Interview With DBRL Board President Terry Higgins of Fulton
Terry Higgins is the 2008-2009 DBRL board president. Each trustee serves on his or her own district board as well as on the regional library board which is the governing body responsible for policy-making and fiscal oversight. A contract binds our three member library districts into a regional library system, allowing us to pool the resources of our whole region to give residents better service at lower cost.
Terry Higgins, a Fulton transplant from Iowa, began her volunteer work with the DBRL Board of Trustees in 1996. This is the second time she has served as the regional board president. She is the retired director of SERVE, is active in her church, serves as the treasurer for the International Association of Rebekah Assemblies, travels, is the purchasing agent for the Callaway Community Hospital auxiliary gift shop and enjoys spending time with her four children, six grandsons and one granddaughter. Here is what she has to say about libraries, DBRL and being the regional president.
What is your favorite library memory?
My memories of the library when I was a child are totally awesome. The library was just up the street from where I lived. It was open on Wednesday and Saturday afternoons. I would go in the summertime when it first opened, get four books (the maximum you could get) and go home and read them as fast as I could. Then I would go again before it closed and get four more books. I loved the library and still do.
What made you apply to be on the Callaway County board?
I was always interested in libraries and what they do. I knew a couple of people who had served and I wanted to help. I wanted to add depth to the board.
What is the role of the regional president as you see it?
To run a meeting and keep everyone on track. I hope to add things that will help improve the library, but mostly our role is to create and adjust policies when necessary.
What do you hope the board will accomplish under your leadership?
I want the board to complete the long-range plan and to begin implementation. I think it will help greatly to get everyone on the same page. A new long-range plan will help us all be clear on the issues. I don’t just mean the board, but the patrons as well, those that vote and are asked to support the library.
What challenges does the regional board face right now?
I think number one is understanding what the constituents want from library services and how much they are willing to support that through their property taxes, which account for about 95% of our total operating revenue. Finally, I think it is an ongoing challenge to have newer and better services and to serve the public in the best way possible.