HAMMOND | The city's library system will have a new director next year.
The Hammond Public Library Board will be interviewing applicants later this month to fill Director Margaret Evans' position. Evans, the library's director since 1997, is retiring, board member Lou Karubas said.
Evans, a Hammond native, has been with the Hammond Public Library since the early 1970s. For many of those years she headed the technical services department.
During her time as director, Evans oversaw the consolidation of many of the library's services, a board directive at the time of her appointment. A year into her tenure, board members voted to close four of the system's smaller branches in Robertsdale, North Hammond, Hessville and one near Edison Park, citing the cost to maintain the aging buildings. Evans also oversaw a massive $12 million expansion of the system's main State Street branch, which was completed in 2002.
"She is an excellent director, and we're going to miss her," Karubas said. "I just hope the new director will be as good."
Evans was out of the office last week and was unavailable for comment.
Applications for the position, which requires a master's degree in library science and at least a decade of experience, were due late last month. A new director, with a salary between $66,187 and $83,735, is scheduled to take over in February.
Karubas said board members will be interviewing four candidates for the job and will announce their choice in January.