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Boston Public Library Board of Trustees Call Special Meeting in BPL Presidential Search

Posted on June 10th, 2016 by BPL News in Media Releases

The Boston Public Library Board of Trustees will hold a special meeting next week to discuss the status of negotiations in the search for a president of the Boston Public Library. Jill Bourne, City Librarian for San Jose, declined the offer due to personal reasons. Bourne had been offered the position by the BPL Board of Trustees following a public interview on Saturday, May 21.

“This does not diminish the Board of Trustees excitement about the future of the Library. I’m confident we’ll be able to select a strong leader to fill this role early next week,” said Bob Gallery, Chair of the Board of Trustees. “The Board of Trustees was looking forward to welcoming Jill Bourne to the Boston Public Library but the Trustees are understanding of her decision and wish her all the best.”

“I am extremely honored to have been offered the position of President of the Boston Public Library.  The institution, staff, and community support all attracted me to this position, as much as the city, its leadership, and the exciting things that are happening there,” said Jill Bourne, City Librarian for San Jose. “However, I have made the decision to withdraw my candidacy for personal reasons that were not anticipated while I participated in this process. This has been an incredibly difficult decision, and I greatly appreciate the patience and support of the Mayor’s office, the BPL Board of Trustees, and others.  While I cannot accept this opportunity, I am fortunate to stay in San José with a wonderful staff, colleagues, and community.”

The special meeting will be held on Tuesday, June 14 at 8:30 a.m. in the Commonwealth Salon at the Central Library in Copley Square.

During the meeting, the BPL Board of Trustees may consider Interim President David Leonard for the position. Leonard was publicly interviewed for the role by the BPL Board of Trustees at the end of May. He has served as Interim President of the BPL since June 2015. The Trustees may also enter into an executive session to review the negotiations with Jill Bourne since details of personnel matters are legally protected from public discussion.

Background on the BPL Presidential Search

In September 2015 Mayor Walsh selected John Palfrey, head of school at Philips Academy, Andover to lead the BPL Presidential Search process, and in November 2015 Mayor Walsh announced the 15-member BPL Presidential Search Committee.

Seven Public Listening Sessions were held with the BPL Presidential Search Committee at branches across the Library system for the community to share their thoughts on what qualities they believe the next leader of the BPL should have and to assist in the development of the presidential job description.

The BPL Presidential Search Committee worked closely with Executive Search Firm Spencer Stuart on identifying candidates for the position.

On Saturday, May 21, the Boston Public Library Board of Trustees voted to extend an offer of employment for President of the Boston Public Library to Jill Bourne, City Librarian for the San Jose Public Library. The decision was made following public interviews of Bourne and David Leonard, Interim President of the BPL, and deliberation amongst the Trustees during a public meeting at the Central Library in Copley Square. The interviews were open to the public and held in the Commonwealth Salon at the Central Library in Copley Square.

 

About BOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY
Boston Public Library has a Central Library, twenty-four branches, map center, business library, and a website filled with digital content and services. Established in 1848, the Boston Public Library has pioneered public library service in America. It was the first large free municipal library in the United States, the first public library to lend books, the first to have a branch library, and the first to have a children’s room. Each year, the Boston Public Library hosts thousands of programs and serves millions of people. All of its programs and exhibitions are free and open to the public. At the Boston Public Library, books are just the beginning. To learn more, visit bpl.org.

 

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Mayor Martin J. Walsh and Boston Public Library Celebrate Central Library Renovation Opening Today

Posted on June 6th, 2016 by BPL News in Central Library Renovation Reopening, Media Releases
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BOSTON 11_press– July 9, 2016 – Mayor Martin J. Walsh and the Boston Public Library celebrated the grand reopening of the Central Library Renovation today with a 10:30 a.m. ribbon cutting. The grand reopening marks the completion of the second and final phase of the renovation of the Central Library in Copley Square, which has been managed by the City of Boston’s Public Facilities Department. This second phase of work includes updates to the lower level, first floor, mezzanine, and the building exterior of the Johnson building, which opened in 1972. The Central Library Renovation puts the Boston Public Library on the cutting edge of library services – reshaping and redefining the patron experience at a 21st century urban public library.

