Gary L. Shaffer

Public Library
Executive Director

Board member
Public Library Association
Board of Directors

Ph.D. Student, Managerial Leadership in the Information Professions, Simmons College

15 years of Fortune 500 advertising account and marketing experience

P.O. Box 3515

Tulsa, OK 74101




Latest News:

2/12 Shaffer named to the American Library Association's (ALA's) Public Awareness Committee. The committee's charge is to develop programs that promote libraries and library issues nationwide and to assist ALA members in promoting their libraries.

2/12 Tulsa City-County Library prepares its MindMixer site for launch. MindMixer is billed as a virtual town-hall that allows municipalities and now libraries to engage its constituents. Tulsa City-County Library is the first library and the first governmental agency in Oklahoma to use MindMixer.

1/12 Shaffer joins colleagues from across the US to participate in the first workshop of the Digital Public Library of America Initiative's Audience & Participation Workstream at the J. Erik Jonsson Central Library in Dallas, TX.

1/12 Shaffer attends the Association for Library Collections & Technical Services workshop Libraries Linked Data, and the Semantic Web at the newly-opened, Omni Hotel in Dallas, TX. Co-presenters included Peter Brantley of the Internet Archive's BookServer Project and Eric Miller formerly of the World Wide Web Consortium (W3C) based out of the Massachusetts Institute of Technology.

1/12 Shaffer and other members of the American Library Association (ALA) Committee on Legislation, working in tandem with the ALA Washington Office and the Office for Information and Technology Policy, cheer as the misdirected Stop Online Piracy Act. (SOPA) is postponed in the House. However, the Senate version, known as he PROTECT IP Act (PIPA) is still in play.

1/12 Shaffer successfully petitions nonprofit Local Wiki to gain access to software to aid the Tulsa City-County Library in launching a citizen-powered local wiki. Look for its debut this spring.

1/12 The Tulsa City-County Library hosted TYPros (Tulsa Young Professionals) at the Schusterman-Benson Library branch on January 24. This free, family-friendly event featured Simon & Schuster author and Oklahoma's own Tammi Sauer author of Mostly Monsterly and other children's favorites.

1/12 The Tulsa Library Trust establishes the Walter H. Helmerich III Professional Development Fund in honor of Walt Helmerich who passed this month. Mr. Helmerich was a noted Tulsa businessman, philanthropist, and great contributor to the Tulsa Library Trust.

1/12 Urban Tulsa names Shaffer to the Hot 100 to Watch in 2012 list for second year in a row.

12/11 Shaffer interviewed by Loren Farr at Studio 21, a Tulsa Community College show run out of the award-winning Center for Creativity on Boston Ave.

12/11 The Tulsa Library Commission accepts Shaffer's recommendation to hire Sustainability Consultant Dr. Donald Fisher to evaluate the library's current sustainability efforts and to help outline a plan for continued improvement in Triple Bottom Line Sustainability.

12/11 Tulsa Library Trust awards Alan Furst the Peggy V. Helmerich Distinguished Author Award. Mr. Furst was honored at a black tie event by 442 attendees, which was held in the Central Library. A public program featuring Mr. Furst was held the following day.

12/11 Mr. & Mrs. Jack Zarrow were inducted into the Tulsa Library Trust Hall of Fame for their ever present support of the Tulsa City-County Library and its mission.

12/11 Tulsa City-County Library introduces free online live tutoring help via Homework Help Now! and online live job coaching and resume writing assistance via Job Now! services.

11/11 Tulsa City-County Library CEO Gary Shaffer and colleague Ellen Cummings asked to contribute along with only a handful of public librarians in Creating a Blueprint for Building a National Digital Public Library conference in Los Angeles. The conference was hosted by the Los Angeles Public Library and was funded by the Institute of Museum and Library Services and the Alfred P. Sloan Foundation. Participants included, OCLC, John Palfrey and others from the Digital Public Library of America project at the Berkman Center for Internet & Society at Harvard.

