FOR THE RECORD: 9-4-96 Spokane public library board of trustees will pay one-fourth of the new director’s salary to a candidate-recruiting firm. A story last week reported an incorrect amount.
The next head of Spokane’s city libraries will be either the current interim director or a manager from the Sacramento, Calif., library system.
Spokane public library trustees will interview the two finalists in September before making their pick.
The finalists, chosen from 20 candidates, are Aubrey George and Susan Hildreth of the Sacramento Library Authority.
George has been interim director of the city’s five branch libraries since last fall, when Dan Walters took a director’s job at the Buffalo, N.Y., library. Hildreth is deputy manager for support services in a city-county system that serves more than a million patrons through 24 branches in the Sacramento area.
The new Spokane library director, when hired in October, will earn $69,000 to $85,200 per year.
Both candidates are qualified and capable of “leading Spokane Public (Library) into the 21st century,” said trustees President Diann Brown.
The city library board used Gossage Regan Associates, a New York City firm, to look for potential directors from across the country.
After 20 were chosen, the board lowered the number to eight - four men and four women, Brown said.
George was the only Washington state librarian within the group of eight.
The headhunting firm will get a fee equal to three-fourths of the new library director’s 1997 salary.
The director is the administrative agent for the library branches. A sixth is due to open next year in Indian Trail.
George has been with the Spokane system for six years, starting as a deputy director.
Hildreth has never lived in Washington state. “The closest I’ve been is when I and my husband decided to get married a few years ago, and we came to Coeur d’Alene,” she said.
Her job puts her in charge of personnel relations, labor negotiations and facilities management in the Sacramento system.
Brown said the board will spend time meeting with both candidates, then host a number of sessions for them to sit down and discuss their goals with community members.
“We’re looking for someone with expertise in running a library the size of (Spokane’s) who has the desire to keep us at the level we’re at - and to make sure we go even further,” Brown said.
This week, for the first time, all city library branches are closed to help cover a budget shortfall. Workers agreed to skip 12 work days in 1996 to prevent eight jobs from being eliminated.
Spokane County libraries remain open.