The New Jersey State Library has chosen Mary L. Chute as the next state librarian.

Chute, the deputy director for libraries at the Institute of Museum and Library Services (IMLS) in Washington D.C., will assume the post in July.

“The thing that energizes me the most is the collaborative role of this position and working with New Jersey’s extraordinary library community and other stake holders to help the state thrive,” said Chute. “The New Jersey State Library is well positioned to help shape policy, address regional and national issues, and still see the impact our work has on the communities we serve.”

A former state librarian of Delaware, Chute was selected after a national search conducted by Thomas Edison State College and a search committee comprising members of the state library community.

“Mary is a dynamic leader with expertise working on local, state and national levels,” said George A. Pruitt, president of Thomas Edison State College. “The search committee recognized that Mary’s extensive background will enable her to shape and communicate a compelling vision for New Jersey’s library community.”

During her 28-year career, Chute has worked in public libraries, state library administrative agencies and, for the past 10 years, with the IMLS, the primary source of federal funding targeted at building the capacity of the nation’s libraries and museums. At the institute, she served as a senior leader focused on program analysis and development, strategic planning, financial administration, national policy development, and partnerships.

Chute joined IMLS in 2002 and served as acting director from 2005 to 2006. Prior to joining the institute, she served as director and state librarian of the Delaware Division of Libraries, where she promoted the extension and improvement of statewide library services through community outreach, library automation, new technologies, and resource sharing.

Chute earned her undergraduate degree from the University of Michigan and earned a master of arts in art history from Boston University and a master of library sciences from Simmons College.

Chute succeeds Norma Blake, who is retiring as state librarian in July. Chute says she wants to leverage the strengths of the state’s libraries to help maximize the latest technologies despite challenging economic conditions.

“Libraries are truly anchors in our communities that provide access to knowledge and lifelong learning through our collections, our services and our relationships with civic and business organizations,” said Chute. “Enhancing this incredible infrastructure and building on our collective strengths will enable libraries to improve the health of New Jersey and make the region stronger.”

New Jersey State Library, 185 West State Street, Box 520, Trenton 08625-0520; 609-278-2640; fax, 609-278-2652. Norma Blake, state librarian.

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