Jeannette Thompson was recently honored at a reception in Franklin Parish Library’s community room for her 47 years of dedicated service on the Library’s Board of Directors.
Through the years, her constant smile and heartfelt concern for the library has been a mainstay while serving on the Board.
“It has truly been a blessing to serve,” Thompson, a retired Winnsboro High School home economics teacher and business owner, said.
Onie Parker, library director, called Thompson an inspiration.
“She is a gracious and kind person who has always been an inspiration to the library board and staff,” Parker said.
John Guice, president of the Franklin Parish Library Board of Directors, said Thompson’s years of service was a positive asset for the library.
"Jeannette has a unique perspective on the library," Guice said, "Her leadership through the years has given the library a vision. She is a wonderful person, and we will truly miss her (on the Board)."
Thompson remembers both happy and sad events during her time sitting on the Board.
One particular moment of sadness was the library tax failing and having to shut down operations for a year, Thompson said.
“We closed for a year, but we came back even stronger,” she said. “Our parish supports our library.”
A happier memory is the library moving from a small building located across from the Franklin Parish Courthouse to its current location on Prairie Street.
“We were so excited about the move,” Thompson said. “We had more room.”
Parker said Thompson’s knowledge of the library’s importance to the community was key in its growth.
“Mrs. Thompson knows the role that the library can play in promoting literacy and educational opportunities in Franklin Parish,” Parker said. “She is forward thinking and open to new ideas for the library’s involvement in the community.”
With the move to Prairie Street complete, the library began expanding its services to offer a Genealogy Room which preserves the history of Franklin Parish and promotes ancestral research.
“The Genealogy Room has been great for the parish,” Thompson said. “It is a great source for Franklin Parish history.”
Additionally, Franklin Parish Library has expanded its services on line with its website: www.franklinparishlibrary.org.
The library’s website features various links where patrons can receive homework help, research family genealogy, check out eBooks and audiobooks, plus many more features for both adult and youth.
“We’re going to more of the electronics and the internet,” Thompson said. “We’re also trying to educate our schools to what we have.”
Thompson gives much of the credit for the library’s success to its staff.
“We have a wonderful staff at the library,” Thompson said. “They go above and beyond their duties. Their reach goes all over the parish.”
Being on the Board of Directors was the perfect fit for Thompson who is an avid reader.
“I still read,” Thompson said. “I read a variety of books but mostly religious and popular books and biographies.”