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  Public Library Director's Guidebook

    Mission & Scope

A mission statement captures the essential aims of the library. It tells:

  • What do we do?
  • How do we do it?
  • Whom do we do it for?
  • What value are we bringing?

Why have a mission statement?

  • It focuses energy.
  • It clarifies purpose.
  • It motivates board members, staff, and volunteers.

A mission statement should be:

  • concise - even pithy
  • community oriented
  • active
  • stated in broad, but not over-general terms
  • obvious


"The mission of The New York Public Library is to inspire lifelong learning, advance knowledge, and strengthen our communities."


"The mission of the Oakland Public Library is to provide quality materials and services which fulfill the educational, informational, cultural, and recreational needs of the entire community in an atmospher that is welcoming, respectful, and professional."


"The Culbertson Public Library is the learning center of our community and the place people turn to for the discovery of ideas, the joy of reading, and the power of information. Community needs drive our services and we take a personal interest in ensuring that they are delivered in a welcoming, convenient, and responsive manner."


"The Helen and Hollis Baright Public Library strives to inform, enrich, and empower the Ralston community and surrounding area residents by providing current educational, informational, and recreational library services and materials in an accessible and efficient manner that promotes lifelong learning."


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