My love of reading and of books began at a very young age. I lived in a small town in Massachusetts where my first school building had 4 classrooms, one gym and the town library. The library was that magical place where a child had her own card and could choose her own books. As I got older and packed for Girl Scout sleep away camp, I was able to go to the library and check out books to pack into my trunk. No snacks, no technology (save for a Kodak Brownie camera) but as many books as I thought I would read in a month.
In college and grad school I studied to become an elementary and special needs teacher to pass on my love of reading to children. Having my own classroom was a thrill!
Recognizing that literacy was a challenge here in SC, a friend and I started BEGIN WITH BOOKS, the local affiliate of Dolly Parton’s Imagination Library, making it possible for children from birth to 5 years old to grow their personal libraries with free books delivered by mail. BWB has delivered 393,395 books to 13,570 children since 2010!
Honored to be appointed to the Charleston County Library Board of Trustees in 2008, I served as Board Chair from 2010-2016. During that time, we engaged in updating ByLaws, Policies and Procedures, recruiting new directors and Strategic Planning. Even with a great county-wide system, in 2011 it was clear that CCPL was not meeting state standards. Working with the county, staff and consultants, we created a plan to build new libraries and update the others. A referendum was placed before the voters in November, 2014 and passed with 74% voting yes. Five new buildings have been built and the renovations are soon to be completed.
It has been a privilege to serve the community as a volunteer through organizations like the Mayor’s Commission of Women, the Charleston County Teen Pregnancy Prevention Council, the Lunch Buddy/Mentor program thru CCSD, Freedom School, The Illumination Project and co-founding the Library Foundation.
Janet earned a B.S. in education and M.S. in Special Education. She has worked as a political consultant for both local and federal candidates. Active in civic affairs, she was co-founder and director of BEGIN WITH BOOKS, the local affiliate of Dolly Parton's Imagination Library. Over the years, she has enjoyed a variety of careers that included conservation technologist in a museum, an arbitrator, founder of several nonprofits, shipyard manager of the Spirit of SC, owned her own event company and was director of education for Spoleto Fe
Janet served the community as a volunteer through organizations like the Mayor’s Commission of Women, the Charleston County Teen Pregnancy Prevention Council, the Lunch Buddy/Mentor program thru CCSD, Freedom School, The Illumination Project and co-founding the Library Foundation. Completing two terms on the CCPL Board of Trustees in December,2016 she led the Board and staff to a highly successful public referendum to expand and improve the CCPL system by building five new branches and renovating the current branches.