11/11 Tulsa City-County Library CEO Gary Shaffer discusses the planned Central Library renovation with Rich Fisher of local NPR affiliate KWGS on Studio Tulsa.

11/11 Tulsa City-County Library and the Tulsa Library Trust welcome author and illustrator Grace Lin, this year's Books to Treasure author. As part of the program, Ms. Lin designed a custom library card given to every second grader in Tulsa County along with a copy of her book Lissy's Friends. The program and books are sponsored by the Anne & Henry Zarrow Foundation.

10/11 Tulsa City-County Library hosts hundreds of participants at the Anime MiniCon at Connor's Cove at the Hardesty Regional Library. Special guest was Printz Award winning author Gene Yang. This event was made possible by the Hardesty Family Foundation.

10/11 Shaffer serves as keynote speaker for the Tulsa City-County Library All Staff Day. This year's gathering scored the highest in staff satisfaction to date.

9/11 The Tulsa City-County Library is one of eight libraries chosen nationally to participate in the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation funded Public Access to Technology Benchmark Study. The study is being convened by the American Library Association Office for Information and Technology Policy, the Public Library Association, the Urban Libraries Council, and the International City/County Managers Association (ICMA). Shaffer joined staff from all entities along with colleagues from the participating libraries in Milwaukee, WI at the ICMA Annual Conference for strategic planning session.

9/11 The Tulsa City-County Library hires award-winning library architectural firm Meyer Scherer & Rockcastle Ltd. (MS&R) to lead the renovation project of the Central Library . Additionally, the library hired local architecture firm Crafton Tull to assist. Work is to begin in fall of 2013. Watch MS&R's presentation video on the project.

8/11 Tulsa City-County Library and the Tulsa Library Trust welcomes Guardians of Ga'Hoole author Kathryn Lasky to Tulsa. Ms. Lasky is the 2011 winner of the Anne V. Zarrow Award for Young Readers' Literature.

8/11 Tulsa City-County Library makes available for free download a Library App in all major app stores, launches a new Facebook fan page, and introduces a free weekly email service for customers that showcases all new books, DVDs, and other materials added to the collection in the last week.

8/11 Shaffer to keynote the final day of iCon 2011, the Oklahoma Library Association information conference on August 5 in Midwest City, OK.

7/11 Shaffer joins other Tulsa leaders in welcoming 150 participants to the 2011 Tulsa Creativity Summit, held at the world famous Philbrook Museum of Art.

7/11 Shaffer joins Abrams Books' Executive Director of Publicity & Marketing Jason Wells, Actress Molly Shannon, and others in celebrating her debut Children's Book Tilly the Trickster, over dinner at the Ritz Carlton, New Orleans on the eve of her address at the American Library Association annual conference.

7/11 Tulsa City-County Library and Good Day Tulsa host author Meg Cabot of Princess Diaries fame, at Connor's Cove at the Hardesty Regional Library.

5/11 Tulsa Metro Chamber recognizes Tulsa City-County Library's contribution to business, with one of seven small business awards.

5/11 CNN Book TV visits the Tulsa City-County Library to tape a program with Native American authors Susan Supernaw and Walter Echo-Hawk. Supernaw is a former Miss Oklahoma while Echo-Hawk is a legal scholar and advocate for indigenous people's rights. The program subsequently aired on July 4 and 5. Watch it here.

5/11 Shaffer joins Public Library Association incoming president Marcia Warner and other library leaders in Washington DC to meet with the Senate Health Education Labor & Pensions Committee policymakers to communicate the vital role US Public Libraries play in Pre-kindergarten literacy skills building, as well as job searching and job skills building.

 5/11 Shaffer elected to a second term on the Public Library Association (PLA) Board of Directors. PLA is a division of the American Library Association.

4/11 Tulsa native and New Orleans Saints' Wide Receiver Robert Meachem kicks off Read 60, a partnership between his Follow Your Dreams Foundation and the Tulsa City-County Library that encourages students age 8-17 to read 60 minutes per day.

