michigan.

Dearborn Public Library is the recipient of the 2022 State Excellence Award, State Librarian Randy Riley announced today.

“Singling out one or a few libraries for recognition is difficult,” said Riley. “Michigan libraries have reinvented themselves during the COVID-19 pandemic and found creative and unique ways to serve their communities. Dearborn’s work with its Arab American community and focus on diversity and inclusion of that community was significant and impactful. The staff have strived to make sure no one in the community feels isolated or ignored.”

Riley presented the annual award today, which includes $3,000 in privately donated funds, at the Michigan Library Awards event during the Michigan Library Association's annual conference     in Port Huron.

The Library of Michigan Foundation and Library of Michigan (LM) bestow the State Librarian's Excellence Award and Citations of Excellence Award yearly to highlight the importance of Michigan libraries’ services.

This year’s Citations of Excellence co-winners, for their exceptional customer service, are the LeRoy Community Library and Lake Odessa Community Library. Each of those libraries will receive $1,000 with this honor.

The State Librarian's Excellence Award is sponsored by the Roger and June B. Mendel Fund through the Library of Michigan Foundation. The Citation of Excellence Awards are funded by the Library of Michigan Foundation.

"Dearborn Public Library staff are extremely honored to be receiving such an important award,” said library director, Julie Schaefer. “We are so grateful for the recognition that this brings to our library system as well as for the City of Dearborn. Thank you to the Library of Michigan Foundation for supporting this award and for recognizing the hard work that the entire staff at Dearborn Public Library does every day, investing time and energy into making sure that our programs and services serve our diverse community and meet their unique need. We will continue doing our best to provide excellent service in the future.”

Riley said the selection committee, comprised of representatives from public, school, academic and special libraries, was impressed with the amount of work the Dearborn Public Library accomplished in challenging times.

“Programs and services that garnered the selection committee’s attention included the library’s priority placed on community conversations to help shape library programs, language translation services, focus on diversity, equity and inclusion, recognition of the various ways the library could meet the needs and wants of the Arab American community, English as a second language programs, and their partnership with the local schools,” Riley said.

State Librarian's Excellence Award evaluation factors include demonstrating that the library provides superior service to its customers and community through library programs and staff interactions with customers and the service community.

The State Librarian’s Excellence Award program is in its 21st year. For more information about the award and the previous recipients, please go to www.michigan.gov/MiStateLibrarian