Young Hire Hopes to Renew Century-Old Library

The oldest library in Armstrong County now has the youngest director.

Molly Troy, 24, of Greensburg was recently hired to lead the century-old Apollo Memorial Library.

The Apollo library's board of trustees hired Troy in hopes that her youth, as well as her marketing and programming experience, will attract more people to the 106-year-old library, according to Treasurer Judy Turner.

"Libraries are changing,'' Turner said. "The whole world is changing. We wanted someone who was younger, with enthusiasm and experience with social media and new technologies.''

Troy was chosen from about 30 applicants.

After graduating from high school in Toledo, Ohio, she enrolled in Gettysburg College to be near family in western Pennsylvania and Washington, D.C. There, she earned a bachelor's degree in English before entering a master's program at the University of Pittsburgh for library and information science with a specialization in children and youth services.

Troy supplemented that experience by serving in a variety of roles with the Allegheny County Library Association. She recently served as a children's librarian at the Sewickley and Moon Township public libraries before assuming the director's position at Apollo Memorial.

"I couldn't be more excited,'' she said. "It's something I've wanted to do almost my entire life. I want to build on what's been done before me and bring in some new things as well.''

Troy has adopted a national program for the Apollo library.

It's called Geek the Library, and it essentially serves as a public awareness campaign to highlight the value of public libraries and the funding issues they have.

With "geek'' as a verb, the campaign attempts to promote libraries as a multi-faceted tool for people to immerse themselves in their interests.

Troy plans to use the campaign to attract people with like interests.

For example, those who "geek'' cooking will be drawn to the library to participate in a weekly program in which people can recommend cookbooks and share recipes. The library will promote that program, which is in its planning stages, and others through the Geek the Library campaign.

With a longtime interest in poetry, Troy is working on a series that would feature poets from throughout the region and provide others with a platform to share their work.

She also plans to implement a computer tutoring program on the library's five desktop and four tablet computers.

Apollo Memorial Library is funded through tax revenue from the state, Apollo and North Apollo. It also operates on the generosity of community donations, non-resident memberships and various grants, which Troy says she'll seek aggressively.

She succeeds Tina Zins, who left to direct the Carnegie Library of Homestead.

Troy enjoys reading and playing piano when she's not working to better the library.

"We're delighted to have her,'' said library technician Connie Ruffner said. "She's very enthusiastic and knowledgeable. I think she's going to take the library in a very positive direction.''

Copyright AP - Associated Press
Contact Us