3/11 Shaffer touts library's role in helping Tulsans cross the digital divide in an interview with Tulsa People Magazine.

2/11 Tulsa City-County Library staffers awarded two prestigious Oklahoma Humanities Awards by the Oklahoma Humanities Council. The American Indian Resource Center for a project to educate children about vanishing languages and the Readers' Library for a program called Novel Talk.

1/11 Shaffer named one of the "Hot 100 to Watch in 2011" by Urban Tulsa Weekly.

12/10 Tulsa City-County Library welcomes Ian McEwan as he accepts the 2010 Peggy V. Helmerich Distinguished Author Award at a sold out black tie event for 465.

11/10 Shaffer accepts appointment to the position of Tulsa City-County Library system Chief Executive Officer. He officially reports January 5.

10/10 The Sacramento News and Review named the Sacramento Public Library "The Best Place to Begin Your Job Search" in its annual "Best Of" issue. The magazine cited the library's excellent online resources, in reminding locals that librarians are the first responders in America's jobs crisis.

9/10 Sacramento Public Library kicks-off its two-month long One Book Sacramento: Connecting our Communities project, announcing over 40 free programs centered on the themes of this year's selection, The New York Times Notable Book, Zeitoun by Dave Eggers. The book tells the true story of just one family's survival during and after Hurricane Katrina. The announcement is featured in a special four-page supplement in the Sacramento Book Review. Author Eggers will visit Sacramento on October 20th, and appears at the Crest Theater, 1013 K Street, Downtown Sacramento at 7:30 p.m. All are welcome.

9/10 Sacramento Public Library launches its free mobile phone application on to the smartphone market. The app is available on the iPhone and Android platforms, among others. Patrons can request books, check library hours, and view library programs via the app. The application was created by Silicon Valley-based Boopsie.

8/10 Sacramento Public Library welcomes over 3,400 guests, including Senate Pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, Mayor Kevin Johnson, and California State Librarian Stacey Aldrich to the grand opening of the Robbie Waters Pocket Greenhaven Library.

7/10 Shaffer's duties expand at the Sacramento Public Library. Director Rivkah K. Sass appoints Shaffer to oversee nine public service offerings, in addition to Communication and Graphics. Amongst his new reports are the library's adult literacy and homework center staff. Shaffer has already begun a reorganization of these patron offerings.

6/10 Sacramento Public Library launches its 2010 Summer Reading program via MegaSplash at the Central Library. Billed as "Five Floors of Fun," the family-friendly event included costumed characters, local entertainers, a reading fortune teller, and tours of a Sacramento Police Department rescue boat. Free transportation was provided by Sacramento Regional Transit. Partners promoting the event were News10 and The Sacramento Bee.

4/10 Executive Editor Thomas Goetz of Wired Magazine is the keynote speaker for National Library Week at the Sacramento Public Library. His new book The Decision Tree: Taking Control of Your Health in the New Era of Personalized Medicine, ties together the library's current Do It Yourself and Helping You Be Better Every Day! campaigns, under the Communities Thrive @ Your Library national campaign.

3/10 The Sacramento Public Library closes down 9th Street, between I and J, to hold a Digital Library Festival. The star of the festival was the Overdrive Digital Bookmobile, a semi-tractor trailer which promotes downloadable e-books and audio-books, was joined by twenty-five booths, each touting a different proprietary web service available from the library 24 hours per day, seven days per week.

3/10 Author Laura Numeroff, visits the Sacramento Public Library and delights an audience of more than 500 by reading some of her classic children's books. Her latest book, The Jellybeans and the Big Book Bonanza, is set in a library.

1/10 Shaffer reaches out to Senators Barbara Boxer and Dianne Feinstein to ask that public libraries be included in the Jobs for Main Street (Stimulus) Bill. As first-responders in getting America back to work, public libraries need to counter budget-cuts that are closing buildings and decreasing hours in spite of overwhelming increasing demand.

