Community Connections: Dan McIntosh Shares How the Winter Park Public Library Educates and Elevates the Community
In recognition of Library Lovers’ Month, Lowndes attorney Dan McIntosh, former president and current member of the Winter Park Public Library Board of Trustees, discusses how the library’s new state-of-the-art facility will offer innovative ways to engage and educate local residents.
When did you first get involved with the Winter Park Public Library?
When my children were very young, we loved going to the library, searching for and finding that special book for them to take home. I cherish the memories of our reading together, which helped my children develop a love for books similar to my own. Six years ago, I began serving on the Winter Park Library Board of Trustees – and continue to do so today.
What attracted you to this organization in particular?
The Winter Park Public Library connects with all members of the Central Florida community, regardless of racial, ethnic, cultural, religious, social, and financial backgrounds. Through valuable educational programs and resources, the library provides an important local gathering place for all residents to come together and share ideas and information.
How have you benefited from your involvement?
As a volunteer, it gives me great pride and satisfaction to contribute to a community resource that is available to our diverse community. I am especially excited to be involved in helping to make the new Winter Park Library and Events Center, located in Martin Luther King, Jr. Park, a reality. The new, state-of-the art facility, which will offer expanded areas for library collection materials, additional study and meeting spaces, and improved technologies, is a resource this community will benefit from and enjoy for many decades to come.
What are some of the most important activities/work that the Winter Park Public Library does?
While many people are familiar with the library’s long-time service of lending books or providing a space for study and research, in today’s digital world, the library provides critical internet and computer access to bridge the digital divide. At the new facility, the library will provide twice as many computers and an expanded hands-on learning area for trying out new technologies. This will ensure that residents aren’t left behind by the pace of innovation. Additionally, the library has been continually ranked No. 1 per capita in the state for its lineup of class and event offerings, as well as its attendance – which we expect will continue to grow along with the library itself.
What do you hope that the Winter Park Public Library will achieve in the near future?
The new facility will bring additional opportunities for the library to greatly expand its current programs and offerings. I am confident that the library will find innovative ways to fully maximize the amazing space so that it can further promote literacy, creativity, and school and career readiness while also inspiring and engaging our entire community. As a central hub for education and collaboration, the library will raise the potential of all our residents and further strengthen our local community and economy.
Is there anything else you’d like to tell us about the Winter Park Public Library?
When the new facility opens, a special area will be dedicated to the history of Winter Park. These historical archives will allow patrons to explore the city’s collective history and learn more about how Winter Park grew from a resort community into the internationally recognized, award-winning city of arts and culture that we know today.