Dan Hess, Branch Librarian
What do I look for in a library? Stories! Everything is a story. Even the most random experiences line up with a plot, setting, characters and theme. Fiction and non-fiction account for experience and record observations in different ways but “storytelling” is what they have in common. Curiosity keeps us asking questions and doubt makes us verify our results. It’s all about “getting the whole story,” and applies to all library materials–from scientific research to mysteries.
Fort Bragg branch is bursting at the seams with stories! Some readers come for Politics, some for Romance! Our staff is composed of people who love to sort and organize material, then present our collections to you. The collections include physical material and electronic resources. We love to dig and don’t want you to leave empty-handed. Our #1 priority is to create a peaceful and cheerful environment where people can learn and share stories.
I’ve worked in libraries since the 1980s with steadily increasing opportunities to serve the public. I received my MLIS in 2011. I started at Fort Bragg Branch in June 2016 after more than fifteen years in county library positions in the Bay Area. My first visit to Fort Bragg was in June 1990 as a cyclist pedaling the Pacific Coast Bicycle Route from Oakland to Portland. Who knew I’d come back to peddle books and movies?! As your Branch Librarian, I hope to make the library an open book–a story of discovery–for anyone who walks through the door.
I am very happy to be helping Fort Bragg families explore all our library has to offer. I am a native Californian but had never been to this beautiful corner of the state until my job interview. I was born and raised in Riverside. I grew up reading Mad Magazine and the Oz books, and I would still rather read a book for children or teens than one for adults, whether it’s Mo Willems or Harry Potter. I spent the summer after high school volunteering at the Riverside Main Library, putting videotape descriptions on 3” x 5” cards.
I got my MLIS (Master of Library and Information Science degree) in 1999 at San José State. I worked as a clerk at the Palo Alto Children’s Library and then became a part-time Children’s Librarian for SJPL. I moved up to Washington State, where I was a full-time Youth Services Librarian and then ran a used bookstore for children. It’s great to be back in a library and back in California!
My first library experience was with the bookmobile that stopped up the street from my childhood home. Every week I held my mother’s hand while climbing the steps to the enchantments of other worlds found in books. I’ve been hooked ever since.
My 10 years’ experience working in a bookstore secured my position at Fort Bragg Library. The library gives me the satisfaction of connecting people with the materials they’re craving without having to up sell.
As a Library Technician, I am responsible for maintaining the website (fortbragglibrary.org), cataloging items purchased and donated, ordering new materials, and anything else as needed. My special passion is the 1000 Books Before Kindergarten program—reading to children is crucial to their future success.
If you have any questions about the website, 1000 Books or anything else, please don’t hesitate to shoot me an email at email@example.com.
See you at the library!
Dennis has worn many career hats throughout his life. He was a route manager for the San Jose Mercury News, a house painter here on the coast, and even a drummer on a cruise ship but by far, his most rewarding has been with the library. After a brief absence, Dennis is back and is one of our biggest advocates through his weekly KNYO radio show where he does an hour long spot for Fort Bragg Library. Catch him on air at 107.7 FM every Friday from 2-3 pm.
While vacationing on the Mendocino Coast as a youth, Amie aspired to be the crazy cat lady wandering the village wearing indelible-ink lipstick. She now lives in Fort Bragg with less than two dozen cats and two beautiful, ginormous dogs: she’s this close to achieving her childhood dream. In addition to being a can-do member of the Fort Bragg Library staff she is also on the Mendocino Coast Writers Conference board and treasurer for the Writers of the Mendocino Coast. She runs our Nanowrimo (National Novel Writing in a Month) program and is in charge of Nailed It! Adult Crafting with Amie here at the library.
“I was born in Berkeley, attended Oakland City College, went to the Mediterranean in the Navy and grew up in a family that valued books.I enjoy helping Library users and today a patron was looking for Fort Bragg history. We have that! Yesterday I was able to recommend a 1975 movie, Hester Street about immigrants in New York City. I eagerly anticipate more opportunities to help.”
Reading has always been a favorite pastime for me. My favorite genres are Fantasy and Science Fiction. After completing a B.A. in English and a B.A. in Anthropology, I recognized the value and resourcefulness of libraries. My love for reading and for assisting fellow students led to my desire to pursue librarianship. In Spring 2018, I graduated with a Masters in Library and Information Science from San José State. I am so grateful that I live in a beautiful place with the opportunity to work in my field. I especially love assisting patrons with their technology and internet needs.
I have completed both the Master Gardener and Master Food Preserver programs through the UC System. I quilt, sew, felt, hand embroider, as well as garden, mushroom hunt and can my own food. Life is busy here on the Mendocino Coast.