By Mineola Library Director Charles Sleefe
The Mineola Library is sad to say that our outstanding reference librarian, Catherine “Pat” Lackner, will be retiring in July. We are certainly happy for Pat and wish her the best in retirement, but we are also sad because we will no longer have her exemplary service and hard work for our community.
As anyone who has spoken to her truly knows, Pat is a native of the Emerald Isle. She emigrated from Ireland with her sister in the 1960s. She was determined to have a better life in the U.S., and earned a bachelor’s degree while raising her children. As luck would have it, Pat got a job as a page at the Hillside Library, and that led to her choice of a career in librarianship. She received her Master’s in Library Sciences degree and remained at Hillside as a librarian.
In 2001, the newly refurbished Mineola Library was set to open, and additional staff was needed. Pat was hired as a reference librarian, and has been with us for the past 17 years. If you enjoy the Mineola Library’s programs and outreach, you can thank Pat Lackner. She has brought a wide range of arts, culture and education programs to our community. These include concerts, health and living well seminars, historical and art lectures, tax help, book discussions, safe driving courses, blood drives, computer classes, and literacy training and instruction. And of course, our huge annual event (drawing on her heritage), an Irish music and dance day every March.
On behalf of the Library staff and the Mineola Library Board of Trustees, I wish to send a huge thank you and a fond farewell to a great librarian and person, Pat Lackner. This farewell is bittersweet, as we are sad to see her go, but happy with the years of treasured memories. Pat Lackner’s intelligence, professionalism, compassion, and humanity will be a lasting legacy for present and future librarians at the Mineola Library.