Public Libraries honor staff, trustees and volunteers with special service awards

Public Libraries in Lancaster County honored staff, trustees and volunteers who have provided outstanding service to their public library during their Annual Meeting held on Wednesday, April 18. The event held at the Manheim Township Public library, had library officials, public library directors, board members and interested citizens in attendance.  The Annual Meeting, held in April each year, marks the installation of Officers who serve on the Library System’s Board of Directors.  The annual event is also an opportunity to honor those who have exemplified excellence in serving their community’s library — as staff, trustees or volunteers.

Service Award Winners

Lisa Greybill presents award to “Spencer” the READ Dog and his Trainer, Kelly Skiptunas

Volunteer, “Spencer, The Reading Dog” and Kelly Skiptunas, Trainer – presented by Lisa Greybill, Director, Columbia Public Library

“I have been working with Kelly Skiptunas and her reading therapy Rottweilers since practically my first day at the Columbia Public Library. These gentle giant dogs are wonderful with adults, teens, and children alike.  When patrons know Spencer is coming, they make special visits just to see him.  Kelly and Spencer work with both individual children and with small groups of school classes, including Park Elementary IU13 and Our Lady of the Angels.  Spencer has become our library “mascot” and is usually present at any library activity, making new friends!  He is a breath of fresh air to many in the Columbia community.”

Trustee and Volunteers, Hugh and Barbara McMaster – presented by Heather Smith, Director, Eastern Lancaster County Library (New Holland)

Barbara McMaster and Hugh McMaster receive award from Heather Smith (center), Elanco Library Director.

“The ELANCO Library would like to honor Hugh and Barb McMaster for their continued and dedicated service. Hugh is a former board of trustee member who also served as board president. Barb chaired our dinner auction committee for years. Both Hugh and Barb were separately awarded our Eleanor Dissinger Award for service and both are still members of the auction committee helping to raise funds and awareness for the library.”


Bonnie Grater (left) and Penny Talbert, Ephrata Public Library Director

Trustee/Volunteer – Bonnie Grater – presented by Penny Talbert, Ephrata Public Library

Bonnie Grater has been an advocate of Lancaster County libraries for decades. She’s served in a variety of capacities in Lancaster County including volunteer, board member and, for a short time, Interim System Administrator. Her appreciation of the what public libraries do has made her an invaluable asset to all libraries in the county.” 


Volunteer, Joanna Hertzler – presented by Susan Tennant, Lititz Public Library Director.  

Joanna Hertzler (left) and Susan Tennant (right)

“Joanna empties our after-hours book return and pulls the items requested by patrons from other libraries five mornings a week. Over the past year, Joanna has pulled more than 10,000 items for shipment to other libraries—that includes books, movies and audio books requested by people from around the county. Plus, on Monday mornings Joanna stays for a couple more hours to reshelf all the items she took out of the book drop as well as everything patrons return to our library on the busiest day of the week.” 




Lissa Holland (left) and Heather Sharpe (right)

Staff Member, Lissa Holland, Assistant Director at LPL – presented by Heather Sharpe, Lancaster Public Library Director

“After seven years as the Mountville Branch Manager, Lissa was called upon to take over the management of the Leola Branch in addition to her current duties. Without hesitation she stepped up to the challenge. Despite both personal and professional obstacles, she demonstrated initiative and unrelenting commitment. She’s since been promoted to Assistant Director of the Lancaster Public Library and continues to demonstrate exceptional leadership and is an absolute joy to have on the team.”


Jonathan Dunkle (left) and Connie Kelly (right)

Staff Member, Connie Kelly, Circulation Desk Manager at Manheim Community Library – presented by Jonathan Dunkle, Manheim Community Library Director.

Connie is our circulation desk manager and has worked at the library for seven years. In the absence of a director, Connie made sure the library ran smoothly, assisted in completing the state report and made it so that when I was hired, everything transitioned easily. Since then, she has been invaluable in helping me familiarize myself with the library and the community all while providing excellent service to our patrons, cataloging, scheduling and much more. She is well-liked by staff and patrons and is extremely deserving to be recognized for her service.”


