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Anchorage Librarian Named School Librarian of the Year


Clark Middle School's Staci Cox named state librarian of the year


To her students at Clark Middle School in Anchorage she is known as Ms. Cox, but to the Alaska Association of School Librarians Staci Cox has a new title - 2012 School Librarian of the Year.  On February 24, at the annual Alaska Library Association Conference in Fairbanks, Staci Cox was recognized in front of all the librarians present and awarded an original framed print and a certificate, as well as a check for $500 sponsored by Follett Library Resources.

The School librarian of the year award is given annually to a librarian who promotes the development of independent lifelong readers and learners, is an integral part of the educational team in the school, exemplifies professional involvement by sharing expertise with colleagues both locally and around the state, and is a certified librarian working in a school library.

In the words of Clark Middle School Principal Cessilye Williams, "Ms. Cox is exceptionally talented and dedicated to the education profession. Staci's vision for Clark has been instrumental in developing a strong literacy enriched program that services a multi-faceted group of students and staff.  Her opinions, suggestions and ideas are often requested for administrative input, and programmatic needs.  Ms. Cox's leadership and commitment to developing innovative ideas are the foundation that makes reading and learning fun, exciting and sustainable.  Her methods have proven to be highly effective."  As proof of the effectiveness of her role, the number of students who use the library each day has tripled under Cox's tenure, Williams reports.

Cox has taken on various leadership roles over the years, including grant writing, being involved in the State Library's development of the Alaska Internet Circle of Safety, presenting yearly at the Alaska Library Association's annual conference, collaborating on programs with the librarians at the Mountain View branch of the public library, and creating useful bibliographic tools that are used by students and librarians all over the district.

Many students and teachers testified to how Cox had improved their school experience, but this teacher says it best: "Staci creates a warm, welcoming environment in the library.  At Clark, the library is the coolest place for the students to be.  I have often sat with Staci in the library working on something and not a student passes through the door that she doesn't ask about their current book they are reading, remember she has a book on hold for them, or direct them towards a new selection she knows they will enjoy.  This is because Staci takes the time to know all the students at Clark.

It is this personal dedication that makes Cox an exemplary librarian, and the reason she is the 2012 School Librarian of the Year!

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