After graduation, I went to Arizona State University on an academic scholarship, but worked part time all four years (busboy, short order cook, dishwasher, stocker at Walgreens). I was active in campus politics, serving as a member of the student senate and graduated with a degree in English in 1970.
I was a conscientious objector and was assigned alternate civilian service at the Augusta Mental Health Institute where I ended up working for 27 years, starting as a basic aide, moving to running the treatment team serving Androscoggin, Oxford and Franklin counties, then running the patient education program before serving as patient and staff librarian for several years. During that time, I served as section chair of the mental health group of the Medical Library Association, presenting at national conferences, while building one of the best mental health libraries in the country.
After leaving AMHI, I was library director at the Boothbay Harbor Memorial Library for five years. During that time, I was a member of the Boothbay Region Community Group, which was comprised of people representing civic, news, nonprofit and educational groups on the peninsula. I also wrote a weekly column about the library that appeared in the Boothbay Register and oversaw the conversion of the library’s holdings to the new Minerva library system, part of the statewide catalog.
From there, I went to the Maine State Library as their library systems specialist, one of two staff members responsible for adding, setting up and trouble shooting libraries in Minerva and SOLAR, two branches of MaineCat that used the software underlying most larger libraries in Maine.
After we moved from Chelsea to Hartland, I decided to simplify life and became the town librarian. I migrated the holdings from an antiquated circulation system to become the first library in Maine to use open source software. A couple years later, I collaborated with two other librarians in the area to write a grant that was funded by the Stephen and Tabitha King Foundation. We were awarded $24,000 to create a library consortium that would run on the Evergreen open source software. That consortium now has nearly twenty members, representing, academic, medical, school and public libraries. I retired in June of 2015.