State Library of Ohio exterior view in spring

State Librarian & Board

State Librarian

State Librarian Wendy Knapp - photo in front of Traveling LIbrary boxes in special collections room

Wendy Knapp

Wendy Knapp has 18 years of library experience that includes state and public libraries. She was the Deputy Director of Statewide Services at the Indiana State Library from 2012 to 2020, where she was responsible for the Professional Development Office, Library Development Office, and Management Information Services Division. Knapp’s statewide library service began at the Indiana State Library in 2006 as an Indiana-Planning Consultant responsible for helping libraries with long-range and technology planning, administering a statewide public library consortium, and serving as State E-Rate Coordinator. Prior to being the Deputy Director of Statewide Services, she was Supervisor of the Professional Development Office. During her tenure at Indiana State Library, Knapp led initiatives such as founding Indiana Memory, inaugurating the Indiana Librarian Leadership Academy, and establishing Indiana’s role as a hub in the Digital Public Library of America.

Knapp’s experience includes eight years as an Instructor in the School of Library and Information Science at Indiana University–Purdue University and three years as an Adult Services Librarian at the Indianapolis Marion County Public Library.

Wendy earned a Master of Library Science from Indiana University and a Bachelor of Science from University of Indianapolis. She is active in national library work, currently active in the work of the Chief Officers of State Library Agencies (COSLA). She is a member of the E-Rate Taskforce for the American Library Association (ALA) Office of Information Technology Policy and former board member of the Association of Cooperative and Specialized Library Agencies. Wendy is active in community organizations, too and is a board member of the Ray Bradbury Center at Indiana University School of Liberal Arts at IUPUI and a member of non-partisan League of Women Voters of Ohio. She also volunteered as librarian for the Crossroad Church of Avon and served on the Alumni Board of Directors for the University of Indianapolis.

Library Visits

Following best practices and guidance from the Governor’s Office and Ohio Department of Health in response to COVID-19, in person visits to Ohio libraries have been suspended. If you would like to schedule a virtual visit with State Librarian Wendy Knapp, please contact Julia Ward at jward@library.ohio.gov.

LIBRARY VISITS 

State Librarian Budget Testimony

  •  Click here to read the State Librarian’s written Budget Support Testimony to Ohio House Finance Subcommittee on Higher Ed for FY2020 – FY2021
  • Click here to read the State Librarian’s written Budget Support Testimony to Ohio Senate Higher Education Committee for FY2020 – FY2021

State Librarian Reports

Each month the State Librarian prepares and posts reports about the State Library. Click here to view archived reports published prior to 2018.

2021

2020

2019

2018

State Librarians of Ohio Timeline

  • Wendy Knapp 2020 –
  • Beverly Cain 2010–2020
  • Joanne Budler 2004–2010
  • Michael S. Lucas 1995–2004
  • Richard M. Cheski 1977–1995
  • Joseph F. Shubert 1966–1977
  • Ruth Hess, Acting State Librarian 1963–1966
  • Walter T. Brahm 1942–1963
  • Paul A. T. Noon 1934–1942
  • John H. Newman 1931–1933
  • George E. McCormick 1928–1931
  • Herbert S. Hirshberg 1921–1927
  • John H. Newman 1918–1921
  • Charles B. Galbreath 1915–1918
  • John H. Newman 1911–1915
  • Charles B. Galbreath 1896–1911
  • Joseph P. Smith 1892–1896
  • John C. Tuthill 1890–1892
  • William B. Sibley 1889–1890
  • John M. Doane 1887–1889
  • Francis B. Loomis 1886–1887
  • Hamilton W. Pierson 1885–1886
  • Howard T. Conard 1883–1885
  • Joseph H. Geiger 1881–1883
  • Henry V. Kerr 1879–1881
  • Rodney M. Stimson 1877–1879
  • Hiram H. Robinson 1875–1877
  • Walter C. Hood 1874–1875
  • Samuel G. Harbaugh 1862–1874
  • William T. Coggeshall 1856–1862
  • James W. Taylor 1854–1856
  • Elijah Hayward 1851–1854
  • John B. Greiner 1845–1851
  • Thomas Kennedy 1842–1845
  • Zachariah Mills 1824–1842
  • David S. Brodrick 1820–1823
  • John McElvain 1818–1820
  • John L. Harper 1817–1818

Board Members

Laurie Gemmill Arp Headshot

Laurie Gemmill Arp

Board President

Columbus, OH
Term Ends: 12/31/2023

Laurie Gemmill Arp was appointed by the State Board of Education of Ohio to the State Library Board and sworn in for her first term on March 19, 2015. She is currently serving her second five year term of office

