Barry Levine was honored by State Library
Director Anne Craig in June 2008 for his service
on the Illinois State Library Advisory Committee.
The State Library and the Illinois library com-munity
lost a dear friend in April when Barry
Levine passed away suddenly. Barry was diag-nosed
with retinitis pigmentosa as a youth and
lost his sight in his late 20s. Despite being
legally blind, he was active in local, state and
national library services.
Barry was a member of the Illinois State
Library Advisory Committee for six years, serv-ing
as chair in 2008. He also was a founding
member of the State Library Talking Book and
Braille Service Committee, a position he held
for eight years until his death. Barry also
served as president of the Prairie Area Library
System and vice president of the Homer
Township Public Library Board of Trustees. As
a Homer Library trustee, Barry was instrumen-tal
in expanding the library’s collection of
large-print and audio books to its current size
of more than 5,000 items. He also supported
establishment of Homer Township Library’s
Bookmobile service and campaigned for an
ADA accessible station and computer for low-vision
patrons at the library.
Barry’s leadership and efforts earned him the
Illinois Library Association’s Trustee of the Year
Award in 2001 and the Alexander J. Skrzypek
Award in 2004, given to those who make out-standing
contributions in the advancement of
library service for the blind and physically dis-abled
We offer our sincere condolences to Barry’s
wife Phyllis and children Randon, Rachael and
Sarah. Barry was truly one of a kind, and he
will be deeply missed.
FAMILY DONATES ATLAS TO MAP COLLECTION — The Groharing family of
Thomson, Illinois, donated an 1876 Atlas of the State of Illinois to the State
Library’s Map Department. Published by Warner & Beers of Chicago, the atlas con-tains
general county maps, a map of the United States, brief county histories (up to
1876), census statistics, and illustrations of homes, farms and factories of the day.
Pictured are family patriarch Bruce Groharing (seated), (standing left to right) State
Library Director Anne Craig, Richard Groharing, map librarian Tom Huber, Lee
Groharing and map librarian Arlyn Booth. Not present for the donation were Don,
Bernard and Jeannie Groharing.
Read for a Lifetime draws
nearly 1,000 students
Statistics for the 2008-09 Read for a Lifetime program, the State Library’s
reading program for high school students, have been released. Nearly 1,000
students from across the state participated and collectively read nearly 4,700
books over the course of the school year.
• 988 students (and five adult library staff members) from 72 Illinois high
schools and public libraries read 4,692 books.
• 68 high school seniors received four-year participation certificates.
• Six students read all 25 titles on the reading list.
• The top five most read books were: Sold; Just Listen; Nineteen Minutes;
Red Kayak; and How to Ruin a Summer Vacation.
For more information about Read for a Lifetime, please visit
Ask?Away group on WebJunction
Ask?Away Illinois, the statewide virtual reference service, now has a group
on WebJunction Illinois. The group includes information about staffing, mar-keting,
training and participating in Ask?Away. The WebJunction group plat-form
allows all Ask?Away participating librarians with accounts on
WebJunction to add documents and participate in discussions. You don’t
need to be a member of WebJunction to view the group page, however. The
Ask?Away Illinois Web site now will only be used as a patron portal for
access to the Ask?Away chat service.
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