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Ashfield’s Belding Library hosts ‘activist geek librarian’ on July 17

Jessamyn West

Jessamyn West

ASHFIELD — Jessamyn West, called “a mover and shaker in the library world” by Library Journal, will speak at the Belding Memorial Library July 17.

The event is a part of a summer-long celebration of the Belding’s 100th anniversary and will be held beginning at 7 p.m. in the downstairs meeting room. It is free and open to all — not just for librarians but for everyone concerned with how a rural community can put its library at the center of its evolution into the digital age.

A resident of central Vermont, West will speak on “How Do We Get to the Future from Here?” a presentation that will be full of practical and creative advice on the interface of libraries (including small rural ones) and technology. She is a former member of the American Library Association Council and a popular blogger. She graduated from Hampshire College in Amherst and received her master of librarianship degree from the University of Washington.

In 2011 her book, “Without a Net: Librarians Bridging the Digital Divide,” was published, a clearly written handbook for helping small libraries climb the technology mountain. According to Wired, West is “on the front lines in battling the USA PATRIOT Act.”

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