After almost thirty years of service at the Anderson Public Library, outreach specialist, Deborah Perry, will be retiring. As the outreach librarian, Deborah has been instrumental in helping provide library services to those who can’t easily visit the library as well as providing educational programs for children at local daycares.
During her time at the library, Deborah has travelled many miles, making close to 21,000 stops, and delivering over 150,000 books and materials. She has made many friends while helping to connect them with the ever changing world of information.
Deborah started working at the Anderson Public Library 27 years ago. Working previously as an electrician in Lexington, she wanted to find a job closer to home, and the library was the right fit.
She started working from the beginning as the bookmobile librarian, driving a 14 foot 1985 Chevy step van. She found that right at home as that was the same type of vehicle she drove as an electrician.
As the years went by, she took the bookmobile to many memorable places around the county, including Western School. But she found that she was hand delivering more and more books to the doors of those who couldn’t easily leave their house. And so in 2008, the library purchased the current outreach vehicle for Deborah to deliver books.
Deborah explains that serving as the outreach librarian is a special job. Part of the service is touching base with people, particularly those who are ill or shut-in.
One memorable day from her career is when she accidentally helped find a dog that got loose from one of the families she delivers to. She explained that a bad storm had caused their dog to run off.
The storm also delayed Deborah from delivering to their house. When she arrived to deliver books, she found the family saddened because they lost their dog two days earlier. On her way back, the dog suddenly appeared right in front of her. She was able to transport the dog back home to very grateful owners.
“It was such a unique thing because the timing was just right,” Deborah said. “I never would have been out there on that day.”
While describing Deborah’s long career, library director, Pam Marks said, “Deborah looks for the positive in every situation and has applied this principle throughout her long career in public service. She is a remarkable person and an amazing librarian. Happy trails, Deborah. We’ll miss you.”
The Anderson Public Library along with the Friends of the Library will be holding a special reception for Deborah on Sunday, August 25th, at 2pm. All are welcome to attend.