The selection process for director included a series of public interviews and a public presentation by Mr. Watts in August.
“This is an exciting, yet challenging, time for public libraries,” Watts said. “We are in the midst of a period of great and rapid change in the manner in which information is organized, transmitted, and accessed, yet there is enduring demand for traditional book-based services and programs.”
“I look forward to working with the board, staff, and public of East Baton Rouge Parish, as we maintain the excellent foundation of library services that has been established and work together to provide our citizens with new and exciting opportunities to learn, grow, and prosper in an era which places a premium on information access and the acquisition of knowledge.”
Watts brings 28 years of library experience which includes familiarity with construction projects, library automation, technology, branch management, library administration and collection development.
Upon receiving his letter of acceptance, Library Board of Control President Kizzy Payton commented, “We are delighted that Mr. Watts has accepted the position. We feel that he will be an excellent fit for the Library System and will make a lasting contribution to the community. We are proud that during the search for Library Director there has been no interruption in service, but we are all eager to have Mr. Watts on board. Once he assumes the reins in January, Assistant Library Directors Patricia Husband and Mary Stein will resume their normal duties.”
Watts was most recently Director of the Mobile Public Library in Mobile, Ala., where he held that position for 12 years.
Former positions include nine years as Director of the Roanoke County Public Library in Virginia, and positions at the Chesterfield County Public Library, also in Virginia.
Watts was Chair of the Alabama Library Association, Public Library Division (2004) and was the Virginia Public Library Director of the Year (1998). He has been actively involved in strategic planning and capital improvement programs. For more information, call (225) 231-3712.