SANTA MONICA – On Friday, March 14, City Manager Rod Gould announced that Maria Taesil Hudson Carpenter, Director of Libraries from Somerville, Massachusetts has been appointed to lead the Santa Monica Public Library. Prior to her position as Director of Libraries for the City of Somerville, she worked as Director of Library Advancement, Marketing and Communications for Northeastern University in Boston, MA.

She was chosen after a six-month, nationwide search. Once the hiring process has completed, Carpenter will assume the Santa Monica Library system in June 2014.

“I am delighted to be joining an outstanding group of people working and volunteering for the City of Santa Monica and the Santa Monica Public Library,” said Carpenter. “I very much look forward to leading Santa Monica’s award winning library system, getting to know its people, cultures, and neighborhoods, and together, envisioning the next stage of innovative library services that will optimally serve the community.”

According to a press release from the City of Santa Monica website, Carpenter received nationwide recognition in her profession and holds a Master’s Degree in Library and Information Science from the
University of Pittsburgh and a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Theater from Ohio Wesleyan University. She is working on her PhD in Managerial Leadership in the information Professions from Simmons College, which is considered one of the top schools in the country focused on this particular discipline.

“I am delighted that Maria Taesil Hudson Carpenter will be joining the City of Santa Monica,” said Rod Gould. “She has a proven track record as a collaborator, innovator and advocate, and is highly regarded as a team player. She is a dynamo, and her ability to work closely with staff, colleagues and the community will have a great impact on our city. We are fortunate to have her ability to lead and create an exciting vision for our public libraries.”

“The Santa Monica Public Library is a civic gem,” Gould noted.  “The outstanding quality of its facilities, services and staff is nationally renowned.  I have no doubt that Maria will help us achieve our fifth straight year as a five-star-rated public library, and more.”

Carpenter will take over the role previously held by City Librarian Greg Mullen who retired. She will receive a salary of $186,648, and will manage an annual budget just over $12 million and 200 employees. The Library Department contains the main library, as well as three neighborhood branches. The Pico Branch is expected to open its doors soon in the Virginia Avenue Park region.

“Ms. Carpenter gives every indication of being a perfect fit for the Library and the community,” said Wright Rix, Acting City Librarian. “New England winters notwithstanding, the many parallels between
Santa Monica and Boston are quite resonant. Ms. Carpenter’s educational achievements, relevant work experience and professional vision have impressed all of us.”