Source: Sherman Publications

Library prez resigns
Ciccolini one of 5 vying for director job

by CJ Carnacchio

March 23, 2011

There’s a possibility that the new director of the Addison Township Public Library could have a quite familiar face.

Last week, Nina Ciccolini, president of the library board of trustees, resigned her elected office effective immediately in order to apply for the director position.

“I’m really excited about the opportunity,” she said. “I may not be the best candidate and if I’m not that’s fine . . . Regardless, I will support the library and continue my service in this community whether I become the new director or not.”

The library’s current director, Michele Presley, is leaving after nearly 16 years of dedicated service and moving to Jacksonville, Texas.

Her last day is April 29.

Five candidates, including Ciccolini, have applied for the position, according to Evelyn Pickwick, acting president of the library board.

“We’ve already started interviewing,” said Pickwick on Monday. “We’re planning to interview all five.”

The other four candidates are Abigail Daniels (school media specialist, Guilford County Schools, North Carolina); Carla Caretto (reference and instruction librarian at Rochester College); Lynda Henderson (Addison Township Public Library); and Alex Krentzin (Madison Heights Public Library).

Pickwick said ideally, the board would like to have a new director selected by April 4, so the new person can train under Presley during her final two weeks.

“That’s the plan. That’s why we’re moving so quickly,” she explained. “(Presley) has a lot of historical knowledge and experience to share.”

Pickwick indicated she would have preferred to see a larger pool of applicants, but “the five candidates that we have are all good, strong contenders.”

Pickwick stressed that Ciccolini’s status as a former library board member will not create a bias in the interview process.

“She’ll be treated just like any other candidate,” she said. “No special treatment at all.”

Ciccolini has lived in Addison since 1998 and served on the library board since 2000. She was president for a majority of those years.

Although she enjoys her current position coordinating the volunteer program and fund development for the nonprofit Habitat for Humanity, Ciccolini relishes the opportunity to devote all of her time, energy and efforts to the library on a full-time basis.

“If my focus was the library, I think it would make a tremendous difference in the services that I can provide to the township . . . and (in the) game plan we’ve got for getting into our new facility, not the interim facility,” she said.

The library is currently in the process of moving from its current 1,200-to-1,300-square-foot facility into a 3,000-square-foot lease space inside the Lakeville Towne Square strip mall on Rochester Rd.

Library officials and supporters consider this an interim move until the library can someday secure adequate funding to build and operate a brand new facility on nearly 4 acres of land located on Rochester Rd., across from the strip mall between Milmine Rd. and Cantley St. This land was donated to the library a few years back.

Ciccolini’s anxious to get a new township library built.

“The interim facility’s a nice resting place for a few minutes, but we need to get out of there sooner rather than later,” she said. “In 2000, the library needed a new facility. In 2011, it still needs one.”

She believes her past experience in fund development can help accomplish this goal.

Ciccolini noted that “from a fund-raising perspective,” the library’s “never done anything” with its status as a 501 (c)(3) nonprofit organization.

“I think that’s a huge lost opportunity,” she said.

The library currently has approximately $36,326 saved in its new building fund, which is a far cry from the estimated $2.9 million needed to construct a new facility consisting of a 7,400-square-foot first floor, plus a lower level with 4,870 square feet of unfinished space for future expansion.

Although she freely admits she has no experience working at a library, Ciccolini doesn’t view that as an obstacle or a drawback.

“Every job that I’ve ever gone into I have not been very familiar with the processes or the dynamics of the job. Everybody does things differently,” she explained. “I came out of the corporate world to run a volunteer program and a fund development program. Other than volunteering and donating, I didn’t have any experience there.”

“I can learn anything,” Ciccolini noted. “I have a great aptitude for data bases and systems. I have the people management skills. I have the project management skills.”

Her considerable experience in the corporate world includes advertising, marketing, designing and developing events, and training.

“I’ve managed people, I’ve managed teams, I’ve managed multimillion dollar budgets,” Ciccolini said. “It’s a library, but it’s still a company in the grand scheme of things. The systems and stuff that they have, give me a couple weeks to go through them and learn them. The rest of it’s customer service.”

Pickwick indicated the new director’s salary will depend on which candidate is hired.

“As a board, we’re going to sit down, look through the budget and come up with a salary,” she said.

Presley is currently paid an annual base salary of $44,824. She receives no health benefits, but does receive a contribution toward her retirement that amounts to 10 percent of her salary.

Pickwick said the new director will also receive no health care benefits. As for the retirement benefit, that’s something the board has yet to decide.

Pickwick suspects the retirement benefit will either be eliminated or at the very least, reduced.