Wellesley letter to the editor: Library Trustee candidate Ann Howley

I am announcing my candidacy for re-election to the Board of Library Trustees and Town Meeting from Precinct C.

Our family has lived in Wellesley since 1993. During that time, it has been my great fortune to serve my community in various ways through involvement in town government. My term on the Advisory Committee gave me a broad overview and appreciation of the whole town government, as did my service on several other special town committees. I have been a Town Meeting Member from Precinct C since 2003. Drawing on my knowledge and understanding of Wellesley and its town government, it has been my privilege to serve as a Trustee of the Wellesley Free Library (WFL) since 2008. The WFL is the heart of our community—free, open to all. I have been privileged to support our superb Administration and staff as they plan and implement ideas to broaden collections, programs and services to meet the needs of Wellesley citizens and keep the WFL one of the premier libraries in MA.

During my time as Trustee, the WFL has constantly evolved to meet the changing needs of our community. Working together with our Administration, my Trustee colleagues and I have drafted strategic plans to outline the Library’s future; developed fiscally responsible budgets that provide core resources for the Library; and have been responsive to growing community needs by supporting new programs like ESL. In addition, we welcomed an outstanding new Director; supported WFL’s efforts to further the Town’s sustainable goals; stewarded the growth of the Wellesley Free Library Foundation; worked with the WFLF and the Friends of the WFL, which provide funding for enhancements that are so important to our Library. The branch libraries have been brought back to life in new ways, and the Main Library has been renovated to update its spaces to meet current and future needs. We continue to work with and support the Administration during these uncertain months of the pandemic. I am proud to have served as part of the team responsible for what the WFL brings to our community.

The Library must always be forward-looking and nimble. I believe my track record as Trustee demonstrates my commitment to these concepts. If re-elected, my priorities include looking at opportunities presented by the newly renovated spaces, working on sustainable options in which the WFL can participate, continuing to build outreach to our increasingly diverse community, and continuing the strong relationships with our supporting organizations, the Wellesley Free Library Foundation and the Friends of the Wellesley Free Library.

I am also running for re-election as a Town Meeting Member from Precinct C. As both a Town Meeting Member and Library Trustee, I have been able to apply a broad and open-minded perspective to issues that have come before Town Meeting, including thinking about how plans and projects apply not just to a single department or segment of the community, but how well they fit into the whole town picture now and in the future. If re-elected, I plan to continue to strive for this balance.

I ask for your vote on March 1. Thank you!

Ann Howley
Hundreds Circle