Geelong Library CEO Chosen by Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation

Geelong Regional Library Corporation CEO, Patti Manolis, has been selected as the only Australian participant to join the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation’s inaugural International Network of Emerging Library Innovators (INELI).
The Global Libraries Initiative of the Bill and Melinda Gates Foundation is establishing this Network in recognition of the turbulent economic times Public Library Leaders around the world are facing along with the crucial role public libraries play in educating communities and helping them respond to change. 
A rapidly changing external environment is affecting all libraries regardless of their level of development.  This offers a unique opportunity for public library leaders to redefine what it means to be a public library. 
The Global Libraries initiative of the Bill & Melinda Gates Foundation believes that the most effective way to ensure that emerging library leaders can respond to change is to provide them with opportunities to connect with each other to explore new ideas, to experiment with new services, and to learn from one another.
One strategy to address this is the creation of the International Network of Emerging Library Innovators (INELI).  The network has three primary goals:
  • Create an international pool of future library leaders to build and sustain public libraries throughout the world.
  • Explore or address global library issues that have the potential to stimulate, expand, or improve public library service.
  • Enhance the leadership skills of library professionals to enable them to redefine public libraries for the future to meet the unique needs of the people in their respective countries.
Following a competitive global application process Ms Manolis will now join 19 others from around the world in INELI and is the only Australian recipient of this remarkable opportunity.
Other countries represented in the program will include UK, Kenya, Netherlands, Chile, Botswana, Germany, Philippines, Kyrgyzstan, Egypt, China, South Africa and New Zealand.
Ms Manolis’ appointment to INELI is a three year commitment to learning and engagement with other library leaders globally. She has agreed to travel to other countries, complete academic assignments and volunteer her time to work with other library professionals as part of this commitment.
Ms Manolis said, “INELI will provide great personal and professional development opportunities as well as functioning as a public library issues think tank.
“The issues explored and the learning achieved will be of direct benefit to Geelong Regional Library Corporation’s future planning and service delivery and I will also be looking for opportunities to share this knowledge with my Australian peers.
“I am proud to have been selected and I also understand that this is recognition of the very positive work I have undertaken with the GRLC Board and Staff in recent years”, she said.
Media Enquiries: Anthea Doran, Corporate Communications Coordinator, Geelong Regional Library Corporation, 0409 419 828. Ms Manolis is available for telephone interview and photographs.