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Senator John Boozman offers recognition and appreciation to retiring Arkansas State Librarian Carolyn Ashcraft


From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [] [ ][Pages S3125-S3126]




                      TRIBUTE TO CAROLYN ASHCRAFT


        Mr. BOOZMAN. Mr. President, I rise today to recognize Carolyn

Ashcraft on her retirement as State librarian and director of the

Arkansas State Library after 15 years of transformative leadership.


        Carolyn has a dedication to the State of Arkansas and a passion for

books, and her departure from a career that blended the two will leave

a significant void in Arkansas' library community. Her enthusiasm for

libraries has been evident since childhood, leading to an invitation to

serve as a student library aide in sixth grade. She went on to serve in

a similar position at the university level while earning her degree in

English at the University of Arkansas at Monticello. She continued her

education at the University of Alabama, where she earned a master's

degree in library science. In 1981, Carolyn launched her professional

career at the Grant County Library and next served as director at the

Saline County Library. She held this position until she started with

the Arkansas State Library in 1993, where she served in various

positions, including deputy director in the library development unit

before being selected as State librarian in 2005.


        Carolyn's career and the accomplishments of the Arkansas library

systemduring her tenure as State librarian testify to her dedication and

influential direction. Under her guidance, our libraries adapted

emerging technologies. She helped facilitate the transition to

digitization, expanding digital programs such as the Traveler Statewide

Digital Resource Program and establishing the Arkansas Digital Library

Consortium in 2018. She also oversaw the relocation of the agency and

its collection of books, State and Federal documents, Library for the

Blind materials, and other documents.


        Carolyn is known for having an unrivaled and encompassing knowledge

of libraries, as evidenced by her involvement in both State and

national professional library associations. The list of such

organizations is lengthy and includes the Arkansas Library Association,

American Library Association, the Association for Rural and Small

Libraries, and Chief Officers of State Library Agencies.


        I thank Carolyn for her contributions to Arkansas during her career

of dedicated service, guidance, and support of our public libraries and

library services. She will be missed, but I am confident she will enjoy

her time in retirement.<bullet>




  • 25 June 2020
  • Number of views: 182
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