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BD:Jan Sanders
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Jan Sanders
Library Director
Padadena Public Library
Term Ends: 10/31/2012


Jan Sanders, Director of Libraries and Information Services for the City of Pasadena, came to town in 2005 from Spokane, WA.  She has been in libraries for more than 30 years, serving as children’s librarian, bookmobile librarian, branch manager, community college librarian, and library construction supervisor before becoming a director in 1990.  Her career has led her to Missouri, Tennessee, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Washington, and now California.

Jan has always been an advocate of free expression and access and was one of 100 people named to the Intellectual Freedom Hall of Fame in 1999.  She is active in the American Library Association, where she has served in a variety of roles including National Chair for Federal Legislative Action, Membership Chair and Governing Council.  She has also long been affiliated with the Public Library Association of America, where she served as President 2007-2008.  Jan served the California Library Association as a member of the Legislative Committee and Chair of the 2011 State Conference Committee.  Jan is also working with the California State Library and the office of Senator Carol Liu to help analyze and define sustainable funding for California libraries.  

Because she believes a librarian is first and foremost accountable to the community she serves, Jan is also active in a number of community organizations.  She is a board member and committee chair for Pasadena Rotary Club, works with the Chamber of Commerce and the Pasadena Arts Council, is a member of the Vestry at All Saints Episcopal Church, and is a past member of the board for Leadership Pasadena.  She serves as chair of a networking group, Executive Directors’ Roundtable, as well as serving on the board of the Pasadena Museum of History and the Pasadena: City of Learning Committee.  Jan also takes every opportunity to speak about (and for) libraries, and often addresses classes at Pasadena Community College about becoming a librarian and what that means.  Jan teaches a PhD-level class titled “Managerial Leadership” for Simmons College (Boston).  

Jan is a flexible, visionary leader and is excited about the possibilities open for today’s libraries.