As published in the Red Rock News
Greetings from Sedona Public Library! This is Andrea Lhotka, your Reference Librarian, here to share with you a little about myself and a lot about the role(s) I play at Sedona Public Library. As we mentioned in a previous column, we want to re-introduce ourselves to the community to revitalize our relationship with our neighbors. This is the second article in a series introducing you to our dedicated library team. We are answering a series of fun and enlightening questions to give you an opportunity get to know those of us who serve our fellow Sedonans every day.
Here are my answers which will give you some idea of who I am both at the Library and in my life outside the stacks. First, where was I born? I am the 4th generation of my family to be born in Arizona. What was my first job? In my first job, at age 16, I was a hostess for a neighborhood restaurant. Do I prefer dogs or cats? I am Team Cat, but dogs are cute, too. Have I ever seen a ghost or UFO? I have never seen a ghost, but once in downtown Portland, I may have heard one. That is a long story, however. What book was most influential on my early life? “Jane Eyre,” by Charlotte Bronte, was pivotal in the development of my ethical framework.
As the Library’s most long-term staff member, I have worn a multitude of hats in my tenure. Initially working in Technical Services, my first job was to prepare children’s books and Playaways (pre-loaded audiobook that gives patrons the portability and freedom to listen to audiobooks anytime, anywhere) for patrons to check out and enjoy. When I oversaw Interlibrary Loans, I helped obtain books and movies for patrons with distinctive reading tastes from faraway libraries.
While at the Reference Desk, I help the public (with or without library cards!) find books and movies, download digital titles, access library and government resources, use library technology, and much more. My job consistently fluctuates based on patrons’ needs. One day I may be wrangling Chromebooks and Hotspots, the next day I might be elbow deep in producing social media posts or graphic designs for our numerous programs. A Reference Librarian is the person that helps you hunt down that missing disc from Season 2 of “Lost,” or I might help you look up City Council minutes from December of 2014. You never know at which desk I will be found or what library service I will be providing. Who knows? When the new coffee machine is set up next month, I may be slinging K-cups with cream and sugar!
These days I cohost a book club with my colleague Kay Bork, another Reference Librarian. We enjoy creating opportunities for rich discussion and learning, and our group selects themes that explore the edges of our own life experience. This is not your great-grandmother's book club—but all adults are welcome to join the fun! So, hello Sedona, it’s nice to re-meet you!
I love my job, and I love to use my skills to be of help. The next time you find yourself in the neighborhood, I hope you will stop by and say hello, and give me a chance to put my reference skill set to work for you.
Please remember that Sedona Public Library is a 501(c)(3) nonprofit organization. We gratefully welcome your support and gifts. Please visit our website, sedonalibrary.org/donate. From there you can easily make an online gift. You are invited to come by the Library to make your donation, or just drop your check in the mail to SPL, 3250 White Bear Road, Sedona, AZ 86336. Your giving is our living, and we want to thank our donors for their ongoing and generous support.
Sedona Public Library
Column for July 2, 2021
Written by Andrea Lhotka, Reference Librarian
Library News appears each Friday in the Red Rock News.