Sections

Weather Forecast

Close

New Plum City library director 'can't imagine working anywhere else'

As Kayla Campbell is settling into her new role as Plum City Public Library's director, she is also getting cozy in her own private corner of the library. Her unique pine-filled Library Director's office is tucked in the back of the library at the top of a short staircase. Rachel Helgeson / RiverTown Multimedia1 / 2
The Plum City Public Library has new director Kayla Campbell in place to continue appreciating the relationship between the library and the closely-knit people of Plum City. Rachel Helgeson / RiverTown Multimedia2 / 2

Because of the people of Plum City, new library director Kayla Campbell said she knows the Plum City Public Library is where she is meant to be.

Having worked at the Plum City library since 2012 and then being placed as interim director for Jacquie Pooler, who relocated, Campbell admitted she really didn't know she'd love working in the library prior to first working there.

"It was one of those things that never crosses your mind. Then you end up here through circumstance and then you're like 'This is where I'm meant to be, I love this'," Campbell said.

In January Campbell was fully certified to become a director and the library board appointed her in February.

Before Pooler left the Plum City library to work in Iron River, Campbell was taught well by her predecessor, she said.

"She really did a great job teaching me how important patron privacy is and we talked a lot about censorship," Campbell said. "You need to provide both sides equally. Libraries are the last source of unbiased information. We do our best to provide materials from both sides."

Campbell said she believes the fulfillment she receives from her new position is because of the community and the library's society-centered origin.

"We have a great community. People are willing to volunteer, help and step up to strengthen Plum City," Campbell said. "When I first started in 2012, the community was very welcoming and made me feel like I was part of it right away."

Women petitioned door-to-door to establish a library in Plum City in the 1980s. It was never an administrative decision to open a library downtown, and Campbell said for this reason the library has been well-supported and used by Plum City and surrounding residents.

Even with changes in the last year, the library still holds a great standing, Campbell said. The Plum City location eliminated late fees for their materials last year, which has been a national topic amongst libraries.

"It (fines) puts more negativity into the experience," Campbell said. "We haven't noticed any change, people still are bringing items back on time and continue to do so."

The lack of impact is also notable in their budget, in which fines had been contributing to less than 1% of the budget. Funding through taxes keeps the library running well.

The library, which currently has three part-time assistants and one page, is gearing up for summer reading programs under the theme "A Universe of Stories" which start on the listed dates at 7 p.m.:

• June 5 - crafts and registration

• June 12 - science tellers, experiments and story telling

• June 19 - Light and Launch, hands-on demonstration of rockets and space travel

• June 26 - Tom Pease, music performer

• July 3 - Lego Guy (Star Wars and NASA)

• July 10 - TBA

• July 17 - Truly Remarkable Loon comedy juggling

• July 24 - Space Painting

• July 31 - Pint Size Polka

Rachel Helgeson

Rachel Helgeson

(651) 301-7864