January 2022 marks the end of an important chapter in the story of Orange County Library System. After 20 years at the helm of the organization, Director/CEO Mary Anne Hodel retires after the January 13 board meeting.
When she came to the library in 2002, Hodel says there were very few computer classes available and the library lacked technology training opportunities. She led the library in expanding the scope of its tech-training resources, and one of her most significant contributions to the organization was the establishment of the Dorothy Lumley Melrose Center for Technology, Innovation and Creativity. The state-of-the-art tech hub provides public access to professional creative software and equipment, including a fab lab and photo, video and audio studios, as well as classes that train people to use them.
She brought numerous other innovations to the library, including the introduction of ESOL and citizenship classes, technology classes in Spanish and Haitian Creole, and increased use of marketing and social media.