Executive Summary

“The library is neutral ground for all walks of life.”
“Spontaneous friendships bloom at the library over shared interests.”
“The library becomes family to transient people.”

With over 80 years of service to Athens County residents, the Athens County Public Libraries remains at the heart of the communities we serve. As the ACPL story continues to evolve, so does our identity as a network of physical buildings and web of services. ACPL recognizes the importance of listening to our communities and patrons in order to build upon our hopes and to realize our full potential.

All public library systems are at an important and exciting crossroads: the ways in which our patrons access and use information continues to change, along with the needs and expectations for the services and spaces a public library can offer. These changes provide a unique chance for ACPL to reflect, learn and grow.

The 2016-2019 Strategic Plan reflects ACPL’s ongoing dedication to living out its mission mantra of “empower. enlighten. embrace.” The plan’s overall purpose is to guide ACPL staff members and key stakeholders over the next three years as we continue to dream and discern, providing focused ideas, direction and vision.

The plan is the result of the following:

  • a professional collaboration with consultants from KMD Associates in Canton, Ohio
  • paper and electronic public survey findings
  • a study of relevant library data and statistics
  • and feedback from several focus group gatherings.

Four main goals emerged from the process above and centered around access, awareness, staff potential, and creation of positive and welcoming environments.