Heights Libraries Welcomes New Youth Services Manager, Honors Outgoing

The Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library is pleased to announce the appointment of its new Youth Services manager, Brian C. Hare, who replaces outgoing Youth Services Manager Susan Black, who retires this month after nearly 34 years with Heights Libraries.

“I am so grateful to have had the opportunity to be part of this library system,” says Black.  “I learned something new every day from my co-workers and my customers.  I will miss everyone. But I am looking forward to travel, adventures and family time in my retirement.”

Black began working at the Cleveland Heights-University Heights Public Library in 1978 as a Children’s Services Librarian for the University Heights branch. Since then, she helped the community raise a generation of babies by introducing them to the power of language and reading through her inspiring story times and programs at preschools. She also supported the implementation of many industry changes, from a card catalog to a computerized catalog system and photographic checkout to automated checkout; from vinyl records to CDs; from books to books on tape and Playaways and eBooks. Black has hired and mentored many talented staff, some of whom have been promoted to higher positions within and outside of the Heights system, including current Heights Library Director Nancy Levin. Black was promoted to Youth Services Manager in March 2011.

“The word ‘No’ was never in Susan’s vocabulary,” says Levin.  “When it came to customer service such as helping seniors with their mail or taking time to just listen to customers, Susan was always ready and willing to do whatever it took to make sure customers got what they needed. We will miss her.”

Black’s replacement, Brian C. Hare, who starts in early August, has six years of library experience including his most recent position as director of the Liberty Center Public Library in Liberty Center, OH, which is a small rural library located near Toledo. Hare has a bachelor’s of science in Visual Communications Technology with a focus in marketing from Bowling Green State University and a MLIS from the University of Pittsburgh.

Hare specializes in youth services and was instrumental in increasing both adult and youth programming and attendance in the communities. Before serving as director at Liberty Center, he was a teen specialist with the Wood County District Public Library and a law librarian for the Barco Law Library located in Pittsburgh, PA.

“I am very excited about getting to know the staff and community of Heights Libraries,” says Hare.  “It’s clear that the Library’s services very clearly reflect the interests and values of its patrons.”  Continues Hare, “I think technology will continue play an ever-increasing role in our communities and we need to figure out how it can be integrated into what we do with youth and young adults. My immediate goal is to understand how my department supports the quality, cutting-edge services and programming that lie at the heart of the Library.”