Laurie has over 21 years of experience working with cultural heritage institutions. As the Director of Collections Services and Community Supported Software, Laurie Gemmill Arp supervises ArchivesSpace and CollectionSpace, two community supported open source collection management software programs housed at LYRASIS. Laurie provides coordination between the organizational homes and the programs and support for activities such as governance, strategic planning and developing partnerships. Laurie also directs the activities related to digitization and preservation including training and consulting services. Previously, she worked for OCLC in positions including Senior Implementation Program Manager and Digital Projects Specialist. For the Ohio Historical Society, she managed several award-winning digital projects and served as the State Archivist. She received her MLIS from UCLA; her MA in European History from UC Irvine; and her BA in History from UC San Diego.

Tracy Najera, State Library Board Member

Tracy Najera

Board Vice President

Columbus, OH
Term Ends: 12/31/2021

Dr. Tracy Nájera was appointed by the Ohio Department of Education to the State Library Board and sworn in on March 16, 2017.

She is the Executive Director of Children’s Defense Fund-Ohio. Prior to that, Tracy was a senior consultant for a national education improvement consultancy partnering with states, foundation and other organizations to improve educational outcomes for students – particular those of color and low income. Her nearly 20 year career has focused on improving policies, systems, and structures to support educational opportunity and equity for all children. She has extensive professional and volunteer experience in communications, budget and finance, public policy, and program implementation and evaluation. She has served on boards and committees in central Ohio and is the recipient of numerous awards and recognitions for her service. A graduate of the Ohio State University, Dr. Nájera earned her MPA from the Glenn College of Public Affairs and her Ph.D. in Education Administration.

A resident of Columbus, she and her husband Israel have two school-aged children and are frequent visitors of their local library.

Janet Carleton

Janet Carleton

Board Member

Athens, OH
Term Ends: 12/31/2024

Janet Carleton was appointed by the State Board of Education of Ohio to the State Library Board and sworn by the State Librarian in the presence of a Notary Public on January 7, 2019.

Janet has been the Digital Initiatives Coordinator for Ohio University Libraries since 2005. She has 24 years of library experience, including more than 20 years at Ohio University Libraries, and extensive knowledge of librarianship in special collections and digitization. She is responsible for digitization, digital preservation, and social media promotion of the Libraries’ unique resources. Her career at Ohio University Libraries began in 1998 at the Mahn Center for Archives & Special Collections as a Scripps Project Reformatting Archivist and continued in 2000 as Digital Projects Librarian. Janet is an active member of state, regional, and national library, preservation, archives, and digitization associations, boards, task forces, commissions, and user’s groups. Her professional leadership includes chair or co-chair of committees for Society of American Archivists, Midwest Archives Conference, Society of Ohio Archivists, and Academic Library Association of Ohio, and chair of the Ohio Historical Records Advisory Board.

photo of Terri Fredericka

Terri Fredericka

Board member

Lakewood, OH
Term Ends: 12/31/2025

Terri Fredericka was appointed by the State Board of Education of Ohio to the State Library Board and sworn in on January 21, 2021.

Terri has 37 years of experience serving the school library community. She retired in 2020 from the Management Council of Ohio’s Information Technology Centers (ITCs) after serving as Executive Director of INFOhio since 1996. She helped to drive equity of access to library services and electronic resources for all Ohio’s PreK-12 schools. Terri was a grassroots member leading the establishment of INFOhio and instrumental in its statewide partnership in Libraries Connect Ohio (LCO). The LCO partners (INFOhio, OhioLINK, OPLIN, and State Library of Ohio) fund and work together to build and provide the Ohio Web Library core collection of information resources. Under Terri’s direction, the INFOhio program grew from a library automation service to a robust website portal providing tools, professional development, support, and equitable access to statewide databases including the Ohio Web Library.

Prior to her work at INFOhio, Terri held positions as Coordinator of Learning Resources at Lakewood City Schools; Consultant, School Libraries for the Ohio Department of Education, Consultant, School Libraries for the Kentucky Department of Education; Elementary Librarian for Deer Park Community City Schools, and High School Librarian for Findlay City Schools.

Terri Fredericka earned a Master of Library Science from the University of Kentucky and a Bachelor of Science in Education from Bowling Green State University.

Alan Hall, State Library of Ohio Board Member

Alan Hall

Board member

Steubenville, OH
Term Ends: 12/31/2022

Alan Hall was appointed by the State Board of Education of Ohio to the State Library Board and sworn in on March 21, 2019.

