Thursday, January 13, 2011

Losing an important City Director

I am very sad to learn Sally Felix is leaving the city as the Director of Library Services. Sally came to the city with excellent credentials and a vast amount of experience in managing and leading library service operations on the East Coast.  She has made a huge impact during her short tenure as director of Siouxland Libraries.

Felix oversaw a main library in downtown Sioux Falls, 3 branch libraries, eight library locations in Minnehaha County, a bookmobile service and outreach services to nursing homes and daycare centers. Her leadership in designing and overseeing the construction of the Oakview Branch and the complete renovation of a main library originally constructed in 1970 was nothing short of phenomenal. Operationally, visits, items borrowed, computer access and uses, new library users, and people attending programs have all increased substantially under Sally Felix's leadership and direction.

She lead the planning, construction phase and grand opening of the Oakview Branch and the complete remodel of the Main Library. She has been instrumental in hiring some exceptional people and developed an organization totally committed to providing excellent, responsive customer service.

Mayor Munson often spoke of the importance of libraries to our community, to our children, and to the quality of life and was a strong advocate of the library system and Sally Felix.  I remember when our exhaustive search of almost nine months found Sally and how excited we both were that she was interested in coming to South Dakota from Pennsylvania to lead the library organization through some very important construction and expansion phases. Mayor Munson understood and recognized her contributions and expertise in the library field and always made comment on how lucky we were to have found her.

Sally Felix's leaving the City of Sioux Falls and the library system is a huge loss to this community. She is leaving way too soon.  I had hopes she would be here much longer than the short 7 years. I hope Mayor Huether understands the significance of what she has brought to the library system, this community and to the organization.  He will not find a more dedicated public servant than Sally Felix.  It is a tremendous loss for the city as an organization, her staff, and to the community as a whole.

1 comment: