Executive Committee meeting summary - June 3, 2020

The public is welcome at all library board meetings

The Library Board Executive Committee met Wednesday, June 3, 2020, virtually via Microsoft Teams.


Present: Sheila Letscher, Chris Damsgard, Tim Dolan and Erin Vrieze Daniels.

Hennepin County Staff: Janet Mills and Jeannette Lewis


Welcome and Call to Order

Chair Vrieze Daniels called the meeting to order at 5:30 p.m. and welcomed attendees.

Approval of agenda and meeting summary

Chair Vrieze Daniels made amendments to the agenda.

  • New agenda item #4 Directors update
  • New agenda item #5 2020 - 2021 Library Board Business/Dialogue/Policy Review
  • New agenda item #6 Communications discussion
  • New agenda item #7 June Library Board agenda
  • New agenda item #8 Adjourn


Sheila Letscher made a motion to approve the amended agenda; seconded by Tim Dolan. Motion passed. Chair Vrieze Daniels appointed Adja Kaba to the Executive Committee.

Sheila Letscher made a motion to approve March 11, 2020 meeting summary; seconded by Tim Dolan. Motion passed.

Director update

Janet Mills gave an update to the board on how the Library is responding to challenging times. The Equity Diversity and Inclusion (EDI) change team is working with library staff. The staff has come together specifically to talk about the murder of George Floyd, how we plan to support the community, and each other. East Lake and Minneapolis Central Library sustained damage as a result of the civil unrest in Minneapolis. Repairs to East Lake may take up to 6 months. The Library Innovation Reopening Team is discussing plans to reopen some library locations by June 2020. Janet highlighted services available during the pandemic and county COVID-19 policies surrounding those services.

2020-2021 Library Board business/dialogue/policy review

Chair Vrieze Daniels began a discussion on the Library Board’s plan for policy review. The board discussed interacting more with staff and having direct dialogue surrounding policies. Executive Committee members removed policy reviews from the committee level a couple of years ago and made it a discussion of the full board. Committee members discussed some difficulties board members and staff face in dialogue during unprecedented times. Committee members recommended holding policy reviews until early 2021 and make their focus on Bylaw review. Sheila Letscher recommended finalizing the Director Selection Process committee work. Chair Vrieze Daniels discussed committee members having a dialogue on creating a naming policy, and making recommendations as an advisory board.

Communications discussion

Committee members discussed email communications and how they are to be received by the board. The Library Board email address will remain on the main page of the board website. Auto-reply confirmation emails will be acknowledged from the Library Board president email account.

June Library Board agenda

The next full Library Board meeting is June 24, 2020. Agenda items include a budget update, bylaws discussion, 2020-2021 meeting schedule, eBooks, and a possible Commissioner update. Chair Vrieze Daniels recommended holding on commendations for board members Katherine Blauvelt, Chris Damsgard, and Margaret Ligon for their years of service.


Erin Vrieze Daniels made a motion to adjourn the meeting at 6:26 p.m.; seconded by Sheila Letscher. Motion passed.