Alan has over 48 years of experience in Ohio’s public libraries. In his first seven years of library service, he worked his way from Page and then Circulation Assistant at Washington County Public Library in Marietta, to earning a Master of Science in Library Science (MSLS) and becoming Director of Delphos Public Library. He retired in March 2019 after spending the next 35 years of his profession as Director of Public Library of Steubenville and Jefferson County. Alan is familiar with the State Library’s programs and services though his experiences serving on State Library committees and work as Director of a library active in the SEO Consortium. He was honored as the 2019 Hall of Fame Librarian by the Ohio Library Council.

Alan is active in his community having served as a board Member of the Retired Senior Volunteer Program and Interpreter and board member at Historic Fort Steuben. He currently serves as a member of the Ohio State University Cooperative Extension Service Advisory Board, member and current President of the Steubenville Historic Landmarks Commission of the City of Steubenville, member and immediate Past-President of the Steubenville Rotary Club, and Clerk of Session at the Two Ridges Presbyterian Church.

Alan Hall earned his MSLS from Case Western Reserve, and a Bachelor of Science in Education from West Virginia University.

History

The State Library of Ohio was established by Governor Thomas Worthington in 1817. In 1824, legislative recognition was made acknowledging the Library as one of the institutions of the State.

In 1844, a law was passed that placed the State Library under the care of a Board of Commissioners consisting of the Governor, the Secretary of State, and the State Librarian.

In the 1840’s and 50’s there was a standing committee on the library in the legislature.

In 1896, the law was changed to establish a Board of Commissioners of three chosen by the Governor to serve a term of two, three, and six years respectively, and then six-year terms thereafter.

In 1921, the law was changed to increase the Board to five members, with four members appointed by the Governor and the Superintendent of Public Instruction serving as the Chairman. The Superintendent of Public Instruction at that time was an elected official. The other members of the Board served eight-year terms overlapping at two-year intervals. This was done as part of the Governmental Reorganization Act of 1921 and effectively made the State Library a division within the Department of Education.

In 1955, the General Assembly enacted the present section of the Ohio Revised Code (3375.01) which sets up the State Library Board as an agency separate and distinct from the State Department of Education. According to a 1967 report, “The Ohio State Library: Present Operations and Future Opportunities,” the Chief Administrative Officer of the Department of Education had been a regular appointee to the Board until the 1955 change in law and in fact was the only member that had not served continuously on the Board since 1955.

About the State Library Board

The State Library is governed by a five member board. The Board members are appointed by the State Board of Education and each member serves a five year term of office. Under the Ohio Revised Code, section 3375.01, the State Library Board is responsible for the State Library of Ohio and a statewide program of development and coordination of library services. Specific powers of the State Library Board include:

  • Maintain the State Library, holding custody of books, periodicals, pamphlets, films, recordings, papers, and other material and equipment.
  • Accept, receive, administer, and expend in accordance with the terms thereof, any moneys, materials, or other aid granted, appropriated, or made available to it for library purposes by the United States, or any of its agents, or by any other source, public or private.
  • Administer such funds as the General Assembly make available to it for the improvement of public library services, interlibrary cooperation, or any other library purposes.
  • Approve, disapprove, or modify resolutions for establishment of county district libraries.
  • Approve, disapprove, or modify resolutions to redefine boundaries resulting from school district consolidations.
  • Amend, define, or adjust the boundaries of library districts submitting applications for changes in their boundaries.
  • Encourage and assist the efforts of libraries and local governments to develop mutual and cooperative solutions to library services problems
  • Recommend to the Governor and to the General Assembly such changes in the law as will strengthen and improve services and operations.
  • Adopt such rules as are necessary for the carrying out of any function imposed by law.

The State Library Board usually meets in the State Library of Ohio Board Room or Conference Room D, 274 East First Avenue. Updated information can be obtained by calling (614) 644–7061.

View  State Library Board Members Past and Present (PDF).

Meeting Agenda

The next meeting of the State Library Board will be Thursday, March 18, 2021 at 10:00 a.m. (EST). A tentative agenda will be posted here prior to the meeting.

Tentative Agenda

Minutes

VIEW MEETING MINUTES

Meeting Schedule

The State Library Board business meetings are located at the State Library of Ohio. Upcoming meeting dates and times are:

  • March 18, 2021
  • May 20, 2021
  • July 15, 2021
  • October 21, 2021
  • December 9, 2021
  • January 20, 2022
  • March 17, 2022
  • May 19, 2022