Two weeks ago, the library’s new Principal Librarian, Glenn Risolo was ready to dive right into his duties, including acquisition of library materials, database selection, and reference services. He met with new colleagues and was excited to begin building camaraderie among the library team. But after just a few days on the job, the Coronavirus arrived, immediately altering a typical onboarding process.
With almost twenty years of experience, Glenn rose to this challenge, adapting to the needs of his new community, and pivoting his energy to supporting our patrons during the Stay at Home Order. “The circumstances we’re in are indeed unusual,” says Glenn. “But I feel very fortunate to be here in Coronado.” First, he endeavored to add a significant amount of ebooks and audiobooks to the available downloadable collection. When the City of Coronado Call Center was created to answer questions from the community during this health crisis, Glenn took on the responsibility of scheduling staff to answer the phones.
Glenn arrived at the Coronado Public Library after seven years with the San Diego Public Library where he managed several branches, including the newly constructed, 15,000 square foot Skyline Hills library. In addition to serving the general public, he has experience in a variety of libraries, including law and academic settings. His experience as a software trainer (in software) has strengthened his ability to work with patrons learning new technology.
Born and raised in Rochester, New York, Glenn recalls fond memories of his hometown – the Monroe County Library System, the vast public parks, the Eastman Theater, Nick Tahou’s Garbage Plate and Abbot’s Frozen Custard. He says it was the dreadfully long gray and brutal winters that drove him to sunny San Diego after earning his Bachelors in English from SUNY Geneseo and his Masters of Library Science from SUNY Buffalo.
Like many librarians, Glenn credits a lifelong love of learning as his daily motivation. “I guess that’s one reason why I’m always reading non-fiction -- I like to understand how things work,” he says, counting music and cooking among his other hobbies.
Glenn brings extensive experience working with Friends of the Library and looks forward to working with the Coronado Friends. When asked what’s his favorite part about being a librarian, he says, “Having access to so much knowledge is incredible. It’s endless! And so, being able to help people find the knowledge they seek is rewarding.”
While he does not shy away from trying new approaches, Glenn also values the library’s long-held traditions. As the lead librarian in Coronado, Glenn shares his message to our city’s patrons: “When it comes to a service profession like librarianship, we should be seeking change and expecting that it’s going to be a part of our careers. And I believe patrons should expect a certain amount of change as well. The world is ever-changing and in order to provide the best possible service to as many patrons as possible, we must embrace change and not be afraid to try new things, while continuing to listen to our customers as we try to balance everyone’s desires.” At the moment, Glenn is looking forward to post-quarantine library services.