1/10 Shaffer invited by John Collins, Director of the Harvard Graduate School of Education (HGSE) Gutman Library to join Christina Dunn, Department of Education's Director of the National Library of Education at HGSE. Shaffer joined HGSE master's and Ph.D. students for an Education Resources Information Center (ERIC) seminar/focus group looking to establish usage patterns, as well as brainstorm improvements of this educational database portal.

1/10 Shaffer joins Simmons 2008 Ph.D. cohort in presenting HR onboarding best practices paper to the Association of College and Research Libraries Personnel Administrators and Staff Development Officers Discussion Group. Key discussion point: Orientation and onboarding are two very different things.

1/10 Shaffer appointed to Public Library Association National Library Advocacy Day Task Force. Set for Tuesday, June 29, 2010, National Library Advocacy Day will convene librarians, library workers, and people who support libraries on Capitol Hill at 11 a.m., so that our voices may be heard.

1/10 Sacramento Public Library staff, along with Congresswoman Doris Matsui, California Senate pro Tem Darrell Steinberg, Mayor Kevin Johnson, and others welcome thousands on opening day, January 9, of the new North Natomas Public Library.

12/09 Sacramento City Unified School District Superintendent Jonathan Raymond appoints Shaffer to district's Literacy Task Force .

12/09 Shaffer joins newly appointed California State Librarian Stacey Aldrich and library leaders from across the state for a two-day summit to improve Internet access in California public libraries. The summit, titled Opportunity Online: Achieving Broadband Solutions for Libraries and Communities, brought together 200 library leaders, supporters, nonprofits, and state government leaders. Convened in Sacramento, the summit was made possible by the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and Washington, DC based nonprofit Connected Nation.

11/09 Public Library Association Board Director Shaffer joins Jill Nishi, Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation and retired Memphis Public Library Director Judy Drescher in hosting the PLA's Turning the Page grant recipients in St. Louis, Missouri. The two-day advocacy training workshop was generously funded by the Foundation.

10/09 Sacramento Public Library expands upon its Better Every Day! Campaign by launching Serving You...Better Every Day! on transit, direct mail, and inserts. This latest rendition of the campaign moves the message from a purely institutional focus to one celebrating the interaction between customer and library.

9/09 Author Steve Lopez visits the Sacramento Public Library to share about his personal friendship and journey with Nathaniel Ayers, as told in his best-selling book and the Sacramento Public Library's One Book Sacramento: Connecting Our Communities selection The Soloist.

9/09 Secretary of Education Arne Duncan holds a town hall meeting at the Sacramento Public Library's Central Library. Joined by Sacramento Mayor Kevin Johnson, he addressed education reform and Race to the Top, available K-12 Stimulus Funding.

5/09 The Sacramento Public Library plays host to United States Secretary of Commerce Gary Locke. The Cabinet member was in Sacramento to promote the digital television conversion. Shaffer was the department's chief liaison during the visit.

4/09 Read Shaffer's post on The New York Times article 101 Uses for a Deserted Mall.Shaffer offers up public libraries as excellent tenants for malls. Jurisdictions would be well served to work with developers upfront to include favorable financial conditions for public libraries in these planned spaces. The article was a follow-up to another titled, Malls Test Experimental Waters to Fill Vacancies.

3/09 Sacramento Public Library announces its 2009 One Book Sacramento: Connecting Our Communities selection, The Soloist by Steve Lopez at the library foundation's annual Authors on the Move dinner. The Soloist was named one of the best books of the year in late 2008 by Publisher's Weekly.

3/09 Shaffer develops the "Sacramento Public Library: Better Every Day!" ad campaign and leads a team that implements the Internet, transit, outdoor, newspaper, general and Hispanic market radio advertising.

