Augusta library chief resigns

Tuesday, Feb. 21, 2012 2:47 PM
Last updated Wednesday, Feb. 22, 2012 1:42 AM
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Teresa Cole, the director of the East Central Regional Library system for less than a year, announced her resignation Tues­day, Georgia Deputy State Librarian Julie Walker confirmed.

Library Director Teresa Cole in a file photo.  MICHAEL HOLAHAN/FILE
MICHAEL HOLAHAN/FILE
Library Director Teresa Cole in a file photo.

In an e-mail Tues­day to library officials statewide, Cole gave little indication of why she will step down March 2, Walker said.

“As far as we understand, it was completely voluntary on her part,” Walker said. The e-mail gave no indication that Cole was leaving because of a job offer, she said.

Augusta Commission member Jerry Brigham, asked whether he knew of any problems in library management, said some library employees were disappointed they didn’t receive the $500 annual raise other city employees got this year.

According to former library Director Gary Swint, Cole decided to use the additional city funds for other library purposes.

After Monday’s board of library trustees meeting, Swint’s first since being named a trustee by Com­mis­sioner Grady Smith, it became apparent that funds restored at a recent commission retreat would have covered the raises, Swint said.

The board typically would not weigh in on such decisions but “felt strongly” that staff should receive the raises and expressed its opinion to Cole on Monday, Swint said.

Swint also mentioned there have been “some problems” since Cole took over but declined to elaborate.

Swint said whoever is managing the library is having to cope with declining state funds, utility bills at the new main library that are more than twice those paid for the former site and threatened cuts to the Talking Book Center.

Cole took over last April as director of the East Central Re­gion­al Library, which includes the main Augusta library and branches in Burke, Co­lum­bia, Lincoln and War­ren counties. Cole, a former director of Dougherty County Li­brary in Albany, was selected after a nationwide search.

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Little Lamb
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Little Lamb 02/21/12 - 04:27 pm
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That photo depicts a very

That photo depicts a very attractive woman. Perhaps she is engaged to a very wealthy man.

my.voice
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my.voice 02/21/12 - 04:35 pm
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She's probably got overdue

She's probably got overdue book fines.

seenitB4
97282
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seenitB4 02/21/12 - 04:38 pm
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Maybe won the lotto....LL you

Maybe won the lotto....LL you do have good taste in women:)

Craig Spinks
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Craig Spinks 02/22/12 - 03:24 am
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Wish Ms. Cole well.

Wish Ms. Cole well.

Bob Munger
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Bob Munger 02/22/12 - 07:45 am
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Having worked closely with

Having worked closely with Gary Swint, I expect he was not allowing Ms. Cole to do her job. When I was the SPLOST Program Manager, he pulled that one. I tried to talk him into doing an 85,000 SF, higher quality LEED building, but he insisted on building it as big as possible. He directed the architects to make it gratrer than 90,000 SF. A LEED building typically has significantly lower utility bills. Now he complains about the higher utility bills, and 2/3 of the library stack areas sit empty, devoid of books. They cannot afford to heat and cool it, staff it properly, or fill it with books. But Gary got his way, except for the 500 SF office he wanted. We were able to trim that to size.

IntrepidES96
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IntrepidES96 02/22/12 - 09:02 am
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Munger, it appears you can't

Munger, it appears you can't read too well. According to the article, Swint was just appointed to the board very recently.

While I have no clue whether he was not allowing her to do her job or not, how about we stick with the facts instead of guessing!

Bob Munger
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Bob Munger 02/22/12 - 05:10 pm
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So you are saying she

So you are saying she resigned soon after his appointment? Hmmmm.

Riverman1
93535
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Riverman1 02/22/12 - 05:22 pm
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If Autumn Leaves is right, I

If Autumn Leaves is right, I wouldn't want to work down there either.

Riverman1
93535
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Riverman1 02/22/12 - 05:23 pm
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Heck, I still say do away

Heck, I still say do away with all brick and mortar libraries and put it all online at about a tenth the cost with tens times the use by the public.

seenitB4
97282
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seenitB4 02/22/12 - 05:49 pm
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Now you know you will get a

Now you know you will get a down sign on that..:)

A lady at the book store told me about using the nook....to read books....I found the book The World America Made today & I'm reading it---so if you run into the Gen again in the ELEVATOR tell him some bought the book..

quarksandsoul76
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quarksandsoul76 02/23/12 - 02:32 pm
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The idea that the public does

The idea that the public does not need a physical library is a very insular idea. Until EVERYONE has computers that work, internet access, and are computer-savvy, there will always be a need for libraries. They are more than just books. They provide services. Many people do not realize what librarians so, yet when people come in they expect us to be IT, secretaries, social workers, and much more. I love my job. I am a librarian. There will always be a need for libraries in all of our lifetimes.

Riverman1
93535
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Riverman1 02/23/12 - 04:06 pm
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Quarkandsoul76, you bring up

Quarkandsoul76, you bring up a good point. If the purpose of libraries is to get the most people to read the most books, there is no doubt it can be accomplished with an online library much better. But I completely understand what you mean about libraries being much more and that's fine. If our purpose is to provide places for whatever reason you choose to insert, we could provide such places better and cheaper than using libraries. All the side activities and meeting room functions are nice, but they are not the stated purpose of libraries. Making books available to the public.

I honestly believe you will find few people with the intelligence enough to come in a library and find a book who can't navigate the internet or don't have internet access. But, I'm ready to go that far, too. If we need facilities with computers for the public, fine. We can do that at a fraction of the cost. Times have changed.

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