Charlene P. Smith, Support Services Manager of the Lake County Library System, is retiring after over 17 years with the library system. Charlene grew up in Ohio and got her Bachelor’s Degree with a major in Library Science from Wisconsin State University in Oshkosh in 1969. She began her library career with the University of Florida libraries, including working at the Spessard Holland Law Library. From Gainesville she moved to Lake County, Florida, and later worked at the Winter Park Public Library.
In 1990 she got her Master’s Degree from the University of South Florida. Since then she has worked as a Reference Librarian at the Leesburg Public Library and Director of the Tavares Public Library before joining the Lake County Library System in 1996. Over the years she has worked in every area of libraries except Childrens’ Services, and has had jobs in public, academic, and special libraries. During her tenure with Lake County, the system has grown from five to fifteen libraries. Her accomplishments include overseeing a shared library automation system, adding internet and wi-fi access for all patrons, implementing the library system website, and adding PC and print management at all but three of the libraries.
Charlene and her husband, Rollin, have lived in Zellwood, Florida with their three children, Alex, Charlene, and Katherine, since 1984. Locally she is known as one of the founders of the Bay Street Players in Eustis, and has often appeared on stage with her family. Her plans for the future include reading, sewing, cleaning out the garage, playing with the family’s three cats, and traveling to visit her daughter, Charlene, in Virginia, and her mother, Charlene, in Ohio. Yes, there are three of them. In a few months, you may even see her volunteering at one of the branch libraries