TORONTO, Feb. 21 /CNW/ - The Toronto Public Library Board announced today
that its Chief Librarian Josephine Bryant will be taking an early retirement,
and as a result, will be leaving her post in early July, 2008. Board Chair
Kathy Gallagher-Ross indicated that the Library Board will begin shortly the
process of selecting Bryant's successor, and expect to have her replacement in
place by late summer.
Bryant was appointed Chief Librarian of the newly-amalgamated Toronto
Public Library system in 1998. Since that time, she has stewarded the library
to its current position of busiest urban public library system in the world.
Last year, Toronto Public Library welcomed 17 million visitors to its 99
branches, and circulated over 30 million items.
Under Bryant's leadership, the Toronto Public Library has been recognized
internationally for its innovation and accomplishments:
- With world-renowned architects and award-winning designs, the library
has restored and revitalized its branches, demonstrating again and
again the vital connection between good building design, healthy
neighbourhoods and prosperous cities. In the 10 years since
amalgamation, the library has opened two new branches, with two more
in the planning stage; 17 branches have undergone extensive
renovations and expansions, and six more branches are scheduled to
reopen this year after significant renovations are completed.
- Bryant established a Children's and Youth Advocate position at the
Toronto Public Library, a position that had not previously existed in
any Canadian library system. Among the many outcomes that resulted
from this focused attention on Toronto's children and youth included
a significant expansion of the library's children's reading programs,
and an exponential increase in youth volunteers.
- The Toronto Public Library has taken similarly creative approaches to
serving other important segments of the population; in particular,
the large and diverse newcomer and multicultural population in
Toronto. Of significance is the partnership which the library has
developed with local settlement agencies and with Citizenship and
Immigration Canada which has brought settlement workers into library
branches that in turn provide settlement support to the many
newcomers who pass through the library system.
- Partnerships have also played a crucial role in the success of the
Toronto Public Library during Bryant's tenure. The partnership forged
between the library and the Toronto Public Library Foundation has
seen more than $20 million raised to enhance library services and
programs. Toronto Public Library has also forged important
partnerships with a large number of local and city-wide community and
cultural groups and institutions that have assisted in building
community coalitions and delivering cultural, educational and
information-based services to the people of Toronto. These partners
include the Maytree Foundation and Diaspora Dialogues, PEN Canada,
Toronto Boards of Education, and through its new Sun Life Museum +
Arts Pass program, city and provincial cultural institutions such as
Art Gallery of Ontario, ROM, the Ontario Science Centre, and several
other Toronto-based art galleries and museums.
Toronto Public Library is the world's busiest urban public library
system. Every year, more than 17 million people visit our 99 branches and
borrow more than 30 million items. To learn more about Toronto Public Library,
visit our website at www.torontopubliclibrary.ca or call Answerline at
For further information:
For further information: Linda Hazzan, Director, Marketing and
Communications, (416) 455-7360, firstname.lastname@example.org