“The reopening of the Central Library’s Johnson building represents the investments we make in the future of all Boston residents, as our libraries are critical resources where residents gather to exchange and seek knowledge and information,” said Mayor Walsh. “I’m grateful to all who contributed to the success of this project, and I look forward to Boston’s residents and visitors enjoying the library’s enhancements.”

Highlights of the second phase of the renovation include removal of the granite plinths that covered the Johnson building windows – reconnecting the building to the street; a revamped lecture hall for author talks and programming, a new innovation center, new Mac and Windows computers for the public computing area, a hi-tech community learning center, an enlarged Fiction section and new ways of book browsing, digital stacks to explore the BPL’s digitized collections, a state-of-the art Welcome Center, a digital imaging suite, and major landscape components along Boylston Street, including a civic table and new trees. The enterprise retail space at the corner of Boylston and Exeter Streets will feature The Newsfeed Café, opening mid-summer and operated by The Catered Affair, and a WGBH News satellite bureau and studio. Patrons will move seamlessly between the enterprise retail space and the Library.

The public can learn more about the Johnson building’s new features at www.bpl.org/bplreno and by following the BPL on Twitter (@bplboston), Facebook, and Instagram (@bplboston).

“This is one of the most significant milestones in Boston Public Library history; the Central Library Renovation has greatly expanded offerings for people of all ages  – the library has been truly transformed,” said Chair of the Board of the Trustees of the Boston Public Library Robert E. Gallery.

“The goal of the renovation was to reinvent both our building and our library services as inviting, dynamic, and modern, to be responsive to twenty first century urban civic life and to strengthen the Central Library and its connection to the City,” said David Leonard, President of the Boston Public Library. “We are proud to welcome everyone, from near and far, to celebrate a new era of library service in Copley Square.”

“We worked closely with the Boston Public Library and the City of Boston to develop an open kind of library space — the Big Urban Room — which connects the most active library uses to the city street.  With over 210 feet of transparent frontage along Boylston Street and multiple entry points, this new space conveys a sense of welcome that captures the Boston Public Library mantra ’FREE TO ALL,’” said architects Cliff Gayley and William Rawn, principals from William Rawn Associates, Architect, Inc.

“The Boston Public Library is a major piece of our city’s distinguished history and one that continues to provide services to thousands of residents in our community every day. We’re honored to have completed this beautiful renovation featuring complex engineering and design that will be enjoyed for generations to come,” said Matthew Consigli, President of Consigli Construction Co., Inc.

The first phase of the renovation, which opened in February 2015, included a colorful Children’s Library with books and media, early literacy and story time space, a tween corner, and flexible program space; Teen Central, a distinctive and media-friendly space with books, digital lab, media lounge, a dedicated quiet zone, and homework and hangout booths; refreshed and reorganized nonfiction collections and reference services; and an adult reading area and workspace for individuals and groups.

The Central Library Renovation project is funded by the City of Boston capital budget at $78 million. In addition to the City of Boston’s Public Facilities Department, the project team includes  PMA Consultants as the Owner’s Project Manager, Consigli Construction Co., Inc. is the contractor, and the project architect is William Rawn Associates, Architects, Inc.

 

About BOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY
Boston Public Library has a Central Library, twenty-four branches, map center, business library, and a website filled with digital content and services. Established in 1848, the Boston Public Library has pioneered public library service in America. It was the first large free municipal library in the United States, the first public library to lend books, the first to have a branch library, and the first to have a children’s room. Each year, the Boston Public Library hosts thousands of programs and serves millions of people. All of its programs and exhibitions are free and open to the public. At the Boston Public Library, books are just the beginning. To learn more, visit bpl.org.

