Rumford librarian retiring after 32 years

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RUMFORD — Librarian Ginny Todd is retiring May 6, ending her 32-year career at the Rumford Public Library.

An open house to mark the occasion is set for 2 to 4 p.m. Monday, May 1, at the library at 56 Rumford Ave.

“(My retirement) will give me more time to play golf with my husband, spend time with my grandkids, and drive my little summer car,” she said.

But Todd’s ties to the library will not be severed completely. She plans to be a volunteer assistant to children’s librarian Susan Marshall and to help with summer library programs.

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First hired as a part-time assistant at the library, Todd said she’s seen many changes but the biggest is the computerized card catalog filing system.

“The changes from going from the old cards to everything on computers now — that was huge,” she said.

Before that, each book had at least four or five cards with the author, title and subject typed out and filed by hand. 

The internet is another change, especially to the quiet atmosphere, Todd said.

“Two kids and a friend (would be) sitting there and they would say, ‘Hey, Tommy, I just sent you an email; did you get it?’” she said.

In 1994, Todd was hired as the full-time children’s librarian.

Teddy Bear picnics, magicians and jugglers, and Children’s Theater productions were a few of the events she enjoyed with the children and their families. And some of her best memories are of the library’s preschool story time.

“There was one year (during) story time (when) I had four sets of twins: the Thorne and Carlson girls, Barrieau boys, and the Arsenault brother and sister. There were (many) wonderful families and it was so much fun with the kids,” she said.

During her college years, Todd majored in life science and agriculture at the University of Maine in Orono. It included a lot of child development and child psychology classes, she said.

Her favorite books are children’s books, she said, including those by Robert McCloskey and other Maine authors.

In 2010, she chose to return to part-time status because of budget cuts.

“I’ve had the opportunity to work with some really, really wonderful people over the years,” Todd said, including Mary Gamble, librarian at Mountain Valley High School in Rumford, Sue Marshall, Rumford children’s librarian, Karl Aromaa, former library director, and Lorraine Mills, elementary school librarian.

“I am going to miss that, the people I work with, people that come in, the parents, the kids. That’s why I’m going to keep volunteering,” Todd said.

Library Director Tamara Butler recognized Todd as “the most organized person on our staff and probably the most knowledgeable about the library because of her experience. And I can tell that she really cares about the library because of how much attention she pays to details; everything has to be right and everything is done well and the way it should be.”

mhutchinson@sunmediagroup.net

Librarian Ginny Todd is retiring from the Rumford Public Library after 32 years of service. She sits on the desk built with donations in memory of children’s librarian Jane deFrees. 

Retiring RPL Librarian Ginny Todd, left, is dressed as Mini-Crisis with Children’s Librarian Susan Marshall as Dr. Disaster. The two often dress as special characters to promote the library’s summer programs at local schools. 

Rumford Public Library Director Tamara Butler, left, with retiring Librarian Ginny Todd. Todd has worked for the library for 32 years. All are welcome to attend an open house for Todd’s retirement on Monday, May 1 from 2 p.m. to 4 p.m. at the Rumford Public Library.

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