Mary Jo Schimaneck, Volunteer – presented by Martha Matt of the Friends of the Manheim Township Public Library

Martha Matt (Left) and Mary Jo Schimaneck (right)

“Mary Jo has been a Library volunteer for 12 years, at the old Oregon Pike location and at the library’s current location on Granite Run Drive. She has chaired or co -chaired the library’s annual Book Sale for the past 10 years. This is a year round task involving not only the extensive preparation for the sale itself, like getting carts, a truck and a massive set up, but also weekly book sorting sessions with the Friends group at the library. Mary Jo is at the Manheim Township Library 2-3 times per week, all year long in preparation for the sale.”

Jan Betty (right) and Barbara Basile (left)

Jan Betty, Youth Services Librarian – presented by Barbara J. Basile, Director, Milanof-Schock Library

“We will be honoring Jan Betty, our amazing youth services coordinator. “Miss Ja-a-a-n” is a refrain we commonly hear. Delighted children and smiling parents affirm what we all know. The heart of our library is Miss Jan’s programs which enthrall children and their grownups alike. For over 12 years, she has engaged families by blending children’s literature, music, art, science, math, dance, and her honest love of life to make reading fun and our library a beloved family destination.”

Bob Stanley (left), Dick Kolb, Jeanette Kolb, Trish Vandenbosch (right)

Volunteers, Jeannette and Richard (Dick) Kolb– presented by Trish Vandenbosch, Library Director,

Moores Memorial Library (Christiana)

“Jeanette and Dick have faithfully served at our Friends Read More Bookstore every Wednesday since it opened 2013.  Jeannette has come up with one of our most popular fundraisers, our Annual Princess Ball.  Jeannette also has taken over as President of our Friends Group for several years.  She was instrumental in having the Bookstore included in the Best Kept Secrets Tour in 2015.  Dick is our DVD and CD expert in the book store.  He cleans each one that has been donated or sent from the library. He has helped us in so many ways behind the scenes, and even donned a tuxedo for our yearly tea.  These valued volunteers are so important to our success!”

Margie Perella and Jason Graybill

Library Director, Margie Perella – presented by Jason Greybill, Library Board President, Pequea Valley Library (Intercourse)

Margaret Perella has directed the Pequea Valley Public Library since the year 2000 and was the local library coordinator at the Intercourse Lions Club Reading Center, located in our one-room schoolhouse, from 1975-1984.   She spearheaded the campaign to build a new Pequea Valley Public Library that was completed in 2007.  In 2008 she managed the expansion of a new branch library in the PVPL service area with the opening of the Salisbury Branch Library in Gap, PA.   In 2013 she organized the addition of a replica of the original Schoolhouse to the main library. She is a visionary and a leader for the Pequea Valley Community and we recognize and honor Margie on her retirement, June 1, 2018, for 27 years of loyal service to our library.”

Sylvia Drennen (left) and Becky McClure (right)

Volunteer with Friends Group, Becky McClure presented by Sylvia Drennen, Library Director, Quarryville Library

“We are pleased to honor Becky McClure, who is a member of our Friends Group. Becky is a dedicated volunteer who goes above and beyond the call of duty in all that she does for the library. She enthusiastically donates many hours of her time as the manager of the donation department and is always a pleasure and a joy to work with.”



JJ Landis (left) and Kristin Fernitz (right)

Staff Member- Children’s Librarian, JJ Landis – Award presented by Kristin Fernitz, Library Director, Strasburg-Heisler Library

“JJ is a terrific Children’s Librarian and all things PR. She picked up the PR piece as something fun to learn and has made it our “star”. She designed a modern fresh logo, boost our Facebook presence, and keeps our website eye-catching and interesting.



Outstanding Volunteer Award

Diane Tannehill,
Outstanding Volunteer of the Year

Diane Tannehill, current LSLC Board President and charter member of The Council of Friends of Lancaster County Public Libraries.

“Diane exemplifies all of the best qualities one hopes for in a volunteer. With passion and vision she has served on The Council of Friends of Lancaster Public Libraries since the group was created in 2000.   Now 18 years later, she can claim eighteen successful Author Luncheons to her vast array of volunteer projects.  She has served as President of the Library System’s Board of Directors for the past three years where she brings her wisdom and years of experience to her leadership role.”  

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