Linden Christian School
Kim Marr has a “connector” personality. She epitomizes what libraries do every day; she connects people with people, and people with resources; she facilitates learning and encourages personal growth and community development. Her passion for libraries and her extraordinary ability to work quietly behind the scenes has enriched school libraries in the province for 2 decades.
Kim graduated from the Library and Information Technology program in 1980. She has worked at the RRCC Library, the Legislative Library and the Millennium Library (Centennial at that time) before finding her passion in school libraries. Kim has dedicated herself to the library at Linden Christian School since 1998. During Kim’s time at Linden Christian School Library she has worked to have the space evolve from a temporary space for the K-Grade 8 school to a literary rich, visually beautiful, well equipped and stimulating learning commons. Early years students are immersed in literature as Library staff dress in character for the Book Fair. Students are supported in creative programming with a video creation room in the library equipped with green screens, camera and sound equipment. The library space is flexible enough to support makerspace activities. Library staff collaborate with teaching staff to develop their students’ digital literacy skills by providing library computer access, using digital subscription resources for content, and NoodleTools. The library layout accommodates the broad age range of students simultaneously where student artwork is displayed creating a beautiful space.
Principal Lorraine Kehler explains Kim exemplifies a life-long learner. “It is a pleasure to have Kim Marr as a librarian as she works from a lifelong learner context for herself and encourages it in others. She has a “can do” approach to her work and connects with students, parents and staff in a way that builds our community and makes our library one of the “hubs” of our school.” Through her time at Linden Christian, she has researched, planned and consulted with architects to create the blueprints for the new library; she automated the library system, advocated and planned the expansion of the library with a view to developing a makerspace, and genrified the fiction collection. As Kim researches the latest library trends she engages with the greater library community and invites colleagues to join her in her quest for knowledge. She strongly believes that all libraries can be stronger when we support, encourage, and learn together.
Kim has been extremely active in the greater library community in Manitoba where she shares her knowledge and expertise. These include MSLA, MTS PD DAY (formerly SAGE), MLCI, AIMSL, SLAM, and the RDA Working Group. Involvement with these associations stems from Kim's belief it is important and economically responsible that we share information between all libraries in the province (school, public, academic and special libraries) as we all share our patrons and a mandate to serve these patrons.
Kim has served on the Manitoba School Library Association (MSLA) executive as the Membership Committee Chair from 2009 - 2012; as AIMSL Liaison to MSLA from 2012 - 2016 and MLCI Liaison to MSLA for 2015/2016. As part of the MSLA board, Kim has advocated for school libraries across the province – in both public and private schools. She has been the voice of the many library technicians who are members of MSLA, and has been a strong connector of people within our community. She has presented for the MTS PD day (formerly SAGE) in 2013 for a “Roundtable on RDA”, in 2015 for the “RDA Working Group document” and in 2016 for the “School Library Learning Commons and Makerspace tours”.
Kim was one of the driving forces behind the establishment of the Association of Independent Manitoba School Libraries (AIMSL) in 2010, although at that time it did not have a name. AIMSL was developed to support library staff in independent schools by developing a network for sharing expertise and knowledge. After spearheading the development of AIMSL, Kim took on the role of Membership Coordinator to continue her role in building the membership of the association. Kim, at the core, is always a connector.
The RDA Working Group was established to update the provincial document, Accessing Information: Cataloguing Guidelines for Manitoba and Saskatchewan School Library Personnel, which was published in Manitoba in 2013. Again, Kim was one of the individuals who worked behind the scenes advocating for a committee to update the Guidelines, starting in 2013, based on the then new RDA guidelines. The underlying principle behind the development of the RDA Working Group was to support all school library staff, regardless of training, to ensure that core requirements were established for school libraries to support strong cataloguing practices. Her work on the Cataloguing, RDA working group continues and her efforts to disseminate the document to all provincial libraries is commendable.
Kim is currently serving her 4th year (2nd year of her second 2 year term) on the board of the Manitoba Library Consortium Inc. (MLCI). On MLCI, Kim has been a voice for school libraries when discussing MLCI’s evolving mandate, database subscriptions, and other issues that impact libraries across the province.
Kim Marr always steps away from the spotlight but her quiet enthusiasm is infused in many of the associations supporting school libraries within the province.