NEW CANAAN, Conn. – Leadership and the ability to raise money for operations and renovations will be among the traits the New Canaan Library’s Board of Trustees will look for as the search starts for a new executive director to succeed Alice Knapp.
“We need someone to help to move us forward,” said Christine Yordan, president of the library’s Board of Trustees. “We need to find the right person to lead the effort, and I think we can do it.”
The library has retained Gossage Sager Associates in Kansas City, Mo., to help with the search. Officials from the firm will be in New Canaan later this week to meet with library staff and town officials to hear their thoughts on what to look for in a new director.
Sunday was Knapp’s last day with New Canaan Library. Knapp announced in November that she was leaving after four years to work as director of user services at the Ferguson Library in Stamford.
“We want the staff to have input. We want them to talk to town officials and hear what they think,” Yordan said. “At the end of the day, it’s everyone’s library, and we need to reflect the needs of the community.”
Yordan said she expects the library to hire a new director in three to six months. The person will be counted on to raise money for library operations as well as funds to build a new facility or expand the current building. “I think it’s just like being the CEO of a corporation. There are many different divisions in the library,” Yordan said.
The search will be a nationwide effort, but Yordan said it would be nice to hire someone who lives in or near New Canaan. “A local person would be the dream,” she said. “But we don’t want to put ourselves in any kind of box.”