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Summit County Library awarded for service during pandemic

Summit County Library Director Dan Compton
Summit County
Summit County Library Director Dan Compton

The Utah State Library recently awarded the Summit County Library the Impactful Service award. This is a special recognition for the extraordinary service provided to the community during the pandemic.

During Tuesday's Summit County Council meeting, Assistant County Manager Janna Young said County Library Director Dan Compton and his staff worked with technical services to modify and innovate, allowing safe and continuous programming during the pandemic. Early on, the library staff would field phone calls and answer questions. Young said expanded Wi-Fi services into the parking lot allowed access for many.

"Folks could even sit in their cars in the parking lots of the library and be able to work on their laptops. They also created picnic tables and some workspaces outside next to the building. They could do remote printing that way. They did a curbside delivery for whole streets. They shifted all of their programmings virtually online and still offered a lot of robust services.”

The expanded access was critical for families with students who didn't have home internet service when schools shut down.

Compton said he appreciates the support from the council and acknowledged his team's willingness to help.

"There were so many times where they needed people to be on the community concerns line. You know, we had a very short window. We needed people within a couple of hours or something, and I would just put the call out, and we had staff stepping up to handle that. And I was just so impressed with them. They were sewing masks for employees, and we're using our 3-D printer to print masks in partnership with Park City Library and just really cool to get this recognition from the state. And I want to thank all of you for your continued support of the library system."

Several library board members lauded the creativity and commitment of the library staff.

The Impactful Service Award criteria consider eight areas of measurement. According to a letter from the Utah State Library Director, the Summit County Library scored highly in all categories.

KPCW reporter Carolyn Murray covers Summit and Wasatch County School Districts. She also reports on wildlife and environmental stories, along with breaking news. Carolyn has been in town since the mid ‘80s and raised two daughters in Park City.