To the editor: Tanzer thanks community as she departs Whiting library directorship

Whiting Library’s first librarian served for 50 years. My tenure was a relatively short 11 ½.  What
began in the children’s room moved down the hall into the front office, which was the library’s original entrance. From there the services to the public, physical needs of the building and news ideas were nudged along.

Sharon Tanzer, retiring director of the Whiting Library.

During this time, furniture was rearranged and replaced, old curtains were removed, almost every wall was
repainted. Multiple air conditioner units were replaced with heat-pumps that switch modes from cooling to heating. The furnaces were changed from oil to propane, and every nook has been cleaned and cleared out.

In 2008 there was one computer for the use of the director. The catalog was a set of cards, and check-out
involved a machine that took a chunk out of the side of the book card while stamping the date. Whiting Library now has eight computers, five iPads and three Kindles.

The catalog and all circulation features are automated. Our catalog is connected to all the others in Vermont allowing easy searching and borrowing between libraries. The collection of VCR and audio tapes gave way to discs. Magazines were reduced to a few, graphic novels became popular, and every book, movie and audio was considered and reconsidered for condition and relevance.

In the public meeting area, a “loop” was installed for those with hearing difficulties. We installed a
whiteboard for presentations, a TV, a DVD player, media screen and a popcorn popper. The piano was moved to a better location, repaired and tuned. Craft cubbies, toy storage and colorful rugs were added in the basement for a play space and maker space.

The exterior of the library was updated thanks to a grant and loan, and a park bench now sits beneath the omega window. We now have more opportunities to partner with others in the community, and many, many to thank.

My personal thanks and also on behalf of Whiting Library to Deb Aldrich, Julie Hance, Cil Mathews, Amie
O’Brien, David Pisha for their help and support; to the members of the Chester Select board and those in Andover who promote our financial support; to SoVerA, Chester Townscapes, Chester Rotary, Nature Museum, St. Luke’s Episcopal Church, Chester/Andover and Green Mountain schools for their partnerships.

Thank you to all the trustees who sat on the board in the last 11½ years: Cynthia Collins, Marian Mosher, Ruthanne Batchelder, Ann Curran, Charlotte Edgar, Janet Churchill Elliot, Phyllis Jewett, Bruce Parks, Suzy Forlie, Shawn Cunningham, Mariette Bock, Mary Lou Farr, Jay Emery, Kathleen Pellett, David Lord, Linda Tallarico, Stephanie Whitney-Payne, Carrie King, Jessica Buchanan, Jessica DiMarco, Vanessa Heybyrne, Judith Copping, Colleen Garvey, Ed Grossman, Lyza Gardner, John Holme, Charlene Huyler.

A thank you to all the volunteers past and present: Doris Hastings, Jonne Adler, Chris Blodgett, Alice and Bob Martin, Brenda Dansingburg, Daryl Gustafson, Elizabeth Moulton, Dorothy Clair, Carol Hoyt, Arlene Mutschler, Susan Ronsheim, John Donarum, Joan Houghton, Cathy Hasbrouck, Christine, Michael and Steve Copping. Loving thanks to Mark Tanzer, who through it all has patched, painted, plastered, repaired, hauled, hammered and otherwise been the library “handyman/husband.”

Thanks and appreciation for the prior directorship of Karen Morris, and to children’s librarian Carrie King and her predecessors Stephanie Kaufman, Jeanne Waldren, Karin Fischer, Theone Wallace. Thank you to library assistant Will Wilcox and those who came before. I look forward to all that new Director Deirdre Doran will accomplish. Forgive my omissions, please know you are most appreciated.

I especially wish to thank all those who find something to inspire, inform and entertain at the library.

Keep visiting! Bring your friends!

Sharon Tanzer
Former director
Whiting Library

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  1. Charlea Baker says:

    What sad news. We will miss you Sharon. Your encouragement and support of local artists gave us a beautiful venue to share our work and to admire the creative talents of our neighbors. The Vermont Chapter of the Hearing Loss Assoc. of America was thrilled to finally have a hearing accessible meeting place for our meetings. FM Loop systems are few and far between in Vermont and your forward thinking and efforts to get a system installed is and will be gratefully appreciated into the future. I wish you well in your future plans and adventures. Happy Kayaking.

  2. Georgia Ethier says:

    Just want to express my regret to hear you are leaving Whiting Library. I so appreciated your kindness and cooperation the many times I contacted you for permission to place clothing collection boxes in the building for the annual outerwear clothing drives, displaying a poster for an event, asking you to speak at the Chester Senior Club, etc. I will miss you! Best of luck!

  3. Connie Tourigny says:

    I am glad to have met you and to have experienced your sincerity . I thank you for sharing your seeds and bounty from your homestead. A smile on my face when I think of you. And a smile for your dear assist. Will. Well done🌻🌾

  4. arlene mutschler says:

    Sad your retirement is happening with a whisper instead of a BANG. But I happy to be one of the many who have seen you move from the children’s room to the board room!! I am sorry there wasn’t any hoopla and balloons and yahoos to send you off. But I am proud to call you friend! Enjoy your well earned retirement! Hang out with the sheep and the critters in your lovely homestead!