Library Superheroes Panel!

December 1, 2015 12:00 AM

Santa Monica, California – Santa Monica Public Library is pleased to present Library Superheroes Panel! on Saturday, December 12, 2015 at 1:00 p.m. in the Main Library’s Multipurpose Room, 601 Santa Monica Blvd.

Celebration of Santa Monica Public Library’s 125th anniversary is underway with a variety of fun events. The Library Superheroes Panel! will appeal to library fans, history fans, students and local residents. Librarians play significant roles in improving the lives and wellbeing of their communities. Join us in learning more about some of these cultural crusaders with a panel including two retired SMPL librarians, UCLA Lecturer and California State Library Consultant, and a professor with USC’s School of Architecture.

Sylvia Anderle, New York Times Librarian of the Year honoree in 2006 and veteran 20 year Latino Outreach Librarian, will address her experience creating the program to promote inclusiveness of Spanish-speaking immigrants into the Santa Monica Public Library system. She will also provide insights into the beloved tutoring program that she developed at the Fairview Branch Library. Sylvia will also offer tips to new librarians and those considering this avocation.

Ellen Braby, author of The Santa Monica Public Library: 1890-1990 shares the story of Virginia McShane, the Manager of Children’s Services at Santa Monica Public Library in the 1960s and 1970s. Ellen, now retired, was a long-time Manager of Youth Services for the Santa Monica Public Library. She began as a children’s librarian and expert storyteller, then became a branch manager before assuming responsibility as head of Youth Services.

Kenneth Breisch, Ph.D. discusses Tessa Kelso, an immigrant, who was the sixth City Library for Los Angeles Public Library (LAPL) in 1889. Kelso introduced services at LAPL that we now take for granted. Tessa Kelso was forced out of her position after 6 years for being an overt feminist and progressive. Ken is a Professor with USC’s School of Architecture and founder of the School’s Graduate Program in Historic Preservation. He has published numerous articles, book reviews and book chapters on American architectural history, especially in the areas of library design and vernacular building. His book, Henry Hobson Richardson and the Small Public Library in America: A Study in Typology was published by MIT in 1997.

Cindy Mediavilla speaks about Carma Leigh, California State Librarian from 1951-1972. Cindy Mediavilla is a part-time lecturer at the UCLA Department of Information Studies and a popular speaker and workshop trainer. One of her areas of expertise is California library history, about which she has published numerous articles. Her dissertation was on Carma Leigh. Cindy was president of the California Library Association in 2001 and is co-founder of CLA’s Library History Interest Group. At the end of the year, she will retire from the California State Library, where she has worked for 10 years. Cindy’s MLS and doctorate are both from UCLA.

This program is free and open to the public. Seating inside the auditorium is first come, first served. Santa Monica Public Library is wheelchair accessible. For special disabled services, call Library Administration at (310) 458-8606 at least one week prior to event. The Main Library is served by Big Blue Bus routes 1, 2, 3, 7, 8, 9 and 10. Ride your bike. Bicycle parking racks are available at the library.

For more information on this and other public programs, visit or contact the Santa Monica Public Library at (310) 458-8600.

#           #         #

Media Contact

Rachel Foyt
Senior Administrative Analyst