June 22, 2020 - Issue: Vol. 166, No. 114 — Daily Edition116th Congress (2019 - 2020) - 2nd Session
ADDITIONAL STATEMENTS; Congressional Record Vol. 166, No. 114
(Senate - June 22, 2020)
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[Pages S3125-S3126] From the Congressional Record Online through the Government Publishing Office [www.gpo.gov] ADDITIONAL STATEMENTS ______ TRIBUTE TO CAROLYN ASHCRAFT
Mr. BOOZMAN. Mr. President, I rise today to recognize Carolyn Ashcraft on her retirement as State librarian and director of the Arkansas State Library after 15 years of transformative leadership. Carolyn has a dedication to the State of Arkansas and a passion for books, and her departure from a career that blended the two will leave a significant void in Arkansas' library community. Her enthusiasm for libraries has been evident since childhood, leading to an invitation to serve as a student library aide in sixth grade. She went on to serve in a similar position at the university level while earning her degree in English at the University of Arkansas at Monticello. She continued her education at the University of Alabama, where she earned a master's degree in library science. In 1981, Carolyn launched her professional career at the Grant County Library and next served as director at the Saline County Library. She held this position until she started with the Arkansas State Library in 1993, where she served in various positions, including deputy director in the library development unit before being selected as State librarian in 2005. Carolyn's career and the accomplishments of the Arkansas library system [[Page S3126]] during her tenure as State librarian testify to her dedication and influential direction. Under her guidance, our libraries adapted emerging technologies. She helped facilitate the transition to digitization, expanding digital programs such as the Traveler Statewide Digital Resource Program and establishing the Arkansas Digital Library Consortium in 2018. She also oversaw the relocation of the agency and its collection of books, State and Federal documents, Library for the Blind materials, and other documents. Carolyn is known for having an unrivaled and encompassing knowledge of libraries, as evidenced by her involvement in both State and national professional library associations. The list of such organizations is lengthy and includes the Arkansas Library Association, American Library Association, the Association for Rural and Small Libraries, and Chief Officers of State Library Agencies. I thank Carolyn for her contributions to Arkansas during her career of dedicated service, guidance, and support of our public libraries and library services. She will be missed, but I am confident she will enjoy her time in retirement. ____________________