Melissa  Powell has worked for 35 years in libraries as a paraprofessional and degreed professional, in addition to a 4-year “retirement” to learn about the book & publishing industry.

She is an Independent Librarian currently teaching Cataloging Fundamentals, Collection Management, and Customer Service Skills both online and through state libraries,  library consortia, and other education agencies.  She spent 2009 organizing a local history collection at a public library in the mountains of Colorado (“from boxes to shelves”), 2012-13 assisting with the setup and cataloging of a dual language university catalog, and regularly consults with school and public libraries on technical and public services.

Melissa  often teaches Basic Cataloging Skills for the Colorado Library Consortium (CLiC) and conducted cataloging training for the AspenCat Union Catalog, (Koha-based ILS) and the SkyRiver Cataloging Utility through CLiC. She received a B.A in History and a Masters in Library and Information Studies at Northern Illinois University and has additional training in coaching and communications.

“My focus is providing practical and affordable continuing education and training for small and rural library staff, particularly the “Accidental Librarian,” the dedicated community member with a passion for libraries who finds themselves with increasing responsibility for one of the most important aspects of their community: the library. These librarians have fewer opportunities for continuing education due to smaller staffs and limited funds.

More than anything my goal is that every small and rural library is aware of and taking advantage of all of the continuing education, programs, grants, and other assistance available in this digital age so they are offering the best to their staff, volunteers, and community.  Our rural areas deserve to have everything available to the urban libraries.”

Melissa Powell, October 2011, Fort Collins, CO


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