Courtright to stack final shelf at Poulsbo Library

POULSBO — One can probably find the answer to almost anything in a book. Books are, after all, the records of and gateways to the greatest depths of mankind’s knowledge. But how does one find that book, the one they desperately need to quell their search and satiate their mind?

That just so happens to be where, for more than 19 years, Rosemary Courtright has come in.

The North Kitsap Friends of the Library will host a farewell retirement party in honor of Courtright’s longtime reference librarian career from 6:30-8:30 p.m. Oct. 1 at the Poulsbo Library. The public is invited to join.

NKFOL president Barb Mitchusson said Courtright has been a loyal employee and a favorite of patrons at the branch for years.

“She’s just always been so helpful about everything in such a kind, conscientious way,” Mitchusson said.

Poulsbo branch manager Susan Lavin said Courtright has achieved at her reference desk what all librarians hope to accomplish.

“She illustrates the philosophy of public librarianship that we all strive for and that is to try and get people in touch with the information they need and want to make their lives better,” she said.

Lavin said Courtright’s dedication meant she always took the extra step in making sure people found what they needed.

“Rosemary has been an integral part of the Kitsap Regional Library,” she said. “She personifies all the good things about librarianship. We’re going to miss her.”

Courtright said being a librarian was her third career, as she worked in public health services in both Alaska and Spokane before opening a garden nursery in Cheney with her husband and their kids. She later earned a Masters degree in Library Sciences from the University of Washington, and in 1988 began working for the Kitsap Regional Libraries. Since 2002, she has served Little Norway’s most avid readers and researches, locating the resources they need from among KRL’s more than 500,000 volumes. Though Courtright has deemed it her third career, it is also a return to her roots, as she worked in a library during college.

“I gravitate toward the materials, the people, the education,” she said.

Courtright said being able to find helpful information not just for pleasure readers, but for those with medical needs and language barriers has been a memorable part of her career.

“What I think about when I’m here is the whole range of questions,” she said. “They bring home to me the needs that people have.”

She said whatever the query, when the perfect book is found, the moment can be priceless.

“It’s like an ‘Ah!’ and their face lights up,” she said. “I’m going to miss that.”

Though she’ll miss it, Courtright is looking forward to having a more relaxed pace of life, and time to ponder politics, travel, visit her family and better get to know her neighbors, both human and animal.

“And of course reading, too,” she added.

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