Laramie County Library System’s Business Services Coordinator Rachael Svoboda received the Wyoming Library Association’s 2021 Outstanding Librarian Award. Given to an individual who utilizes innovative thinking and planning to implement special projects and makes significant contributions to the library and wider community, the award acknowledges a Wyoming library employee who has gone above and beyond in providing services and resources to the community. Rachael’s work to secure funding for and implement the Wyoming Library to Business program was one of her many incredible contributions to the community this year, and her dedication to providing comprehensive business services to anyone who needs them made her an exceptional candidate for the prestigious award.
Rachael received nine nominations for the award, and was acknowledged not only for her work in starting the Wyoming Library to Business program with a Libraries Build Business grant from the American Library Association, but also for her work with the Wyoming Library Leadership Institute, her dedication to library users, the successful application of a Community Navigator grant from the Wyoming Small Business Development Center, being named as one of six national Libraries Build Business coaches, and her tireless commitment to expanding and growing Laramie County Library System’s own business resources, including the recent addition of a video recording studio.
In an award ceremony held on January 4, 2022, Wyoming Library Association’s President Jeff Collins noted that, “it would be impossible to cover all of what Rachael accomplished in 2021.” Wyoming State Library’s Federal Documents Librarian Tekla Slider stated in her nominating letter that, “As a native Wyomingite, Rachael strongly identifies with her roots and wants to see the entire state and its residents succeed. She values the contribution each individual, library, organization, and government brings to the whole.” When nominating Rachael, Executive Director and County Librarian for Laramie County Library System Carey Hartmann wrote, “Rachael knew the Library Build Business funds could aid many more libraries and help her achieve part of her vision to get business service expertise in more Wyoming Libraries.”
Rachael’s dedication to not only Laramie County Library System, but to the Wyoming library community as a whole is unparalleled. Having spent much of the past year traveling around the state installing new business stations and services, her dedication to expanding libraries’ impact for small businesses, job seekers, and those looking to start their own business is evident. Laramie County Library System is incredibly proud to have such a dedicated and hardworking employee on their team who continues to make an impact on the community, and congratulates her for her well-deserved Outstanding Librarian award.