June 27, 2024: Board of Library Trustees engage Koya Partners for executive director search

At the June 25 regular meeting, the Oak Park Public Library Board of Trustees voted to engage the professional search firm of Koya Partners to conduct a national search for the Library’s next executive director.

It is expected that the Board and Koya will schedule an initial kick-off meeting within the next two to four weeks. A primary focus of this first meeting will be the development of parameters for the search process. This will likely include the formation of a search committee or task force, identification of opportunities for staff and community input, determination of a search timeline, and creation of a candidate profile, which is likely to require a master’s degree in library and information science.

As part of the search process, Koya will solicit 360-degree comprehensive references on final candidates based on their prior employment, including input from staff, board, and library leadership. Koya will also support onboarding to ensure a smooth transition.

“Koya Partners has an excellent reputation for identifying exceptional candidates for leadership roles with public and academic libraries and related organizations,” said Matthew Fruth, president of the Library’s Board of Trustees. “They have deep roots in the Chicagoland region and a strong track record of success in providing meaningful opportunities for staff and community members to participate in the search process.”

Fruth also emphasized that Koya’s commitment to diversity, equity, and inclusion aligns with the library’s mission, vision, and values. Koya’s proposal to the Board indicated that 75% of the firm’s candidate placements in 2023 identified as people of color and 62% as women.

Interim Co-Executive Directors Leigh Tarullo and Suzy Wulf will continue to provide day-to-day leadership of the Oak Park Public Library during the search process and until a new executive director is appointed.

“We know that the Oak Park Public Library is a valued community resource. We are grateful to Leigh and Suzy for their commitment to maintaining our high-quality programs and services and supporting the needs of our valued staff during this transition,” concluded Fruth.

The Library Board committed to provide periodic updates at key milestones in the search process at their regular monthly meetings and on this library web page.

Terms of the Library Board’s engagement with Koya are being finalized. However, Koya’s proposal detailed a fee structure based on one-third of the total first-year compensation, including base salary and any bonuses plus a 2% administrative fee.