Silver City volunteer library organizer recognized |

Silver City volunteer library organizer recognized

Karen Woodmansee
Appeal Staff Writer
Photo provided The Silver City Volunteer Library hosts many youth events, including this African mask-making class with Arizona sculptor Richard Johnson. Pictured here is volunteer Teresa Panziera with Connor Panziera, 7, Nick Drum, 11, (in mask), and, in the background, Zach Alves, 11, and Zach Drum, 14.

Many of the residents of the historic town of Silver City love to read, so when the Silver City Schoolhouse and the makeshift library it contained burned down in 2004, it was a blow to the community.

Quest Lakes set to work to restore the Silver City Volunteer Library in the tiny office of the Silver City Volunteer Fire Station. Now, with the help of donors, the library is better than ever.

“There really wasn’t a library before the fire,” she said. “What we had was three full-size bookshelves and a half-bookshelf, and it was mainly things people donated.”

Those books were destroyed, mostly from smoke and water damage, save one children’s art book that had been inside a metal cabinet, Lakes said.

“Now we have a real wide range, a lot of top sellers, a complete set of Nevada Revised Statutes that Joe Dini donated and encyclopedias donated by Lyon County Libraries,” said Lakes, who has been given a plaque in recognition of her efforts.

The children’s offerings range from preschool picture books to the latest in the Harry Potter series. The library even had two Harry Potter Parties that were attended by every kid in town.

“We also have a lot of other fantasy series, like the Golden Compass series and the Hobbit series,” she said.

For adults, there are journals, Civil War history books and the latest mysteries.

There are also periodicals for adults and children.

Lakes said there are two older computers at the library, which is only open on Sundays at least until the schoolhouse reopens.

“We already have volunteers to help us move things and we’ll get some other computers,” she said.

Books and materials are donated from all over, she said.

“We’ve gotten a lot from local residents and Lyon County Libraries,” she said.

Though she didn’t have any library training, Lakes said her mom was a librarian and books were important enough for her to start a new collection to be housed in the fire station that serves as a temporary community center.

She said the volunteer library has received some funding through Healthy Communities Coalition in Lyon and Storey Counties, and that funding has helped the library’s programs, all of which are free.

“As small as we are, we have all these programs, art and cultural programs and book signings,” she said.

Even Sue Fawn Chung, an expert on Chinese-American history, flew up from Las Vegas to give a lecture last summer, she said.

Lakes, who was nominated for her award by Lyon County Library Director Diane Brigham, is quick to credit others for the library’s success, in particular the local fire department, the Silver City Case for Change and local residents.

“Silver City is a town of book lovers, and it seems as if we’ve had donations of books from just about every household,” she said.

• Contact reporter Karen Woodmansee at or 881-7351.


Nevada Library Association 2007 Awards

• LIBRARIAN OF THE YEAR: Laura Oki (Elko-Lander- Eureka County Library System) – Laura has 33 years of service to the Nevada Library Community. She served as interim director of the Elko-Lander-Eureka County Library System and has been responsible for the daily operations of their 10 branches and the bookmobile. She has planned and chaired at least three conferences for the Nevada Library Association and served on numerous committees as well. In addition, she has been deeply involved with the Friends of the Elko County Library in planning fundraising events.

• TRUSTEE OF THE YEAR: Carol Madsen (Elko-Lander-Eureka County Library System) – Madsen began her career in libraries working for the “Books by Mail” program and through her work, this system went from paper due-date cards to the present online system. She also worked in Carson City as the CLAN Computer Specialist. In 1998, she was appointed to fill a vacant position on the Law and Library Board of Trustees. She was appointed to her first full term in 2000 and will complete her second full term in 2008. She has served as both vice-president and president. She has also been involved in libraries statewide when she was appointed to the Nevada State Council on Library and Literacy in 2001 and reappointed in 2004.


• QUEST LAKES (Silver City Volunteer Library)- After a 2004 fire in the historic schoolhouse in Silver City destroyed the library, Lakes recreated the library and restocked it with resources for children, young adults and adults. Today, the Silver City Volunteer Library has regular hours with a computer available for children to do homework and for recreation and materials for all ages.

• BARRICK GOLDSTRIKE ( Elko-Lander-Eureka County Library System) – Funding from Barrick Goldstrike has sponsored this system’s Summer Reading Program for the past eight years. This has enabled the system to bring in storytellers as well as provide weekly incentives for 10 facilities and the Northeastern Nevada Regional Bookmobile.

• LEO SEGURA (Las Vegas- Clark County Library District) – Segura has served on numerous NLA Committees and in 2006 was the conference chair of the NLA Annual Conference. In addition, he is a committed mentor to his staff, both current and past, as well as to new librarians just beginning their careers.

• GEORGE STEPHANOS (Las Vegas- Clark County Library District) – Stephanos has given 21 years of excellent service in support services both to his library district and to libraries in Nevada.

• JUDI FIOTI (Las Vegas- Clark County Library District) – Fioti possesses remarkable knowledge of children’s literature and has promoted early literacy instruction to parents and advocated reading as a lifelong skill to both parents and youth. She has worked tirelessly in support of Children’s Library Services for libraries in Nevada.


• LISA GIBSON (Las Vegas- Clark County Library District) – As the supervisor of the Micro-Computer Center at the West Las Vegas Library, she has promoted libraries tirelessly to patrons in the community that she serves through the classes that she teaches on how to use library computer resources. In addition, she has worked in many capacities for the Nevada Library Association. She has presented programs at conferences and served on numerous NLA Committees.

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