One outstanding librarian can change and improve countless lives. She can provide fascinating friends (the characters in books) to anyone in need of a friend. She can help us learn anything we want or need to know, from art to zoology—as our knowledge expands, so does our thinking, our imagination, our potential, our hopes and dreams. She can offer free trips to anywhere in the world (through books). She can make reticent readers into eager readers and lifelong learners with bright futures—and since readers tend to raise more readers, this is a gift that’s passed down from generation to generation.
An outstanding librarian offers her library as a place of refuge, quiet comfort, and escape—figuratively and literally, today and tomorrow—I wonder how many people began their escape from social, emotional, intellectual, spiritual, or financial poverty at their nearest library.