BRASS Excellence in Business Librarianship sponsored by Mergent Names Its 2021 Winner – Mark Pond, Business Reference Librarian, Spokane Public Library

Mark’s strong service ethic, promotion of Spokane Public Library’s role in the regional business ecosystem, network building, and service to the profession is highly praised by colleagues. Some notable accomplishment are crowdsourcing subscriptions to both PitchBook and Bloomberg, a combination of resources not found elsewhere in a public library setting.

Some examples of Mark’s projects, leadership and services that have enhanced the stature, reputation and overall strength of RUSA include:

Over the past year Mark has been heavily involved with the Urban Libraries Council, working with their entrepreneurship team to develop a toolbox that would allow public libraries around the nation to become hubs f or their local business communities.

Not only is Mark making a difference with the Spokane business community and the Spokane Library, he is sharing his unique approach to business librarianship across the region and the nation.

Mark has consulted on numer ous projects around the state including working with the Washington State Microenterprise Association (through a WA State Department of Commerce grant) to develop a needs assessment for small, rural public libraries and how they can best support business d evelopment and workforce development within their communities. He has also worked directly with other Washington public libraries to help launch their business research and outreach efforts. Mark has been a leader in getting Washington state public librari es to expand their thinking when it comes to what they can offer their business community.

Mark has partnered with Eastern Washington University’s MBA program to develop a onecredit class so that EWU’s MBA students can exit the program Bloomberg certified, giving them a significant skill set in the marketplace that they would be lacking were it not for the SPL resources Mark cultivated. Gonzaga University is slated to start their own similar class.

Mark’s professional activities and contributions include:

In 2018, Mark was a Program Chair for the Oregon Library Association and Washington Library Association combined conference. This year he was Conference Co Chair for the WLA statewide conference. In the past several years, Mark has presented numerous times on the topic of outreach to the business community and how public libraries can play an integral part in their local business ecosystem. The participant evaluations consistently reflect Mark’s exemplary guidance and instruction in this area.

Mark has won multiple awards in the past for his business research and outreach efforts (including WLA’s statewide Outstanding Performance Award).

BRASS Excellence in Business Librarianship Award selection committee was Chaired by Genifer Snipes.

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