Braxton Citizens' News, Community

Connie Skidmore retires as Sutton Library Director

After eight years of dedicated service, Connie Skidmore recently retired from her position as Sutton Library director. Concerning her experience with the library, Skidmore, who plans to continue to work with some of the library programs, said, “I appreciated the opportunity to work with the library and the community. I enjoyed my time there.”  As she enjoyed her time at the library, she began many new programs and received several grants which advanced the service the library offers to the community.

Skidmore noted that the library “received grants nearly every year to purchase books, furnishings, equipment and program supplies. Her successful efforts gaining grants included recent grants to improve the technology within the library. “This year was by far our biggest grant year with two grants for a total of $41,000,” she said. These grants funded the purchase of a 16-camera security system, eight Dell computer systems, WIFI router with boosters, Luminer air and surface disinfecting systems, eight mobile hotspots, and 10 Kindle Fire units. 

Many new programs were developed during Skidmore’s time as library director. One, with which Beth Atkins worked, came following a donation of a large amount of fabric. One activity in this program included making quilts to donate to pre-school classes.

After relaxation of COVID restrictions, a group began meeting each Thursday to enhance quilting and sewing skills. In addition to creating quilts for Pre-K students, participants created items they could keep for themselves. This group, Create and Donate, also created a full-sized quilt to raffle and donate money to the library (Friends of the Library.)

A program of which Skidmore said she was proud was called Tails and Tales as part of the summer reading program. Here, those in charge had the attendees do an extra program on recycling. For this project, called Cans for Canines, participants brought in aluminum cans for recycling. “The purposes here,” Skidmore said, “were to educate kids about recycling and see a way to give back to the community.”  This program raised over $1,000 for the animal shelter. Skidmore noted, “Here, the library gave back to the community because the community gives to the library.”

These are just some of the programs that Connie Skidmore brought, or helped to bring, to the Sutton Library. Now that she has retired, she plans to continue working with some of them. In addition, she said she will have time “to quilt more and to read more.”  She added that she and her husband Ken “will travel some.”

As one who worked closely with Skidmore during her time as library director, Pat McPherson, president of Friends of the Library, commented on the retiree. “As the director, Connie had a vision for the Sutton Library to provide patrons with a variety of programs to draw them in to the library. As a friend, Connie is caring and generous and you want to be part of the effort to carry out that vision,” she said.