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Valley People: Lyn Drewien looks to the future

By October 22, 2021November 8th, 2021Media Coverage, News Item

Lyn Drewien
Express photo by Willy Cook

In an article by Tony Tekaroniake Evans of the Idaho Mountain Express:

Lyn Drewien grew up on a farm in South Dakota and rode her horse 16 miles to town. Her destination was the library, and it took four hours to get there. In hindsight, the experience would prove to be providential.

“My grandfather would meet me there and hold my horse while I went in to check out books,” said Drewien, now 58 and serving as the director of the Hailey Public Library. She recalled being entranced by literature as a kid. “I loved Nancy Drew mysteries right off the bat, and also anything to do with travel and history, science. I loved to read, and it didn’t really matter what. So long as I had a book in front of me, I’d read it.”

Drewien earned a degree in history from Metropolitan State University in Denver and a master’s in library and information science from San Jose State University. She worked in libraries in Arizona and Ketchum before taking the reins at the Hailey Public Library.

Prior to starting her job at the library several years ago she worked as Blaine County’s grants and procurement specialist for two years, honing grant writing skills she would bring to her new position.

“Libraries are always looking for grants, so that’s what I spend a lot of time doing,” said Drewien. She took over as library director about a year ago. Since that time, the mostly city-funded library has increased its focus on serving the Hispanic community. Siomara Navaret was recently appointed the first Hispanic member of the library’s board of trustees.

“One of my main goals has been to expand the collection with the Hispanic community in mind,” Drewien said. “One issue we face is finding quality materials in Spanish. We do have bilingual librarians on staff.”

Drewien, who is 30-year resident of the Wood River Valley, understands the importance of libraries for small towns.

“When you grow up in a remote place, libraries can give you access to the world out there that you can’t get elsewhere,” she said.