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a silent salute: The audience "claps" at Joke Night during Deaf Awareness week. Click Arts&Life for a link to story. / Photo by Leah Lopshire

Today's word on journalism

December 16, 2008

As part of my own personal "war on Christmas" (which a Utah state senator has offered legislation to outlaw), the WORD celebrates the season by going on hiatus until January. May all out days be merry and bright, and here’s to a safe, healthy and saner New Year. HoHoHo!

Empty Minds: "Of all the people expressing their mental vacuity, none has a better excuse for an empty head than the newspaperman: If he pauses to restock his brain, he invites onrushing deadlines to trample him flat. Broadcasting the contents of empty minds is what most of us do most of the time, and nobody more relentlessly than I."

--Russell Baker, Pulitzer-winning columnist

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Former volunteer steps up to take over Newton library duties

HOLIDAY DECORATIONS: Newton Library's new director Sara Rigby completes a library decoration project started by local Boy Scouts. / Photo by Rachel Christensen

By Rachel Christensen

November 25, 2008 | NEWTON -- Sara Rigby stepped up to the plate when Cleo Griffin retired from her position as director of the Newton Library this month.

Although Rigby graduated college with a degree in teaching, she said she decided to change her field of work and recently finished a state certification program to become a librarian. The program is carried over 2.5 years, Rigby said, and consists of a three-day session in the spring and another in the fall. Rigby said the sessions lasted about 20 hours and taught subjects such as administration and cataloguing.

Rigby said she moved to Newton with her husband and six children, ranging from 2 to 13 years in age, when her husband was hired for a teaching position in Smithfield.

"We moved to Newton six years ago and I started volunteering [at the library]," she said. "I've always loved books."

Rigby and her family chose to move to Newton so her husband could have some separation from his students in Smithfield, Rigby said.

"You can let your kids go to the park and their friends will be there, and you don't have to worry about strangers being there," she said of Newton. "Everybody rides their bikes. It's that farming community and people help each other."

Rigby has worked three years alongside Cleo Griffin. She said besides a few quirks, the two have the same ideals and goals for the library. Rigby said she agrees with Griffin's management style and doesn't plan on deviating far from Griffin's way of running the library.

"Everyone has their own style of doing things," she said. "Once I find my niche, I don't think it will be that hard."

Rigby said her favorite literature genres are romance and suspense, which she said make a good story when the two types are combined. Rigby's favorite book is Island of the Blue Dolphin and has been such since her youth.

"My teacher read it to us in fourth grade and I always still love it," she said.

The library position is neither full-time nor part-time, and Rigby said it's nice because she can work a couple of days and still spend time with her family.

"To work with kids and adults is a perfect combination," she said. "I love meeting people and working with them."

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