Former Baldwin youth services librarian named director of Scott Library
Gina Leone is living her dream.
Leone, 38, had been the youth services librarian at the Baldwin Borough Library since 2008 but now she has the opportunity to direct a local library. She started this week as the new director of the Scott Township Public Library.
“We couldn't be happier with the excellent candidate we chose,” said Tony Ahart, the Scott library's board president.
Leone, a Collier Township resident, worked full-time at the Scott library from 2003 to 2005 and part-time there while she studied at the University of Pittsburgh to earn a master's degree in library and information science.
Leone replaced Janet Forton, who moved to Columbus late last year. Forton had been Scott's director since 2005.
When she was young, Leone said, she discovered the joys of reading. “My mom, Ann Leone, was always an avid reader, and I thank her for passing on that love of the written word,” she said.
She remembers early visits to the Beechview Library with her brothers for the summer reading program.
“The library was so cool, literally, because the building had air conditioning and the coldest water fountain, and was welcoming,” she said.
Leone went on to earn a bachelor's degree in communications and media studies from Pennsylvania State Univeristy-Erie, The Behrend College. After graduation, she entered the job market, doing administrative work and later, becoming manager of a business center.
The year 2001 was the turning point of her career, when she and her roommate were unemployed. She visited Beechview Library to search for jobs, and found positions in the substitute pool of the Carnegie Library of Pittsburgh system. She worked at libraries in Hazelwood and Homewood and ultimately, Scott and Baldwin.
“It took a lot of passion,” she said.
A job with the University of Pittsburgh saved her tuition dollars.
Being a library director always had been part of her career objective.
“Scott has a strong team,” she said.
Jenny Worley, director of Baldwin's library, remembers the “wonderful comments from kids, families and Head Start teachers” about Leone.
“She is a very kind, attentive, caring person for the children,” Worley said. “During story time, she always made them feel at home and have a good time. You could tell she enjoyed it.”
Leone is looking forward to the new challenge in a library where she once served as the first youth services director. At Scott, she'll direct one full-time and nine part-time employees and keep the circulation numbers growing from 2011's 88,000 items, the most recent tally.
“I love getting down on the story-time carpet and watching kids grow and become lifelong learners and library users,” she said.
Dona S. Dreeland is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. She can be reached at 412-388-5803 or email@example.com.
You are solely responsible for your comments and by using TribLive.com you agree to our Terms of Service.
We moderate comments. Our goal is to provide substantive commentary for a general readership. By screening submissions, we provide a space where readers can share intelligent and informed commentary that enhances the quality of our news and information.
While most comments will be posted if they are on-topic and not abusive, moderating decisions are subjective. We will make them as carefully and consistently as we can. Because of the volume of reader comments, we cannot review individual moderation decisions with readers.
We value thoughtful comments representing a range of views that make their point quickly and politely. We make an effort to protect discussions from repeated comments either by the same reader or different readers
We follow the same standards for taste as the daily newspaper. A few things we won't tolerate: personal attacks, obscenity, vulgarity, profanity (including expletives and letters followed by dashes), commercial promotion, impersonations, incoherence, proselytizing and SHOUTING. Don't include URLs to Web sites.
We do not edit comments. They are either approved or deleted. We reserve the right to edit a comment that is quoted or excerpted in an article. In this case, we may fix spelling and punctuation.
We welcome strong opinions and criticism of our work, but we don't want comments to become bogged down with discussions of our policies and we will moderate accordingly.
We appreciate it when readers and people quoted in articles or blog posts point out errors of fact or emphasis and will investigate all assertions. But these suggestions should be sent via e-mail. To avoid distracting other readers, we won't publish comments that suggest a correction. Instead, corrections will be made in a blog post or in an article.