CRESTVIEW — Marie Garcia, the Crestview Public Library's assistant director, will soon drop the “assistant” in her title.
The City Council on Feb. 8 voted 3-1 to offer Garcia the library director position; she replaces Jean Lewis, who is retiring. Councilman Joe Blocker cast the lone nay vote.
Garcia — who starts her new role March 3 — said she plans to expand on Lewis' initiatives. Those include community outreach programs such as the winter holidays' Noel Night; a monthly educational lecture series; weekly Music at the Library performances; children’s learning programs; and arts events.
Emphasizing the library’s role as an educational service and extension of local schools, and having the facility serve as the community’s arts center are among her goals, Garcia said. “The arts and the sciences are equally important to our community,” she said.
Garcia said she recognizes there are challenges ahead, including internet bandwidth limitations and the need to keep pace with the growing community.
In his recent State of the City address, Mayor David Cadle said library plans eventually call for a science, technology, engineering and mathematics-centered children’s wing.
“I’d love to have a computer lab and build the children’s wing,” Garcia said. “Hopefully in the next 10 years that’ll happen. The city’s growing and we’d like to grow with it.”
Whatever the future holds, Lewis said she's confident in Garcia's abilities.
“She’ll do a wonderful job,” Lewis said.