TOWNSEND — Townsend resident Stacy Schuttler has taken over as director of the Townsend Public Library.
Her appointment was announced by the Library board of trustees in a press release.
“Ms. Schuttler brings energy, enthusiasm and commitment to her new position and the board is most confident in her ability to manage and expand library services to the town of Townsend,” the announcement read.
“We wanted to make sure that someone was going to be seriously committed to this facility and make sure it is kept up and maintained. It’s a promise we made to the benefactors,” said Suzanne Doust, co-chair of the trustees. “I think we have a phenomenal new director. It was a good decision, we’re moving forward,” she said.
Her wage is $23.11 an hour for a 32-hour work week, the same as the former director. Like most other town employees, she will be working without a contract. Town Administrator Andy Sheehan said the town no longer has contracts for most of its employees because of the recommendations made by labor counsel.
Schuttler, 39, has already shown her commitment to the library and her job. She started as children’s librarian in 2006 and stepped in as interim director this past June. She is two courses away from completing her master’s degree in library science from the University of Rhode Island. Her undergraduate degree from Eastern Connecticut State College is in developmental psychology with a double minor in English and art.
Being a part of the community is important to the new director. “It’s nice because it’s my town and I feel really passionate about this building. It’s where my kids live,” she said. The family lives in Townsend. Her three daughters, Zoe, 15, Violet, 12, and Mazie, 10, attend schools in the North Middlesex Regional School District. Her husband Dave volunteers as coordinator of the town’s Destination ImagiNation program for school-age children.
Schuttler is excited about her new position and is making plans on continuing to improve the staffing and programming. “I’ve been doing this job the past five months. We want to continue moving forward,” she said.
The first goal she has set is to get a full staff back on board. The job posting for her former position as children’s librarian is out. Finding additional funding and grants to support library programs is another immediate goal, so more good adult programming can be offered she said.
Schuttler faced some stiff competition for the director’s job. The applicant field was impressive. Most had a master’s degree in library science and several would have needed to relocate if they accepted the position, Doust said.
After advertising the position on library job boards and the town website, the search committee received 14 applications. They interviewed four candidates, using the same set of questions, and selected two people to recommend to the trustees, said committee member Pat Jeanig.
After the trustees decided Schuttler was the best candidate, the selectmen officially appointed her on Nov. 9.
The search committee included representatives from several town boards and two at-large members: Jeanig, a library trustee; Gini King, a Finance Committee member; Susan Robbins, a member of the School Committee; Pam Snaith and Melissa Herman, members at large.
The community is enthusiastic about Schuttler’s appointment. Doust said she has been getting phone calls daily saying, “you did the right thing. We’re so happy Stacy is there.”
Schuttler is approaching her new job with high spirits. “I’m really excited. I think the ladies I work with right now are hard workers and very smart. I think we make a great team.”