Braden River Library supervisor Cathy Laird named Manatee County Employee of the Year

Braden River Library supervisor Cathy Laird named Manatee County Employee of the Year
Posted on 12/06/2018

MANATEE COUNTY, FL (Dec. 6, 2018) — Cathy Laird, the branch supervisor for the County's busiest library and a longtime employee of the public library system, has been named Manatee County's 2018 Employee of the Year.

Cathy oversees a staff of nine librarians and numerous volunteers at Braden River Library where as many as 700 patrons visit each day. She's been described as "an excellent instructor" who helps patrons with computer problems and often serves as a staff trainer.

"Cathy is the ultimate professional," said Deputy County Administrator Cheri Coryea. "Her work is outstanding and she is often the go-to person for supervisors. She leads by example every day."

Neighborhood Services Director and former Library Services Manager Ava Ehde said Cathy is a true professional and an exceptional branch supervisor.

"Cathy's quiet, calm, unassuming style and unassailable fairness provide outstanding support of both internal and external customers," Ehde said. "In nearly 20 years with Manatee Libraries Cathy has proven herself a dedicated, responsible, patient and caring team member. She exemplifies the ACE (Accountability, Civility & Ethics) philosophy daily. Cathy is the supervisor the other supervisors and staff go to for advice and counsel. Her steady composure, reliable efforts and general decency make her a favorite of volunteers and staff as well as a perfect ambassador of the best in County customer service.

In the 19 years with the library system, she has earned the respect and admiration of her coworkers, supervisors, staff from other departments, and the library patrons. When Cathy joined the Manatee County Public Library, she brought with her years of experience as a supervisor. children's librarian, cataloger and adult services librarian. In her years as branch supervisor, she honed those skills and developed leadership abilities when she was chosen to attend the prestigious Florida Sunshine State Library Leadership Institute in 2012.

Cathy says she was floored to learn of her Employee of the Year honors.

"I love the work I do, but don’t feel that I deserve such accolades," she said. "I’ve been in this career for 30 years, 20 of them here with Manatee County. Libraries are such an important benefit to our community and I am proud to be part of the service Manatee County provides to its residents."

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