3/09 Sacramento Public Library launches its new Web site, on-time and under budget, to many accolades. Shaffer says the dynamic site, for which he directed the project, allows staff from across the system to maintain individual pages and offers customers a more user-friendly experience.

1/09 The Sacramento Public Library plays host to the 75th Biennial Crocker Kingsley Art Exhibition on the balcony of the Central Library's Tsakopoulos Galleria. Shaffer served as the Kingsley Art Club's chief library liaison.

11/08 Shaffer presents Getting the Word Out! a library literacy marketing toolkit at the California Library Association Literacy Section Annual Meeting. New television, radio, and newspaper PSAs were shared with the group. The presentation took place at the San Jose Public Library's Dr. Martin Luther King Library.

11/08 Sacramento Public Library launches Smart Investing for Women, a once-a-month noon-time brown-bag talk series. The Keynote speaker launching the series is public television's Pam Krueger; host and producer of the show MoneyTrack. Pam is also the author of the The MoneyTrack Method: The real person's guide to successful investing.

10/08 Sacramento Public Library is the only public library to exhibit Freedom's Sisters, the latest traveling exhibition from the Smithsonian Institute, now on display through early January 2009. The exhibit may also be viewed at one of the many museums across the country which will follow.

10/08 Shaffer attends the PLA Fall Board Meeting and a joint meeting of board members from other ALA Divisions and the ALA Executive Board in Chicago. Amongst many discussions was a request from ALA to seek stimulus funding for public libraries from the Federal Government, PLA Communities of Practice, and Leadership Development.

9/08 The Center for Creative Leadership (CCL) issues an extremely favorable report on the Urban Libraries Council Executive Leadership Institute (ELI). The report cited that ELI utilized best practices in 10 of CCL's leadership program dimensions. Shaffer graduated from the fourth ELI class.

9/08 Sacramento Public Library fills the Community Center Theater to near capacity (2,400) for a presentation by the author of the 2008 One Book Sacramento, Connecting our Communities selection: Greg Mortensen. Mortensen's book Three Cups of Tea has sold over 2 million copies and has been on the New York Times Best Sellers list for 83 weeks. Mortensen's co-author David Oliver Relin will visit the library in October.

9/08 California State Library debuts a Public Service Announcement promoting public libraries' free adult literacy programs on International Literacy Day. Shaffer conceived the campaign and is assisting the State Library with its launch.

6/08 Government Technology Magazine heralds Sacramento Public Library's MoneySmart @ your library Web page, one of 32 Book Bulletin Web pages, full of recommendations on books, materials, articles and Web sites on a myriad of topics. Customers may also sign-up to have Book Bulletins delivered to their e-mail inboxes. All suggestions link directly to the e-item or to the catalog record.

5/08 Shaffer elected to the Public Library Association Board of Directors.

4/08 Sacramento Public Library and the Sacramento Public Library Foundation celebrate National Library Week by bringing NPR's StoryCorps project to Sacramento.

3/08 Simmons College, Boston, Massachusetts, accepts Shaffer into its Ph.D. program in Managerial Leadership in the Information Professions. This distance-learning program is designed for (full-time) working, senior-level information professionals.

2/08 Shaffer is nominated to serve on the Public Library Association Board of Directors .

1/08 Reference User Services Association Executive Director Barb Macikas recommends Shaffer for a talk to fellow Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) grant recipients at the American Library Association Midwinter Conference in Philadelphia. The bibliography and a methodology (detailed in a 2003 article), which Shaffer shared during his talk, are posted here for the groups' reference.

12/07 The Alameda County Library hires Shaffer to give a talk on marketing for libraries. Per a letter from Children's Services Manager Bonnie Janssen the talk was very well received.

12/07 American Library Association announces that Shaffer and his cohorts at the Sacramento Public Library are awarded a $60,000 grant by the Financial Industry Regulatory Authority (FINRA) to execute their project proposal: Take Control of Your Future: Smart Investing for Career Women. Shaffer served as the chief grant writer and will also serve as the project principal.