 

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Read Your Way to Fenway Summer Essay Contest Begins at Boston Public Library

Posted on June 1st, 2016 by BPL News in Media Releases
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rywtfYouth ages 5-17 are eligible to win tickets to a Red Sox game

Boston Public Library’s annual Read Your Way to Fenway summer essay contest begins today for young people in Boston ages 5 through 17. Readers may download an application via www.bpl.org/summer or pick up an application at any Boston Public Library location. Children and teens are encouraged to read a minimum of three books and write an essay about their favorite for the chance to watch the Red Sox play at Fenway Park on Sunday, August 28.

“Summer is a key time for our young people to pursue their reading interests – to stimulate imagination and creativity, to work on hitting grade-level reading standards, or just for fun,” said David Leonard, Interim President of the Boston Public Library. “We are extremely grateful to our sponsors for their support – Read Your Way to Fenway is a key program among our summer learning offerings, and combines themes of reading and sports in a uniquely Boston way.”

“The essay contest is a prime opportunity for youth to be active readers and writers this summer and to experience the fun of America’s favorite pastime in historic Fenway Park,” said Farouqua Abuzeit, Boston Public Library’s Youth Services Manager. Read more »

Boston Public Library’s Concerts in the Courtyard Return to Central Library in Copley Square

Posted on May 26th, 2016 by BPL News in Media Releases
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Concerts3Boston Public Library’s free Concerts in the Courtyard (www.bpl.org/concerts) series returns June 1 and runs through August 31, featuring a variety of artists and musical genres in the library’s iconic courtyard at the Central Library in Copley Square, located at 700 Boylston Street. Concerts are held on Wednesdays at 6 p.m. and on Fridays at 12:30 p.m. All the concerts are free and last approximately one hour. Wednesday concerts are presented in partnership with Berklee College of Music.

June schedule:

  • Rodolfo Arteaga, Wednesday, June 1 6 p.m. Rodolfo Arteaga is a singer-songwriter and cellist from Ciudad Ojeda, Venezuela.
  • Cocek! Brass Band, Friday, June 3 ● 12:30 p.m. Cocek! Brass Band’s original music is based on the sounds of Eastern European brass bands and blends dance music with improvisation and inspiring melodies.
  • Samuel Batista, Wednesday, June 8 ● 6 p.m. Samuel Batista is an alto saxophone player from Panama City, Panama.
  • Moody Street Sound, Friday, June 10 ● 12:30 p.m. Hailing from Lowell, Massachusetts, Moody Street Sound is a sextet specializing in jazz, soul, and the blues.
  • Harshitha Krishnan, Wednesday, June 15 ● 6 p.m. Harshitha Krishnan is a vocalist of Indian origin from Lagos, Nigeria.
  • Duo Esplanade, Friday, June 17 ● 12:30 p.m. Duo Esplanade explores the flexible sounds of flute and clarinet, both as solo instruments and as part of different instrumental combinations in the various styles of standard classical repertoire, new music, and original arrangements.
  • Eduardo Mercuri, Wednesday, June 22 ● 6 p.m. Born in Curitiba, Brazil, guitar player Eduardo Mercuri has performed at the Panama Jazz Festival, Beantown Jazz Festival, and the 2013 Latin Grammys.
  • Properly Unprepared, Friday, June 24 ● 12:30 p.m. Properly Unprepared is a jazz combo made up of five members with an average age of 18.
  • Kristin Corpuz, Wednesday, June 29 ● 6 p.m. Kristin Corpuz is a singer-songwriter, actress, and dancer from Tampa, Florida, who currently attends Berklee College of Music as a 2013 Presidential Scholar.

