Director Selection Process Committee meeting summary - September 18, 2019

The public is welcome at all library board meetings.

The Library Board Director Selection Process Committee met Wednesday, September 18, 2019, Washburn Library, Meeting Room.


Committee members: Chair Katherine Blauvelt, Tim Dolan, Jonathan Gaw, Sheila Letscher, Margy Ligon, Samuel Nelson, and Erin Vrieze Daniels

Library Board members: N/A

Staff: Interim Library Director Janet Mills, Kari Boe Schmidt, Deborah Johnson, Shannon Adkins and Jeannette Lewis

Welcome and Call to Order

President Katherine Blauvelt called the meeting to order at 5:01 p.m. and welcomed attendees.

Approval of agenda and meeting summary

President Katherine Blauvelt made a motion to approve the agenda.

Erin Vrieze Daniels made a motion to approve the agenda; seconded by Jonathan Gaw. Motion passed.

Margy Ligon made a motion to approve the June 5, 2019, meeting summary; seconded by Erin Vrieze Daniels. Motion passed.

Public Comment


Director Search and Timeline Update

Katherine Blauvelt invited staff (Kari Boe Schmidt) of Hennepin County Human Resources Department, to provide a Library Director Search and timeline update.

Katherine Blauvelt listed handout materials:

  1. Message from Michael Rossman, Chief Human Resources Officer.
  2. Library Director Job description.
  3. Brochure from recruitment firm (DDA).

Kari Boe Schmidt, Manager of Hennepin County Talent Acquisition, gave an update on efforts, including that they have launched the job search, and have contracted with the search firm DDA to supplement efforts. The search firm is doing personal outreach to potential candidates within current network or looking to new networks to individually invite people to participate in the hiring process. DDA is informing and inviting applicants, and also receiving all applicants’ information. After a period of time, DDA and Hennepin County Talent Acquisition will assess what the candidate pool. The position is posted as “open until filled."

Chair Blauvelt opened the floor for questions. The following discussion included an explanation on how the final selection of a search firm occurred, and around whether they will be looking nationally or internationally. All employees of the library have received information that the position has been posted. Sheila Letscher noted the need for the posting to be accessible via the Library Linkedin site. Regarding recruiting a diverse candidate pool, Kari Boe Schmidt noted the change in the MLS requirement, and that they have given direction to the search firm to support efforts for a diverse pool.

Director Selection Process Committee Meeting Scheduling

Chair Blauvelt led the committee in a discussion on the work of the committee, including how the Board could communicate with the public, and public engagement activities. Ideas were provided, such as Facebook, staff portal, and being more active in identifying stakeholders and reaching out specifically to them such as the Friends. It was noted that we will want to coordinate with County communications.

Committee members discussed a potential timeline for the screening committee to do its work, and whether all board members should receive feedback from a generic email. Sheila Letscher will reach out to Communications on potential needs, Katherine Blauvelt and Jonathan Gaw will draft an outreach and finalist engagement plan for the Committee to review, and each committee member will provide ideas on stakeholders to engage.

Brief discussion amongst members about the value of continuity in the two DSP members appointed to the screening committee.

Proposed motion: Jonathan Gaw and Erin Vrieze Daniels
Second: Sheila Letscher
Motion passed with no dissent.

Next meeting

The next meeting of the Library Board Director Selection Process Committee is Wednesday, October 16, 2019 at 5:00 p.m., Ridgedale Library, Ladyslipper meeting room.


Katherine Blauvelt made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 6:05 p.m.; seconded by Margy Ligon. Motion passed.