10/07 Shaffer joined California State Librarian Susan Hildreth to present a program at the Annual California Library Association Conference in Long Beach. The presentation served as an introduction to the newly available Public Library Association publication Libraries Prosper with Passion, Purpose and Persuasion: A PLA Toolkit for Success.

10/07 Director of Marketing Shaffer posts a Public Relationship Request for Proposal on behalf of the Sacramento Public Library. The RFP calls for a complete change in how a public library interacts with its customers, via the Web, in-branch, and via the phone.

10/07 The Urban Libraries Council's fourth Executive Leadership Institute graduates. Shaffer joins over 70 library leaders who have completed this leadership program run by Geno Schnell, who has run similar "action-learning" leadership programs for various departments in the Federal Government and the private sector.

6/07 Shaffer and fellow Public Library Association @ Your Library Advocacy Campaign Task Force members publish and make available for sale Libraries Prosper with Passion, Purpose and Persuasion: A PLA Toolkit for Success at this years' American Library Association Annual Conference. The toolkit was instrumental in securing a $7.7 million dollar grant from the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation to be used for public library advocacy training. This is the single largest grant ever awarded to ALA or any division of ALA. Library Journal reports that grant recipients will be trained in sessions offered around the country.

5/07 Library Journal announces Shaffer's move to the Director of Marketing post at the Sacramento Public Library.

4/07 Shaffer leaves mark on the County of Los Angeles Public Library via the establishment of a National Library Week Evening Author Series partnership with the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books and an expanded experiential themed booth at this year's festival. View photos of the booth experience themed "County of LA Public Library, where Science, Magic and Learning Meet." The Festival was held April 28-29th, 2007 at the UCLA Campus.

2/07 Shaffer discusses the loss of Brooklyn Public Library's innovative Public Urban Library Service Education (PULSE) program to the profession, with Library Journal Editor-in-Chief Francine Fialkoff. Read her editorial titled Keep PULSE Beating here.

11/06 Infopeople, a project that functions as the training arm of the California State Library, proposes that Shaffer conduct intermittent statewide training on an ongoing part-time basis.

10/06 The Urban Libraries Council chooses Shaffer as a fellow for its prestigious Executive Leadership Institute 2006-'07 class. The program is facilitated and taught by Johns Hopkins University faculty.

9/06 Shaffer promoted to Public Services administrative post at the County of Los Angeles Public Library Headquarters.

8/06 The County of Los Angeles Public Library nominates Shaffer to participate as a fellow in the Executive Leadership Institute of the Urban Libraries Council in Baltimore, MD for the '06-'07 Class.

7/06 Gary Shaffer publishes an article entitled Stop the Presses! in the July 2006 issue of School Library Journal.

6/06 Public Library Association National President and California State Librarian Susan Hildreth asks Shaffer to serve on the prestigious PLA Partners committee.

4/06 Gary Shaffer accepts nomination to Beta Phi Mu an international library and information studies honor society.

3/06 Shaffer named one of the 50 people shaping the future of libraries by Library Journal. See LJ Movers & Shakers for details.

2/06 Author Dave Eggers' 826NYC opens first Superhero Writing & Tutoring Annex in the basement of the Williamsburgh Branch of the Brooklyn Public Library. The partnership was an outgrowth of Shaffer meeting Eggers at the 2004 New Yorker Festival. Shaffer served as the project manager on the alliance while at Brooklyn. See Shaffer's School Library Journal article for details.

1/06 Gary Shaffer accepts appointment within elite reference unit of the County of Los Angeles Public Library.

11/05 Shaffer addresses the Library Public Relations Council at the New York Public Library's Science, Industry, and Business Library. The talk: Building Strategic Partnerships in Libraries may be accessed here.

8/05 John Berry, Editor & Chief of Library Journal publishes Shaffer's letter on his Feedback page.

Other helpful links are:

Download Adobe Acrobat Reader