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New CEO settling in at Fort Frances Public Library


The Fort Frances Public Library Technology Centre recently welcomed a new CEO after losing Caroline Goulding in July.

Joan MacLean, who's worked as a librarian since 2006, started as CEO on Sept. 27 and is thrilled to work in a community that truly supports its library.

“I knew the fact that the town had raised the money to build the library and every librarian wants to work in a community where the library is so loved that the town just builds it,” she enthused.

“I had also heard great things about the Fort Frances library before and I was really thrilled to see the job come up.”

MacLean has held positions in the past where she had strong commitments to the community, so she's happy to be serving the town.

“Good library's are very aware of the community they exist in and all library's need to respond to its needs,” she explained.

“Coming here, I know that there is a lot of integration of the library into the fabric of the town,” MacLean added.

“My job is to further that goal, that we become more and more integrated into the town, where the library is looked at for leadership from a social point of view.”

MacLean is originally from Toronto but has moved around quite a bit from the Maritimes to foreign countries such as Germany and England.

She told the Times she's transitioning well into her role as CEO at the library—and as the newest community member.

“I'm really happy that I chose to come here because it has been a very welcoming community,” MacLean lauded.

“Even though I'm a Toronto girl born and bred, I do choose to live in small towns.”

Becoming a librarian has always been a goal of MacLean's and she's very thrilled to have worked in the field for the last 13 years.

“It was a dream deferred I guess you could say, and when I had the opportunity I finally fulfilled it and I'm so glad I did because I love being a librarian,” she enthused.

In addition to running a smooth operation at the Fort Frances Public Library, a large part of MacLean's role is ensuring the community has the resources it needs.

“If you want to know how to do Tunisian crochet methods, we can find a book for you on that or if you want to read about every prime minister of Canada or anything, that's what our job is,” she said.

Part of MacLean's role as library CEO is to also keep up with the latest trends in technology and keeping the community educated.

“You can learn anything that you want at the library and if we don't have it here or we don't have a program for it, we'll help you find it,” she explained.

Meanwhile, MacLean said she looks forward to her future at the library here.

“I'm just really happy to be in a community that's very supportive of the library and it shows,” she lauded.

“From the wonderful building to my wonderful staff, people who are attracted to working in this library are some of the best I've ever seen.”

Ontario Public Library Week runs from Oct. 20-26 and a celebration is being held at the local library on Tuesday, Oct. 22 which will be MacLean's first opportunity to introduce herself to the public as CEO.

She told the Times she's looking forward to becoming better acquainted with community and encourages everyone to drop by.

Goulding had held the position of CEO since 2016.

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