The York County Library is the First in Pennsylvania to Receive the Statewide Award
The Pennsylvania Library Association named Martin Library as “Library of the Year” Tuesday during the association’s annual conference. The York County library is the first in Pennsylvania to receive this statewide award. The designation comes on the heels of the library’s recent award as a PA Forward Gold Star Library.
“Martin Library has real energy. It has tremendous passion. It moves quickly on initiatives, is nimble, creative and always inclined to find a way to make things happen. I applaud the staff for this well-deserved recognition! The people of the City of York are fortunate to have this excellent library at their fingertips and the County is lucky to have it as a model and inspiration for our Commonwealth. BRAVO!” – York County Libraries President Robert F. Lambert
Award Recognizes Accomplishments of Talented and Visionary Staff
Each year, the Pennsylvania Library Association recognizes members who have contributed significantly to the library profession and the betterment of libraries in Pennsylvania. This year, the 2018 Awards Committee opened nominations for the new “Library of the Year Award.” Entries came in from across the state. The association’s newest award honors a library that exhibits excellence in serving its community, advancing staff development, and leadership.
“As the Director of Martin Library, I am so proud of the accomplishments achieved by our talented and visionary staff. Martin Library’s staff identify the diverse needs of our community, build effective partnerships and create innovative solutions to address those needs. We thank the Pennsylvania Library Association for this recognition of the work we do every day in the City of York.” – Martin Library Director Mina Edmondson
Partnerships that Make a Difference
Among the library’s many accomplishments is its ever-evolving and diverse partnerships with community agencies, public and private schools, early childhood education centers, area hospitals and the county prison. Martin’s longest-standing partnership is the School Library Aides at Martin (SLAM) program. For more than 30 years, SLAM has placed highly trained staff into the libraries of the School District of the City of York, making it possible for students to receive library services. Martin Library also delivers the district’s afterschool program providing learning enrichment, learning support, special activities and meals to more than 800 children, five days a week during the school year. This year, students will learn coding, a vital 21st century skill set through library staff.
Nestled in the Heart of the Neigborhood
In 2017, Martin Library opened the award-winning Salem Square Library*. The Salem Square neighborhood is plagued by high levels of poverty, unemployment, illiteracy, and crime. Martin Library provides workforce development, job search assistance, afterschool STEAM programming, early childhood educational programming and public technology access through a prime location in the heart of the neighborhood.
Bridging the Digital Divide
Martin Library bridges the digital divide by bringing new technology, assistance and training to community. Its Tech Guru regularly visits all York County Libraries to help residents with their computers, tablets, and phones. The library continues to be an integral player across the city supporting makerspaces, including robotics and coding for all members of the community.
*Location ceased operations as a library in 2020