Concerts in the Courtyard are generously supported by the Library Programs Fund at the Boston Public Library Foundation. Concerts will be moved indoors in the event of inclement weather. The concerts continue in July and August with the following schedule:

  • Phil Berman, Friday, July 1 ● 12:30 p.m.
  • luhx., Wednesday July 6 ● 6 p.m.
  • Castle of our Skins, Friday, July 8 ● 12:30 p.m.
  • MIXCLA, Wednesday, July 13 ● 6 p.m.
  • Amaryllis Chamber Ensemble, Friday, July 15 ● 12:30 p.m.
  • Dear June, Wednesday, July 20 ● 6 p.m.
  • Isabel Stover and Molly Flannery, Friday, July 22 ● 12:30 p.m.
  • Shirhan Agabeyli, Wednesday, July 27 ● 6 p.m.
  • Boston Youth Symphony Orchestras’ Intensive Community Program, Friday, July 29 ● 12:30 p.m.
  • Kyle Thornton & The Company, Wednesday, August 3 ● 6 p.m.
  • Kenn Morr Band, Friday, August 5 ● 12:30 p.m.
  • Njoki Karu, Wednesday, August 10 ● 6 p.m.
  • Hiroya Tsukamoto, Friday, August 12 ● 12:30 p.m.
  • James Fernando, Wednesday, August 17 ● 6 p.m.
  • Yi David Yang, Friday, August 19 ● 12:30 p.m.
  • Honeysuckle, Wednesday, August 24 ● 6 p.m.
  • Boston Lyric Opera, Friday, August 26 ● 12:30 p.m.
  • Aliya Cycon Project, Wednesday, August 31 ● 6 p.m.

 

About BOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY
Boston Public Library has a Central Library, twenty-four branches, map center, business library, and a website filled with digital content and services. Established in 1848, the Boston Public Library has pioneered public library service in America. It was the first large free municipal library in the United States, the first public library to lend books, the first to have a branch library, and the first to have a children’s room. Each year, the Boston Public Library hosts thousands of programs and serves millions of people. All of its programs and exhibitions are free and open to the public. At the Boston Public Library, books are just the beginning. To learn more, visit bpl.org.

About BOSTON PUBLIC LIBRARY FOUNDATION

The Boston Public Library Foundation is a fundraising arm of the BPL, with a mission to raise private funds for library programs and special projects.  Working closely with the leadership team of the Library, as well as the Board of Trustees, the Foundation has made over 15 grants to the BPL in Fiscal Year 2016, ranging in size from $10,000 to $175,000, to support programs such as the Lowell Lecture Series, Concerts in the Courtyard, Read Your Way to Fenway, Community Learning Center programs, and the upcoming “Celebrating Shakespeare” initiative, among others.

 

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Boston Public Library Reaches 100,000 Items Digitized and Accessible at DigitalCommonwealth.org

Posted on May 25th, 2016 by BPL News in Media Releases
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15_05_000237Boston Public Library recently added its 100,000th digitized item to Digital Commonwealth, providing access to digital resources of cultural heritage organizations throughout Massachusetts. Collections in Digital Commonwealth.org include thousands of images, documents, and sound recordings from member institutions which are openly accessible to researchers, students, and the intellectually curious.

“Boston Public Library’s collections are extensive and making them available online is a key way of delivering on our mission of access and education in the modern 24/7 connected world,” said David Leonard, Interim President of the Boston Public Library. “Digital Commonwealth is one way of showcasing the library’s digitization work to make our collections and those of our many statewide partners across the commonwealth discoverable by all.”

The 100,000th item was the print Hebron Barns, dating from 1938, of the Thomas W. Nason prints and drawings collection.  Items from the Boston Public Library in DigitalCommonwealth.org include the Boston Pictorial Archives, Fine and Historic Bookbindings, and the Anti-Slavery Collections of Distinction, Emily Dickinson letters and poems, images from Boston Herald-Traveler photographer Leslie Jones, postcards, prints, and more. Boston Public Library has digitized more than 152,000 items from its collection, which are housed on Digital Commonwealth.org and the Internet Archive. Read more »