INDIANAPOLIS — After some major changes to start off 2023, a special meeting of the Indianapolis Public Library Board is scheduled for next week.
On Jan. 1, Hope C. Tribble became the board's president. Previous president Judge Jose Salinas' term expired 12/31/22, but will continue to serve until a successor is appointed. By law, Salinas can serve until a successor is appointed.
Curtis Bigsbee's first term on the board also expired on 12/31, but his appointment was renewed through 2025. Bigsbee is the board's vice president.
This week, Dr. TD Robinson resigned as a member of the board, according to a library spokesperson.
WRTV has learned the 2022 search for a permanent CEO through Bradbury Miller Associates was a $27,000 contract. The board voted to extend the offer to Gabriel Morley, who declined it less than 24 hours later.
"I am disheartened by the way we have come to this point and decision. I wish IndyPL well in its future endeavors," Morley said at the time in a news release.
Since then, there have been protests and calls for the board to appoint Nichelle M. Hayes, who has been with the library since 2015, as CEO.
Last week, the Black Caucus of the American Library Association (BCAL) and the National Convention of African American Librarian committee (NCAAL) announced that the 12th National Convention of African American Librarians will no longer be held in Indianapolis due to the actions of the Indianapolis Library Board.
The group says it determined Indianapolis to be an “inhospitable location.”
Sixteen members of the Indianapolis City-County Council wrote a letter to the board saying in part "we believe the library board’s recent decision to reopen the CEO search rather than appoint Ms. Nichelle Hayes will have a detrimental impact on the system."
Members of the board, including Tribble and Salinas, responded.
"We recognize that the results of the recent CEO search process created confusion and continued discord in our community and among our staff. We as Trustees must come together and do better for all those who care for and utilize our Library," their letter said.
Interim Chief Public Services Officer Gregory Hill is currently serving as the acting CEO for IndyPL.
"We anticipate engaging a respected member of the local community to provide temporary administrative leadership for the library soon," Tribble told WRTV via email on Jan. 11. "No further information will be released until the board has worked out the relevant details ... the new CEO search will begin after the appointment of the temporary administrative leader."
The special meeting is scheduled for January 17 at noon at the Library Services Center, 2450 North Meridian Street, Room 226. It is open to the public.
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