Richland librarian set to retire after 41 years

Image Credit: Mid-Columbia Libraries, Facebook

RICHLAND, Wash. – Branch Manager Tom Moak of the Mid-Columbia Libraries’ West Richland Branch is preparing to step away from his position after 41 years as a local librarian.

According to a press release issued by the Mid-Columbia Libraries, Moak is expected to step away from his role on March 4, 2021. This date was selected to give the next Branch Manager time to prepare for the summer rush.

MCL Executive Director and Chief Librarian Kyle Cox acknowledged Tom’s impact on the West Richland community in his own public statement.

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“We are thankful for the commitment, community focus, and zeal for knowledge Tom has given to MCL and our customers for over four decades,” Cox said. “Tom’s mark on life in the Mid-Columbia can be seen within our libraries and in so many other organizations. He is the personification of a life lived in service, believing life can be made better through effort and intention.”

Moak wears many hats in the Tri-Cities community. In addition to being the West Richland Branch Manager, Moak has served as a Port of Kennewick commissioner since 2014. He’s also President of the Kennewick Housing Authority, President of the Benton-Franklin-Walla Walla Good Roads and Transportation Association and Vice President of his Kiwanis club.

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He also served on the Kennewick City Council for eight years before a brief stint as a state representative for the 8th District of Washington state. He used to serve as President of the East Benton County Historical Society and as chair of the by-laws committee for the Washington Library Association.

“If you’re doing things that you feel are rewarding to you and the community, you keep doing them,” Moak said. “It really is the people who work with me—with their great community service attitude—who deserve a lot of the credit. There’s a framework here for the next manager to do even better.”

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