Marlene Paulson is no stranger when it comes to libraries, after all she has over 35 years of experience either working or volunteering with them.
A native of Gilbert, Marlene met husband Don Paulson while at Luther College in Decorah. The couple moved to Clarinda when Don took a position with Clarinda Community College, now Iowa Western Community College, in 1960.
Marlene taught math and tennis at Clarinda high School before deciding to pursue a master’s in Library and Information Sciences from the University of Iowa. Upon completion of her master’s program, she was the Shenandoah High School librarian from 1985 until she retired in 2000. Upon her retirement Marlene became active in the Friends of the Library volunteer group and then was elected to serve on the Clarinda Public Library Foundation in 2009.
Marlene, an avid reader, generally enjoys reading mysteries and historical fiction. Some of Marlene’s favorite authors include, Joanne Fluke, John Sandford, James Patterson and Jeffery Deaver.
Marlene’s very proud of what the Lied Public Library of Clarinda has been able to accomplish over the past number of years. “The new library building is such a welcoming space and there’s so many different spaces to sit, read and relax” says Marlene as she reflects on the new building, built in 2004.
Some of the projects Marlene is most proud of during her time on the Library Foundation include the digitization of all the Clarinda newspapers, which allows one to easily search the newspaper archives from 1853 to present. The newspaper project was also made available to access at the Nodaway Valley Historical Museum for genealogy research.
Another project was the outdoor area, which was completed in 2017, after a large donation from the Donald Schwartzhoff estate. These projects “highlight the impact and importance that the Foundation can provide to the community when people are able to leave a legacy to the library,” she said.
Marlene plans to continue to volunteer as a Friend of the Library and will of course continue as a library user.
About the Foundation:
The Clarinda (Lied) Public Library Foundation recognizes that the Library is a valuable and unique asset to the entire Clarinda community. Established in 1984, the Foundation is committed to dedicating all its efforts for a healthy and vibrant library for the benefit of all. The Foundation seeks to complement and enhance traditional library funding resources. The Foundation works with the Library to identify funding needs. The Foundation is incorporated and registered with the Internal Revenue Service as a 501 (c) (3) tax-exempt organization. Funds, securities, or real property given to the Foundation may be tax deductible.