Public Libraries

Reinstated in Valparaiso

Sue Martin, who was recently “suspended(Florida Librarian Suspended over Porn Incident)”: from her job at the Valparaiso Community Library, has been “reinstated(Valparaiso reinstates library director after porn ruckus)”:
bq.I am extremely pleased to share that the Valparaiso City Commission voted 4-1 last night to dismiss all charges against library director Sue Martin and have reinstated her as library director effective immediately. The commissioner who brought the charges against Sue will no longer be responsible for the library or serve on my governing board. A new city commissioner who has long been a strong library supporter will be responsible for the library. Computers will be placed back in the library this week. In Valparaiso, the commissioners are responsible for overseeing city departments. This means that the library director’s supervisor is an elected official. About 150 people attended the meeting last night with others being turned away. The elected official who brought the charges again Sue refused to be sworn in or to testify. The meeting was a quasi judicial hearing. – Robert Gorin, Director of the Okaloosa County Library Cooperative. It would have been better had this incident not happened at all, but at least it seems to have had a happy ending.

By Michael K Pate

Michael K. Pate tends to spend a great deal time of time around computers. He has been a Librarian since 1997.

Michael was born in Avon Park, Florida in 1966. Except for a couple of brief periods in his life (once in Tampa and once in Winter Haven/Haines City), he has been a life-long resident.

Originally, he planned on a career as a Computer Programmer and therefore graduate from Webber College with a Bachelor of Science in Computer Information Systems in 1988. However, unhappy with career opportunities at the time, he soon returned to school and received a BS in Social Science Education from the University of South Florida.

He began his career in education at Avon Elementary and later Avon Park Middle working as a Computer Lab Coordinator. While technological challenges were interesting, he found himself more and more interested in becoming a Media Specialist. He began work on his MLS in 1995.

However, a summer internship at the Sebring Public Library in 1996 soon made him reconsider just what his career should be. Upon graduation in 1997, he secured a position as a Media Specialist at Eastside Elementary in Haines City. Eventually, the position he was looking for opened up and he returned to SPL as Reference Librarian in 1999.

In 2003, he became Assistant Director of the Highlands County Library System, serving in that role until the position was eliminated during a late round of budget cuts in 2010. Since then, he has been the Computer Support Specialist for the Heartland Library Cooperative. In 2011, he began serving on the Board of Directors of the Tampa Bay Library Consortium.