This week we say goodbye to our director Amy Groskopf. Amy has been with the library for over 33 years and has held numerous positions in that time culminating in leading the library for the past 7 years.
With a small staff, she expanded the beginnings of Special Collections and turned it into a Center that is highly regarded as one of the best local history and genealogy collections west of the Mississippi River. She spearheaded the renovation of the Main Library basement into a welcoming and useful facility after pitching a million-dollar proposal on the spot to donors Ted and Alice Richardson Sloane. Working closely with the Scott County Genealogical Society, Amy was the catalyst of today’s Richardson-Sloane Special Collections Center. She worked with city and local organizations to create a premiere photograph collection, then initiated the Upper Mississippi Valley Digital Image Project making images accessible through that new medium, the internet!
Amy was a major force in building both Fairmount and Eastern branch facilities, handling many of the construction issues and details, putting out numerous “small fires” along the way, all while running SC at the same time. She has tackled remodeling, refurnishing, re-carpeting, and rearranging multiple times in her tenure.
Never afraid to pitch in, Amy schlepped thousands of glass negatives out of a coal dust-covered basement, dug out archival treasures from the basement of a crematorium, and loaded thousands of blueprints from a construction company when called upon with very little time to prepare. Amy has shelved books, processed collections, ordered equipment, managed conservation projects, built branches, trained staff, faced floods, consulted, contributed time and energy to archival organizations, held positions of leadership on boards and commissions, and ultimately led the library through arguably one of the nation’s biggest challenges – the Covid Pandemic. When faced with difficulty she put on her “mountain” earrings to meet it head-on! After all, if you can climb a mountain you can face anything, right?!
Amy’s unflappable professionalism, her ability to think outside the box, and her integrity have brought the Davenport Library system to our Community in new and exciting ways, making us “The Library”. We celebrate her contributions to DPL.
“The mountains are calling and I must go!.”-John Muir. Go, Amy, with our best wishes. Thank you for everything.
(posted by Karen)