Government Relations Committee

Committee Members | Purpose and Objectives

The Government Relations Committee develops the OLC legislative platform, analyzes legislative issues that could potentially impact Ohio’s public libraries and the customers they serve, and advises staff the advocacy strategy to serve the best interest of Ohio’s public library community.

 

Committee Members

Andrew Mangels, Chair (2024)
Westlake-Porter Public Library
Work: 440-250-5450
andrew.mangels@westlakelibrary.org

Molly Carver (2022)
Sandusky Library
Work: 419-625-3834 x6001
mcarver@sanduskylib.org

Karl Colon (2023)
Greene County Public Library
Work: 937-736-7051
kcolon@gcpl.lib.oh.us

Anastasia Diamond-Ortiz (2023)
Lorain Public Library
Work: 440-244-1192
adiamond-ortiz@lpls.info

Pamela Hickson-Stevenson (2023)
Akron-Summit County Public Library
Work: 330-643-9100
phs@akronlibrary.org 1

James Hill (2022)
Chillicothe & Ross County Public Library
Work: 740-702-4162
jhill@crcpl.org

Jason Kucsma (2024)
Toledo Lucas County Public Library
Work: 419-259-5260
jason.kucsma@toledolibrary.org

Chris May (2022)
Mansfield/Richland County Public Library
Work: 419-521-3127
cmay@mrcpl.org

Nieca Nowels (2023)
Marysville Public Library
Work: 937-642-1876 x33
nnowels@marysvillelib.org

Michael Penrod (2024)
Wood County District Public Library
Work: 419-352-5104
michaelpenrod@wcdpl.org

Sandi Thompson (2024)
Puskarich Public Library
Work: 740-942-2623
sthompson@seolibraries.org

Meredith Wickham (2024)
Southwest Public Libraries
Work: 614-875-6716 119
mwickham@swpl.org

Jim Wilkins (2022)
Warren-Trumbull County Public Library
Work: 330-399-8807 x124
wilkinsj@wtcpl.org

Wendy Knapp, ExOfficio (2022)
State Library of Ohio
Work: 614-644-6843
wknapp@library.ohio.gov

Donald Yarman, ExOfficio (2022)
OPLIN
Work: 614-728-5250
don@oplin.ohio.gov

Board Liaison: Paula Brehm-Heeger
Staff Liaison: Jay Smith

 

Purpose and Objectives

The primary function of the Government Relations Committee is to serve in the best interest of Ohio’s public library community in regards to all legal and legislative matters.

To that end, the GRC:

  • Maintains a legislative network to work with library directors around the state to ensure a complete and consistent local grassroots advocacy effort.
  • Monitors and examines all information that has the potential to impact the Public Library Fund, supporting any issue that would increase state funding for public libraries.
  • Makes recommendations to the Ohio Library Council Board of Directors regarding legislation to be submitted to the Ohio General Assembly.
  • Explores collaboration opportunities that will lead to more efficient and effective public library service.
  • Strongly supports the State Library of Ohio and OPLIN and their efforts to provide services to Ohio’s public libraries.
  • Reviews proposed changes to the Ohio Public Employee Retirement System (OPERS), supporting legislation which ensures stability of the fund while maintaining fair benefit levels, and communicating as much information as possible regarding OPERS to all OLC members.