United for Libraries recently welcomed six individuals to its Board of Directors. Mary Soucie, Camille McCutcheon, Kathy Kosinski, Peter Pearson, Ben Carter, and Debbie Smart have been appointed to board positions effective immediately.
Mary Soucie, State Librarian at North Dakota State Library, has been appointed to a trustee at large position. Soucie has 20 years of experience as a librarian. She has worked in public and school libraries; as the Youth Services Consultant for a Regional Library System; and was also an adjunct professor at a community college teaching Reader's Advisory and Adult Programs. She has served as a trustee for both her local public library and an Illinois Regional Library System. She has served in many volunteer capacities, both within the library community and her own community.
Debbie Smart, Trustee at Arlington Heights (Ill.) Memorial Library, has been appointed to a trustee at large position. Smart has been supporting library boards, friends groups, foundations and school libraries for over two decades. She has served as Treasurer and President of the Arlington Heights Memorial library; she currently serves as Trustee. She has been a program contributor or United for Library and currently serves on the awards and Programming committees. In 2019 she was named Illinois Library Association Trustee of the Year. She was also awarded the Village of Arlington Heights Hearts of Gold Award.
Camille McCutcheon, Coordinator of Collection Management and Administrative Services at University of South Carolina Upstate and Archivist at Southeastern Library Association, has been appointed to a friend at large position. McCutcheon coordinates collection management at the University of South Carolina Upstate and has been a librarian at the University for more than 12 years. She is a member of the South Carolina Library Association (SCLA) as well as ALA and has been active in the Library Instruction Round Table (LIRT).
Ben Carter, Assistant State Librarian for Library Development at Georgia Public Library Service, has been appointed to a friend at large position. Carter serves as Assistant State Librarian for Library Development with the Georgia Public Library Service. He currently serves as Georgia’s state representative to the Southeastern Library Association, serving on the Board of Georgia Library Association. Recent professional activities include serving as leadership of the GLA Scholarship Committee, being elected and serving on the PINES Executive Committee, and working on legislative advocacy as Vice Chair of the Georgia Council of Public Libraries. He holds current membership with four Friends organizations, including his hometown library.
Kathy Kosinski, Member Services and Outreach Manager at Califa Group, has been appointed to a board member at large position. She has been a member of United for Libraries since her 2018 ALA Emerging Leaders team project. In 2020, she is co-author of ALA Editions book "All Ages Welcome: Recruiting and Retaining Younger Generations for Library Boards, Friends Groups, and Foundations," written for the United for Libraries audience. She also worked previously on the Literary Landmarks task force and currently participates on the United for Libraries Awards and Honors committee. Kosinski is passionate about eliminating barriers to access and creating equitable library experiences for all.
Peter Pearson, Founder/Senior Consultant at Library Strategies Consulting Group, has been appointed to a board member at large position. Pearson has previously served on the United board, and is a past president of United for Libraries, past committee chair and/or committee member of multiple United for Libraries committees, and frequent speaker/presenter for United. He is a Founder/Senior Consultant for Library Strategies Consulting Group. He was president of the Friends of the Saint Paul (Minn.) Public Library for 25 years. As president of the Friends of the Saint Paul Public Library, Pearson led three capital campaigns and coordinated an annual grassroots advocacy campaign that added millions of dollars of public funding to the library's budget. He also served as a Trustee for the Twin Cities Regional Library System for 10 years. He is a member of Friends of the Sarasota (Fla.) Public Library.