The seven-member Texas State Library and Archives Commission today [Friday, August 30, 2013] unanimously selected Mark Smith for the position of Director and Librarian, the agency’s chief executive also known as the Texas State Librarian.
Mark Smith currently serves as the Vice President of West Coast Operations for Library Systems and Services (LSSI) of Germantown, Maryland, and oversees all LSSI contracts for California and Oregon. He has been with LSSI since September 1999.
The announcement caps a two-day assembly of agency commissioners, staff, and constituents at the Lorenzo de Zavala State Archives and Library Building. On Thursday, August 29th, the three finalists met publicly during a reception and each candidate delivered a presentation to the assembled guests that included former commissioners, board members of the Friends of Libraries & Archives of Texas (the agency’s non-profit support group), librarians, and other members of the public. On Friday, August 30th, the commission met in executive session to conduct formal interviews.
“The commission conducted a nationwide search for this very important position,” said TSLAC Chairman Michael C. Waters of Dallas. “We had an accomplished and impressive pool of applicants, and we’re excited and proud to welcome Mark Smith into service for the State of Texas.”
Further details and photos of Mark Smith will be released on the agency’s website and social media in the coming days. In the meantime, all are invited to send greetings and congratulations to the new Texas State Librarian on Twitter: @TSLAC_Director
Mr. Smith begins his tenure November 1.
The former Director and Librarian, Peggy D. Rudd, retired in December 2012 after 13 years of service with the agency.
Note: Mr. Smith’s new job will take him back to Texas. His bio on the LSSI site mentions that prior to joining the company in 1999 he was, “Director of Communications for the Texas Library Association and served at the Texas State Library where he administered a $7.7 million project funding and technical assistance to oversee Texas public libraries.”