Libraries are ‘all in the family’ for new circulation manager

Dr. Cheryl Lawson, Richland’s new library circulation manager, seems to be right at home on campus.

Hired in June, Lawson said she loves Richland; the trees, the landscape and the lake. Being on a college campus is nothing new to Lawson. There are five librarians in her family, including school librarians, although most of them have retired.

“Several have gone through the Missouri system or gone through the university system,” Lawson said.  “I have an aunt that was a librarian for many, many years.  I guess it’s kind of in my blood.  My mother-in-law was a librarian and educator.”

Lawson said that to most parents, libraries are the resource that gives them an opportunity to entertain and educate at the same time, not only during story time but by providing access materials and resources for free.

“Where else can you go where you get books and DVDs and now online materials, like Kanopy and wonderful movies,” Lawson said.

Richland recently added the Kanopy movie streaming service to its digital collection.  Students, faculty and staff can now access it and watch popular films and documentaries anytime through dcccd.kanopystreaming.com. The library also offers complimentary access to The New York Times.

As circulation manager, Lawson said she is the person who’s in charge of staffing for the circulation desk.

“I was a coordinator there at Lincoln [University in Jefferson City, Mo.], worked with students, worked with paraprofessionals, librarians,” Lawson said.

“So, it was right in the ballpark in the teams I’m accustomed to working with. Love libraries, love being in that environment. It’s fast-paced. You build up tolerance for that.  But, you’re constantly dealing with the energy that comes from the surge of excitement of new students coming in.  We have so many international students here.”

Lawson worked on her Ph.D in library and information sciences at the University of North Texas in Denton. She also worked in East Texas at the Sulphur Springs Public Library, where she was director for about six years and a former Dallas Public Library employee at the Martin Luther King branch library in South Dallas for nearly two years.

When Lawson isn’t working, she enjoys playing pingpong, walking and practicing yoga.  She said she is excited and happy to be at Richland.

“I’m now one of the new Thunderducks,” she said.  “It’s official.”