Wyoming State Librarian Jamie Markus took office as President-Elect of the Western Council of State Libraries on July 1. Markus leads the Wyoming State Library (WSL), a division of the State of Wyoming’s Department of Administration and Information. By statute, the WSL is tasked with serving as the official depository for state government documents and with supporting library services throughout the state.
“We’re fortunate to have such a collaborative library community in Wyoming,” Markus said. “Our participation in the Western Council has taken that collaboration to another level ever since Wyoming joined in the 1970s. We bring what we’ve achieved in our state to the table and in return, we learn what’s worked for others.”
The WSL has a strong focus on statewide projects that ensure equity of access to library services for all Wyoming residents, even in the smallest communities. It manages Library Services and Technology Act funding from the Institute of Museum and Library Services to benefit all Wyomingites. Recently it’s been involved in using CARES Act funding to provide career training resources so that Wyoming’s economy can recover from the effects of the COVID-19 pandemic and to support summer reading on the Wind River Indian Reservation.
The WSL’s WYLD office manages the library catalog shared by more than 100 libraries, including every community college and county library system. Through its online GoWYLD.net portal, the WSL makes databases, ebooks, learning resources, and more available free to every Wyoming resident. GoWYLD resources are available not just at libraries, but from home, work, or anywhere else with an internet connection.
The Western Council is made up of 22 state library agencies west of the Mississippi River. Among its functions, it promotes library service in member states, provides a forum for interstate collaboration, and invests in innovative projects. Markus will serve a term of two years as Western Council President-Elect, followed by two as President and two as Past President.