November 3, 2023

New Raymond Village Library director settling in

By Masha Yurkevich

For those who regularly attend the Raymond Village Library, you may notice some slight changes in the way the library operates as its new director, Richard Dowe, settles in.

Richard Dowe is the new director
and says he believes that having
a strong library helps create a
strong sense of belonging for
community residents.
Dowe grew up in Kennebunk and graduated from Kennebunk High School. From there, he went to college at McGill University where he received an undergraduate degree in Russian Studies and English Literature and a master's in library and information studies.

“I went on to work as a children’s librarian at the New York Public Library and after a few years I decided to move back home to Maine,” said Dowe.

He worked as the correctional librarian in Windham for a short time, was an elementary school library media specialist, and before coming to Raymond he also worked at the South Portland Public Library.

For Dowe, this is his first position with the Raymond Village Library and the town of Raymond.

“I have been here for a bit over a month and am enjoying learning more about the community and the library,” said Dowe.

The Raymond Village Library is a community based informational, educational, and recreational facility dedicated to providing quality library services and resources in a welcoming atmosphere. The library is responsive to the changing needs of the community, cooperates with other entities and strives to fulfill its role as a service oriented, dynamic library and Dowe said that he is happy to offer his services to the town of Raymond.

Being the library director means that Dowe gets to help both continue and improve upon library services for the Raymond community.

“The Raymond Village Library is a well-loved part of the town and I hope to help expand accessibility, so all members of the community feel welcome and engaged with the library,” said Dowe. “I want to continue to provide fun and enlightening programs and events for all ages, connect with other town departments and local organizations to provide even more opportunities for community members to meet and connect with each other. I would love to expand our collection with more graphic novels and comics.”

Dowe has an exciting opportunity to continue the great work of the Raymond Village Library while bringing his experience working in a variety of library settings.

“I plan on continuing to provide the Raymond community with free access to information, a place for people to gather during author events, art programs, card games, live music, and more,” he says. “I think the library is the heart of any community and having a strong library helps create a strong sense of belonging for residents.”

According to Dowe, he is pleased to have this opportunity and looks forward to meeting as many new people from the community as he can.

“Please come in and say hello, check out a book or DVD, or bring the kids in to do a craft. We also just joined a new library consortium called the Chickadee Library Consortium, consisting of Casco, Naples, Bridgton, Harrison, and Raymond,” he said. “This new consortium allows anyone with a Raymond Village Library card to visit and check out materials from any of the five libraries and request materials to be delivered to Raymond. This will greatly increase the number of books, DVDs, audiobooks, and more that we all have access to. I’m excited to help this small but mighty library thrive.”

The Raymond Village Library is a department of the town of Raymond and is a team effort led by Dowe, wonderful support staff and dedicated volunteers who work to provide a sense of community and educational opportunities to Raymond and the Lakes Region. <

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