June 5, 2018
Vancouver Public Library Welcomes Christina de Castell as New Chief Librarian
VANCOUVER, B.C. – Vancouver Public Library (VPL) today announced the appointment of Christina de Castell as Chief Librarian. De Castell joined VPL in 2006, and has served in increasing senior roles, most recently as Acting Chief Librarian since March 2018.
De Castell brings a depth of knowledge and experience to the role. She is internationally recognized for her expertise in copyright and digital technologies and has led the promotion of ebook lending among libraries in Canada. As a result of her innovative approach and leadership, VPL is considered a leader in ebooks among public libraries worldwide.
“After conducting a comprehensive North American search, the VPL Board is thrilled to have Christina take on the role of Chief Librarian. We have the utmost confidence in her,” said VPL’s board chair Kyla Epstein. “Christina’s expertise, innovative thinking and collaborative leadership style will ensure that VPL continues to meet the changing needs of our community, while creating an organizational culture where staff can thrive.”
Vancouver’s City Manager Sadhu Johnston is also pleased to welcome de Castell in her new role with VPL. “Encouraging and retaining high-caliber employees is an important way to ensure continuity and collaboration in a high performing workplace,” says Johnston. “We look forward to seeing Vancouver’s public libraries grow and thrive under her leadership.”
De Castell holds a master of library and information studies from the University of British Columbia. She is vice-chair of the copyright committee for the Canadian Federation of Library Associations, and has held board positions with the B.C. Library Association and the Special Libraries Association Western Canada Chapter.
After authoring the digital strategy and leading the opening of the Inspiration Lab for VPL, in 2015, she undertook a one year assignment representing libraries at UN and international forums as Manager, Policy and Advocacy for the International Federation of Library Associations and Institutions (IFLA) in The Hague, Netherlands.
“I’m honoured to take on this role and to work with our staff, stakeholders and Vancouver’s communities to reach our vision of an informed, engaged, and connected city,” says de Castell, who is also a frequent speaker on ebooks, reading, digital technologies and libraries. “As VPL continues to share the world’s ideas and stories through lending books, supporting literacy and providing great programs, I’m excited to explore together the possibilities that technology enables and the new ways that we can learn, create and collaborate.”
The leadership change takes place as VPL is about to unveil two new levels of vibrant community spaces in the downtown central branch, including a much-awaited public roof garden Anticipated opening of the new facilities is fall 2018.
De Castell succeeds Sandra Singh, who was appointed General Manager of Arts, Culture, and Community Services at the City of Vancouver.