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Library Board Commences Search for New Director; Names Interim Executive Director

January 22, 2018 (Canton, Ohio)– The Stark County District Library Board of Trustees announced on Tuesday that it has selected John Keister & Associates to conduct a national executive search for candidates for the Executive Director/CEO role.

John Keister & Associates has over 30 years experience in executive searches and specializes in community libraries. The founder has been involved with public libraries for more than 29 years in various capacities, with extensive experience as an elected Public Library Trustee and Library Board President. He also served multiple terms on the Board of Directors of a library consortium made up of public, special, school and academic libraries in suburban Chicago.  The Board expects the candidate search and selection process to take 90-120 days to complete.    

The Library is also pleased to announce that the Board of Trustees ratified the appointment of Jean Duncan McFarren as Interim Executive Director at its January 16 meeting. In this role, McFarren will be responsible for the planning, development of all Library operations of the nine Branches, Main Library and the Mobile Services department of Stark County District Library.

McFarren has worked for Stark County District Library since 2010 and has served as Deputy Director since 2015. A graduate of Walsh University, she received her master’s degree in Library Science from Kent State University.  She has worked as a reference librarian and library administrator in both Stark and Summit Counties. 

McFarren is a graduate of Leadership Stark County’s Signature Program and Government Academy and was selected for the 2014 American Library Association Leadership Institute. She serves as a member of the Board of Directors of TomTod Ideas and is active in Women’s Impact Inc. She lives in Stark County with her husband, Rick, and daughter, Abigail. 

The Board has expressed full confidence in McFarren to lead the Library and ensure a smooth leadership transition.



One of the 9 largest library systems in Ohio – and the county’s oldest library – Stark County District Library serves the community through 10 locations, six mobile libraries, and a 24/7 digital branch.

A 2009 winner of the prestigious National Medal for library service, the Library serves over 140,000 active cardholders, annually circulating 3.85 million items from its 1.5 million item collection and providing access to an additional 66 million items from lending networks throughout Ohio. Each year the library presents more than 9,000 programs for 175,000 attendees and provides 240,000 computer sessions on the publicly available computers found in each branch.

Today, as it reimagines itself as The Smart Store, where everything is free®, the Library is emerging as a national thought-leader with innovations such as its “no overdue fines” policy, the BikeSmart bike sharing network, and the Start Smart School Partnership.

For more information, call 330.452.0665 or visit

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 Stark County District Library: Start Smart. Stay Smart. Share Smart.