Fountaindale Library Names New Director
Paul Mills will be the library's next director and begin work July 5.
The Fountaindale Public Library spent more than five months searching for a new library director. And in the end, it didn’t have to look very far to get the candidate it wanted.
The library’s board of trustees announced Wednesday that Paul Mills, the former deputy director of the library, would take over as Fountaindale’s new director beginning July 5.
Mills, according to a library release, left Fountaindale in January to become the director of the Acorn Public library District in Oak Forest, where he helped manage an ongoing addition and renovation project among other initiatives.
Bob Kalnicky, the board’s vice president, said Mills has a tremendous upside and brings a forward thinking mentality to a library that all but requires it.
The new Fountaindale opened just more than three months ago and Kalnicky said the staff is still adjusting to the buildings new offerings and technologies.
“We’re still in that flushing out period with the new building and there are still some bumps and things to work through … processes to work through and staffing that needs to be addressed,” Kalnicky said. “Paul will figure out where to use our employees, which is a really hands on decision that has been on hold because we haven’t had a director.”
Board president Peg Danhof said Mills’ long-term vision was what set him apart from the rest.
“We were looking for somebody to guide us into the future—we have this great big beautiful building—and guide us to the fullest,” she said. “We needed someone to help us serve the public better and we believe Paul is the best man for that.
“He’s an excellent leader and the right kind of personality. He’s very collaborative and interested in working with each individual with their part in the library,” she said.
Mills replaces Vicky Trupiano, who retired in December, as director. Sandy Ringstrom held the position in the interim.
The library board hired John Keister and Associates to perform a nationwide search for a director in January. The board paid the company $11,000 to conduct the search.
Danhof said Mills’ salary will be revealed at next week’s board meeting. The two other finalists for the position were not internal candidates, she said. One was from out of state and the other was out of district.