By Eleanor Greene
When the Shaler North Hills Library in Glenshaw, Pa., opened in 1942 it had only two rooms. In the past 70 years, the library has grown with the community and has constantly supplemented and adapted its programming to meet the changing needs of the community. Once in the library’s history, tells Director Sharon McRae in this video, an artist came to the library and commented how few opportunities there were in the area to display artwork. The library was happy to add local artists’ work to the walls and host art openings. Since then, the library has been approached to address needs from taxes to property assessment, and it is constantly seeking suggestions for programming and materials that the people of the surrounding towns would like to see. Community member Janet Miller discusses the intergenerational programming of the library and its emphasis on the importance of early literacy.
The Shaler North Hills Library was one of 10 winners of the 2012 National Medal for Museum and Library Service, the nation’s highest honor for libraries and museums that are serving their communities in exceptional ways. Winners of the 2013 National Medal for Museum and Library Service will be announced on April 23, 2013.