The Bookmark About Libraries and Friends

by Jill Forman

Local Author Talk at Hill Road Library

Michele Artiz Smith, J.D. will visit the Hill Road Library on Sunday, May 15th, 2022 at 11:30 a.m. to discuss her book My Husband’s Keeper: A Memoir. 

Smith takes the reader through the early, middle, and late stages of Alzheimer’s disease. After her husband’s diagnosis, she vowed to learn as much as possible about the condition, becoming a State-Certified Ombudsman and gaining a window into the world of dementia and Alzheimer’s through visiting long-term care facilities and meeting with other families that experience this illness. 

More information can be found on her website: 

This event is free and open to the public. 

Online Bookstore update:

VFOL Online Bookstore is putting great vintage literature on sale in April! Hand selected for their quality, despite their age, these selections are sure to bring enjoyment. Also, be on the lookout for seasonal titles for children, new puzzles and of course fiction you can sink your teeth into.

Meet your Hill Road Library Staff

Interview with Veronica Betancourt, Library Technician I

Why did you become a librarian?

I came to the Ventura County Library system in 2021 after 10 years of teaching, tutoring, and college admissions counseling. I was very “burned-out” after working in high-pressure environments with high-pressure parents, and the opportunity to continue working with children and teens while stepping away from the high-stakes world of college admissions was very appealing to me.

What education do you have?

I have a bachelor’s degree from UC Berkeley, majoring in medieval history. I have always loved the process of how history is made and preserved throughout the centuries, so it makes sense that I would end up at a place that is all about books,  especially considering how much of a privilege access to books has been for most of human history

Where were you raised?  Were libraries important in your childhood?

I grew up in Silicon Valley and was really lucky to have had the San Jose Public Library system as a huge part of my childhood. I spent a lot of time after school in the library, and the library was the first place my parents let me go by myself on weekends. So for me libraries are a place of freedom and independence – I could read whatever I wanted and go whenever I wanted.

What is your favorite part of your job?

There are two things I love the most! I strongly believe in the value of non-commercial public spaces, and libraries are one of the last places left where you can spend all the time you want with no expectation of spending money. Whenever someone feels safe and secure in our library, regardless of their circumstances, I feel like we have done an important public service. There is also nothing better than the look on a child’s face when you pull “just the right book” off of the shelves for them! 

Anything else you’d like to add?

Just some words of appreciation for the whole Hill Road Library staff and Friends volunteers for making me feel at home here!


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