Director of Kern County Libraries, Diane Duquette, Resigns

PINE MOUNTAIN / BAKERSFIELD / FRAZIER PARK, CA (Tuesday, Jan. 17, 2012 at 2:30 p.m.)— Diane Duquette, the recently embattled director of Kern County’s library system, has submitted her resignation. The Pine Mountain community resident fought for 15 years to bring the Frazier Park Branch Library into reality. She was successful. During her 24 years in the position, she built numerous libraries throughout the county, developing a full network of facilites and services for the growing population of Kern County.

In a press release today, Allen Krauter of the Kern County Administrative Office issued this press release: Today, the Board of Supervisors accepted the resignation of Kern County Libraries Director Diane Duquette and authorized County Counsel to execute a written agreement whereby Ms. Duquette will reimburse the County more than $8,950 through payroll and vacation deductions for the cost of her personal use of a County-issued cell phone and a County-owned vehicle, as well as disputed travel claims and vacation days. Ms. Duquette will be on leave using previously earned accrued leave time until March 23, 2012.

The Board appointed Sherry Gomez as Interim Director of Libraries, effective immediately.

This second press release, with a bio for the interim director, followed:


The Kern County Board of Supervisors today named Sherry Gomez as Interim Director of Libraries effective immediately.

Gomez has served as Deputy Director of Libraries since 2006.
Gomez began her County library career in 1975 in Delano as a Junior Librarian. She worked as Children’s Librarian at the South Bakersfield Branch (now the Eleanor Wilson Branch) and Northeast Bakersfield Branch until her promotion to Librarian 2 in 1985, when she began supervising the Baker and Bryce C. Rathbun branches.

Gomez became the Children’s Librarian at the newly opened Beale Memorial Library in 1988, and she was promoted to Librarian 3 in 1993, when she began serving as the Children’s Extension Librarian and then as the Adult Extension Librarian. After being promoted to Librarian 4 and working as the Branch Coordinator in 2001, Gomez became Deputy Director in 2006.

Gomez developed the Grandparents and Books program in which adults read to children and shared their love of books; the Storytelling Festival which brought storytellers from across the nation to share their art with the residents of Kern County; and English Language Literacy, a partnership with the Arvin School District that encouraged children and their families to use the library and discover the joys of reading. She also helped to supervise the moving and/or expansion of several branch locations and to implement the Library’s increasing migration from print materials to electronic resources.

Gomez earned both a Bachelor of Arts degree in History and a Master’s degree in Library and Information Science from Brigham Young University.

This is part of the January 13, 2012 online edition of The Mountain Enterprise.

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