Who inspires you as a librarian?  I have been blessed to have many librarian mentors along the way as a child and as an adult.

Joy Mabry is someone who has been an inspiration to me for nearly twenty years now—I first met her as a barely twenty-something at our district teacher center, and she has been an unfailing source of support, encouragement, friendship, and wisdom.  She is an educator who has touched countless lives in the Cherokee County School District—she still has students from her days as an elementary school librarian who approach her with words of gratitude and thanks for what she did for them as their school media specialist.   I can only hope that I could have even an ounce of the positive influence on students as Joy Mabry has done and continues to do so even as I write this post.  If Joy were a library book, she would have been showered with every literary accolade and prize that one could win—she is definitely a Pulitzer  of a librarian!

Joy has especially been my “rock” the last few years as I opened my media center, and our patrons at Creekview High owe her a debt of thanks as she was an advocate of our media center (and still continues to be!!!) when our library barely had shelving in place.  I have also had the pleasure of interviewing her for a research project at the University of Georgia in which she shared her history as a reader and writer with me; I am hopeful she will let me eventually make that interview a live podcast you all can enjoy.  🙂

When I think of people who have shaped me as a person and as a librarian, Joy is at the top of the list.  Her spirit, her wit, her boundless energy, her faith, and unwavering enthusiasm always make my day.  I am proud to be an “adopted” granddaughter to her and grateful she doesn’t judge me for my inability to change lamination film (she did this for me throughout 2006-07!).  Thankfully, my other qualities do make up for that flaw.  🙂 

I would like to publicly give a shout of thanks to Joy Mabry—friend, mentor, muse, librarian pioneer, maverick, and lifelong learner.